The Ugly Curtains


All white room
except for the carpet.
The thin, itchy navy blue rug added as a last minute attempt
to reduce the resemblance to that of lockup;
a protection for those temporarily without their wits.

I refuse to lie on it.

The curtains are a worn out red,
long tired of its color.
It’s clear they’ve spent years of
the last two decades
in many different windows.

I wonder if they were just as ugly then.

There was a time they adorned large floor-to-ceiling windows
in walk-ups in the center of the city,
alive with color,
accentuating the dining room carpet.

For all their loyalty,
only to be passed down to
dusty suburban windows
with obstructed views.

The dust read their fate:
intended to live out their final days
in a smoke-ladened second-hand shop.

But somehow,
they took a wrong turn
and ended up here in this dreadful room.

The trim has been stripped of its color, too.
Three diagonal stripes that once boasted red, white and blue,
now, a lost, lazy effort to maintain a sense of
forgotten patriotism.

The window is large now,
almost comically so.
It overlooks a garden
that just never quite grew in.
On second thought,
maybe it did.
It’s hard to tell.
The trees are much too tall.

I laugh when I see the bars on the window;
Either restricting air or shielding desperate attempts to jump
of those willing to risk the fall
to escape the ugly curtains.

I give them a tug
and look down to see the
barely-there garden,
and I laugh.