street like war

I feared that the elevator
would shut off again
only this time with me inside.

the heat wave took
the city by storm
not ready to face
the sunday sun.

the street outside was
quiet; it smelled like oil,
pools (though there are none
around, I suppose it was my own desire),
cars' fumes and other
people's deodorant.

heat makes smell condense
and light up this particular
hot concrete scent
which I know so well.

inside the shop it was
quieter. it was a new shop
they sold ice cream. I guess
no one told them about
competitive pricing.

i heard a voice behind me say
"the war that lasted 30 years"
and I turned.
it was winston churchill on the
screen. I said aloud, "winston
and the guy behind the counter

the street is quiet like
empty train stations,
a field,
a friend's old car with no stereo
a night alone.

the street is quiet like
it holds a secret.
maybe war is still going on.
who knows.

I'm just glad to be back
in the shadows.
I'm not buying ice cream
there again.