excerpt from “Unintentional Guide to the Big City”

From beneath mounds of earth, foundation enough for a grand reach to sky. Cranes and claws, metal blades abound behind the links. Consecrate the spire’s site in trucked concrete parked at the gate. What child would not be caught in the coil of construction below ground? Knowledge, that seed planted shoots forth, bursts to sprout to spear to stalk. The peak, a fruit. The fruit, a thorn. Ambition of footfalls plodding central stairwells. Two-thousand feet, an extremity of smoke. Of dust restlessly lapped by wind, leaving serpentine prints along the walks. Steeple of the barbed beak. The fanged tooth. A thumb pricking at heaven. The child, cusped in her waxing. Eager to reach her edge. Impatient for enough stairs to climb.

wind-bit child
begs to dig
casting for color


published as “Chicago Spire,” WaterStone Review, 2012