Tourists walk at all hours. They smell of plastic bags, fresh film, sweaty backs, and heavy book-bags. There are no books. As their eyes wander to the sky, there is a twinkle. The Empire State Building lights up red, white, and black. If you make it here, you make it anywhere. Times Square doesn’t tell you about the things that breathe through their noses first. The things that smell a change in the atmosphere and emotion. They crawl in the basements of movie theaters. Under the stations of butter, they lay droppings. Under the pop of corn, they excrete. Inside the potpourri hot-dog, they wait to be eaten. Sometimes they pass by your feet, but it must your partner’s foot hitting you. “I’m sorry baby”.
New York City doesn’t sleep at night. Crawling under the cars are the true gangsters of the night. They have fat tails and round bellies hunting for their next meal. Hunting for the leftovers of silent restaurants that speak of greed. Restaurants that leave odors’of filth. The slime dripping from the contaminated,corrupted, defilement of hodgepodge animals we put in garbage bags. The bags are black for a reason. No one wants to see inside. We walk until the smell is no more. Odor’s of bones without meat, of macaroni without cheese, the remnants of original recipes.
10022 is quiet. They are difficult to touch. You must know somebody that knows somebody. Their basements show the truth of their excess. The extent of their greed. Of what they believe in and what they forget. They forget who opens their doors, they forget who picks up their garbage, who smiles with teeth of despair. Creatures wait in silence as the compactor feeds their needs in caterpillar forms. Silence is discreet.
10032 is full of cats. The cats stretch and pierce your eyes to simply walk away. The cats eat well. They have families. They have reunions and barbecue their food in your basements. The cats love Coors light with their khaki and white stripes. These creatures are smaller Uptown. I haven’t seen one in years. I remember them being bulimic. They were anorexic waiting to nibble on whatever comes, whatever they could get their claws on. With their whiskers, the cats make them food for thought. Cats cha-cha slide to the left and salsa to the right with their meals of fallen prey.
The city sleeps, but we are not the ones awake. We do not rule the night. In the night, the streets are drained of their morrow and sanitized by rats. Sometimes they look at you and don’t run away. Sometimes they run away without looking. You see what people wish to hide. They wish to hide their gluttony, but the rats symbolize how much they waste. They wish to see the twinkle in Times Square, but rats crawl beneath them. They wish to hide their greed with cats, but the cats symbolize their ambition for greed like the capitalist we are.
This is what happens when you work at night.This is what hides. These are our leftover’s. The things we leave behind. The people, food, and creatures in the city of the world. We close our eyes to the truth of our city. If you peak, there will be no bottles, no parties, no horny men looking for women, you will see the snakes in the grass. You will see what I see. You will see the nobodies of the city. The disenfranchised, underrepresented, the economic misfits that work when you are asleep. We are the leftover’s.