15 August 2012

another night in vegas {a poem}

Like a plague sent as punishment,
it is raining in Las Vegas.

On the Luxor, raindrops slide down
the glass pyramid,
Nile rivulets marking riches and excess
Pharaoh himself would covet.

Farther down the Strip,
an attempt at the Eiffel Tower outside
the Paris Hotel welcomes the rain—
even though it is not the gentle rain of a French spring
that slicks the cobblestone streets around
the Champs de Mars, umbrellas appearing
in one theatrical flourish:
the French joie de vivre does not
proclaim itself in neon lights and clanging cymbals.

Under the portico at Caesar's Palace,
millions take shelter.
Stand too close.
Rub bare shoulders with strangers.
And stare with a communal vacant eye
at the rain
as if it were another game they could bet on.

The Strip has flooded from the downpour:
for once, Vegas itself is overwhelmed.

A girl in a Pepto Bismol pink dress
that stops far above her knees
looks both ways on the River Strip
and not seeing Charon coming to ferry her across,
puts one gold-sandaled foot in the water,
shriek-laughs at the grime flowing around her ankle,
then flings herself across,
hoping for better luck on the other side.

1 comment:

  1. Easily the best poem of yours I've had the fortune to see.--Andrew



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