Tuesday, February 28, 2012

No Story

I braced myself on the wooden bar, breathing wine and garlic, and in a panicked moment turned my head sharply to the right as if I hadn't seen her. Some sort of dead magnet betraying me, my eyes sliced sharply back to her own, flashing green and wild, and her slim hand shyly waving, almost a fearful gesture. I pushed off from the bar with a roll of my eyes up to the bill of my cap and swung myself to the empty seat next to her, carried by jelly legs that through drunken grace gave the appearance of a slow-motion swagger.

The greetings and formalities exchanged, the topics quickly melted to those of smoldering honesty, me stuck lunatic between a grin and a grimace as if to hide the candle wax oozing from between my broken teeth. Her eyes green, green flame, the tense and wild green that eats the sky just before a May tornado, her eyes were the only reason I still sat, still spoke, needling through her with a rising contempt, a frustration bolstered like icy rain as my words hardened and fell, and still I couldn't move to lose sight of her eyes. As if understanding that I was a rat pinned to the board, chewing and chewing, she looked everywhere but at me. Helplessly across the restaurant, defeatedly down at the table top.

Bad noise, hummingbirds pleading with hornets, leaves burning into a cold October, December eating pickled flesh buzzing with rot. I was mean, a hammer thirsting for a nail.

She made admissions of guilt, plead for peace, looked finally at me with green eyes brimming with wet, maybe searching for a shared understanding, but I'd been drinking since eleven in the morning and couldn't be bothered to do anything but shrug.

Minutes later, dressed warmly and smoking a quiet cigarette in an 8 o'clock winter chill, I sighed and smiled and rolled my neck, no shame nor remorse, just a warm stiffening in the backbone of a proud drunk, and I felt amber and weightless, happily unforgiving to all but the flash of green eyes.

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