Swimming Upstream


I walk the sad swollen streets

where the wolf-eyed women

ignore “do not walk” signs

and cluster in parochial packs.

It is beyond midnight

and the underfed mucilage musicians

stand on tiny stages

to sell their unkempt sour songs

for just enough coins

to shiver under threadbare blankets

and eat processed instant oatmeal.

There is a drug attitude

that permeates the dank hours.

Large latent women in the diner

profile whom they will serve or turn away.

I am at the end

of this evening’s disappointment.

When I order a bagel with lox,

my white uniformed angel

flips her brown grey hair

away from her perspiring face

and smiles.


R. Gerry Fabian is a poet and novelist. He has published four books of his published poems, Parallels, Coming Out Of The Atlantic, Electronic Forecasts and Wildflower Women as well as his poetry baseball book, Ball On The Mound.