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O'Hara, Frank: A Step Away from Them

Portre of O

A Step Away from Them (English)

It’s my lunch hour, so I go
for a walk among the hum-colored  
cabs. First, down the sidewalk  
where laborers feed their dirty  
glistening torsos sandwiches
and Coca-Cola, with yellow helmets  
on. They protect them from falling  
bricks, I guess. Then onto the  
avenue where skirts are flipping  
above heels and blow up over  
grates. The sun is hot, but the  
cabs stir up the air. I look  
at bargains in wristwatches. There  
are cats playing in sawdust.
to Times Square, where the sign
blows smoke over my head, and higher  
the waterfall pours lightly. A  
Negro stands in a doorway with a  
toothpick, languorously agitating.  
A blonde chorus girl clicks: he  
smiles and rubs his chin. Everything  
suddenly honks: it is 12:40 of  
a Thursday.
                Neon in daylight is a  
great pleasure, as Edwin Denby would  
write, as are light bulbs in daylight.  
I stop for a cheeseburger at JULIET’S  
CORNER. Giulietta Masina, wife of  
Federico Fellini, è bell’ attrice.
And chocolate malted. A lady in  
foxes on such a day puts her poodle  
in a cab.
             There are several Puerto  
Ricans on the avenue today, which  
makes it beautiful and warm. First  
Bunny died, then John Latouche,  
then Jackson Pollock. But is the  
earth as full as life was full, of them?  
And one has eaten and one walks,  
past the magazines with nudes  
and the posters for BULLFIGHT and  
the Manhattan Storage Warehouse,  
which they’ll soon tear down. I  
used to think they had the Armory  
Show there.
                A glass of papaya juice  
and back to work. My heart is in my  
pocket, it is Poems by Pierre Reverdy.

Uploaded byP. T.
Source of the quotation