Lines West: Sept. 30, 2011

SUNDAY AFTERNOON

Charcoal and pink Pontiac drops me at the curb,

Fins flaring as it pulls away.

I push three quarters and a dime through the port

In the round glass booth under the marquee.

Inside popcorn conks the metal bowl

Exuding seductive, buttery air.

I glide over the plush, quiet carpet to my seat.

In deep darkness, the fantasy begins.

Magic Technicolor scenes of Cleopatra draw me—

Kidnapped and floating on the Nile,

Clinging to life in a racing chariot,

Pressed breathless into a kiss by Mark Antony.

Too soon I squint into the late afternoon sun,

Silently riding the charcoal and pink chariot,

Staring at passing streets and

Trying to bring my spirit back from Cairo.

— Linda Stout


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