Monday, October 18, 2010

TC: Double Feature


Image, Source: digital file from intermediary roll film

After the moon goes down, the nearness of the night, fair
And dark in its standing against the remaining trees,
Comes off as not an embellishment
But a facsimile. Where have I seen this evening before.
Past is past. It is no longer the small town nineteen forties.
But living in the moment is postponed by
This uncanny sense of repetition.
For example, at the filling station
On the corner outside the theatre,
Beneath violet neon, near green garbage cans
And racks of bright red cans of motor oil, and rows of whitewalls
Stacked for sale, a young man in blue overalls pumps
Gas, over and over, in my mental reproduction of this scene,
Remembered from a foggy night on Pico, Santa Monica,
1951. Sometimes images will never leave your mind.
It's as though you were merely the carrier pigeon
For messages of unknown origin, to be delivered over and over.
As when, after a long day of construction
And assembly, the factory worker and the apprentice escort,
Having put workaday cares aside for a rare night out
At the movies, sitting rapt through the double feature,
Shyly holding hands, turn to one another at last
And sigh, and one whispers to the other,
In a tone of concession gentler than the soft summer night wind,
This is where we came in.

Image, Source: digital file from intermediary roll film

The new movie house in Greensboro, Greene County, Georgia: photos by Jack Delano, June 1941 (Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information Collection, Library of Congress)


irishpoetry said...

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Peter Greene said...

So much to enjoy here!