Fresh Briefs: Lemonade

Suppose you and I happen to be running rather late to a mutual friend’s wedding reception, which, according to this handcrafted, hand-delivered, rather
RSVP (regrets only) in my possession, will take place to-day, a chapped dry July afternoon, on the patio of a home you and I both have not visited, in a booshie, same-looking suburban borough we both do not know,
and the heat could pucker a person’s eyes–
suppose you and I happen to be running rather late, and suppose we just so happen to see, after turning up a street we swear we’ve already been,
a lemonade stand,
abandoned, but still curiously stocked by three pitchers of lemony-sweet nectar, and a mountain of individually serialized paper cups,–if we just so happen to see a lemonade stand, abandoned, erected just off the odd crosswalk there, in front of that old whitewashed, boarded-up, dandelion-swallowed home–
will we go and wait for the child to return?
Because if you and I do not find our way to the wedding reception
P R O N T O,
we will be arriving on the unfashionably side of late,–or wearing an even worse look: like missing the ceremonial cutting of cake/frosting face-decoration festivities.
And at this point you and I have been walking around long enough to be both visibly irritated and more-than-just-visibly perspired,
and at this point you and I are halfway between lost and actually admitting we are lost,
boiling beneath the skin, mouths cotton from gin,–
so tell me, if we just so happen to see a lemonade stand, abandoned, will we skip over, arm-in-arm, and then eagerly pour ourselves each an ice-cold cup from the sweating pitchers of sour/sweet?
Will we leave a couple crumpled bills in absent thanks
(an asking price nowhere to be found on the handscrawled sign,
before downing one final refreshment, and then continuing back up the baked asphalt hills in a hurried search of the wedding procession?
Perhaps in the moral heights of your light head, you think it smarter to resist the urge, and display patience–yes–God forbid the good folks here think us thieves!
But who, who then would start this lemonade stand only to leave?
Hm,—now who could that be?
Could it be this man here, who squeezes out of the whitewashed home,–this man here with the ruckle-scarred skull, and the bare brow, his mouth a crease, all decked in ivory, a two-piece Italian suit, could it be this withered, crumpled man here who crosses through the comatose lawn, towards us, crushing the dandelion colonies with a spit-polished pair of wingtip Derby loafers, could it really be this cruelly contorted old soul, weakly dragging an oxygen tank at his side (plastic tubes splitting from stubbly nostrils) who unlatches the gate, and then stretches his crooked hands out across the table, and grins toothlessly at the two of us, and snickers squeals at our sugar-soaked lips?