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Monday, October 02, 2006


by Kenneth Salzmann

This is no game, remember,
Because the elevated rumbles still
Through the kitchen smells of each
Wave of ever-dark-eyed strangers
Ever cooking up strange dishes
Strangely spiced, and all the while
Slipping strange words
Into the spiced atmosphere
Hovering over 161st Street
To rise above the
Train's insistent jazz,
To swell into an unequivocal
Roar that will be joined by ghosts
As surely as forgotten ancestors
Will never let us go.
America is dark-eyed, too,
Against all its wishes,
And speaks in tongues,
And can't subdue
Its hunger for a common language.

Kenneth Salzmann has been an arts administrator, journalist, editor and freelance writer, and has been active in small press publishing since 1979. His poetry has appeared in numerous journals, including Rattle, Comstock Review, Sow's Ear Poetry Review, CQ and Afterthoughts. He lives in Woodstock, New York .