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Sunday, March 15, 2009

OH CHICAGO! Suite White City
Suite White City

Chicago I see you,
Though to be there I must tap root scenes,
Now, very long ago, what I share
Might be more dream, fiction,
Than actual history event, my life enfolds,
I see it in pictures,
The lake front parking, a make-out spot,
Way down at east end of Foster,
The time me and my son’s mother,
A woman who in future time to become my first,
My one, and only wife, today,
Almost thirty years, divorced,
That fellow, from within the bushes,
Came out with a length of metal gaffing hook,
Then with a big overhead swing,
Punctured the hood on my Dad’s Chevrolet,
Brand-new, 1960, four-door, hard-top, white,
And we survived the attack,
Intact, secure behind the doors and car in reverse,
We were lucky, I guess.

That time in the high rise, near North Side,
Where up on the 18th floor me and my buddy,
We laid that cop,
Oh, Chicago, she was great,
I remember her, only fondest delight!

I liked fact that her 9MM slept with us,
But under the pillow, the uniform,
The belt and boots, both on her, and
When they latter scattered and heaped,
Clothing and leather accessories,
They looked good, I recall
They were piled on the rug of the bedroom floor.

Later, in the back seat, police cruiser unit,
I joined the convergence, while she drove
And her partner sat shotgun, chased the culprit,
Down the alleys, fast, 30mph,
Galvanized cans popping, their lids flying like saucers,
Garbage was raining all over the concrete.

Riverview Park, my first high school,
Down the block from the Ferris Wheel,
Reader excuse the free thinking,
I leap here to insight and meaning,
Back to the time my great grandfather,
All the way from LaSalle, came to see the lights,
The white city, magic, and when he returned, home,
Told tales about the city, twenty-years after the Fire.

He ignited my grandmother’s lust,
She sold her soul to abandon the narrow,
Woman’s common lot, early twentieth-century,
Hand laundry, drudgery, the great bore, small town life,
She married to, iterant painter, my grandfather, John.
He went from town to town painting church murals,
Wayward man, by all accounts, if there ever were one,

He promised her life, incandescent, a part of history,
The new town rose up from the old, up from ashes,
And was there not real truth,
Behind the story, the Whites, the miracle,
How they had been rescued at Fort Dearborn?

She sought energy, electric, the moment
She wanted city burning, burning bright, resplendent.
Oh, Chicago, it is from you that I have my life!

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