Portrait of Las Vegas

O dark dream!
Forsaken hope.
There is no love,
No soul to this city.

Robed in garish lights
You strut, strut,
Kicking your feet like a wooden doll
In a marionette ballet
Singing to the world in that bleached-bone voice
Your hymns of neon.

You are money,
A loveless lady in green,
Lush but cold-bosomed,
Boisterous but barren.
Despairing, hide your tears behind your green fan,
For you will always be as lonely as I,
You bittersweet lady of leisure.

How sad it must be, fabled whore,
How woeful to your pride
That I am unmoved by your charms.

George Chadderdon © 1993