Poem 60

Picking up a penny from under a grocery store checkout,
Rewind, pan out, wide angle.
Picking up a penny, in the A&P, in 1984, in the evening sometime, from under a grocery store checkout, while mommy pays with cash.
Rewind rewind, pan out more, trolley out to ext shot.
Picking up a penny that has been dropped by an old woman, while the snows of 1984 Indianapolis circle outside, bunching up in drifts, icing up roads, people covering and rushing inside, and a wintry breeze gets down in the collar of my coat as I bend, touch the not-strictly-copper of the penny, and pick it up from under the grocery store checkout as my mom pays with her bartender tip money, knowing she’ll have to cut corners somewhere, and
zoom in zoom in zoom in tight, macro,
three frail skin cells of the old woman who survived two wars, a depression, a kindly but distant husband and too many dead sons touches my fingertips and for a moment I feel lucky, and sad about the penny under the grocery store checkout, but
zoom out to top down view, somewhere above in the corner of the store,
I put it in my pocket anyway as we go out into a bygone winter.


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