Who sets the rules

that garbage should be stacked

in alphabetical order?

The men from down town

smile and tell jokes as they uncover the cans,

checking off on their lists that everything

is in order, that every disposable

is in its appropriate position.. And someone in City Hall

smirks. He sits at his desk at the center of everything

and counts the receipts

from the fines of those found guilty of disorderly disposal,

contemplates the most arcane possibilities of punishment.

Thus the measure of each man’s position in society:

garbage as the common denominator.