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Poems On / About CHICAGO  12/20/2014 6:54:22 AM
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Best Poems About / On CHICAGO
 
 
 
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  237.     

Youth

Strange bird,
His song remains secret.
He worked too hard to read books.
He never heard how Sherwood Anderson
Got out of it, and fled to Chicago, furious to free himself
From his hatred of factories.
My father toiled fifty years
At Hazel-Atlas Glass,
Caught among girders that smash the kneecaps
Of dumb honyaks.
Did he shudder with hatred in the cold shadow of grease?
Maybe. But my brother and I do know
He came home as quiet as the evening.


He will be getting dark, soon,
And loom through new snow.
I know his ghost will drift home
To the Ohio River, and sit down, alone,
Whittling a root.
He will say nothing.
The waters flow past, older, younger
Than he is, or I am.
 
James Arlington Wright

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  238.     

The Red Flag

The people's flag is deepest red
It shrouded oft our martyred dead
And ere their limbs grew stiff and cold
Their hearts' blood dyed to every fold

Chorus:
Then raise the scarlet standard high
Beneath its folds we'll live and die
Though cowards flinch and traitors sneer
We'll keep the red flag flying here

Look round, the Frenchman loves its blaze,
The sturdy German chants its praise,
In Moscow's vaults its hymns are sung
Chicago swells the surging throng.

Chorus

It waved above our infant might
When all ahead seemed dark as night
It witnessed many a deed and vow
We must not change its colour now

Chorus

It well recalls the triumphs past
It gives the hope of peace at last
The banner bright, the symbol plain
Of human right and human gain

Chorus

It suits today the meek and base
Whose minds are fixed on pelf and place
To cringe beneath the rich man's frown
And haul that sacred emblem down

Chorus

With heads uncovered swear we all
To bare it onward till we fall
Come dungeons dark or gallows grim
This song shall be our parting hymn

Chorus
 
James Connell

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  239.     

December 7

As I sit at my desk wishing
I did not have to edit a book
on poetry and painting a
subject that fascinates me
usually, but today is not as
usual, being today, white sky,
decent amount of sunlight,
forty one degrees in Central Park,
and it makes sense to dream of
Chicago, another big city
with two major league ballclubs,
and the pleasure of seeing Paul
and you, too, Elaine, whom
I never get to see often enough
in our own city of the subway series
the champagne gallery and
the tech wreck on wall street,
and as I look out the window
almost any minute I expect
the brokers to fall from the sky
like Icarus in Brughel's painting in
Auden's "Musee des Beaux Arts"
(and so back to work)
 
David Lehman

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Read more: city poems, today poems, poetry poems, sky poems, work poems, dream poems
   
 

   
   
 

  240.     

The Icarus Of Housewives, Circa 1981

From ashtrays he rises
when birds in backyards
have been fed their seed,
a dove amid the starlings.
In smoke filled stupor we stare.

Icarus climbs our stairs,
waves his muscled arms
in doorways mimicking
the starlings in stocking feet.
He feels his way blindly
down hallways, a whirlwind
of feathers trailing behind.

And one day like any other day,
bedroom windows open,
he is gone into the sun to
make his movements golden,
to steel his flight a monument
of silver in the sky over Cleveland,
over Chicago, the Dakota plains.

And we are still reeling.

Come back.
Come back, Icarus.
Plead our case to the sun
but do not fly too close.

And it is a day like any other day
we lose him to a solar flare.
All our litigation cannot raise him up again,
our curtains closed in protest to the sun.
 
Warren Falcon

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Poems On / About CHICAGO