All My Wonder by Donna Pucciani

is wrapped in steel wire.
Cables of the Brooklyn Bridge
are the large, thuggish relatives
of their skinny cousins inside my piano.

These delicate threads will never see
the gulls circling traffic jams
over white waves in the harbor, 
never hear the honking horns
of cabbies; they witness only
the tentative first notes of Bach, 
the intimate touch of Chopin.

The Bridge, who watches Lady Liberty
daily, holds hands with a city
that smells of money and urine.
Its steel wings shine platinum
against the sky over shores
that once witnessed my grandfather
arrive from Italy in a stinking ship.

And I, the little girl who practiced
scales and heard the treble ping of wire,
the growl of the bass coiled in steel,
can hardly resist the thought of my grandpa’s eyes 
squinting after two weeks in steerage 
to open onto the city of promise, to view
the silvery shoulders of the Bridge span the dawn
while I steam through the narrows
of a Bach fugue, the lines blurring.

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