run while you can

The acquaintances.

The garden level. Chicago, IL. Winter 2011.


They didn’t ask questions of me.
I liked that about them.
They accepted and respected me upfront,
immediately, nothing and no less.
The rest was for time to sort out.
And time is the trick.

Like tossing cards,
winning and sweeping.
Friends coming, going,
staying overnight.
There, there… nowhere.
//
They argued about space.
They argued about heat.
“Take out the trash,” he said.
There we were, garden level.
The sidewalk, at eye level.
There, there… paired.

The grocery wasn’t far.
The neighborhood seemed safe.
“This is our train.”
I was eating an avocado sandwich.
“This is it. We need to run.”
I was eating an avocado sandwich.

The train was a bi-level;
we sat in lower seats.
We both knew I had gotten him sick.
“Look. This wasn’t my idea.”
He turned away, wouldn’t be breathed on.
“You know, it shouldn’t matter.”

A green fleck was on my lip.
He had told me.
I swiped it away, my mitten did.
“I don’t care.”
Everything seemed back to normal,
no split ends.

“We’re going to be meeting old friends.”
My head gasped.
“I know. I am nervous.”
Oh no. Unimportant anxiety.
“You shouldn’t be. Like I said, old friends.”
There, back to normal.

The kitchen was cold. We ate soup.
“Tell me, do you like it?”
A break between bites.
“Absolutely, of course.”
The spoon had a squarish, metal handle.
“I am glad.”

We had drinks, champagne for the occasion.
“A standard question: any goals?”
I looked up, meeting his eyes.
“Sure. Find a better job.”
A textbook reply, I had regrets.
“Oh?” He poured.

I kept talking.
Pretty soon everyone joined.
I took a sip.
There weren’t many bubbles.
“A responsible society shouldn’t have criminals.”
The room grew quiet again.

Looks different now.

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One response

  1. PMG

    So happy to see that you are back in business :)

    January 4, 2012 at 9:27 pm

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