On Break

A cameraman from Channel 6 Action News

films insignificance  on

the corner of 18th and Walnut.

A police car is parked in front

of TD Bank across the street.

The trash can named

“Big Belly Solar Compactor”

overflows with debris and graffiti

has been sprayed on the side.

Rich foreigners strut around speaking

different languages.

It is night.

Automobiles splash dirty rain water

on the rest of us.

Every few minutes

someone comes up to me

asking for

a cigarette or

spare change, all I can say is sorry.

I only have a few dollars to my name,

one more cigarette,

and something stuck

in my teeth.

About Sean William Lynch
Sean Lynch is a writer and editor who lives in South Philly. Lynch's first book of poems, the city of your mind, was published in 2013 by Whirlwind Press. His second chapbook, Broad Street Line, focusing on politics and public transportation, was published by Moonstone Press in 2016. 100 Haiku is his latest release, also published by Moonstone Press in 2018. Lynch's writing has been featured in numerous publications online and in print, including (parenthetical), Poetry Quarterly, and Tincture Journal.

12 Responses to On Break

  1. michaelmulholland says:

    Very good…

  2. I hate it when people come up to me asking for a light or a cigarette. The fact that you are so desperately dependent on something with plenty of chemicals found in all sorts of cleaning and pesticide products that you need to ask for them from complete strangers shows there’s a problem.

  3. lillisamy says:

    I like how the disparity in society is handled in an off hand manner. I noticed it more on the second read.

  4. pembroke5 says:

    Another good one for the summer series.

  5. Miss Molly says:

    Sean…IMHO this is one of your best! The details are exceptional and the poem moves beautifully. Not a single extraneous word here…Congratulations

    • Sean Lynch says:

      Thank you, strange thing is I didn’t originally write this as a poem. But it’s a good thing I turned it into one because it’s different.

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