Imagine our surprise
in such a tear-down & rebuild-type town
to see you not dismantled
when the cranes leaned in to peel
away your façade & to pick
you down to Tyvek.
Nude women’s rooms, we, two
gay men, assumed;
avoided you in the Capitol’s long shadow,
passed each day from work,
even inside your steel lattice
cut us up with shadows.
We didn’t know you grew another
coat of bricks
to race the changing season.
The lakes held the summer’s end’s dark green,
algal, shit-sustained through the century
& through massive progress,
through regress and demolition—
they killed the train
before they finished the station—
did the workers fasten a tube slide
of hooked-together garbage cans
from your window, hung
there to drain drywall, 2x4s and chairs
as across the street we ate
bagels and watched dumpsters fill.