Friday, June 23, 2017

Independence Night

Playboy Bunny Angle

You were ungodly
in the hazy neon light
and I was dumbly dressed

Badlands, fourth of July
fireworks finished
and business begun

On first pass I was daunted
then sped back unseen 
what was it on that screen?

Mad at myself, circled round
and stared in my cool way
which was not very

Where had all the boys gone
from the Kennedy Center roof?
at which you smiled, less aloof

Than I had taken you for, though
no less lovely in affability, the kind
of calculation I made at twenty-two

You liked my Mardi Gras beads
and didn’t hate my lime green tee
I liked everything about thee

Drinks with limes and lemons
vodka, gin, cranberry
precious little to say

I was surprised how quick and easy
I got the best man, like
that time at nineteen with Lee

Parting the crowd on the way out
my hand on your back, proprietary
or maybe your hand was on me

Logan Circle, newly charted territory
nicer than it needed to be
handsome, spare, a curiosity

Pimms and soda on an elegant bench, 
your foot rubbed my foot ardently

You told me about the dairy farm
toy truck stenciled with your name
and your abstract aspirations lame

Cooking at a hotel joint
a joint and some cocaine, but
the night remained abundantly sane

Harnessig heritage with heresies,
dairymen, ministers and attorneys
paintings, oil cans and keys

Your Texas drawl, the arch of your foot
your elegant recline

My tennis tan, the arch of my foot
my muscles defined

We smoked cigarettes
talked all night
and slept in your boat of a bed

July nights in Washington don’t dip
below eighty, so you placed fans
inches away as we worked out plans

I’d had girlfriends
and a senior-year thing with a guy
with red curly hair

I accidentally slept with him 
every night
of spring semester

But you I loved instantly

Not knowing about the paddle boat
or the hammock
or the telegrams to come

How much I liked kissing
and holding hands

Or the fact that you would
spend the rest of your life
with my best friend

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