Winner of the First Horizon Award for superior work by a debut author.

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After Hours


Darkness never quite befalls this midnight-lighted, energy-ignited

New York night.

In bed, possessed by whispers sneaking through

my seventh-floor front door,

I rise to find the source of it all.


Bedroom lighting leaks from closed blinds,

this sacred New York privacy, which closes minds to neighbors, blind,

of others living near them.


Lampposts highlight


Cracks on sidewalks, hosting thousands

Of New York soulful rubber soles; and

smacking cheap beats to pavement,

these hurried, all-business bodies all day long.

They seek purpose in time and place,

a place for time and purpose,

but never quite find the timeĀ  for place and purpose to collide.


By day, chaos swallows these concrete streets,

This highlighted life with eternal exclamation points.

By night, it hangs just above the sky-scraped atmosphere, waiting with the wind

for the sun to seep between them.

By night, I stir, myself, an addict of light leaking through tiny cracks

In this foreign, midnight-lighted world.


I answer, down flights of winding staircases,

To echoes that hang in the lampposts like old black and white photos.

I answer, bursting through to the off-beat of the street,

to catch a glimpse before the rest join in.




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