For twenty-three years we have lived in a town
whose first family takes the name of Mississippi
for first City. First Shitty would be more apt.
You don’t have the exact dimension of the window
our air conditioner is to set inside, it’s your fault
we had to make a trip out to the truck to get
a board to shim up the space in which we discover
it must reside, even though your worker said,
That’s OK when I offered to pay for their trouble
and waved away the hand I held out. Two weeks
passed before he came again to try to get rid
of the vibration that kept us awake upstairs
and downstairs. But that was another half a C
for that trip, once it happened, and the worker
said, There’s nothing I can do, giving us reason
to believe our two hundred dollar air conditioner
plus fifty dollar installation fee would be refunded
only to learn this morning the owner of Naylor
Electric, King Rob–we never say Robert if our
family is first in line to fully own this town
should the Mississippi overflow its banks, for
he will be the first who sends his bill to the gods.
The phone finds its cradle, but not before
being told we shall be charged for only one trip.
We, however, never record our conversations!
And I am the impotent one! I, the customer who
in olden days was "always right." Naylor is he
who swims among the minions who always say
what their country club first family neighbors
pronounce to be the rule of the day here on out.
I watch Obama flailing to keep from drowning
in Bush’s lingering debt hanging over a nation
waiting to be robbed by the next Republican
who ascends to the presidency to take the rest
of what the poor, the old, the desperate young
once could draw from because they owned
a franchise in their future as well as the day
everyone will own an air conditioner in Hell.
8 June 2011
copyright 2011 by Floyce Alexander