42 DAGGETT STREET
It was where I lived for my first 16 years, the upstairs flat in a two family house in an Italian neighborhood. I can still hear my grandfather shouting from the first floor as I went up the back stairs.
“Chiuda la porta.”
“Chiuda la luce”
A noisy street and smelly with a Goodyear rubber plant on one corner and a cheese processing plant directly across from our house. Yet, a lively and cheerful street with small front gardens and friendly neighbors.
Today, the factories are long closed and empty, along with several of the houses, including ours. The porch roof is gone, the rails sagging. Windows boarded up, concrete where once were hydrangeas, the paint peeling down to bare wood.
It is mid-summer. The air heavy and quiet in this semi-abandoned neighborhood. I return to the car.
a man and a woman
their words unclear;
the sidewalk empty
but for shifting litter
Modern Haibun & Tanka Prose, Issue 2, Winter 2009