Chicago, May 2021

I stare at a picture of the great metalled Ferris wheel 
from the 1893 Chicago World's Fair and lose myself 
in the number of people who went for a spin so long ago.

Fifty years later, Picasso, stares into the cave
of Lascaux and, upon seeing the dancing animals
painted on the walls, declares, They've invented everything.

And what about all the children that died 
before the age of five or the mothers that died 
in childbirth before the miracles of modern medicine?

Is there nothing so distinctly sweet,
so sweet,
as real bananas picked from the Peruvian 
rainforest an hour before breakfast?

There I stand in a picture from seven years ago with my arms around a daughter who no longer exists. That she lives in my memory, yes.  And in some form of a heavenly afterlife, perhaps.  

Sometimes I pause, 
shake my hands and arms in the air, 
convulsively, 
and grin from ear to ear.  

I am mindful 
of the number of times 
I have returned 
from wherever 
I have gone.  
Many have not.

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