Photos of America’s Abandoned Malls
by Chad Heltzel

  1. Most of all, the stillness: the escalators
  2. stopped. Inside the storefront, mirrored
  3. columns glint against empty jewelry counters.
  4. Outside, a glass pane shattered blue on
  5. the floor like rain. The long hall,
  6. a track-and-zoom where sun falls through
  7. a skylight onto the escalator’s exposed machinery.
  8. In the food court, a toppled cart, a stroller.
  9. A payphone, hanging from its cord. A wall reads
  10. Rest Easy. From the ceiling, acoustic tiles
  11. peel like leaves. Another skylight, broken, and water
  12. has pooled at the base of a bench below.
  13. A planter of ivy has overgrown from brickwork,
  14. and the green reaches leaf by leaf across the tiles.
Packingtown Review – Vol.10, Spring 2018

Chad Heltzel's poems and reviews have previously appeared in Cream City Review, Faultline, Hamilton Stone Review, Fifth Wednesday, Konundrum Engine Literary Review, Sarmatian Review, and in Volume 5 of Packingtown Review. Chad currently lives in Chicago and teaches World Literature and College English at UIC College Prep High School.

  1. Jessica Young
    Road Hazardsfiction