The Room of the Stolen Lamps
I walk down the dark street
past the neon drug stores,
alleyways full of cellophane corpses
and arrive at this abandoned building.
In the basement, there is the room
where I imagine they keep
all the lamps that were ever stolen.
They stand there, quiet as dawn,
unlovely as the moon seen through oil,
a string of snuffed torches. As the ones
who were beaten or kidnapped, they stand
afraid and alone. They are like orphans
gazing into the rich streets of a foreign land.
The cords are fallen nooses at their feet,
the shades of their faces in prayer,
the spine of their stands bent in grief.
Outside, streetlights pale above
the beams of silent traffic
and cast shadows like bars.