Jessica Greenbaum is the author of Inventing Difficulty, winner of the Gerald Cable Prize, and The Two Yvonnes, chosen by Paul Muldoon for the Princeton Series of Contemporary Poets. She is the recipient of a fellowship from the NEA, and of the Alice Fay Di Castagnola Prize from the Poetry Society of America for the poems in Spilled and Gone. She teaches inside and outside academia, and lives in her native Brooklyn.
I Was Waiting for You Outside the Post Office I was waiting for you outside the post office A gray morning, nothing special about it Except everything, since we were traveling People walked to work pressing their collars Closer to their throats, a delivery truck Almost backed into a parked motorcycle But by the time I recorded it here and looked up Both gone. One of this city’s oversized Pigeons, stocky in a brown turtleneck and Gray bottom, hustled like a man-in-motion Among the chimney pots, and no matter the Stillness of the pale yellow buildings (a hue Mythically, or stubbornly, without analogue) No matter the rows of stillness you could tell The whole city was moving slightly as if Under water, each limb in the tree crowns Riding their own eddy, each person striding Their own path, a window opening and a cat Threading between parked cars, the sky Pulling it all along into what might happen Next, and you arriving, saying, Come with me.