The Message

by Susan Adler George


The angel arrived with an insipient message

eyes unfocused robe rented from Prometheus

One wing had a cigarette hole

but no one had been smoking in the lobby

He had been hanging around reading

staring into the red leather tufted seats

placing each person with the gait of their silhouette

Adventure just may be behind the

sharp tooth palm

under the checkered tile floor

between the brass pretzels

remnants of Gabriel’s horn

He had an allowance but did not believe in sharing his thoughts

he preferred to scramble

for half-smoked cigars

wedged in between the scarlet taffeta cushions

so he went to bed covered in thoughts chalk ready in hand

scoring the days accomplishments

in the morning he ate the white sounds of his scores

Famished he hurried down the marble steps to the coffee shop

where he studied the circumference of a restaurant saucer

and the logic of numbers on his breakfast receipt

He then spent some time

thinking about the time he was spending

A revolving door caught his fancy

he went around in circles testing his resistance to danger

darting in and out of the slice of pie-shaped door

He would have flown but with a hole in his wing

he thought it best to take the subway

once in a seat he thought it best not to stare

at all the unstaring eyes

so he found some print on a paper next to him

and pretended to be important by hiding his face behind print

Again he preferred to scramble for the half smoked cigars

wedged in between the seats

He was rumbling inside with excitement

and could not keep from spitting out a mouth full of pearls

“Grow wings and fly through ideas”

he whispered

The syllables dropped

as if they were silken shawls

the words filling the ears with crystal prisms

No one is listening

he whispered again

Everyone was tip toeing away

He gave his tattered robe back to Prometheus


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