The Realization

I went alone to a book party
at a vintage shop that I adore--
a place chock full of
kooky charm bracelets,
garage-sale oil paintings
and battered monogrammed luggage
that speaks of a time
when travel
was glamorous.

But when I got there
everyone sipping the wine in plastic cups
and listening to the vampy jazz singer
was twenty-four years old--
the women, leggy and resplendent
perspiring lightly under their makeup
in feathered-this and sequined-that
and the men,
scruffy and carefully messy
in stovepipe pants and leather jackets.

I realized that I didn't know anyone there
and suddenly felt old
and out of place,
like one of the less-interesting
garage-sale paintings
in the corner.