© 2010, 2016, 2020 Vernon Miles Kerr, vernonmileskerr.com
What on Earth can compare to the Arch?
No superlative is adequate.
Nothing prepares you for that first glimpse,
No travelogue, no picture in the Nat. Geo.
Soaring above the downtown skyscrapers,
Its satin-silver face reflects
The sky and clouds,
And the river,
That Old Man River.
Your first thoughts are
Who conceived this;
Who planned this;
Who approved it?
How many minds had to meld
For a city to accomplish this?
Millenia later archaeologists will theorize,
“Something significant happened here.”
Yes, but not so much “Westward Expansion,”
But more: human cooperation.
I stop at a signal light
And wait while a tidalwave of red-shirted fans
Crosses and flows toward Busch.
“Gotta support those Cards.”
One senses in St. Louis
A spirit of community, of egalitarian concern
For everyone’s pleasure, everyone’s edification:
The famed Zoo has no admission fee
Neither does the Art Musum
Nor the Science Museum
There are even free seats at
Forrest Park’s Summertime Opera.
When the project ends, I head West on 70.
An elastic memory stretches out behind;
It won’t break.
Someday it will yank me back to St. Louis.