Unsung Song

The world changed.
Books disappeared, replaced
by glowing screens.
Poems that mattered once
were gently laid to rest.
Once, the summer was
the summer, the fall the fall.
Outside, cars sat quietly at the curb,
puffy like soft sculptures,
or finned like giant fish.
Mornings, afternoons,
a boy on a bicycle delivered
news of the world.
Then suddenly it all ended.
There was only the present
looping continuously on a screen,
but you couldn’t make sense of it.

Outside people still jogged,
walked their dogs, coffee
in one hand, a phone in the other.
Holding bright little gods,
they texted and twittered.
Vainly, you tried to recall
when everything had mattered,
when the summer was the summer,
the fall the fall. When people stood
on the sidewalk in the cool
of the evening quietly talking.
When a rolled newspaper hit
the door, mornings, afternoons,
delivered by a boy on a bicycle.
Whatever had happened,
had happened overnight.

You open your mouth.
You open your mouth.
Although there is nothing
to sing about, you sing.

–by Elizabeth Spires

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