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He was checking the watch on his phone every five seconds,
Pacing himself in perfect four-step lines, counting ticks,
But still checking his phone to see if he had counted them right,
By his displeasured look on his fading face, it appeared he had.
He tossed his feet back and forth beneath the nylon lights
That painted the title of the movie theatre on the street puddles,
Flickering, twinkling, ironically lighting this boy’s desperate mood.
I watched the skin beneath his eyes begin to sag with weight
From across the street, as my eyes focused through the
Streaming laughter of my friends as we sat at the bus stop.
He unrolled his sleeves and wiped his sweaty palms on his pants,
Checking his phone again, and again, and with every needing
Glance a little piece of his youthful and hope-filled face
Seemed to chip away with the imaginary second hand on his
Time as it seemed to warp and steal his innocence away.
He pulled the gummy bears he had bought out from his jacket,
And began to rip through the small, chewy animals, chomping
Away the guilt and embarrassment that rushed into his rosy cheeks.
At the first sign of rain that came just when it seemed he would
Need an excuse for why his collar was damp to begin with,
He took the tickets from his wallet, placed them on the top step,
Crossed the street to the very bust-stop-bench where my friends
Howled silent laughter that fought for control of the atmosphere,
And he watched the tickets sit, with every last ounce of hope.