University District/Old North Columbus

University District/Old North Columbus

Bodies that used to lean out of the open windows, hugging three-dollar buckets of beer to their chests have their own kids in college now

Stories spin of those old, stinking haunts, with cheap gyros, rum-soaked pineapples and combat boot-cracked floor tile

Musical ghosts of spirited places that lived in buildings too shoddy to rehabilitate

There are vestiges of sovereign coffeehouses and record shops and gift stores with serpent rings and revolutionary bumper stickers

But most have long since cleared out, closed up or been leveled

In favor of tall structures with brighter lights and fancier foods and ten-dollar buckets of happy hour beer

Or the conundrum of “luxury student housing”

Institutional structures loom larger on the west side

But it’s hard to imagine what the east will become

Cross Lane to find the graduate students

And grown-up kids who can’t stop looking back

<<<Convention Center/Short NorthClintonville/Beechwold>>>

Poem ©Tracy Zollinger Turner, 2014. These pieces were originally used to frame the exhibit 25 on High in Columbus, Ohio’s Urban Art Space.