Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Circus of Us

malls and theatres were once less shocking
filled with plainclothes strangers
self-moving, staying within themselves

a long sit on this bench, watching
brings them out of plainclothes

a platinum blonde stops at a store window
looks at her reflection, opens a small purse
takes out a lipstick holds it at arm’s length
pulls its cover off, out leaps a two-foot butane flame
the tip of which she applies briefly to her lips
turning them a pleasing cherry color
liquid shiny and opulent

a tall thin man with thick curly hair
walking in a crowd, walking purposefully
(to a casual observer, going nowhere)
reaches to an inside pocket arm across chest
when his hand comes out of his now-white-sequined jacket
so does a flock of pigeons one at a time
as if on a string; he seems not to notice
their wings brushing his neck and face
as they fly straight up and vanish

a young couple walking slowly together
not talking, matching speeds with the crowd
watching the store windows with dull-eyed brief intrigue
never upholding a single item for more than a few seconds
not reacting to the fish slithering out of their sleeves
and pant-legs, indifferent to the deep slow-moving stream
the mall mainwalk has become, bubbles trailing from their lips
having switched to gills in adaptive throw-back
nothing gained nor lost

an army of bakers in white aprons and tall hats
carry fresh loaves and rolls, decorated cakes and cookies
a herd of hunter-gatherers dressed in filthy skins
dragging a half-eaten (raw) pig carcass
a defeated army slumping past a line of blasted tanks
a long watch is antidote to fear and hope

a tall woman passing in a shimmering white dress
her dark hair perfectly prepared, unruffled
pauses, returning our watchfulness with a century of rueful smile
 
 
DBsDon Brandis is a retired healthcare worker who has been writing poems for many years, has published a few recently in The Camel Saloon and the Shot-Glass Journal, and has self-published several volumes of poetry, most recently Hubble This: Poems 2014, available from Amazon.
 
 
 

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