Friday, November 13, 2009

poem of the day 11.13.09

crossing abbey road in the rain

when we get there
there are two idiots standing in the middle
of the street, posing, holding up traffic.

i tell my wife that this is stupid
as i catch raindrops on my tongue
and think about british beer.

i tell here that i want to turn back
and find a pub
but she won’t go because we walked
three miles to get here
in a continuous mist

and aren’t i a big beatles fan?

she’s feeling guilty because she’s dominated
the trip visiting the old homes of
shakespeare and virginia woolfe,
j.m. barrie,
although i didn’t mind at all.

she starts taking photographs of
the intersection
catching the famous crosswalk
before more people do their poses
and more car horns blast out at us fool
getting soaked in the english afternoon.

then more people show up.
other americans.
the chinese.
russians and germans
a whole world of beatles fans
the masses that won’t let the past simply
die or fade away.

there is a family holding up everything
smiling like morons
standing in the flow of traffic
stopping and doing every single
pose that the beatles did on the cover
of the album.

christ, i think,
there is no god
there can’t be.

my wife tells me to cross the street
and i say no
just get pictures of the thing
but she prods on, talking about how
i might never get back here
so i do it
walking fast so as to not become some
asinine spectacle
like the rest of them.

this is dumb
how can i not be a spectacle?
another tourist in the gray mist
of a long line of tourists wearing down
the white rubber on this street?

i cross the street and ask her if that’s
good enough
but my wife wants me to do it again
and again
so i get in the line and cross
then cross back
then do it a third time
as the rain gets harder
and pride becomes impossible to find.

after i cross a fourth time
i look at my wife and she tells me that she
didn’t get a good shot because the camera closed.
its batteries are dying.
i say to hell with it, let’s go and find a pub.

but we haven’t taken her picture yet.
so i grab the camera and turn it on
the red “low battery” light flashing at me
as my wife smiles
and crosses abbey road in the rain
and i think, well, this could’ve been worse.

we could’ve gone to see all of the stiffs
at madam tussauds instead.

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