“Take a Number”
“Take a number,” someone whispered in the night,” any one
Will do!” and come to think of it, it happened to be true..
They’ll dine in or out or perhaps linger in that long blue
Moment in the atrium, or then again, they’ll take the sun
At midnight or take the stairs and skip the banister. They’ll taste
The wine gone flat; and why not? That is, of course, unless they’ve read the signs
In time to outwit the posse just a little forward in the line
From where they are to where they’re surely going. The race
Is on, you see, to falter willy nilly at the altar, to settle the bill,
Unzip the lining of the thing, pick up the ball
And run like hell through the side booth in the kitchen, down the hall,
Turn and cash in their chips on the spot. The cogent thrill
Is gone, perhaps, but not the will, and if they’ve read the bulbs correctly,
They’ll never reach the pantry door directly.