perfume the air,
heavy and humid
lingers the past,
dancing with both
my dreams and wishes
Maybe I should know
I say Love isn’t real, but I kid. Love is the only real thing. And I believe we can control it if we try, in so far as we can either invite it in, or we can pelt pink tennis balls of untruths and projections of fear at it, and hope it will prove its endurance to use through useless abuse.
“Is this just sex,” he pushed, “and drugs, and money?”
“It’s a good time,” Caitlyn shrugged.
I don’t think one Xanax is really going to cut it. I think I’ll need a literal handful more . . . I’m a bit exhausted of everyone thinking they have any right to me. I wish more people actually feared me than resented my potential power.
“He probably just wants some adult company to talk with him about adult stuff.”
He motioned with his eyes to the American Spirit still barely burning in her right hand.
“Can I have that?”
“Sure,” Caitlyn held the cigarette to his lips.
Michael wrapped his fingers around her wrist, pressing his thumb into her palm as he inhaled.
I didn’t care
whether or not he understood
what I’d said,
for just the night before
I’d gotten cleansed,
dipped deep in a steaming pool
Caitlyn glanced briefly at his crotch, where Paula’s left hand clutched his thigh tightly in place as she focused on adding a swirling tribal pattern to his oblique.
“Is this weird for you?” Michael asked.
Caitlyn brought her eyes to his.
“I’ve never been fired before.”
“No,” he said. “I meant watching Paula fake tattoo me naked.”
I light my sticks and slide
my cards, barely able to recall at all
the desperation and isolation
of harder days before,
now that my paranoia has retired