The Last Ride


It's night and the fairground from a distance
Looks aloft in a field of stars.
Everything floats on the ending of summer,
Fried delicacies, sweets, laughter, cyclic music.
The rides creak, whirl, dive,
The mechanisms straining,
But always the Ferris wheel rising
Not to plunge in free fall
Or to spin like a madcap top
But to climb up slowly and to pause
At a high summit before a slow decline.
The fair stretches out beneath it in all its grandeur
Perhaps like the 1893 white city in its first unveiling,
Though less vast and worldly
Yet still delightful, and the wheel
The first revolution of rides, turns
On pure entertainment unfettered by bric-a-brac,
Forever upright in stately marvel
The last ride of the fair
Well worth the remaining few tickets
After seeing everything,
Then slowly, one final time, all at once.

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