When brave brushes against abrasive you get tested: bow, curtsy, elbow, see you later. Bump & run. Coke & rum. You’d like to even things before skin palls in the burgeoning light. After a night when they offer to fuck you up then drop you off. It’s a livery service, it’s love. It’ll take me six gins to catch up. You’re wearing that halo again, the one that leaves me feeling a gimp, stuttering & blind, a grope in need of a steady hand. Don’t blame yourself, it’s my voracious need for reciprocity that’s led to this late night, Conan, drum where you don’t so much as flinch when I turn the light on you & your naked friend. Cactus oozing sap like a Vermont maple when the weather turns, blooming into a boisterous, out-of-season turkey. Oh for a balcony! The sweet corniness of launching over the edge, to change the dross to gloss & everything becomes clear when you finally walk out the door. Sapphires are always purer than what goes against the grain. I should start temping again. Sometimes I think we should blame Art Carney for everything, no, not him, the other guy on Gleason, the drinker who talked to Joe the Bartender so sweetly & never once forgot to pay a bill. Eventually.