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December 8, 2019

Old Downtown Theater

fire of unknown origin is what they say
that’s a cool way of saying they don’t know what happened
the old movie theater long abandoned and neglected
one time it was a palace
marble stairs to the upper deck
lush red carpeting in the lobby where you stood for popcorn
the seats were rocking chairs and well padded
but the neighborhood started going downhill like a runaway sled
and the people stopped coming during the week
and eventually the weekends too
crime, homeless people like me asking for money
nobody wants to see that or put up with it
so eventually one day it was boarded up and put up for sale
nobody wanted it and it stood there silently like in an old-time movie
films flickering no more--
paint fading and the marquee breaking
and it sat empty for a decade or two at least
the city wanted to save it
but didn’t want to actually spend any money to do it
dated, dilapidated, decaying
one night the power of red and yellow flames came out of it
like a two story towering inferno or some such thing
it disintegrated like an old film made on nitrate film base
until it could be seen no more 
somebody collected insurance money on it I bet