The Service Elevator – A Poem by Kushal Poddar w/an image by Robert Frede Kenter

IceFloe Press

The Service Elevator


“I cannot do it.”, says my mother.
“Sure, you can. Either way
we’ll angle the baby out.”, the nurse says,
and the hallucinogens injected pave
A 60s-green plastic-painted corridor.
My mother waddles toward a door, ajar,
at the end, and on the other side
she sees her mother bleeding out her cancer.
My mother feels she’ll birth a girl.
The service elevator, out-of-order, sits
like a praying mantis in the dim shaft.
Outside, April decontaminates the streets;
the moody rain taps the last of the cobblestones;
my father’s umbrella guards his anxiety.
Nothing happens. Nothing happens often,
and isn’t that something?
I see the stars whoosh past me as I descend.
The path will not remain in the memory.
My mother will die forty-three summers later.
The river will recede to reveal its bed, unkempt,
hidden from the visitors, always has kept
the bundles of letters and…

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