trapped in opposition

Trapped in Opposition

He shows up
in line
behind me
in the
upper county
Safeway in a
suit & tie
wearing a
name tag
beard & a
An incongruous
but he’s
in transition
after years of
fist in
the air &
piecemeal employment.


Hey Waco, I say
(it’s the only
name I know him by)
looks like you
came in
from the cold.


He doesn’t
laugh his
normal laugh,
he frowns
instead &
adjusts his
new company


Yeah, I finally
came to my
senses, he says.


You saw
the light,
I say.
You bought the
full enchilada.


That’s right
he says,
neither humored
nor insulted.
Full medical
sick pay
paid vacation


Waco held out
longer than
he’s in his
but it’s not
a matter of
holding out,
it’s a matter
of being
something else.
It’s what pissed
me off about
the hippies,
even as I
frolicked among
them sporting
my own
long hair &


Maybe it’s time
you get your
act together too,
says Waco.


Too late for me
I say.
I’ll just have to
forgo the


I had my
groceries sacked
by this time,
& as I was
leaving I
tapped him
on the shoulder
with my fist
like in the
old days.


He pulled back
& brushed the
sleeve of his
suit coat,
like it was
swarming with

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