Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Providence (Lenten Poem # 9)

I’ll go to Florida, she says, one day.
And he asks, maybe because he has to,
And she says, longing for something
More than banter at break time,
Four years, I have a plan.
Four years, and then I’ll go to Florida.

Mid March morning, sometime between
The early morning caffeine crush
And the incoming wave of undergrads going places,
And two minor league baristas
Are granted a fifteen minute break
By Starbucks or Au Bon Pain, or
Whoever it is that insists on their
Triple A, yellow and brown uniforms.

Their aprons, and ball caps, yellow and brown.
The walls and cups and menus and tables,
Yellow and brown.
All around, the programmers and the programmed are
Plucking away at yellow and brown devices,
Working out yellow and brown plans and
Finishing up yellow and brown assignments.
He says, I’ve heard it’s nice, Florida,
As he lowers his yellow and brown cap
And fiddles with his phone, texting to
Pass the time till break time is up.
I saw a dolphin down there once, she says,
Breaking the humid silence, leaping again
Into the salty fresh air of her dreams.
Never seen anything like that dolphin,
She says, exploding out of the ocean,
Diving again out of sight, then again
And again and again, but each time
A little different from the last.
And the young man beneath the
Yellow and brown cap looks up from his phone.