the loneliness of train whistles

tracks over Mayo
the loneliness of train whistles
has been known
to keep us up at night.

when there is moon,
we play hopscotch
on  old sidewalks

with chalked silhouettes
of desire. when there is not,
we walk white-footed the rails

by the river, counting
darks between shadows
until the sun

comes and grows and
our backs bend too heavy
so we turn them

from the creosote-soaked
tang of the city
to dig holes in dry dirt,

filling them up
with all the weight
of emptiness.

sitting, two years later,

in the james center starbucks, i
am distracted by the business
which parades in suit, by
the slow, slow sound

of winter dying, its feeble thuds
keeping time with my own unarmed
chest. there is a meek half-light
outside the windowed-walls,

the sun un-warm & indecisive.
i am afforded a first-class view
of the parking garage,
the crimson-awninged atm,

the bundled cafe umbrellas.
i am waiting, brokenly:
for a car crash, for a lightning strike,
to see someone i recognize.

for you to catch hold
of my cheek and say, come,
let me take you home.
it is more limbo than

purgatory, the waiting;
there is no redemption at its end,
only the promise of a flatter
mattress and yellowed teeth.

as the poet said: there
is evening, there is morning,
and i think i loved you better
when we were

desperate. besides i
quit being a good catholic
years ago, now only
remember my rosary

when digging through
the jewelbox for a gold
chain you also didn’t give me,
also years ago.

This is kinda a re-make of a poem i did about two years ago, posted wayyy back here.

current

Image

canal-edged bourbon
bar on a Tuesday closeted
in dark corners & acous-
tic dampened brick; i
sit by the windows & smile,
sip at the purple-black of un-
returning water, of dis-
inhibited bitterness.