we sit at a dimly lit café table
hot coffee & cautious glances,
among your blue ghosts.
conversation is sparse: ‘how’ve you been?’
‘okay. okay, I guess.’
so we sit in the lulling smoke
sizing up our commonalities:
eyes that no longer cry,
hearts that are ever lonely.
it gets quiet, & I try not to think of the night years ago,
when I woke up on the steps across from your place, &
saw you standing in your doorway, your robe half-opened,
& your latest pickup grinning & sucking in the fresh morning
air, the way a man does after a good lay.
I won’t ask if you still prowl the streets looking for a man,
any man, to get you through the empty nights,
as long as you don’t ask if I love you.
you’re not a wicked woman, you just needed to fill the
shallow spaces when I was off drinking or whoring or
getting my ass in a bind.
and I wonder why I get off the bus when it stops at your
corner, what it is that links two wayward people, like
trash floating down the same rainy gutter.
later, when I walk you home,
invite me in.
you can pretend we’re still in love.
just don’t ask me…
(Art by Lynn Sanguedolce)