The mall is packed, causing
a sensory overload.
People weave and
thread around each other.
Aural torment comes in
the form of a food court.
One dozen stores rush to feed
People chatter, giggle,
cry or scream.
The babble permeates the senses,
numbing: imperviousness approaches.
Smiling salespeople offer skinny booklets,
fixed smile fading as the day wears on.
Freebies and contests and promoted,
yielding countless rejections.
Christmas spirit is established and
encouraged: tinsel and ornaments
and trees strategically placed and done up.
Glitter and baubles glue together
a reminder that Christmas is
not far off.
It is all perfectly coordinated.
Customers metamorphose from
cheerful and energetic to drained and
weary, wincing in a Pavlovian response to
yet another store.
Shrill notes, borne from hours of
walking, creep into voices.
The gloss wears off and
tedium sets in, to be repeated next year.