The other day I woke and went outside.
Sat there on the stoop til guess what--I was three hours
Late to work.
I headed West, as all great pioneers.
And went block by broken sidewalk block until the strap
At my heel dug slowly then clawed, burrowing bloodily
Into the shrill and stringy tendon
Located at the precise back of my leg,
Connecting foot to sinewed calf.
The very spot
Where Achille’s mother pinched two fingers
To grip him tenderly but tight
As she dipped his headfirst body in the stormy mud-churned Styx.
I sat again. Under the bright brown awning of a
Chicken frying, grease and oil hazy place.
Across the street I saw
Sprouting from parallel dusty cracks in the concrete-mixed ground
At the end, where the pavement hit a building.
I watched blood trickle to my toes and
The plants grew up
Of the store, one went faster than the other.