Ode to the Run-Down Theater in Monroeville, OH

the sign above you said
Now Playing, but the stripped paint
broken doors and blacked-out windows
said otherwise -

driving down Main St. in rural whoknowswhere
makes me wonder what made you go under:
the drive-thru liquor store
and gentlemen's club (which still looks oddly
like a garage) seem to be doing
just fine

the antique furniture store next door is filled with
all of the items that were around when you
were first built - that old green-padded
dining room chair, the velvet sofa;
the faux-crystal vase reminds me of your old lights
that used to glisten in the night sky but now
are dulled and burnt-out, like your old
silver screens (that probably had a hint
of real silver)

i wondered what on Earth that FURNITURE sign
did on your marquee - i think that in a desperate
act of pleading, your seats were stripped
from you and put on a black market just off of Main St.
in order to keep your screens lit up for just
another decade or so - just long enough to see
the next incarnation of the Coca-Cola logo
that your customers would carry with their popcorn
on their way to see Night of the Living Dead
for the umpteeth time

i just pray to god that your last blaze of glory
was not The Blair Witch Project
or something terrible like that

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