I just want a ticket home, you know. The clock in the middle of the station reads 12:15. That’s post meridian. I could sit by the railing and drink a Gibson, but the onions always remind me of something. The board flips slats, no train listed for Thebes. A woman in a concert t-shirt pushes past me, twenty years out of date. Cigar smoke fills the ceiling cavern and hides the Furies, following me since I left town. I know I’m headed in the wrong direction, away from you. The solution’s simple: lay my body down next to yours in the grove under the trees along the path in the park you drove by as a child and found so sacred. But when I called your number someone picked up and said, “You’ll get your chance to be immured later. The gig’s up.” I didn’t mind the begging bowl, or the blood. I didn’t mind relocating or even the dull tide of prophesy. But your thing with death left me no way to sidle up to you and get comfortable. We were always so short on time.
An escape. An impediment. A pediment. A foil. As an object lesson and an instance, an illustration. To chastise, to excommunicate, to excoriate, to refer and defer. To combat corporeal history, railing and groveling. The luminous the illuminated the illustrious. Illustrative. Insignificant. Insomnia. Incapacity. Interpolation. Immolation. Sisiphyus, Oedipus, and Tantalus. The ultimate or the penultimate but not the paramount or the prevailing. Not initial, nor indispensible. Interstices. Imprecations. Inferences. Under the allée of live oaks on this side street, I know, I know.
After C.S. Giscombe
So he asks me what happens when you get bored, you just leave? You pretend for a while? People are starting to look. Love’s over there. That old terror. I look down at the lipstick smudge at the edge of the poem. I kill the Maker’s Mark left in my glass. Is it about your father being distant? Do we need to talk about this later? It’s March madness here. He grips his vodka and soda. He leaves no marks, but I will. He looks around. Everyone is watching. At the far end of the bar, vulpine, weeping, arrhythmic the last one begs to be anesthetized. I don’t get bored. I reach for his perfect ass and nudge. Love’s not domestic or suburban, in heels too high for this bar. I’d like to say I’m dangerous. I’d like to say don’t be scared. I’d like to dance for him in the dark to Gimme Shelter or Let it Bleed. I let him look at me. It won’t matter anyhow. He’s too gone. Love, that old terror.