Closed for Lunch

10 Jan

————

 Closed for Lunch

 

            She’s a phantom. Barely there. Scared to leave anything exposed, she rarely shows up. She’s like a drone attack: a cup of coffee and then she’s gone. Finger on the button. The bodies line the street like landmarks of old and broken love. But she had her fun. Like a sadist she took her trophies: from me she got a book, from others she’s corralled songs, the gathered works of Oscar Wilde, a Criterion Collection copy of The Crying Game signed by Stephen Rea, and from one peculiar case she kept a bought shell casing used in the assassination of a Liberian war lord.

            I still depended on her glow. It helped me write, like liquor used to. Now I chase her through the city I used to love. It all seems like a constant, endless departure – with no one there to meet you when you arrive.

            Her unkempt beauty riled my perception of reality – I was uninitiated to the surreal, cold cobalt, shape that love and necessary affection took in her gravity.

            When I fucked her, I wasn’t confiscating any hidden purity – but instead I was witnessing an entire civilization being born. It was like two-hundred thousand years fast-forwarded between her legs; watching her face contort the muscles in twitches and orgasmic surrender, she’d close her eyes and I would try to see what she was seeing. I wanted to know what it was like to see that future. Her future. But she turned men blind, in savagery and pleasure, like she was enlightening Oedipus.

            But we must bypass the past, because eventually it all comes down to survival. She’ll sing something new. I’ll hear it differently tomorrow, and even more different next week, and eventually I will not hear anything at all, and I’ll stop writing for a while, live on a deserted beach with a new lover, looking for shinning idylls in her eyes, wet and lovely, but of only tangential magnificence, like settling in a new pasture on a new planet. I’ll kiss her and remind her of our happiness and we’ll both believe it. She’ll read all my new work and she’ll be encouraging. We’ll eat feta salads during the Greek siesta, from noon to around two, but we’ll drink Cointreau with Perrier instead of the Ouzo that tastes like the tragic fire of misbegotten insurrection. One day she’ll introduce me to her parents and I’ll play it charming but polite and I’ll offer her father a fine cigar and her mother a good bottle of Pinot.  

            We’ll tell them all how we’ve built our own Olympus, and the days will keep doing what they always do, and my memory will worsen and I’ll start seeing gray on my hairbrush and it will all be fine. Every now and then I’ll think of the one that got left behind in that city of money and tension and “I got that shit” on every street corner and cinereous Springs and liberal middleclass lips that preach anarchy and all that pavement and her thighs aroused me and I have to stop thinking and this city will eventually only be an opening overture in a lauded Woody Allen film and decent coffee outside of Seattle and begging bodies and hip-hop along Flatbush, an old apartment I used to share and barely afford, someone’s faithfulness that I used to miss but never had.

            Eventually it all comes down to survival. 

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