Tuesday, February 16, 2010

poem of the day 02.16.10

two scotches, five beers, and counting

is just enough to float through a day
like this one
sitting in a bar and being hit on by a lonely blonde
who keeps checking her cell phone for no one

she wants to know if that was my wife

yes, i say

how long have you been married?

two scotches, five beers, and counting

almost six years, i say

she asks more questions
this is beginning to feel like the spanish inquisition

i don’t remember what it’s like to be hit on

at the other end of the bar
the bartender is getting sympathy from
a drunk model and a professional soccer player

at least that’s who he tells me those loud whores are

the blonde tells my wife that her last boyfriend was zeus
the one she took home last night, well, at least
he didn’t rape her

they didn’t even fuck

not that night

not the next morning

he’s the guy she keeps checking her cell phone for

two scotches, five beers, and counting

the bartender buys us two free rounds because we listen
to his story about his uncle dying of heart disease

shit, he starts crying in the bar
while i’ve been given the task of watching the blonde’s purse

he’s crying and popping alka selzter because he
got drunk on bourbon and beer last night

crying over his uncle

he says his uncle was like a father to him
taught him how to be a man
then he worries if you’re allowed to be a man
in the 21st century

i tell him yes, but they’ll work like hell
to take that away from you

i feel like robert bly, saying shit like that

he says he keeps having to visit the porcelain god
and don’t i know all about that man, i think

this death
these scenarios have happened to me, us, twice this week

at another bar, carrie told us that her mother had just died
she was a tough bitch, except for the cancer

my wife tells us we’re banshees
banshees howl before death and spend their time
around the bereaved

i tell my wife that we spend our time howling
at a neighbor who won’t turn her television down
then we hit the bars for these stories
these people who always seem to find us
in an otherwise crowded room

two scotches, five beers, and counting

i think of carrie two nights later, drunk in the bar
yelling at her boyfriend, larry
she’s mad, stabbing at cold chicken and broccoli
from a styrofoam dish
she tells him he gets drunk three times a day
but she only gets drunk once

it’s sad
sad because we’re only allowed to get drunk once in a day

carrie tells larry to fuck himself
go blow yourself, she says, because i ain’t doing it no more

i wonder what carrie expects
being thirty-six years old and taking up with a fifty-five year old
bar flunky

that’s kind of asking for it, i think

two scotches, five beers, and counting

i hope larry is getting head from carrie, from someone

i hope someone doesn’t steal this blonde’s purse
while the bartender cries

i have my eyes on the old creepy guy in the next seat over
he’s checking his phone and laughing at nothing
if anyone is going to steal that purse
it’s going to be him and i know it

the bar whores laugh
the soccer player and the model
the bartender wipes his eyes and winks at us
before he goes down to tend to them

i hate the way they slur their words

some drunk women have that way about them

he buys them beer and they buy him a shot
everyone drinks it down as blondie plays on the jukebox

two scotches, five beers, and counting

banshees my wife says again

i tell her let’s leave after the next one
before my songs come on the juke
before elvis and the doors and
chuck berry and two david bowie songs

but after the blonde comes back and i don’t have to watch her purse
maybe after her story about her getting ass-fucked by poseidon
maybe after the not-rapist calls

i just don’t know anymore
i don’t know how any of us do it
how any of us get through
every day just seems so fucking long

two scotches, five beers, and counting

tables full of madness and the dead
streets full of the sick at heart

i see a girl on the r train wearing sunglasses in the night

a beautiful girl

she’s either middle eastern or italian

i want to slap her
who does she think she is for being so young?
for having this ugly world by the balls

i think of larry without sex
of carrie without out her mother and love
the blonde waiting for a phone call or another me to come strolling in
i think of the bartender getting a pity fuck from two women
of barstools empty and mouths without anything useful to say
of neighbors huddling in front of loud televisions

because there is nothing else
and there is nothing else to think about anymore

i think of you and me, and the way moonlight reflects
off our faces

the two new wine bottles that we had to purchase because

two scotches, five beers, and counting is not enough

it’s never enough.

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