The Way Things Are in Franklin

Even the undertaker is going out
of business. And since the dime store closed,
we can’t get parakeets on Main Street
anymore, or sleeveless gingham smocks
for keeping Church Fair pie off the ample
fronts of the strong, garrulous wives
of pipefitters and road agents.
The hardware’s done for too.
a Sunday, I saw the proprietors breaking
up shop, the woman struggling with half
a dozen bicycle tires on each arm,
like bangle bracelets, the man balancing
boxes filled with Teflon pans. The windows
had been soaped to frustrate curiosity,
or pity, or that cheerless satisfaction
we sometimes feel when others fail.

:: Jane Kenyon, Otherwise: New & Selected Poems (1996)

No comments:

Post a Comment