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An Abandoned Factory, Detroit
(January 10, 1928 / Detroit, Michigan)

An Abandoned Factory, Detroit

The gates are chained, the barbed-wire fencing stands,
An iron authority against the snow,
And this grey monument to common sense
Resists the weather. Fears of idle hands,
Of protest, men in league, and of the slow
Corrosion of their minds, still charge this fence.

Beyond, through broken windows one can see
Where the great presses paused between their strokes
And thus remain, in air suspended, caught
In the sure margin of eternity.
The cast-iron wheels have stopped; one counts the spokes
Which movement blurred, the struts inertia fought,

And estimates the loss of human power,
Experienced and slow, the loss of years,
The gradual decay of dignity.
Men lived within these foundries, hour by hour;
Nothing they forged outlived the rusted gears
Which might have served to grind their eulogy.

User Rating: 3,3 / 5 ( 52 votes ) 13

Other poems of LEVINE (106)

Comments (13)

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Masterful writing from which I have learned technique to further enhance my writing skills.
Marvelous portrayal of an abandoned factory. Congrats on modern poet of the Day.
The gates are chained, the barbed-wire fencing stands, An iron authority against the snow, And this grey monument to common sense.... Men lived within these foundries, hour by hour; Nothing they forged outlived the rusted gears Which might have served to grind their eulogy. wow, so much written between the first and last lines, I particularly liked the images of 'broken windows', 'great presses paused between their strokes', 'air suspended, caught' and 'the sure margin of eternity.' this is a massive work with so many exceptional lines, a topic exceptionally well written in this poem, which is often a badly written topic makes 'An Abandoned Factory, Detroit' a masterpiece for me, even the title sets up wonderful resonant themes within the poem, loved this.
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