"Concierge"

Written By

Freedom Chevalier

calloused, cracked knuckles defend

against dawn's first flush

 

chipped nails trim grime-washed

palms, eager to work

 

tuck shirttail into too-big trousers, straighten frayed cuffs without sleeve-buttons;

 

hold open doors.

 

suits, ties, phones, files

corporate-meeting-vivisetion-congregation

 

per diem procession

 

Could you believe it!

 

In-house coffee tastes like crap! I won't drink it!

 

I DON'T have any spare change. He should get a job!

 

outcast cups catch castaway coins tossed, en route.

 

8 hours procurement: $3.50

 

morning special:

small coffee and any regular donut $2.00

 

...a limited supply

 

evening exigency:

bed at hostel for one night $4.00

 

...a limited supply

 

another biting night on numbing city

cement, huddled between

threadbare sack and subterranean chasm

spewing foul vapors

warming;

 

carting workmen home to post-bachelor flats

baroque accoutrements: toilets, hot water

his life furnishes no surplus

Freedom Chevalier is a rehabilitated thespian and the author of countless feature articles, several dramatic plays, short stories, songs, poems and even a gritty thriller set in the world of Canadian stand-up comedy of the 1990s. She currently resides outside of Boston and is desperately trying to get back to the bay...and she really has heard every possible joke about her name.

Subscribe to hear about new articles and issues of Breath and Shadow!