All alone on a bastard evening. He
tells me the story as he shakes
that ass and pockets that change.
Old Henry Parker used to pretend
he was something else, until he
realized he was, then went back
into being nothing.
The cook asks for another two
minutes. The waiter says I'm sorry
but my hands are too cold. Besides
that he's got a blister on his
tongue, and ten years from now
he'll be dead like any other yesterday's
sale on gram crackers and speed.
He does it again, and this time
the easy way in. A milk man in the
background is picketing India, if you
didn't notice, and a piano player is
doing the same. Unlike Georgia, (the
woman, not the united state) Ms.
Jones is well prepared for her sister's
He walks drunk and silent to his
apartment which is garnished with
pin-ups and encyclopedias; including
pin-ups reading encyclopedias, and
encyclopedias with pin-ups in them.
The laundromat downstairs is open
all the time. The coffee isn't free,
but the loitering is, and this is irrelevant
because he never goes there.
Chico and the Harpo Marxists are
present. They are setting up the stage.
Soon they'll be playing us their songs,
and making the world a better planet.
The bafoon yelps water all around, on
me! Just then the door opens twenty
miles away revealing this week's secret
prize, and the deli's lights are also
eighty-sixed by fingers.
Billboards keep trying to sell him,
but nobody seems interested. They all
want cigarettes and beer and statues
of themselves in the garden. Placing
his elbows on the bar (with his chin
not too distant from the near-empty
glass) it comes to a close like the first
few days after getting a bad haircut. I
ask for another, and light up again. It
feels like it's my turn to tell a story.