| Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian

Courtesy of Sam Walpole/Flickr.


       Very soon, and in pleasant company.
                —Chinese fortune

    In a race for a tree, one Mexican soccer player almost beat the rain,
only to be met at the tree by lightning. Light, that cold sheet, replacing his blood,
joining with his muscle. His skin bursting into glorious copper.


    A sparkler stole the scene on Independence Day, electrifying a girl’s eyes.
She spun around, her dress lifting, sparkled tulle and satin. Her hair, with curls and
velvet blue bow, were too close to the sputtering of fire, capturing the flames. Light
blurring the outline of her face, leaving only party dress and shined shoes.


There is a woman on Houston Street, who refuses to walk downtown until the sun sets.
She doesn’t want the heat of each day clouding her mind. Downtown workers approach
her with food. The shelter attendant sees her with pins in her hair, sometimes lipstick.
Sleeping under building overhangs to avoid a streetlamp’s line of light, refusing her
eyes when car headlights drive past her sleeping bag, avoiding her own reflection
in the windows of a building alcove.


Death is a fire at your window when you have the curtains drawn.

There is no way to outwit it, especially when burning searches for those
who most avert their eyes.

It knows, there are times, despite the fear, when you want your reflection,
when you want to touch its fire.