Decline of the Blue Plate Special

They owned it most when they didn’t

belong, waiting like mental patients against

the door, headlights smacking their eyes

in passing.  The wait staff still

didn’t know their names and they didn’t

notice.  He always paid and she always

wiped the rim of the ketchup bottle, hating to leave

evidence of appetite.  They sat,

staring out windows polluted

with breath, he thinking he could do better, she

thinking she could do better, neither believing

this Union Street diner, its tic of blue

neon scabbing the sky, blinking

Diner blinking Open blinking Diner

blinking Open, could last another month,

gimping each hour away with low rent

biscuits and bacon grease.  But it does.

It lasts.  It goes on forever.

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