for just a few beers
--for randy costanza
i try to remember the last time we hung out
a vietnamese restaurant on the upper east side
after smoking cigarettes on the steps
of the metropolitan museum of art
when i was brand new in new york.
and except for that one time
when we ran into each other in midtown
i don’t think we’ve seen each other
at all these past five years.
we were still in our twenties back then.
i know what you look like, now, though
and some of what you’ve been through.
the internet is at least good for that.
it was nice to get your email.
i’m glad you’re writing comics again
and drinking a lot of beer.
as you can see i’m still messing
with the poem and the story
trying to hit one out of the park
but mostly smacking singles and doubles
in between the insomnia, the jobs, the moves,
the slugs of scotch and cheap french wine.
i’d be glad to get together soon to drink
and see what real damage time has done to us.
sitting across from you in a bar like the old times
just might be the cure-all i need.
another chance at intangible youth.
it’ll at least give me a bridge
from the past into the present
something to help me figure out what in the hell
i’m doing with myself in these days
of turning sallow and gray-haired against
the onslaught of time.
but......do you remember those times when we were young
and driving pittsburgh streets with bags of black label beer
on the floor of your car, drunkenly pissing on the vast front lawns
of university professors, and then racing into liquor stores moments
before closing just to get a fresh liter of vodka so that we could mix
it with mountain dew in a suburban mall parking lot on another
lost summer night when we thought we’d never get old or die?
i do too.