|Richard lives in Youngstown, Ohio.|
© 2004 Richard Hahn
legal pad, the shade of schoolyard sunlight,
sits on this pocked, blue tabletop
in the corner, next to the icebox.
A pencil hovers within the thin fog of coffee-
an unmanned drone over a battlefield,
awaiting orders from a distant bunker
To neutralize the last pocket of resistance
in the skirmish between trite and clever.
Outside, a new season stumbles in
Fresh from the damp, wrinkled womb of winter;
barely making it up the front steps,
struggling to find its own poetry.
that thin strip of leather
which separates you from the headline:
Worker Plunges 36 Floors from PPG Building.
Your drawn out, wistful strokes
peel away yet another month
from this shivering skin.
Within, women flow through its veins:
the blond on 32, the short skirt on 28,
Miss Cleavage of 1999 on 17 South.
They float by, raise a coffee cup,
blow a kiss from an upturned palm,
flash a self-assured wink.
These are high-altitude women,
different than those at street level
where the air hangs thick and sour.
Up here, you can dance across
Mt. Washington with clouds on
your shoulders and women take notice.
That penthouse crowd is tough though.
You watch their lips concoct aliases such as
Mr. Squeegee and Bucket Boy-
But that's okay with you
because if, just once, they'd press
their ears against that immaculate glass
You would lean over the scaffold
and tell them this is your skyline
and you have the postcards to prove it.
He came sashaying down the aisle:
flashing smiles, scribbling autographs;
a six shooter gleaming from each hip.
Indiana chattered by frame by frame
as my parents quietly agreed-
He looks younger on TV!
Where is Topper anyway?
Cinched-up back in the mail car, probably;
one of Hoppy's sidekicks combing his mane.
Genuine cowboys don't fly-
When we can't ride real horses,
we ride iron ones.
Just opened Hoppyland out in California
and he hoped 'all you little wranglers'
could come out for a spell someday soon.
Tugging at his black stetson, he motioned
all the kids back to the 'chuck wagon' car
for some grub and a sagebrush saga or two.
An invitation, which back in the 50's,
I suppose now,
didn't raise a single eyebrow.
All work is copyrighted property of Richard Hahn.
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