Unexpected early dismissal from jury duty
left me on my own
midday midweek midtown
used book store cafe near the court tantalized me in
juror parking was free so I still had ten bucks
clerk with race-car tattoos and vertical hair
took my six of my dollars
for a poetry book and a scone
scone was pear and almonds
book was Richard Garcia
both were great
reading and eating in a sunny spot
playing out my own alternate lives
with sailor me lost at sea
when cowboy me moved to town
disco me died too young
astronaut me who never took off
royal me without a throne
monastic me who suffered alone
the afternoon was passing
time to head home
the evening was still open
for us to decide who to be
When Mom or Dad drove; he played cowboys and hot-wheels in the big back seat
At grown-up parties they would leave him to sleep back there
(He pretended to sleep afterwards when they fought)
Never needed his license; just rode in back and went with friends.
Married young he took the back seat to her.
Back seat to the mortgage and bills.
Back seat to the kids.
Back seat to the job.
She meet someone and off they drove
(Leaving him to clean up the mess)
Kids gone now; all grown up
New job these days; travels more
Big cities mostly – don’t need a car.
“Cabbie, take me home will ya?”
“77th Street , near West End Ave.”
“Take the long way there”
I’m tired and
It feels good here in the back.
Blenders run day and night here at “Smoothie City.” Something’s gone way wrong with the electric down our end (“the bad end”) of the mall. Just one toggle of a blender’s switch and the mall’s crappy PA muzak speakers snarl and howl in creature-feature demonic possessed agony!
Sometimes that’s ok, like “All Punk, All Ages, Spit In Your Smoothie Night,” why it just adds to the fun! But not so good for “Generic Disney Princess High Tea.” Wall to wall tiny pouty lips and folded arms is all you’ll get from this crew of cranky parlor princesses.
But The “Overnight Smoothie Smorgasbord” (one size, one flavor, all vegan) with the ambient sounds of “Moby”? Funny crowd, this one could go either way.
by Doug Mathewson