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On Not Flying To Hawaii Analysis

Author: poem of Alison Luterman Type: poem Views: 10

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I could be the waitress

in the airport restaurant

full of tired cigarette smoke and unseeing tourists.

I could turn into the never-noticed landscape

hanging identically in all the booths

or the customer behind the Chronicle

who has been giving advice about stock portfolios for forty years.

I could be his mortal weariness,

his discarded sports section, his smoldering ashtray.

I could be the 70-year-old woman who has never seen Hawaii,

touching her red lipstick and sprayed hair.

I could enter the linen dress

that poofs around her body like a bridesmaid,

or become her gay son

sitting opposite her, stirring another sugar

into his coffee for lack of something true to say.

I could be the reincarnated soul of the composer

of the Muzak that plays relentlessly overhead,

or the factory worker who wove this fake Oriental carpet,

or the hushed shoes of the busboy.

But I don't want to be the life of anything in this pitstop.

I want to go to Hawaii, the wet, hot

impossible place in my heart that knows just what it desires.

I want money, I want candy.

I want sweet ukelele music and birds who drop from the sky.

I want to be the volcano who lavishes

her boiling rock soup love on everyone,

and I want to be the lover

of volcanos, who loves best what burns her as it flows.


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