Double A by Jim Senetto


Double A

That Double A train
rumbling down the El,
interrupts the sun
streaming through the ties,
turning the boulevard below
into a quick paced,
‘22 silent movie.

Soot stained pillars
all but hide
graffiti writings
as the neighborhood widows,
clad in black,
scrub their stoops.

The candy store,
behind the broken sign,
displays rows of glass jars,
holding gum and licorice
and cherry sticks.

Newsprint and tobacco
fill the air,
and the chrome
and red leather stools,
show the wear
of lovers sharing secrets
and a two cent plain.

Old men,
in thread worn suits
and Fedoras,
step cautiously
over uneven sidewalks,
remembering a time
their Cagney walk
impressed the girls.

The shadows grow longer,
barbers sweep the clippings
and different dinner smells
reach out
from lace curtains,
rattled from time to time
by the elevated
Double A.

blackpooljimmyAPJim Senetto about Jim Senetto

My father was quiet; loving, provider but quiet…I never knew a grandfather, his side, or his brother lost at 28 and I was told not to ask. So quiet I was…me, the quiet one, second echelon in a group of friends…quiet in the confessional booth I was brought to…why tell a stranger, in a dark booth sitting behind mesh, my woes, thinking it just might be his woes were worse than mine (I’ve later learned, some in collars should have sat on the other side of that mesh window, confessing). I was drafted in ’66, taught how to kill strangers and my mouth began to question why and with some friends now dead from bullets of insanity, I became alive, vowing never to be as quiet as my father. He had his reasons, I’m sure, old school and all of that, but I had to break the chain. Art, photography, music, poetry is my voice and it’s all fair game…say it loud, some will listen and that is good enough for me.

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