"Apollo at 4 a.m."
Another day, another drachma,
He thinks to himself
As he sets the cruise control
And glances at the couple in the back seat
In his rear view mirror.
The fare's hand slips under his date's skirt
And Apollo smiles to himself –
But like a shoe salesman who was once
A high school football star,
His glory days are far behind him.
He never thought he'd end up
Just another American dreamer,
Driving a cab in Houston.
Sure, he doesn't have the duty
Of a blazing chariot
To drive across the sky each day,
But the hours are still pretty bad.
And this rotten city, this stupid, stinking city –
Like the crotch of a low-born goddess
He once knew,
It's always moist here,
Kind of smelly,
And probably a little diseased –
But it's so easy
To slide right in,
You take your chances.
And when the after hours clientele
Forget to tip or throw up in your cab,
You remember the olive branches,
You remember the bronzed physique
That inspired worship and envy,
And for a minute or two...
You pretend it's enough.