Thomas Fitzgerald

October 30, 2010


For The Man Who Practices His Saxophone In The Apartment Next Door

Ignore the calls and complaints.
Keep practicing Coltrane through the cold city night.
Forget the wind advisory on the news,
possible flooding on poorly drained streets,
torrential downpours past midnight.
Play your heart out, loud, as if we all knew we had it coming.
Don’t stop for anyone, not the police, your past,
the hand you remember once through your hair.
Forget. Wake us all.
And when you hear the knocking at your door,
simply play louder, play for me,
pour yourself into the flooded streets of the world


Upon Seeing A Man Spray Paint I Love You Across The Front Of His Girlfriend’s House

So you’ve said it
said it fully, completely,
left no doubt–

as when it rained blood over the skies of Paris
or monsoon season in China,
or tornado alley, or the great fault line,
Vesuvius, Pompeii, Bangladesh rising in the sun.
Tsunami, the final ice storm
the sky falling,
or lightning on the boy collecting bases after practice,
or the one caught in the flood.

A cloud holds itself quietly on San Juan
and you keep waiting.
The wind stops and the palms are still.
The old man with the straw hat stops painting his fence white.
The stray dog finds a home.
And so now you’ve written it,
left it all in big blood black ink across her house
and nothing ever happens.
A wave comes up, trembling,
pulls a rock from the shore.


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