The city has been deserted, next
Year’s phone book will not include
Our last name, nor will any mailbox.
There must be some obscure relative
Remaining in a two-family house
Somewhere, but I could not tell you
Who, or where they buy their groceries,
Which weatherman they quote. We will no longer
Stand at a bar-b-q in somebody’s driveway, cousins
Shooting baskets into a frayed net
Hung over the oil stains left
By a car, purchased from a common grandmother.
I will not think of the local parish
Until retrieving a prayer card
Tucked in a pocket of some dark
Coat I seldom wear.
A librarian, as well as three time Pushcart Prize nominee, Thomas O’Connell’s poetry and short fiction has appeared in Caketrain, NANO Fiction, Elm Leaves Journal, and The Los Angeles Review, as well as other print and online journals. As of January first, he will be the poet laureate of Beacon, New York.