• Steph Shuff

Philadelphia

Updated: Dec 22, 2019

The buildings were old and worn

The shutters hung delicately from the windows

like spider webs

“You’re ever after is all I’m after”

The words were painted in bright colors on the side of

an abandoned motel


A newspaper gets caught by the wind

and spirals upward into the air

as if on a string

A young couple strolls hand in hand down the street

fingers interlocking, stepping in stride,

in tune like instruments


Behind them, a man is carrying a plastic cup

the filter of a discarded cigarette pressed between

his chapped lips

A small child approaches him with a dollar bill

clutched between the fingers of

his delicate hands


He offers the dollar up to the man like a sacrifice

raising both hands above his head, eyes wide

The man accepts the offering – “God will save you”


The newspaper floats back down to earth

only to be blown away again by a passing car

It floats up to the sky as if summoned

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