Metaphors are everywhere
Red, White, Blue & a bank logo on its side.
Right there—a cynics delight.
There it flies—or tries.
The twin speakers—two horns of an angry ram—blare “Born in the USA”
“Sent me off to a foreign land
To go and kill the yellow man.”
Each song symbolized the hot air balloon being launched.
“Kill the yellow man”
That’s the flag’s song.
Most of us sitting with our mesh backpack seats watching them go up
At least in my little packet of people,
I’m not, but in so far as “us” represents this group of people—the us is Asian American.
But the flag
+ the song
+ the people here
It all clashes.
Then the balloon’s basket catches the low barricade fence.
It smacks to the green grass, fallen among the people—Bruce still playin’.
More and more balloons go up, we take pictures—it gets hot, the sun is setting cool, but the balloon’s flame is close
But it isn’t doing it.
It isn’t providing lift.
The people on the other side of the fence, they try to help the flag up.
I don’t know, I was watching a giant birthday cake lift off, and three cartoon bumble bees launched in unison.
They try again and the carriage of the balloon skids on the ground—caught in the crowd.
Most of us are taking pictures with our smart phones,
But a group of bald Black men, strong and competent
+ 2 Vietnamese women—maybe Cambodian—wearing designer cowboy hats and fancy sun glasses
+ an enthused Indian family
+ a couple WASPier than the Bushes, you just knew they were from Connecticut by all the pastel and the matching handbag/manbag combo
they all got under it, despite the heat, and pushed it up.
The crowd pushed it up—despite itself.
It awkwardly catches the wind current, partially deflated, but up.
With the other ones, it is up.