These aging towns have drawn their structure from temporary exploitation:
logging, mining, freight, retailing trinkets made in more polluted nations.
Survival means servility so they seek new source of substance
to fill their empty shells or pay for paint to patch the cracked cement.
“Façade in disrepair: seeks maintainer”
Some now make their living by the nomadic, “mobile” millions who roam the roads
searching for distraction: tele-vision.
Trades once traditional now “artisanal” —
it is a rare & shrewd babushka who knows the words to call her wares;
though a few eyes still know the signs of signs —
that have read the same for generations —
almost lost among the glowing neons;
their face cannot be found in any book —
the truly secret spot will never know a Yelp review:
yields not to tourists, fools, or to the casual.
No sign may mark its entrance but “God bless all who enter here.”
No certificate of state can ever mar the guileless geometry of its walls.
The home is what is sought; the façade is what is bought,
so no amount of searching will quench the searcher’s thirst for origin —
Find that place from whence you came, and stop to smell the roses,
for it has been said that we remember easiest through our noses,
and unless we breathe the floral air that blooms before the windows there,
we may be forever window-shoppers on our trip into the sun.