4 pm coffee-shop yellow
union square hangover
and a grey snow haze
plotting plans in
dense delirium. The chaos
of legend still sits diffused, expenses
chip away stone from fossil
and pile on empties
upstaging mere madness.
We stood in a box, no room
to pace, ripping one-ies
shooting skyward through
narrow alley exhaust hatch. Beck’s
in the freezer hoping to catch
a quick chill. Cheap brandy,
ice, tumbler, and a casserole
of culture. Ping ponging
notions adjacent to
memory, waiting for life’s
cork to pop.

Parting ways the night sizzled,
no fizzled in illusions of
silence, still talking, maybe
listening. She stared,
questions I’d sworn I’d
answered. The long drunk a
sullen teenager pushing curt
syllables as if they were novels
she pouts, I’m lost, curses and sleep.

Back to today, I’m nursing a
coffee, perhaps I should say
it’s nursing me. At the counter,
America. Over the speakers, America.
the pot has melted a stew so
different from the London same.

Light skinned vision of close
cropped hair, straight over
curled lips. Ice. Clicks pen.
We exchange glances and
later stools. She laughs
and posits running on
the check. Her tale lyrical
on my ears, America. I hold
to the chair through her
anecdote, dodgy dates
leaving her sink side, a
stack of dishes and a
smirk of contempt.

My pocket buzzes, pursuing
plans, piling the plot ‘til
the night mounts with minimal
madness. She is a phone
as well. Dots connect,
America. Cadence cascading,
is there someone, I wonder, on
the other end listening, or a
sweet soliloquy solely to benefit
me? Others pass, each face
America, foreign tongues, spaced
faces, still America. Waitress
glides by New Yorker illustration
and in the caption: eavesdropping
a one sided conversation. Her
sweater, cashmere, a scratch
of the wrist and my mind
unravels revealing the text
of hidden tattoos. I loose
attention, direction, this
isn’t about nudity but ear
shape beauty, diamond stud
eyebrow peak, and an oh
so suspicious glimmer
4:10 pm coffee shop yellow.