About Young People

by Dorothy Chan

"It's the movies that have really been running things in America ever since they were invented. They show you what to do, how to do it, when to do it, how to feel about it, and how to look how you feel about it."

"The most exciting attractions are between two opposites that never meet."—Andy Warhol

Take the all-American beautiful boy
and plop him down at the Library that's meant
for Flirting. He might be a little too old
for the teen drama, but his looks and his
outlook will do. And within fifteen minutes
of sitting there, he'll whine like the most
petulant child in the grocery store:
"Of all the libraries in all the towns
of the world, she walks into mine."

[Don't zoom into the girl's face. She's a generic redhead with a tired lip.]

And now sense the melodrama of the
beautiful youth as the generic redhead
takes a seat…with her back faced
towards him. He chews his bagel (extra vegetarian),
making sure crumbs don't get on his bowtie,
wondering if she's thinking about him;
wondering if he should march right up to her
and thank her for the good time last weekend
and return the butterfly hair clip she
left behind, now sheepishly hidden in his pocket,

until [now zoom camera in] his best female friend,
the Vogued-out girl (even though a potato sack
would do just as well) walks in, French soda
in hand, holding the newspaper she's not
going to read, and stops the beautiful boy
from such nonsense.

Really, she acts like his mother,
or acts like she owns him—
It looks like they won't
be making up their minds anytime soon
as he pulls out the chair
for her, and she glares…glares at him,
as if she's telling him:
"Stop it and just look at me."


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