Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Work in Progress

First there’s the skeleton,
framework of steel struts, form only hinting at function.
Then the skin, walls and windows—
suddenly it’s a building instead of just a construction project,
suddenly it has a face.
Frowny, with heavy horizontal elements
or aspirational, with strong vertical lines.
Blank concrete brooding on secrets
or smiling glass, shiny but just as concealing.
Still, you can tell the building’s character-to-be:
all windows means expensive office/retail,
more solid walls, residential. Frosted glass
for bathrooms, and those vertical slit-windows for stairwells.
Maybe the roof will sprout a garden. Maybe it’ll dangle
hip, dreadlocked vines to scandalize
older buildings in conservative granite.
Unlike babies, buildings rarely grow taller
but they do grow older
like all of us.

Available! High-Voltage Lines, Knocking from Inside

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