Toronto, January 2012: a Poem

Photo by Jessica Wilczak

For JP

Here is a curbed and censored winter—
its skies are blank as paper.
So instead we read the sidewalks
sanded bone-white
by a wind made fast and loose
on northern highways.

They draw chalk lines over crabgrass
relapsed since November.
“Never mind,” they say,
“This is no bardsung city of love,
just the brick and stockyard reckoning
of economical men.”

Now there’s not a solitary leaf
to hide our bald inheritance.
We’re naked as the vacant park,
frozen on the shore.
But beautiful still the lake in January—
dark, and wide.