Poem: Motels


Motel Pool Cleaner – Tony Peters


Written June 25, 2017


We see the sign on the highway that
there’s a motel at the next exit probably
along with a gas station. Dad has been
driving through California all day and it
is summer but it is starting to get dark
so it is late.

There’s an office where you go in to pay
and get a key and an ice machine down
one corridor and a machine that sells pop
and drinks that seems to be working
but that’s as fun as it gets in that way.
Of course we never get to stay in hotels
or motels unless we are on a trip.
We see the sign with the vacancy and
from the parking lot it looks like there
are quite a few, and there is a pool but it is
too late to swim and I watch the bugs
that fly around the light outside our door
and look down at the pool with the fence
surrounding, the cool blue water clear and lit.

There’s a tv that seems to get a lot of
channels, plastic cups beside the bed
and a bedspread that is an orangey brown
paisley print, with a painting of a mountain
above the bed.

I can see the lights of the motel sign outside
of the curtain and I am the last to turn off the tv
as my sister rattles a couple of icecubes
in a plastic cup. After the light is out
I think I do not dream differently in a motel
room on a summer trip away from home
with the temperature still warm and
the bugs flying around the light outside.
I awake in the morning light to the
sounds of a car door shut and an engine
reversing out of a parking spot.

By Wendy Stewart

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