Disregarded drips collecting along the bottom rim
of my mug, staining rings on Grump’s old desk,
prove combined similarities can leave a mark.
My city, similar in thorough collectivity,
patient in method, observant of other’s moves,
reminds me that stained history is tough to disregard.
Those rings will not be the first. Boasting
like the Olympic symbol, entangled arm in arm
as a unit, a friendship through proper challenge,
sharing education amongst ego and diversity –
elements separating like a frozen vinaigrette,
layered like our crustaceous Earth.
Will today’s children remember yesterday’s stained
history? America, the tossed salad. Will they
know the dressing is no good unless you shake it up?
As the last lukewarm splash of coffee swirling
around my mug slows, I picture Grump stirring
similar thoughts, chopping metaphor like celery,
dissecting injustices of his city, kicking
his feet up on the top of this desk, disregarding
the coaster next to his sweating mug.
Children laughing as the fountain,
shooting in pre-described patterns,
lobs jiggling liquid clumps
of light filled water
in wormlike arches
before smashing into the cement.
Down the street, pass the dogs
unleashed and rampant,
proving their essential maniac,
the old church brews
in a Friday frenzy.
The city brews.
Summer is hotter
with all that metal reflecting
God’s big ball through the streets,
off windows and through the steam
shooting up through grates
from basements machines.
Winter hasn’t left us yet,
the soups and chili’s still
nourish the seasonally sad,
and that old coat hasn’t been hidden
behind the broom.
But, that big ball is tickling
tree bark and drying dirt,
staying awake later for joggers,
and whispering the few last grains
of patience before beginning to shed
our winter weight.
Us humans are a funny animal –
genetic makeup driving
distinction and discretion,
pricking at our provenance,
exercising dirt lies to make up
new truths then feel clean.
Opposite: to remove cleanliness;
lying that we are dirt,
applying makeup as we make up
rules of beauty as if is exists
outside of the heart’s eye.
A stumbling quarrel between lovers
may the next day manifest
into a fumbling make up.
A spoiled child may refuse
to make up his messy room
littered with all the toys he collected
by yelling and crying for years,
the parents unable to make up
their mind if they’re to blame.
A drunken university student
infuriated when denied the option
to make up the final exam,
unaware that the drinks she spent
her student loan money on
will end up costing twice as much
when it comes time
to make up the debt.