This is a guest post by Marissa. Inspiration for this poem came from this image.
“I still don’t get why everyone’s wearing gas masks.”
“Because it’s a post apocalyptic wasteland, ok?”
“But how could anything at all still be alive if the air is so toxic? Wouldn’t all the animals and plants die? And then what would they eat? How are all the trees around them still alive?”
“Plants and animals aren’t affected somehow. Only humans.”
“Whatever! There are plants and animals that can breathe the toxic air, ok?!”
“You mean, like cockroaches? Everyone’s living on nuked cockroaches?”
“Sure. Protein. Also, um, people look cool in gas masks.”
“Yeah. I mean, I like the picture and all. It just seems . . . over the top. A whole town of people wearing gas masks all the time?”
“Well it’s better than not being alive, wouldn’t you say?”
“Where’s your sense of imagination anyway?”
“Ok, ok. It just raises questions, that’s all.”
She squinted at the photo, considering.
“I like the hats.”
“Yeah. Like, it would be one thing to have this whole huge group of people, including children, wearing crazy gas masks and whatever. Even add in the uniforms. It’s creepy, but you know, it’s just creepy. But I think what really makes it, is the hats they’re wearing over the gas masks. It makes you think of them, standing in their bedrooms, pulling their gas masks on, and then being like, ‘Wouldn’t want to forget the hat! That really completes the look!’”
“No, you are.”