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This poem is taken from PN Review 148, Volume 29 Number 2, November - December 2002.

Three Poems Stanley Moss

Subway Token

If Walt Whitman were alive and young and still living in Brooklyn,
he would have seen the burning Trade Center,
and if he were old and still in Camden, New Jersey,
he would have seen men jumping out from a hundred stories up,
some holding hands, believers and non-believers
who prefer a leap of faith to a death in an ocean of fire.
Walt could have seen women falling from the sun,
although the sun has no offices.
True in the heavens there has often been a kind of tit for tat,
not just thunder for lightning:
where there is grandeur observed, something human, trivial.

The South Tower fell like the old Whitman,
although it was second to be struck,
then the North Tower like the young Whitman.
What history, what hallucination?
...


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