July Is Relevantly Busy

Ellen Reiss

The pavements of upper Manhattan have dust, 

And fruitstands close to the streets, 

And it is noon so the fruit ripens rapidly. 

Children playing in the street shout 

Clattering syllables which crash against the buildings 

And echo. 

It is noon, so 

The golden flesh of mangoes and apricots turns

       deeper gold. 

They are soft inside the wooden crates. 

They are bruised and soft against the wooden crates. 

A child, 

Chasing a ball along the gutter, 

Falls, and scrapes his skin. 

And his blood is warm against the dusty sidewalk.

It is noon. 

The sun is a ripe yellow fruit.