Without distraction…

Galena Street in old Aurora

houses the remnants of hope

once called tomorrow, Al Capone

built around the corner, the old

fire department kept well, the

rest now shuttered behind

For Lease or Sale – abandoned

masonry shells discolored by

time, flourishing pawn shops

exhibiting the valuables of

families swapped for pennies,

for food, for liquor, because

hope lost its value altogether;

and a corner taqueria named

after a John – the only clean

windows on the block, showing

sticky booths of primary colors,

plastic baskets of chips left

unattended on dirty tables,

and salt shakers with discolored

rice absorbing the moisture,

and a dad seated but gesturing

wildly while talking on his phone,

ignoring his round faced little

girl looking up at him from

across the table, wide-eyed,

without distraction.

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