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Stand on your head. You’ll see that she’s a boat
Winding between the waves of wailing walls,
Careening through the rush of siren-calls,
A small ship on a violent ocean. Smote
By sea-wind, still unyielding, she’s afloat,
And unabashed by bitter gales and galls
She sails through the city’s shifting halls,
Unchanging nave, intimate, yet remote.

So swim along the sidewalk to her door;
Turn, tossed explorer, right-side up again.
This ancient, mighty haven, grim and good,
Drags in the drowning to her drier floor
And bears the wounded through her healing hold
And bids you drink the drink, and eat the food.

—Betsy K. Brown

Image by Nicole Compton via Creative Commons. Image cropped.