Winter's Smile

Nina Simone
and static rain crackles
from the phonograph speakers.
Between the windows
we float
with the smoke,
licking lips,
the shaking fits of
harmonizing bodies,
giving sex tips to strangers
in the parking lots of liquor stores
while I watch
the future and past
skull and crossbones,
lists of predictable chores not done,
lusts for raunchy rhymes unsung,
as of yet,
due to televised hypnosis,
the pyramids in Memphis,
wailing ghosts
on the sidewalk
that you so carelessly pass between,
nods of recognition
between old lovers,
spitting swear words that delved deep inside
the bruised breaks in the pavement.

I washed you down,
lime and tequila,
embracing the luscious night
instead of your warm skin
on my cold veins.
People leaving my life
through thick doorframes,
forgetting their keys
next to coffeepots gurgling and hissing,
humming to themselves in lonely long grocery lines,
opening mouths to speak turbulent truths,
deciding against it,
crunching tight,
teeth to teeth,
crooked jawlines ache
with heartbreak pulsations,
canceling dinner plans
at the last possible second,
flipping through
worn out pictures instead,
just for a chance to recall
my dad’s knowing smile in the winter.

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