Rag & Bone Shop
The Victorians looted dead homes for scraps of old clothing and people, and sold them. Poor Richard’s Knick Knacks sold marionettes & incense above a 70s-esque basement, where we played Cards Against Humanity. Poor Richard’s is a rag & bone shop, inheriting its name from the Victorian practice. In my grandmother’s obituary, my mother writes my deadname. William Hamilton, ten years post-rev, inherits 300 acres of land along the Schuylkill, which is now The Woodlands Cemetery, but which was just The Woodlands when he, presumably, walked the river at night and had sex, with someone who was with every possibility a man, but was before, as all things are, something else. A body decays & a tree uproots the stone. Claustrophobia is a means of survival.
Sully Sullivan, an American hero, vaporized a flock of geese, and what’s left in the engine we call “snarge.” It seems tragic for the geese, which were beautiful, to become an ugly word, but ugliness is aerial combat. When the plane landed on the Hudson, witnesses claimed it looked like a duck.
so, which one of you is gonna kiss me at graffiti pier, dangling our legs at death’s distance above the delaware? just a girl with sleepy vibes to smooch when the sky turns from blue to grey, then blackish cream, as the petty island lights go on. we can’t see them even this high up, but the groundwork’s been laid since forever. we know the lights go on, sure as payphones died for the cell. only finding work in train stations and prisons, where Luke calls Elijah once a week. a tin can father, estranged brother. nephew, we can never meet. adjective clock wrapped around us, a spacebar clack between us. a generation differentiates demon from ghost. like kissing a magnet’s south end. which one of you is gonna cry with me? we’ll flick our tears in the river, take turns cracking knuckles against our thighs, describe unseen or hidden stars as bridge lights reflected in the Schuylkill. inheritance is water, as Berry describes, or this city, as KV sd, is facing inward. knowing the general direction, Philadelphia always resolves.