Plastic Flowers*

February 21, 2011 § 1 Comment

Since you never ask,
what I would like, for a change
is to just lie on our backs,
and watch the flowers grow.
But don’t you just love to talk
about how you really have to go?
Maybe in silence,
we would have had a chance.

But you tell me about your day
looking into someone else’s eyes on a screen,
and your laugh lives in an acronym
that has never rolled in the grass
or made a pass at a pretty girl
in a silly summer dream.

In this room it is cold,
smells like lemon, artificial,
the way cabs do when they’re old,
but if now was then
and you knew how to listen
and touch my face when
the light made it glisten,
maybe we’d have had a chance.

You don’t have to explain,
just please refrain from calling me
pet names and that word love–
it pours from my heart to yours
like wireless fidelity in the middle
of a busy business city.

If you held my hand,
you would’ve seen
my fingers bloom like flowers
into a forest more beautiful
than the future.
But across the ocean
tall buildings wait for you,
bright lights blink and flash for you,
the top of the world caves for you.
I hear over there, rooms smell like real lemons,
and the fruits are like golden suns
that hang from leafless trees.

I wish we could just watch the flowers grow.

Maybe in a time warp we’d have had a chance.
Maybe in a horse-drawn cart we’d have had a chance.
Maybe without electricity, or light, we’d have had a chance.
Maybe in the limited vicinity of disability,
or in helpless blindness,
or the tightness of poverty,
we’d have had a chance.

You never settle, you tell me,
as you scour the grocery shelves
for the biggest, freshest watermelon-
greener pastures, first world adventures-
pinker lips, through Freudian slips.
Don’t worry, you say,
with technology today,
it’ll be like I never even left.
But there’s nothing like seeing
the reflection of the sky
in someone else’s eyes,
or the way they try not to cry
when you meet an old man
just waiting to die,
and how the little hairs on an arm stand
when you brush gently against them.

The advent of technology you say,
the future,
the world.
Your dream is a draft
that will snatch you from me.
Maybe in war, we’d have had a chance.
Maybe in peace, we’d have had a chance.

Maybe before aviation, we’d have had a chance.
But we’ve always loved airports
and the vastness of runways,
so you make me take you to the gate
when I wish we could just stay
in this tired old lobby,
smelling fake lemon Glade
sipping cheap coffee,
watching the plastic flowers grow.

*Spoken

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