In the amber-smog flicker of the streetlamp

raindrops stick

molten copper ticks

and gnaw away at the wrists

of the wrought iron railings.

Boy stares down through corroded metal steps,

takes a breath

of midnight mass crystal meth,

parts his hair with his fingers,

and spits into summer’s face.

Down below a cat hisses in a dumpster,

rats scamper,

and a trash can orchestra

churns out a trashy rhythm

to the tune of traffic jams.

A shiver as Boy feels street corners looming—

one more fix,

then, on legs like tinder sticks,

down the spiral staircase

to where chanceful delights await.

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