Dan Masterson (1934 – 2022)

Twin spotlights blast the night

Sky high from the bullet-proof

Windows, flicking shards of light

Into their stainless steel facade

That shimmers like giant tuning forks

Stuck in the veined sidewalk here on

Vesey Street. The dark will be held

At bay until the tapestry gets hung,

Its bloody bull’s-eye strung high &

Taut against the 95th-floor extrusions,

Giving their corporate suites the dust

& acrid odor of scorch-blackened tombs.

Two young guns, whose buildings have

All been mountains, are nearly ready

To hang the target, a thing limp as

A shroud, before rappelling back down,

Snapping the hem-grommets to the pitons

They intend to install on the way up,

As they slide handheld willigs along

The window-washer tracks that ascend

To the pinnacle, trusting they’ll hold

The canvas slings they’ll ride in.

They’re giving 10-to-1 odds they’ll be

Down, coiling their mile of rope around

Their stanchions, before the morning

Bells toll in Saint Joseph’s belfry at

The end of the block. But now it’s time

For them to lace on their spirit-gum

Shoes & begin to walk the sunny side

Up, 13 hours before all bells on Earth

Will toll, when the target is hit & torn

Asunder, turning the tower to rubble.

Leave a Reply