“I See It In Us” by Andrea Janov

I See It In Us

 

There!

       There!          

Dave yells.

Hughes’s Cavalier   jolts   :   stops   :

third space from the entrance.

Rock star parking!

 

The glass door obscured

by smudged handprints

closes behind us. Fluorescent

lights : Christmas decorations : shouting voices

that never form words

engulf us

cut off

the winter night.

 

The food court packed :

teenagers eat slices of greasy pizza

children throw Happy Meal toys

mothers stare

with bags of merchandise

to exchange resting between their legs

eyes focus :  shift to stares  :  as we walk by.

 

band T-shirts   :

hoodies   :   skateboards   :   studded

belts   :   mohwaks   :   liberty spikes

meet up outside the Gallery of Sound.

                                Old women scurry

JC Penney to the Hallmark store,

tired men recline on benches,

their gaze

always on our group.

Hot Tony from Hot Topic is on break

           Art and Sean mooch money

               underage punks bum rides to Metro

Dave skates through the crew.

                                                           We gawk back,

at their wrinkles and grey hair,

their high-water pants and orthopedic shoes.


One old man has an inky

blob sticking out

of his shirt sleeve.

I stare into his eyes

he stares back

What does he see in us?

His high school days :

a pack of cigarettes

rolled up in a white T-shirt sleeve

as he ditched last period

to smoke under the bleachers?

His wife slams her shopping bags

against his legs   :   looks to what

he stares at.

Does she see

the fuck-authority boys

her mother never let her date?

Does she see

the girl she always

was too afraid to be?

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