>Slow Newsreel of Man Riding Train (Cont’d–Part II-4)

The picket line revolves slowly in its third year
on the sidewalk. My father walks through smiling amiably.
He is leaving the hotel on his way to General Delivery
to pick up his weekly money order. He will return later
with a box of chocolates for one of the girl picketers.
He is known affectionately as the “Ambassador.”
A dull day: The strikers’ attention brightens
as they watch a delivery boy arrive bringing a box of flowers.
An order of cheese sandwiches arrives from the drugstore.
A pressed suit is delivered from the tailor shop.
A corpse is taken down
transported heavily by three uniformed policemen into the waiting morgue car.
Room 1301 a case of liquor is sent up
A bottle of shaving lotion a bottle of bath salts
A carton of Luckies is sent up
a box of paper diapers is sent up
A TV dinner is sent up.

–from Slow Newsreel of Man Riding Train, by Robert Nichols (City Lights Books, 1962)

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