Nancy Bailey Miller: Status

Welcome all passengers, Flight 82,
the microphone crackles; I've arrived at the gate.
Two stretches of carpet one red and one blue

divided by stanchions. The edgy move near,
as jetway doors open; folks pack up their snacks.
Execs tend to smartphones, a plug in each ear.

First: Star Gold and Gold Elite, Silver Star holders,
a summons for servicemen dressed in fatigues. Next,
parents with lattes, kids texting in strollers.

You might expect Chase Card Explorers in minks.
All special-needs persons, step up on the double!
Plush lounges, express lanes, more legroom, "free" drinks:

such perks for the journey are actually faux−
they convince us we're privileged in sweatpants and fleece.
Now boarding zone five. At last I can go.

"We must be the losers," I suddenly sigh.
The one other person in Zone Five’s reply?,
"At least we are boarding—not like that stand-by."