Ransom in Burnt Neon
The city has something to say
in the letters we can't see.
"Big O Tires" is just an "ire" away
from Rodney King all over again.
"The Glass Works" hides a dirty secret
behind its already suspicious "gl,"
if you'd just see through it.
The tight-lipped "De" betrays
why break time near the vending machine
is so popular at "Office Depot."
"Wa-Mart" cries "Noel"
because every day is Christmas
in a department store.
Drop that snake's hiss
and stand revealed for what
you really serve,
that fuel from earth's underbelly,
and what we're willing to pay
to get up and go . . .
. . . on tires that prefer their side
of the road.
Those seemingly burnt out neon letters
are the city's way of
clipping out a ransom note.
It's holding the obvious