There are still match sellers

There are still match sellers, naturally their words smoke.
Their faces nearly as small as the body, boy hands shivering
for a box of matches, over on the footpath, dogs gang.

The people have their favorite colors too, the shoes change,
the clothes change but there are still match sellers. Sometimes
he sells toy parrots- bright yellow bodied, blood red faced.

He raises it off the newspaper, over the footpath, when
a child glances his way, still holding hands. His hands
as a boy shiver, remembering caterpillars in empty match-

boxes becoming butterflies in the open sun. In the night,
naturally, they are smoke. The shoes change still, clothes
wear new people every day as they go on & come out

of the trains- long smoking caterpillars in a line. Over
on the footpath, there are still match sellers, the last thing
of their Pandora’s boxes rolled into fragile needles of aspen,
& the parrots follow hand-held children into the blinding lights.

(First appeared in The Ekphrastic Review)