There are no footprints in the City
Dust wore away to bare rock concrete.
The fine strung twine of feet pulls close
At corners, weaves through traffic
In the street. There are no tracks or trails,
No paths to follow back. No paths to follow
Just this maze, this crumpled map. These layers
Of paper tole built up, set down, no footstep
Leaves a mark on this compacted ground.
There is no hill top oversees it, and
The buildings block the view. There are
No journeys but a different way to move:
By bus and sign and pushing through
And chessboard steps to reach adjacent avenues
Down one-way streets that snake
Like ladders paved with passing feet
But passing what? Just passing through
The City like an unlived living room.
Deep underground unseen life goes on,
Outside it only goes about, between.
There's just no way of knowing where
That walk has been, it brings no new dirt home
And out there no new resonances sing.
The tramp of feet goes on the same but
Underneath it makes no sound, it's just
An ever-moving sea swept in by wind,
It sweeps away footsteps before they
Even grip. It pours like silt through
Every streeta heavy weight, a soulless thing.