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  • by Janet St. John

Art & Soul Short #14

Peggy Acott. Brooklyn Bridge.


There is a line that divides us. Some keep walking, guided by signs and symbols to keep moving forward. We catch up to others. We fall behind. We are on a bridge that unites city to city, gives us bird’s eye view of river, makes us both aerial and tower-weighted with caissons sunken to bedrock. Isn’t there always such motion? The reaching and grounding. Counter forces. Suspension. A woman stops on a bridge to share a bite of food-cart breakfast with her toddler, in a stroller, unseen. She pushes that stroller, her baby boy, for miles while running errands on a day off, on a morning when commuters hike across the bridge to ground-floor stores and skyscraper offices. This day, the sun will be bright enough for an umbrella to shield her child’s fair skin. There are clouds now but the sky will become that blue of blues. A day when nothing threatens sky, city, our faith in human goodness. Nothing right now challenges the notion that the day will continue to awaken and brighten for the mother and son. She is a dancer. Her left foot instinctively places itself in 3rd position. A ballerina. Graceful, strong. She is an elegant bridge between art and life. Connector of worlds. This bridge. This day. Work and no work. Time, people, river flowing forward. The woman stops, right here, to share and feed and eat and swallow whole. She pauses to think and listen to the city’s honking, laughing, grinding, conversing, siren blasting, singing. How it circles and hums. She is elevated in place, both hummingbird-hovering and flip-flop-fixed pedestrian on a bridge above a river, inaudible in its motion.

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Thanks for joining me here!

News: This prose poem was recently accepted by ABQ inPrint and will appear in Issue 2 autumn 2017!

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