Wednesday, February 2, 2011

at this time & location & juxtaposition to jello-soul

this is the

kind of bar

i went to

in my early twenties

when i wore tight lycra shirts

& fisted speed

& still

ignominiously genuflected

to pussy

as a

viable

long-term

concept.



decade later

i'm old man

at a coworker's

bachelor party.


my face rudolph


my fat arms

sweaty anvils

choking the bar.



i haven't seen

coworker

or his other

penny-nails

in over

an hour.



one of the

poor little shits

lost his muesli

when i bought everyone

a double 151.



what’s this?

here comes daffodil

of razor-blade hair

& peach-fuzz midriff

for another

twelve dollar martini.



i wouldn't

fuck you

for all the olives

in italy,

i say

in deference to principle

while watching a blade

on the ceiling fan

up and left.



leather huaraches

calves like minnows

to the

other side of the bar

where she

points me out

to the tender



he

who whistles for the doorman

to come over.



good

good,

i smile to myself

& squeegee sweat

from my eyebrows

& forearms

preparing an

adequate

acceptance speech.



like cracking a beer



feeding

a stray dog



or rolling your sleeves

up past elbow

as the first eye

of spring sun

kisses the skin:


a night


of new pussy


never gets old.


man in a wheelchair in front of the VA hospital


gayle was a brick tender

his entire

working life.



at forty-five

he took a night class

in sociology

at drake.


sometimes after class

he'd drink irish whiskey

with the professor

at Flanagan's.


one night

the professor was shit-faced

he hit on the girlfriend

of drake's middle linebacker.


gayle stepped in

broke the kid's jaw

spent a week in jail.


the professor

is now an esteemed lecturer

at an ivy league university.


he's written an autobiography

and there is gayle

on page 122.


only the sum-bitch

calls me randy

and says he saved my ass

with some slick words,

gayle says

as i light his cigarette for him.


but i'll give him that

seein' as i took thirty

maybe forty

good pulls

on his wife.

Justin Hyde