In an alleyway beside a nightclub
a miniature figure is vomiting:

that’s how you know this is no
ordinary snowglobe. there are stockbrokers visible

in tall office buildings
staring at lit computer screens

for the slippery secret of money. It is late;
the babysitter turns up the volume on her headphones

to Mach 5
while the kids go out on the balcony to play.

Oh life! Are you even sober?
Can you touch your index finger

with the tip of your nose?
While great corporations drag their shades
across the land

like giant cloud formations,
sucking up pesos in one place,

raining down yuan in another.

Chopsticks and cancer and yellow cabs.
The interstate buzzing with metallic bees.

The greasy haze on the city shoulders.
While in the park a flock of poodles
escapes from a dogwalker’s grip
like a pack of balloons.

At the bottom, a thickness that gathers,
like leftover gravy;

at the top, hope, like a pocket of air.
But what would happen if right now

it all turned upside down?

Tony Hoagland


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