Labor Day (pains)

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I pinched the scent of ammonia
Held it like a beggar’s sign.
Pedestrians winced as they strode past,
Their gestures relevant through permanence.
Huddled lips raising the curtain on buck-toothed trembles.

But I should mention I was at work.
And it was Labor Day.

Outside smoke clouds of charcoal splendor
Announced to the sky
That Americana looms wherever there’s fire.

On an empty stomach-
An average citizen suggested
That I wash my hands. I obliged the comment
By walking towards the toilet,
Kneeling at the basin
And splashing water around. While my butt crack smiled
As it peeked above the waistline
Of my khaki pants.
To keep the crowd’s attention I announced,
“Bruised fruit is thrown out.
Yet, it contains the same amount of nutrition
As non-bruised produce, and the bruises here,”
I lifted my shirt to expose purple blemishes
Adorned across my round belly. “Makes me human
Not fruit.”
The audience applauded, except for the average citizen
With an empty stomach. He smiled and mumbled something brief.
I couldn’t hear the words over the applause.

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