By Joseph Hesch

I’m sitting between parallels
of To and From, perched here with
the sunlit Hudson glaring in my face
and the Interstate blaring at my back.
The smell of one hundred trucks is
echoed by that smoky tug pushing
a barge upriver to the locks, and
the silver Amtrak flyer hoots
“Goodbye, Albany,” across the water,
on its way down to New York City.
As I wave adieu to the forty suns
reflected on its chain of windows,
I realize these arteries of Man’s mobility
have a common theme –
they run only North to South
and back again. How mobile is that?
The answer comes when I see
a cormorant lift from the river,
wings dripping sundrops on the chop,
and loop away – not quite west.

27 thoughts on “Crossroads

  1. Joe, when humankind seems to have erected so much crap that even the sun is only reflected in the windows of structures, Nature will always remind us: There is another way. There is another path. Sometimes, when you live in a city (as I did for years in NYC and LA), that alone can get you through. Beautiful thought, great write. Amy

  2. I loved the image of all the suns on the windows as the train moved. That was lovely.Your prose is so full of vivid pictures and the bird in free-flight sealed it for me. Lovely.

  3. I, too, love the forty suns. This is a rich, thoughtful piece indeed, and all the more poignant for me because the paternal side of my family comes from upstate NY, along the Hudson. I can see that bird so well. Beautiful, Joseph.

  4. And now for something a little different. I like the blues reference in the title "crossroads". Sometimes even with that sensational view of the Hudson looking across it at the splendor of trees and light on the water, the reality of man's encroachment on nature will give one the blues. Console yourself, you're not in a concrete canyon.Lovely work — you put me there.

  5. Mmmm…I'm a fan! This is just the kind of thing I look for–based in reality with specific images of specific things and places,(and they touch you)not just vague, nebulous stuff swirling around in someone's head and cascading onto the page like throwing the I Ching to see what turn up! (Which seems to be the norm of what we find when we go dumpster diving for poetry on the internet.)

  6. Wistful for that freedom that is real, and not noise and smoke and limitations. Your descriptors are so precise, so taken from life and turned just right on the mental lathe that you show us everything clear as a photograph in the mind's eye. Fine writing, as always here.

  7. Hmmmm….at first I thought of a piece of pastoral poetry….and the joining of mankind machinery and nature brings it full round.A haunting poem, indeed. I have been thinking of this since I read it…it doesn't leave the mind quickly.Rich.Lady Nyo

  8. I love these lines:As I wave adieu to the forty suns reflected on its chain of windows, I realize these arteries of Man's mobility have a common theme – they run only North to South and back again.Also, you are a gifted writer; you can write haiku or any poetry form if you want to.Happy blessings too~

  9. Joe this is wonderful, the rigidity of even the most flowing of things shows us that life is about balance between both forces. I really enjoyed this! ~ Rose

  10. An utterly modern piece in scene and image – and lovely for it. A moment's capture, with resonating feeling, and a flow to it that snares the real works of the world around us. Thoughtful, well-constructed piece, Joe. Really draws one in!

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