by Paul J. Willis
The mirrors on opposite walls
present us to ourselves in regression,
as if going back in time
to rooms we used to occupy.
The people there are bewildered
to be so small and distant,
dismayed to be merely former selves.
So they wave us back
into their diminishing frames
to join them as the hours elapse,
as day joins on to day
like box cars coupling one to the other
until they reach a tiny caboose
conducted by a portly man in miniature
who fishes a watch from his fob pocket,
pushes back his black-billed cap,
and squints at the unlikelihood
of any sort of timely departure.