Unemployed clouds and blue sky

gaze down through a glass ceiling

framed by industrial geometry

to brick walls and tame plants.

Stacks of white stairs

curve below ground.

Women in trendy dresses –

dull business suits on the men,

one of whom leans from the stairs

to call a hearty,

Keeping you busy are they?

in organizational voice.

He smiles a PR smile,

waves a corporate wave,

bounds up the stairs with

Motivational Seminar vigor.

His listener asks the table,

“Does he know about those figures?”

A tailored solitary reads a fat novel,

reaches, sightless, for rattling potato chips.

“…I like green best for the wedding

and silk fabric…” “My son said

her boyfriend was beating her…”

Two in cropped hair and black and white dresses

lean over coffee cups, interrupting each other,

“If she writes the article we won’t…

“I told you, get the magazine more.”

An iconoclast in non-designer

jeans and ordinary sneakers

buries himself in

the New York Times.

If they knew, would they care –

these sitters on mesh and red

leather chairs, as they eat

caterer’s sandwiches and talk

of love and death and cantaloupe,

divorce and how they should

design the cover of the new brochure

to look like something else –

that the matron in the power suit,

scribbling importantly with

her silver pen, is writing

a poem about them in

her Daytimer?

Marylou Kelly Streznewski is a freelance writer, the author of two non-fiction books, three poetry chapbooks. Her fiction and poetry have appeared in national publications. She is currently at work on a short story collection and a novel. A “Jersey Girl” who grew up in Trenton, she currently resides in Bucks County, PA.

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