what was here before

they’re framing in rowhouses on the corner lot

where i once paused to watch the sunset over the thick green grass —

now the rooflines will obscure the horizon

and i’ll have to walk farther up the street to catch the glow

i’m trying to think the best of these buildings

picturing tricycle races down driveways

and neighbors who’ll laugh across the street

to each other on warm summer evenings

but then the picture slips slightly

and trikes roll out toward the traffic

neighbors treat each other with polite disdain

and no one is left who remembers what was here before —

a little white ramshackle house

in a grove of trees

and a sky on fire with the dregs of a dying sun