Who sings because they have a songor because they have a say
how am I to tell them apart
and will it matter anyway?
press the buttons, twist the knobs,
turn the key and speed away.
Potatoes, tomatoes, fresh mushroomsa pack of meat, jars of preserves
bread is boring, but devil’s food
is far too rich, this gateau’s worse
how much stuff do we consume!
and how little it takes to starve!
The parking attendant comes and barksin his fluorescent uniform
straight cut left back long look sharp -
the coins transfer smooth and warm
abject hands give clipped commands
toot the horn and whoosh off home.
An old man stands by the red lighthe wears a rim of dusty white hair
his eyelids don’t quite fit his eyes
could be his age, could be despair
he makes no pitches of his life
just offers tissues to the midday air
the glass is filmed, the scenes are dimmedbut nothing’s ever dimmed enough
a breathy, jingly radio sings
about namby-pamby fancy love
peppermint fresheners cover the stink
of dust and blood, keep windows up
Children stand on ladders by treestrim them into top-tail smart
others dance by the side and sweep,
their broomsticks shorter than the dirt
adults and children no longer meet
at the old house, times are hard.
I carry my bags on the right sidethe left shoulder’s gone a bit stiff
another peace of urban slice
nothing unusual where we live
the doorman’s smile is sad and wide
he carries all bags for a small tip.
The rallies get long, the rallies get largesongs are sung but the audience thins
somewhere tyrants are in charge
elsewhere seasonal shopping begins
but everywhere the times are hard
and bones shake looser in nervous skins
you’ll tell me where to go and whenthe rest is a case of semantics
you can say it’s a song, or a slogan
it’s up to you to match and mix
some sing as they fill up on reason
and for others nothing clicks.
Shared with poets for OLN@dVerse