Daniel Pravda: Sanctuary



Two Norfolk Southern engines hum eight thousand horses hot.
A hundred coal cars obey, cracking, clacking, ringing the bell of mobility.

Here’s to the urban planners for disallowing houses this close to the yard.
Unknowingly, this little lifepocket thrives: English ivy trails down to the marsh,

parsed for the opossums, racoons, crows and the occasional homeless human balled
in his blanket.  Can anyone reveal the half-life of a chainlink fence

or does it depend on fallen trees or ease of connecting previous streets?
Sycamores sing the song of belonging to nearby or yonder, somewhere

to ponder the fortune of a forest in a city, owning a moment of sun and wind,
quiet and din of railroad friction, natural benediction, righteous realm of the elm,

holly and water oak bordering industry with brown leaf and broken branch majesty
for anyone bold enough to declare herself engineer of the minute.