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Settling In by Andrew Stergiou (12-11-2005 Altoona, Pa.)

Arriving home as heavy snows fell

I felt fortunate as I had a home,

With opportunity to enjoy such marvelous sights

For as an adult or a child snow was amazing

Was If I had arrived home I could not longer say

What occurred that I couldn’t see outside?

As a transplanted New Yorker I did not know

The door was shut, locked, and chained

As is our custom


So I lingered on the way home

Contemplating feelings

Magnified by the magic of the moment

Oh Mother Eyes what was it that

On the way home that causes me

To emotional thoughts creeping quieting

Without notice into my head

As the tears force themselves on me

Without encouragement of alcohol


They were not beat thoughts

Contrived high of drugs

Nor were they whimsy of idle moments,

Nor classic thoughts

Struggling with words they were feelings

Undeniably in his world of crude scum

For some reason, meaning, and purpose

“I wouldn’t know”


Altoona Pennsylvania like America as a whole

Abandoned by the Industrial Age

Reverted to the time of horse and buggy

Where despite efforts to improve matters

Its streets showed the wear and tear

Tracing passing moments

By deductions as to what did or did not display use

Brand new, or like some shirt thread worn at the elbows

Older parts of town versus the newer

The malls versus the shops

New street signs were put up all the time

While older street signs were merely abandoned

Forgotten, and left to be rediscovered

Sidewalks barely cleaned

Since last snows fell a day or so ago

While streets were cleared for car traffic

I walked thru heavy snows

Watching in a city consumed by the snows and cold

I saw to that no one cleared a path for me

For I walked alone though at times there were passerbys


The streets were plowed of its snows early

As the plowman had another job

Full time employment as opposed to part time work

They created piles of snow by the sides of the roads

Snows that at times reached 4 to 5 feet

Snows on bridge walkways hardened with time

As I Struggling with my green military surplus duffel bag

Loaded with a good array of goods

Like a human pack mule carefully stepped thru snow piles

Paying attention by watching what few cars that passed by

My mother was still there

Telling me to be careful “watch the cars”


First after I was done shopping I sat down

On a bench to check my receipt

Recalling how once I ran out of the house

Clad in my pajamas I ran to the corner store

Chased down by my father

I watched a child escape momma

Running back into the store

I picked up the can of cold Orange Soda I paid for


My thoughts and feet lingered walking

In what felt natural and uncontrieve

Wandering there was great beauty




Recollecting what seemingly was no longer had

I stumbled lost and clutched tighter

Attempting tightly grasp at every scrap of memory

When to my surprise all that was required was there

In a steady stream of thoughts

A stream or rivers were not like rocks

Like light and mass


Living waters were not stagnant but moving

Possessed by what they had not in holding back

 But in flowing, overwhelming the river banks

Of rocks and soil and sand

In youth those rivers flow in death they become rocks


When I arrived home I put away my groceries

Without turning the TV on I prepared to think

In the silence of my own thoughts

Not those of some crummy TV

Restarting my computer I prepared write


Distractions were avoided with a few exceptions

Without TV I bounced from unpacking to writing,

Between thoughts until I settled in

From cooking to writing, from pissing to writing

From removing and replacing burnt light bulbs

To writing, flowing, rhyming, daydreaming


I stood on the sofa of my furnished room

Replacing the ceiling lightbulb to see by light

So my landlady can remind me

“You use so much electricity”

“What were you doing?”

“I went to sleep and woke at 5 to see your light on!”

Neighbors remind me also as they too mention

“I was walking by and noticed your lights on late last night”

At the base of a red leather sofa

Where well they might find my body

As opportunity to say how and why

“He always seemed so depressed”

“He probably tried to commit suicide and fell”


 “Ah yes comrade require a confession from me”

“So not as to inconvenience you I must confess”

“Beside you are too smart for me, and I can not bare the torture”

“I work at all hours for free, with no or little pay”

“So that though OUR GREAT HOMELAND provides for all”

“So I can create the pretext of an excuse to spread my lies”


“Provides all any one could ever need or want”

“Including illegal aliens from other planets”



 “Blessed by god HIM SELF allows for minimum wages”

 “That scum sucking bastards like me subvert by our failures”

“Yes comrades at any given moment without notice”

“We must be on our guard to defend the HOMELAND”

“for I take up my pen, and word processor”

“Subverting the American literal constructs”

“By merely use of contrived foreign vocabularies, and constructs”

“Yes comrade here we will hold the line”

“In big cities with wild abandon”

“Pot crazed skateboarders and bicyclists are running wild”

“Snowboarders have taken over the slopes”

“Going where no snow board has gone before”


The child running in the store at the age of two

Runs past aisle 9

As I remembered grandma’s giving me a shiny penny

Smiling faces, hopes and aspirations

Thoughts are limited when they are focused

As at two I know though I can’t spell it

Crying to the high heavens kicking my feet

As I was lifted to be placed in the shopping cart seat

Mom “Why must I be restrained?

For the world is a dangerous place?

Even, or especially for children

In what we don’t fully realize until it is all too late

As we settle in to sleep and hopefully arise the next day

To start all again


Universally Copyrighted, All Rights Reserved (copyright 1955-2006 Andi "Punk" Anderson Zito (aka Andreas) use at your own risk, contact for author's consent to fair use (fascists only have rights to drop dead, die, or be killed!)