Niles, Ohio 2011

Niles, Ohio 2011
by Thomas Bacher

Broken boards
draped across windows
chairless front porches, my gas
tank filled with unleaded
super test.

Chain links
a slim post
walked up the dusty road
alone. He was smoking
a Lucky Strike.

Windowboxes filled with weeds,
roof tiles water worn,
gardens with spindly climbers,
red climbers dangling on every
thunderstorm. I could feel the weather in
my flabby arms.

I inched by
deaf factory buildings,
a silence of fathers’ voices
habitually clocking  out
Independence Day drunkards
driving tan Impalas
into two-car garages.
filled with
constant overgrowth. The final tag sale
listed in the last column of the daily paper.

Car bodies of unemployed
pay stubs in rows of
fallow fields,
excised molars.
The Labor Day company town
led by High School majorettes
vilified by empty porch gliders crying
in the wind.

River ice
flows between silent fireplace
of antiqued family gatherings
Betrothals of hands
in calloused hands
of feeble waves
in vacant lots.

2 thoughts on “Niles, Ohio 2011

  1. I don’t know what event took place in Niles, Ohio in 2011, whether a natural catastrophe or severe economic downturn, either way what was once a flourishing cornucopia of memories is now a picture of dilapidation and a grim reminder that nothing lasts. Great descriptive piece. I was taken in by the compare and contrast interwoven thruout poem. Thanks for sharing.

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