one roof

i miss the malls
with their obvious ploys of placing
larger stores at either end
the distractions between your destination

i miss the malls
with their smells of caramel
and floor-wax
the anticipation of bright signs
and bright prices and bright
songs where fountains don’t play,
they work and there is no
such thing as holidays
because smiles are complete

i miss the malls that take swarming
under one roof and deliver
forgiveness for spending on
bags that are sharper
and carried with a pride
of compunction
while children are accessories
and not problems
the sky is the limit
and the caves are explored

while smelling and tasting and seeing
the wealth of desire …

i miss the malls
those temples we swarmed-to as children
those relaxed endeavors
that traded “Please, Mom?”
for an “OK”
where the world opened to possibility
because it was there, right before your eyes

… i miss the malls
saddest is having them gone —
but sadder still, is having those dinosaurs of trade
with doors into a parking-lot
no smells but exhaust
and goods that are reduced to being only goods
not decorations for a world
that flows one into the next
with a design that can only be called replete
born for weekends
and songs for every kettle

what folly took them down?
the same greed that built them up,
i suppose
so the world moves on and we travel now
in our minds searching malls of the internet
searching aisles of the grocery stores
wondering where magic went
where did the dreams land

because they were THERE ….they were!
i will never forget
we had it all
born to be silenced and chained
to the one thing industry could not afford
but loved anyway
chained to walls and rooftops
and countless smells between the jobs that
were not really jobs
and the spinning of toys
and the spinning of lights
and the spinning of innocence and laughter
baubles and more reasons to protect

what you were
what you are

…i miss the malls



6 Replies to “one roof”

    1. thanks, K …. things change and time catches up to us all….had these cement bridges and turtles as a sort of indoor playground at the mall i miss most. was like a tactile study on form. such work and all now gone.

  1. This was oddly enchanting. It also spurred thoughts in my anthropologist’s brain about the cultural factors at play and the shift from tangible, communal activities enacted in a spatially perceivable context to solitary actions performed in an isolated, virtual forum. The root of commodity is still there, but the attendant experiences are absent. What consequences might this entail for the human psyche? How will it shape our global cultural sensibilities as well as those at play within more select communities?
    What I meant to say is, “Wow, excellent piece! Thanks for sharing.”

    1. there is going to be impact…. but where this particular one leads is anyone’s guess. to create a tide of interaction and then remove it? that is to bet on a sure thing….. the key to your thought is “isolation”…. while even childhood songs end with “the cheese stands alone.” ? not like we weren’t warned but there are days i think of the possibilities.

  2. I’m reminded of something I read in a management theory magazine. Managers in one supermarket chain (as we call them) had been told that staff were being empowered and micro-management was out. Next day one manager so addressed saw a senior manager lurking behind a pillar, peering at a checkout. He asked him what he was doing.

    “I’m recording whether the checkout girl smiles at the customers,” he replied.

Feedback always welcome

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