Scent of street fair and dressed in dust
You’re still Gatsby’s distant green light.
We were taught to love you unconditionally—
Put makeup on you, as if you were a whore.
We turned you into a myth and then despised you,
Then saw your tears from our small, safe screens:
They were crystal balls turned flat, were magic mirrors
And that we hoped and prayed would never be us.
You could have been much fairer by yourself,
Black and white Patti Smith in a Mapplethorpe.
You’re the one who welcomes a lost cause:
You’re alleys and lone diners and the Swans
And Ivy League and murders and the Village,
And many things the outsider cannot know,
Beyond the silent numbers of your veins,
The thousand books of your ghost story anatomy,
The gaping wound some like to call an act,
(Ever wondered why we love you in pieces?)
The virgin who is your Venus in Furs,
The small, shining-screen-like golden heart,
The imagined ghouls who ravage you as a pastime,
The haven of green, blue and chord-ial music,
The silent pulse of this spheric herzeleid.
So smile around at the revering globe,
Streetwise and runaround younger sister.