New Orleans—New York

by Carol Alexander Red plums are the bodega’s daily special, at rot’s very verge. Wednesday crowds flow over the hump of bridge & tunnel traffic, delirious greasy smoke. The plums sag, well fingered. Leaning from unscreened windows, children dump dishwater on raku cement. At Greenwood, Brooklyn to Slidell, the drydocked are safely dead. Opaline city,


by Carol Alexander Less plumage. Fewer pirate eyepatches skulking around the bins. Pink retracts to notional seed, leaving a carapace of columbine the brown of dead cigars. Turkey oaks extrude ungainly acorns, splayed feet knotted by precipitate gusts of wind. Spackled squirrels with autoimmune disease, dock-tailed, slow. Less water from the decommissioned drinking fountains save