The Plastic Cup
Kim Roberts

So it’s one of those bars, see,
where everything is painted black:
the walls, the windows, the crowd,
and the music itself, banging
loud and black. We’re all drinking
beer from these clear plastic cups,
they don’t trust us with glass
and the band’s tuneless and it’s too loud
to speak, though what is there to say?
The scene, the people, everything’s
clouded, and the music everyone
keeps thinking they might come to like.
We could be anywhere,
Detroit or Houston, with these
spotlights shining their circles
randomly on our heads, until this girl,
she puts her empty cup down
right in the middle of a circle
and it glows, it glows like God
right there on the floor.
And it’s got you, the kind of light
you wish could blaze inside you, solid
enough to hurt. It’s got you.
You’re sure it’s not just the booze,
and that cup is not a cup. It’s larger.
Its light could locate you, stop
the banging, could change, could slow,
you’re sure, you don’t know how, the thing
that makes your standing still here
a flight.