Airport Bar

by John Rocco

I worked in an airport bar
for years
where I saw the worst minds
of every generation and flight number
drunk
during delays, cursing me
for the high prices, cursing me
for the delays and the weather,
demanding service.

But this was balanced
by the interesting people I met
like the student who just got
back from Russia who drank
vodka 24-7 there the last night
a drunk screaming: “Life is useless! Drink!”
And the Spaniards I gave free shots to
who swore that if I ever got to Madrid
I’d be the king of the city, everything mine.

And the women dancing on the bar.
And the Irish girl I kissed who
had strong B.O.
but she was very pretty.

Then there were all the famous
people I met: old cranky comic
Alan King (gin and tonic),
Joe Walsh from the Eagles (several double vodka tonics),
Mark Anthony from Van Halen (vodka orange)
Steve Martin (buying yogurt next door),
Madonna (refusing to sign autographs
for two disappointed sad kids).

The king of them all was
Telly Savalas
Kojack
Blofeld (he killed Bond’s wife in
ON HER MAJESTY’S
SECRET SERVICE!)
the mad Cossack slugging vodka
in HORROR EXPRESS
Maggott the lunatic in
THE DIRTY DOZEN
almost ruining the secret mission
when he lost it
at the secret Nazi hotel.

He was flying back to Greece
with his daughter.
The double vodka I poured him
was just too small so I just filled
up my mixing glass with ice
and vodka and he walked
around the bar saying:
“Who loves you, baby?”
to all the blushing old ladies
suddenly young again
growing like new young flowers again
in the crowded about to be empty
airport bar.

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One Response to Airport Bar

  1. Nice poem. This would be a good poem to read at an open mic, it sounds like something that would deliver more power if read out loud to an audience.

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