A cellar collection of electric meters,
hook-ups to power with so many wires
in makeshift highjack, it’s hard to tell
what’s unraveled, what’s attached
among the crisscrossed and slung, power
tapped, leeched, jumped, and supporting
that white tiled floor the well-heeled
once flew over from Florida to gamble
and dance on. The door’s aqua is still
sea-gleam bright, while the wrought iron
staircase spirals up from its fallen-out bottom
as if down here is where power starts,
where the grid gets given out — or grabbed,
energy infusing the tenement-dense world.
Someone saw how things can work, how current
could be shared, wires sprouting so wildly
there’s no telling which belongs to whom.
Reviewers claim this is about decay,
but who are they to say that a people
living by jury-rig won’t keep going,
knowing one light dims, another kicks in.