Milwaukee Afterparty I Should Have Avoided.

And he was telling us about some personal lovethings,
how they had to get it all straight before he moved out here
from backeast dustcloud. Somewhere the rent didn't seem high
for a one room coldwater flat surrounded by the evilgrey
industrialcity with no rations for the sacred&religious.
Thinhipped bowing, sorted lookalikes walked around the room
trying plaidshirt notfitin, nervously searching for ways to make
breakfast out of breadloaf and eggwhites in the bluefridge.
Small apartments with cigarettes from red lipped openmouths.
Immense smokerings, thoughtbubbles, illuminated dumbtalk
from longbodies who hung over blackforest fire escapes
never realizing some lives had once (perhapstwice) passed by.
All the while he wrote desperate letters home to motherlovers
with shakenheads in disapproval. Reach for another bourbon.
And she went on again about her past, some jailkiddrug story,
all deafening rumors about best laid plans, reported accusations.
Words spoken so fast she was inventing new contractions. Then,
she called some guy a wannabe feminist. Shouts, blares, yammers
from outside convinced himself and others about the last nighthome.
Didn’t sleep with her passedout on the couch. He could wake
her up with his eyes, his beerbreath, his fewdollars of weed
in the hollowedout soul of his shoe. Too sane for madmen,
not shallow enough for artschool, what his friends had become.
But they had nowhere else to go, all lovepromise and headsweat.
Taking wrongrisk, capable of doing horriblethings if needed.
And I was swimming, studying for midterms, standardizedtests,
the bias of thosethings. Therefore we left. And I said to Joan
as we rushed down the street to my safe blackcar. We were past
a ticktick in riotdream now. Droves of rivernoise in nightmaze.

Tyler Farrell                                               

from Burdock 8