Between the racks move muttering moms
and pleading kids.
Crouching low the helpers pull out shirts and hangers
stuffed in the wrong rack, wrong department,
forgotten in the face of a better price
or wave of guilt.
On her tip toes a helper wrangles and lifts down
a milkwhite mannequin man, one hand under his
crotch and the other squeezing his smooth ankle.
A stoic fleshy man needs those pants in that size, please.
Across the store two teens have slipped into a fitting room
trying each other on for size.
A boy sits on the edge of a table, his arm draped across
a stack of cashmere sweaters, crying patiently.
His mother is lost in the Levi’s, comforting someone on the phone.
The new girl carefully steers her feet down the aisles,
blisters growing bigger by the hour.
It’s the first day of the Christmas soundtrack.
Everything, everything’s a gift.