We begin to believe in the collapse
of trees / sky folded like a hand,
an hourglass wasting sand.

Can we contain the catastrophe?
The park is in bloom with loss.
Water towers perch like turkey hawks
on the shoulders of buildings,watching.

The newspaper wants stories of resilience:
Unity in the community,
people cooking food for the families,
organizing prayers for victims,
buying coffee for the cops.

Close months / halfway to agony.
Wrapped in down coats we survive.
We become the people we read about in the news.
The news becomes our truth.
Daily we dance doom daily
day after day after day after

Chemical sunsets, steam rises from the streets.
Time matters less now. There is nowhere to go.

Could I have caught them anyway—
those years of plenty—and pinned
them to the page?

Flyers for a missing cat paper the neighborhood.
The Hudson is as still as a holding tank.

A knot of sparrows levitates skyward,
painting the air with bright harmonies.

I pray the people of tomorrow
don’t need them as much as I do.


Photo by NOAA on Unsplash

Laura Murphy

Laura Brockett Murphy is a writer, actress and editor living in New York City. Laura likes to write about urban living and history of place. Her poem, La Flaneuse, is winner of Brooklyn Poets YAWP 2018 Poem of the Year. Laura has poems forthcoming in The Rumpus and Pembroke Magazine.