What size, what color, how many?
said the New Orleans T-shirt merchant.
Say, buddy, jus' a minute, jus'
a minute, said the inebriated man
on Canal Street, his life misplaced
behind his eyes somewhere. Talk to you
for a minute? he said.
Now I'm back behind gauze
of hotel drapery looking
at charcoal silhouettes of
financial towers. I gave
the boozy man some money,
and to the street-vendor,
I said big, blue, and one.
Copyright 2009 Hans Ostrom