Tag Archives: smoking

Alice

Talking to Alice as she smokes outside the restaurant

where she works as a waitress, in a hokey red and pleated

uniform, some salt-of-the-earth and down home nonsense.

The smoke stinks, and I know it’ll stick to my clothes,

and I’ll smell it on the ride back home afterwards,

but it’s worth it, to be near here, to fell a closeness in winter.

Alice is like me, close to forty, not where we want to be,

so we tell off-color jokes and talk about how the war

ruined it all, and how children are the cruelest mistakes.

Her shift starts in a few minutes, and she’ll go in, and so will I,

and she’ll get to work, and I’ll eat the heavy, greasy food here,

just because I got to steal a few minutes with her.

With someone who knows it’s all going to burn.

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The Stars Pulling Off Their Masks

Smoking? When did I start smoking again?
Filterless Camels like before, one after another,
futile against stress, nerves and dead AM Channel static.
I realize I’m sitting alone again, looking down on the city,
waiting for it to beautiful in it’s distant, golden lights
as the sun goes down, and there another one in my fingers.
I don’t remember buying them. I don’t remember picking the habit
up again after all this time, and I don’t even remember driving here,
but here I am again, after work, not wanting to go home.
I sit on my car’s hood, windows down, an enveloping synthpop love song
playing, wrapping me in warmth and peace, like being hugged tightly
by a plump and soft woman, one who loves you dearly.
I stare out into the city lights coming up, the stars pulling off their masks,
and, as I work my way through the pack of smokes, dream of her,
the earth goddess, the one who plucks the strings of devotion, thrumming light.
The song plays on repeat. It is the first of autumn, and it’s growing chilly,
almost bitter as the sun fades away, but the cold is calming, peaceful,
reminds me of something lost, when all was well.
I cannot keep the Bad Thoughts away forever, not with the city lights,
the stars showing me their faces, or the beautiful, embracing love song.
The come again and again, and maybe the stress is why I forget so much.
One last cigarette, and then I’ll have to face the room without treasures,
the thoughts that intrude like a rude neighbor couple screaming at each other
at 3 AM, hating each other, unable to leave and unable to stop.
I try to hold onto her, and the music, and all the sweet and innocent things
that slip away from me, harder and harder to call back all the time.
I try to imagine kissing her, warm and pale lips. I try to imagine being full of love,
Like her.

Kristen’s Death Rays

Raven hair, and dark, hooded eyes.
Her unshed tears that never dries.
Hazel eyes, like a shallow grave.
Broken thoughts on a poetic lathe.
 Ask for a cigarette, so I can talk to her.
On what damnable thing can we confer?
My own heart is filled with silent knives
and the regret of unsullied poet wives.
 She gives me one, even smiles, even bright.
Angels never die when they fall from a height.
We just become bitter and unsure, ready to burn.
That we go on living is a truth you’d do well to discern.
 And, like that, the moment is over, and I go on my way.
I fixate on her unadorned, pale pink lips, the death they betray.
I want to taste those plain lips, and lust mainlines, infernal high.
She looks at me, knowing my heart, sending death rays on the sly.