The River at Dusk

Late afternoon. I drive past the Bunker Hill factories

over the new steel girders of the Sixth Avenue bridge.

Through the glossy, silver webwork, I glimpse

the river curving toward downtown Paterson,

the trees over it stark as burnt matches

against the darkening sky.

How beautiful the city is at this hour.

People caught in glass and metal

drive toward lamplight,

the rough brush strokes of factories in the background.

The river, peaceful and slow, moves as it has

always moved, and at dusk, the rising moon,

like a Lucite dipper, lifts the dark water

into a momentary, exquisite light.

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