there is a unicorn in the lobby

the blazers scored over 100 points

last night, so of course i traversed

the cold urban streets to the only

mcdonalds in downtown portland,

to receive my free chicken nuggets.

inside, a man was asleep on the floor,

and we all pretended to ignore the

scenario—the manager prodding him,

telling him to wake up, telling him

not to hit his head on the bench

he had nestled under.

this is portland, the land of

a thousand homeless, left to rot

in city streets.


this morning the train braked

suddenly, shortly after the stop

in old town/chinatown, throwing

us all off balance and launching a

couple of poor standing souls

forward into guard poles; a curt

reminder of the fragility of these

meat bags in which we are

cocooned. something was

wrong with the train. the

conductor  didn't tell us what.

we left in exodus and i

walked to work among the

detritus of the vagrants.


an old attorney received a

christmas card in the mail,

from another firm. a woman

in the group photo was

instantly recognizable: i

walk past her nearly every

morning. i am intimidated

by her sheer concussive beauty

and style—and her twin shield

headphones blocking out the

croon of lechers. she never

looks at me. i will never know

her, so long as we pass each other

on the street.


there is a unicorn in the lobby,

protecting the christmas tree.

no one knows where it came from.

just another serendipity

to mark on your tally sheet.