Sunday, September 7, 2008

Details Inside


Last night, we were pumping gasoline into an automobile, and I looked at an exterior wall of the the gas-station, and I saw a sign that "said," "Buy 5 car-washes and get the 6th one free. Details inside."

I wondered what additional details lay inside. Maybe if I were to go in there and to inquire about the information on the sign, an employee would say, "Well, I think you'll find the details ironic. You actually don't get the 6th car-wash free!" Or perhaps she or he would have said, "No one has asked about the details before, so I'm ashamed to say I don't know what they are." Or: "You may not believe this, but if you purchase 5 car-washes, you automatically become a Knight of Malta."

I assume the details are, in an actuality inside the gas station, mundanely legalistic. You probably have to purchase the car-washes with a form of American currency--not that American currency actually exists. No rubles, no semi-precious gems. Or you have to purchase the car-washes all within 12 months. Or perhaps if you've purchased a used Soviet tank from the Black Market, you are not allowed to try to drive it through the car-wash.

That's why I didn't inquire. I wanted to make up some mythical details. I also thought, however, that a great generic title for almost any poem would be "Poem: Details Inside."
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