A bright middle-March day
stolid oaks waving wildly naked
was no time to stay in and bemoan lost elms.
The bus at my door took me straight to where
no lions crouched before the gates. There
were no grand stacks, no lampshades
glowing green over hushed, pale faces in a field-sized room
I'd once seen only in films.
Here, though, were some of the former rewards.
I lugged an armload of Romans, a Bishop, a George,
a Sexton out to sidewalks
where people also sat and dawdled and talked.
There were still seven-dollar sandwich shops!
And street vendors with the same boiled dogs!
I ate on a bench before a trellis
just starting to bloom. What else to do
but let the Japanese girl shoot my picture, let the squirrel
toss nutshells on my head
As I smoked and read and smoked
and said hello to my newfound old home.