Matthew Zapruder

This morning I rode my gray metal bike 
through the city throwing its trucks at me, 
sometimes along the narrow designated 
lanes with white painted symbolic bicyclists 
so close to the cars too close to my shoulders, 
and sometimes down alleys where people
on piles of clothes lie sleeping or smoking
or talking in the shade. Cars parked there 
have signs in their windows that the doors 
are unlocked and there is no radio. 
It is remarkable to me that downtown 
is always so remarkable to me. Every single 
time I feel so shiny mixing my intention 
with all the other lives, each so much 
more interesting and easy for me to imagine 
than the tourists muttering to each other 
over their maps in some garbled 
by traffic or wind foreign language I never 
quite hear. From my window the old 
brick factory building with its large white 
graceful letters seems to be actually 
proudly saying WILLIAM HENRY STEEL
to the sky, the building floats, up and to 
the right but it’s the clouds of course 
that move. Or is it? The earth moves, 
farther off a squat little tower with three 
huge metal cylinders that must be 
for sending some invisible electric 
particles out into the city. I only feel 
free when I am working, that is writing 
this book about a pair of zombie detectives 
who painstakingly follow clues they think
are hidden in an authentic Tuscan cookbook. 
It is really more a sort of transcribing, 
every day I close my eyes and see 
them in an ancient yet modern high ceilinged 
earth-toned kitchen, laughing as they 
blunder through the recipes, each day 
a little closer towards the name of their killer 
whose face will soon to all of us be clear. 
They have a little zombie dog, I name him 
William Henry Steel, and this will be 
my great work time has brought me here to do.

Found In Volume 39, No. 05
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Matthew Zapruder
About the Author

Matthew Zapruder is the author of three collections of poetry: American Linden, The Pajamaist, and Come On All You Ghosts (Copper Canyon Press, 2010).