Anne Nygren Doherty 2020

  • Anne Nygren Doherty

Bay Bridge



You’re not as pretty as your sister.

You’re gray and drab, no sunset hue.

Broke in half, your island blister

Connects up the halves of you.

You were wounded in the shaker.

Took more than 20 years to fix;

The Cal trans workers bought their acres

And retired. That’s politics.

Your new addition, white and sleek,

Is sinking thanks to Chinese steel.

The double deck is known to squeak.

Abused, neglected you must feel.

And then the city, like a lover

Ashamed to let his mistress slide,

Helped your glory to recover

With twinkling lights on your north side.

Now you’re a must and every tourist

Admires your shape when comes the night.

But you judge them like a jurist:

They don’t appreciate your might.

In gridlock you hold up commuters.

Impatient cars, some burning oil,

Serve coders who program computers,

And those who serve us with their toil:

Teachers, nurses, clerks, beauticians,

An angry activist in her jeep

Need you for their daily missions -

Work in the city, live where it’s cheap.

Most of them curse you for your length,

None of them know you need a cry.

None of them thank you for your strength.

None of them love you as much as I.