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Night of Voyeurs

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It’s more than silhouettes tonight,
every window in the city lit,
shades lifted, curtains open.
As one suspected, the dark buildings
full of lovers, undressing
beneath light bulbs, before mirrors.
Men & women, men & men, women & women, embracing.
Even the loners visible, flickered
by single candles, touching
places they’ve usually chosen to keep secret.
So much nakedness!
And the streets empty
except for the newsboys moving through shadows,
leafless trees snatching underclothes
out of wind, the El clattering
above the roofs
like a strip of blue movie.

Stuart Dybek, “Night of Voyeurs” from Brass Knuckles, published by University of Pittsburgh Press. Copyright © 1979 by Stuart Dybek. Reprinted by permission of Stuart Dybek.
Source: Brass Knuckles (University of Pittsburgh Press, 1979)
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Night of Voyeurs

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