When you walk in a big city,
what is it that you fear?
Is it the dreaded hoodlums?
I’ll confess my fear right here.
As I walk, through our own streets
I spot a metal grate,
I sidestep quite un-gracefully,
don’t want to tempt my fate.
Not the roundish ones that guard
the roots of sidewalk trees.
If you fell in one of these
you’d stop right at your knees.
The ones I fear are treacherous
guarding the big black deep.
We walk above, oblivious to,
the secrets that they keep.
Especially the one that fronts
Brews Brothers coffee shop.
It is so bent and twisted up
my heart jumps and I stop.
I have to go around this one,
I’m chicken it is true
But someday, unexpectedly,
Some lady will fall through.
Her heart will leap, and with a gasp
computer bag go flying,
torn fingernails grasp for the grate
there’s really no use trying.
And with a thud she finds herself
in a dark and goopy place,
with twisted knee and broken heel,
something smudged across her face.
She’ll try to sit, with aching knee
and torn up business pants.
But what is that, that awkward smell...
I can not take that chance.
So there you have it, I confess,
my fear is on the table.
I’ll keep side skirting the grates
as much as I am able.