Early in the morning
the day after Thanksgiving,
I bleakly regard my fellow patrons,
squeezed from surrounding tract homes.
They had nudged out & stumbled away
from frightened lives.
They stand at the restaurant wall
looking at grease splattered
These accidental victims of excess,
butts bulging, thighs dropping,
ruminate on pancakes or burritos
chorizo or bacon, tacos or tuna salad
eggs with hot chili. or coffee, tea, or Cerveza,
They order—filling an emptiness,
jockey for a seat overlooking a sea of hybrid
station wagons plastered with “baby on board” signs.
These folks dying of cancer, or filled with divorce,
or worse yet, homes infected with lies that kill,
homes of infidelity, homes of indifference,
homes one plots to leave,
homes with children without parents,
or worse yet–with twisted parents
looking ordinary—but living on rape,
or blood or tears on the mattress,
as suns come up & moons go down.
You don’t know how to love them,
or pity them. They simply are—and they leave
no apologies for their pain, your eyes glaze over,
as you too stare at the parking lot.
Steve DeFrance is a widely published poet, playwright and essayist both in America and in Great Britain. His work has appeared in literary publications in America, England, Canada, France, Ireland, Wales, Scotland, India, Australia, and New Zealand. He has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize in Poetry in both 2002 and 2003. Recent publications include The Wallace Stevens Journal, The Mid-American Poetry Review, Ambit, Atlantic, Clean Sheets, Poetrybay, Yellow Mama and The Sun. In England he won a Reader’s Award in Orbis Magazine for his poem “Hawks.” In the United States he won the Josh Samuels’ Annual Poetry Competition (2003) for his poem: “The Man Who Loved Mermaids.” His play THE KILLER had it’s world premier at the GARAGE THEATRE in Long Beach, California (Sept-October 2006). He has received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from Chapman University for his writing. Most recently his poem “Gregor’s Wings” has been nominated for The Best of The Net by Poetic Diversity. for further work by Steve De France see Poetry Life & Times & www.motherbird.com
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