Am heading downtown on the number two train.
A kid enters holding a chicken bone.
His mother and siblings also jump in—
A sister, who is older, perhaps ten,
And a brother, who is little, maybe one.
The kid himself is probably seven.
They board at one hundred ten.
We reach ninety five street.
The kid has yet
to give up his fried chicken bone.
He sits next to a sleeping man.
The straphangers stare,
but the kid doesn’t really care.
At seventy second,
the train is packed.
The kid, his siblings and his mom
are now outside Harlem.
As we pass Times Square,
less black and more white faces appear.
The Harlemites get off at thirty four;
they may be going to Macy’s
for holiday shopping sprees.
The kid walks out still holding his chicken bone.
And I am going further down…
down … downtown…
To see Chinatown,
or Ms. Brown.