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This place, this city where deals go down on street corners

while overhead, pilots cast cloud nets into the sky,

harvesting freeways and office buildings and tree-lined streets

with swimming pools that are nailed like turquoise studs into the ground.

 

In the supermarket terminals old women

on their journey to home towns that wait for their return,

sit in hard rows and reflect on the children’s children

they have mid-wifed into life.

A crone gives into her desire to tell about the golden man

who stood at the end of the bed and made the cancer disappear

while she walked through the valley in the shadow of death

and prayed not to want but she did.

And now she says to do it all in 96-year old vibrations

that were forged when women wore high breasts and long skirts

and played croquet on lawns on a Sunday afternoon.

“because you never know when the day will come,” she says,“ so do it all.”

The lady with the walker, one step at a time,

makes her way to the ticket counter

and passes the young woman from Reno

who sits beside the man from LA

who sells gum by the truckload

when he isn’t making time with a small town girl

who has been made too friendly

by the blue skies that dome her days.

She tells about her mother who rides a Harley

and is looking for a man who will run her up mountains

as she circles his tattoos with silver ringed fingers

for the duration of the ride.

Laying on her side on the floor,

a blond girl waits for her ship to come in

while the white haired lady with a cane

discusses the politics of wealth with the Italian-loafered gentleman.

Eating chocolate yogurt the gypsy with the briefcase

scans the board for the New York bound

and the man in the Panama hat sits quietly

and reads the life and death of Hemmingway.

Students cluster on the floor

and proclaim in heroic tones

how they will change the world

when it is their turn to be in charge.

The fat woman with the horizontal stripes

lumbers through the crowd looking for a seat.

A terminal exhibition, travelers all,

waiting impatiently for their number to be called.

While overhead strangers eat small bags of honey roasted nuts

as they compare sales territories and organizational charts

then look out of oval windows

as runways reach up and grab the wheels.

At touch down passengers pull heavy suitcases

filled with karma from overhead bins,

stand crouched over cell phones

and wait for their turn to file slowly

down the aisle past flight attendants

who smile with sweet insincerity

and welcome you to Los Angeles.

This place, this city where deals go down on street corners.

 

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