Philadelphia Fog

It gathers in puffs outside the windows,
until even the tallest buildings,
hunched as they are near the river,
slip away like memories do
when you get older,
so you’re not sure whether
they ever really happened.
Maybe you dreamed them.

Even the Ben Franklin Bridge
with its big sweeps of light
and delicate spider web curves
is gradually erased like chalk on a board,
or like chalk effaced by a field of chalk.

The city becomes mythology then:
a story we all agree to believe,
a creature in metamorphosis,
a ghost both fearsome and genial
haunting the waterfront.

And we curl inside our prisons of white,
worried we too might soon disappear:
like herds of tiny ancient beasts,
or schools of fish being gobbled whole
by this great white hunger
as big as a snow’s.
Eileen Moeller has an M.A. in Poetry from
Syracuse University, and many years experience as a teacher. Her
poems have appeared in BlueFifth Review, The Paterson Literary
Review, Feminist Studies, Writing Women, and more. She judged the
2004 Milton Dorfman Poetry Contest, and the 2005/2006 Syracuse Association
of American Penwomen contests Her work Body In Transit,
is online at

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