Monday, March 25, 2013

From the Empirical Archives: Scratch Apple by Christopher Bacavis

Scratch Apple
Christopher Bacavis
Originally published in the September 2012 issue of Empirical

New York City materials
Scraps of street have been
hanging up there in my room.
I’ve had no gambling problem,
but I have collected nearly 3,000 lottos
from the trash outside of delis.

Some had bad luck,
most had no luck.
Others won and threw them out
in scratched-up desperation,
an ordinary crushing tragedy,
massive quantity with an abject feeling that they
had their chance and lost
the game called
for Life.

And I hold one in my hands,
and I feel the one behind it
who played with hope
while sitting on the nine train
underneath the World Trade Center
twenty minutes before the first plane hit.
And I feel the earth quake,
feel so many people
jumping out
of that building.

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