The Bells Toll

by Jeff Schiff

For those hawking cacahuates
boiled in vinegar
and doled from galvanized pails

For the bearers of portable whetstones
dragging quivers
of newly honed picks and scythes

For those delivering propane
For those charged with civil warning
For the cobbler

and the nearly destitute glazier
dispensing putty and points

his sour lunch and entreaties
For godly reminders

a resounding deliverance
on the quarter hour
templo igelsia catedral

For garbage hoisted into trucks
and men rising by the bag
from their putrid reward

For those who wish to join
the cortege and those
who keep humping

just out in front of it