In My Pocket This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

December 7, 2011
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There’s 67 cents in my pocket
I counted on the bus
There used to be 68 cents
But I dropped one
And couldn’t find it

It’s a grey city day
Everyday’s a grey city day
Except when it’s a blue city day
But those are cold
Too cold
I like grey days better

There’s 57 cents in my pocket
I have an unopened jolly rancher in my hand
From the candy store on the corner
Its grape
My least favorite
They didn’t let me trade
There’s 57 cents in my pocket

There’s an opened window
10th story
Black and shiny
I stick my head out
Can see the world until Michigan Avenue
And Clark
I perch on the sill
Ready to fly
The 57 cents cling-clangs
In my pocket
What a waste of coins
I close the window

I bought a friendship bracelet
From the kids raising money
For cancer or the rainforest
Or whatever
I think I’ll give it to my sister
If I ever see her again
There’s 8 cents in my pocket

A hat sits on my head
A fedora
Grey
Brown leather strap
It’s nice on my head
An anchor
A wild wind gust
The hat almost leaves me
I clutch it to my heart
‘You won’t leave me will you?’
The hat shakes its head
It’s nice having friends

And old man huddles in a doorway
Plastic cup out
A few coins in it
I drop in coins to add
What else do you do with eight cents?
There’s no money in my pocket

I’m back at the window
Sitting looking
Seeing the world
The world is Chicago
The world looks back
I stand
Ready to fly
For real this time
Something falls out of my pocket
The other one
I catch it
Before it falls
A penny
There’s one cent in my hand

The park is quiet and calm
Unusual for a busy city
On a grey city day
The flowers are drooping
The fountains have no water
A jogger jogs by
I walk
A bicycle
A crouch by a tulip bed
Dig a little whole
Place the penny
Plant the cent
Cover it again
I walk farther
What else do you do with a penny?

It’s a grey city day
I like them the best
Always normal
The wind is gentle
And tugs at my hair
It whispers to me
Sh-ahhhh shhhh-ah
It’s nice having friends
My pockets are empty
A jolly rancher in my mouth
A fedora on my head





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