Friday, January 20, 2012

Gift Card

Gift Card

The woman ahead of me placed her stuff
on the belt, off-loading in a pattern
I could not seem to discern.  She wasn’t
applying the alphabet, that much was

clear, Dawn Anti-Bacterial Dish Soap
ahead of Burt’s Bee’s Dry Skin Salve plunked down
well after a brace of green peppers side
by side among a skyline of boxes

of breakfast cereal.  I was that close
to cracking her scheme wide open when I
was distracted by a rack of gift cards
placed with deliberation, the perfect

ploy, a pleasing grid of gleaming colored
thin plastic rectangles that appeared to  
suggest a collectable set.  Why not
buy all thirty, seemed to be the message,

display them framed, under glass above the
fireplace, though at that moment I was
wondering what it would feel like to be
in that rack, among those cards, side by side

with Chili’s and VISA and Home Depot
and i Tunes and The Gap.  You, unloading
your cart, lost in thought perhaps, giving us
only a cursory glance while I shout

silently from my slot below Sunglass
Hut, vying for your attention, fearful
you won’t notice me there among the rest,
screaming at the top of my lungs, choose me!

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