Visions of WONDER and Cardboard Cheeseburgers

At the exact same corner, every day
Chester holds a cardboard sign that carefully reads:
Visions of a Cheeseburger. The last undeveloped lot on Halsted Street, Chicago,
has a chain-link fence that neither
keeps anyone out nor anyone in. On the chain-link fence,
someone spelled out “WONDER”
by placing styrofoam cups on their sides
in the
holes in the fence. The evidence of life in America
shows up all around this fence with,
cigarette butts, candy wrappers, dandelions, plastic McDonald’s cups, used condoms a crimson child’s sandal and overgrown clover
dog shit and cat shit and
pieces of paper, missing children flyers
empty Season’s Greetings paper bags,
a white wooden cross and achingly faded blue roses
for Alma whose name translates to spirit,
bags with the rinds of leftover cheeseburgers,
weeds and grasses, and
dirt and muddy urine. The WONDER styrofoam cups are neither half full or half empty.
They’re asking a question,
making a command,
or pleading to eyes
towards what isn’t seen. Then Chester finds a cheeseburger rind in a paper bag
and sits down for lunch under the letter W.
Copyright © 2018 by Carolyn M. Bevington. All Rights Reserved.

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