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Soda Fountain

The quiet hum,
perpetual ticking
of the large grey
soda fountain in the lobby
is the only sound I hear now.
 
I grab a cup
to pour some Dr. Pepper.
“Cherry extract? Huh,
that’s new.” I say
as I push the button
and a cherry-colored liquid
syrups its way into the dark cola.
 
The machine whirs as I take my fill,
I’m a little impatient
but allow the non-imposing seconds
to pass.
 
The room I’m in is empty,
cold, unforgiving... desolate.
It’s an old hospital lobby,
taken out of commission
to be converted.
I’m the last to inspect the room
for the night.
 
A flickering light
seems ominous,
potential fire hazard,
but I’m apathetic to the situation.
 
Suddenly the lonely tables and chairs
are arranged in such a way
as to judge me,
ridicule me,
laugh at me
eerily,
as if an entire ghost banquet
were taking place around me,
a private soirée
of supernatural
occurrences.
 
A bead of sweat falls from
underneath my yellow helmet.
I raise my arm and deliberately
wipe it away.
 
My heart has started
pumping excess blood
to my amygdala,
exciting my fear.
That is what I say
to myself to regain
my composure.
 
The curtains on the windows
limply move with the wind.
 
It’s 10 p.m. and the night
is incredibly young, teasingly fresh.
I put the straw in my mouth and
watch the dark cola crawl upwards
as I walk away.
 
The pale woman standing
at the edge of the room
looks longingly after me,
desiring to follow but unable.

(2015)

Fountain, Free-Verse, Ghost, Halloween, Hospital, Jennings Parker, Party, Poem, Poetry, Soda,

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