Millions of introverts just got their most fervent prayer
We are alone at last, each in our own bubble, only
no one chastises us for not going to the party. This time
we are the standard
and six feet its measure. Much like The Boy in the Plastic Bubble,
made-for-TV movie that leaned heavily on pre-Saturday Night Fever
There he was, abs and shoulders fresh from a home gym, eyelashes
any model would envy,
the boy next door, if you lived next door to the Adonis of 1976,
only in a bubble,
rolling around looking pensive, which is some serious acting
in a hamster ball.
There he was, reaching to touch the girl next door, reaching
but not touching
because he’s the boy in the plastic bubble
and he would die
if he did. Touch. It ends with sudden immunities—surprise!
You can come out now
and he does but can you ever know for sure? They walk off
together into the sunset
as romantics are wont to do, but no one knows
what is just off frame.
Death could have been sitting on a curb, chilling,
maybe playing jacks
and waiting to start a game. Maybe six feet isn’t enough.
Author of the poetry collection The Tethered Ground and Professor of English at Missouri State University. Contact me for readings or for workshops on writing/publishing and on teaching writing online.
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