Double Shift

The diner glows fluorescent at 2 a.m.

IMG_1963

The diner glows fluorescent at 2 a.m.,
beckons boozers and truckers, runaways,
women between men.

Mary receives them
as her namesake received Gabriel,
pours coffee unbidden, tends
to coconut cream and lemon meringue,
eggs over easy, a malt for the guy
with stringy hair, jittery for a fix.

She saves her tips in a pickle jar
under the grill — enough, she hopes,
to post 50 bucks for her old man’s bail
come morning.

Sarah Russell
First published in Kentucky Review
Photo:  Diners, Delis & Dives

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55 thoughts on “Double Shift

  1. Wow! Another great one. Would be curious to know the thinking behind the lines…

    “Mary receives them as her namesake received Gabriel,”

    Obviously biblical but was their some specific thought you had when you wrote those lines?

    Still enjoying your poetry/writings!

    Bob

    >

    Like

  2. I so enjoyed the descriptions of the people and food served at the diner and Mary’s tip jar with hopes to spring her man from jail…that says a lot right there!

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  3. This poem is cinematographic, Sarah, and really zings in the imagination. The ending is so poignant:
    ‘She saves her tips in a pickle jar
    under the grill — enough, she hopes,
    to post 50 bucks for her old man’s bail
    come morning’.

    Like

  4. oh my……..you’ve painted quite a scene. The quintessential small time diner. I’m reminded of that old tv show Alice and the waitress who chewed gum and had a flamboyant lacey hankie in her pocket! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. So sorry, unexpected visitors last night have made me rather late in responding to your piece. A great poem Sarah: “eggs over easy, a malt for the guy
    with stringy hair, jittery for a fix.” is perfect and very beautiful writing…

    Like

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