A luminous blackness is what I recall entering
before dawn the autumn I was twelve to do my paper route,
in a grid of streets with European and Haudenasaunee names.
From home on Montcalm Street overlooking Lake Ontario,
I zigzagged along streets named
until I arrived at the alley alongside the Oswego River,
where we paperboys rolled the Syracuse Post-Standard
into porch-seeking missiles.
Now, a bleak time suck is what I imagine when I consider
googling “news fall 1962,” to add a veneer of verisimilitude
over my memory from boyhood, as if our missiles needed warheads.
But memory doesn’t need facts, only honesty –
we’ll be sustained by that, plus a mouthful of names.
– Dave Read