In August they appear
shimmering in the highway haze.
Metal caravans refracting the sun.
They set up in plain view.
In parking lots or
the rented dirt of fair grounds.
By nightfall they’re up,
red lights running,
the kind of cheap attraction
built to go up as quickly as it comes down.
The crowds wander in
looking for a late night thrill.
They wait in long lines
for the chance to take their turn,
to lose their breath
in that slow grind
Up up up to the top
They pay a heavy price
for that moment of weightlessness,
They forget their places on earth
in that second of being suspended,
before plunging back down to the ground.
In the morning there is
nothing left but trash.
Empty containers and paper wrappers
used then discarded.
Things that once held a purpose,
thrown away for somebody else
to eventually have to pick back up.