Saturday, September 22, 2012

On the Edge of the Autumnal Equinox (a poem)

Last sunset of summer
over the Hudson River
from a Tribeca rooftop
through my wineglass --
a birthday party for
the Virgo girlfriend
of a Virgo ex.
It has been over three years
since I have been here.

My best friend brought a date
who is so rude that he leaves
before he drives her
to push him off the roof
for being hostile and uncouth.

I keep thinking I will leave
after one more glass of wine --
it does not happen.
It is a magical glass
that keeps refilling itself.
But what the hell:
the Moon is in Sagittarius,
which encourages excess.

The party's remnants
move from the roof to my ex's apartment
to smoke and drink. A pizza arrives
and I take a slice to absorb all the wine.
Three latecomers show up
just as I am about to leave --
I wind up staying till the party breaks up
because two are astrologers
visiting from the West Coast
and the other one knows her chart
and makes me feel smart.

Just a few blocks from home
I hold the door of a bodega open
to let in a large black cat with a white chin
that I have seen slinking down those aisles
of canned soups, sodas, and six packs.
A guy passing by exclaims how nice that was
of me to do, and asks me what I think
the cat's name is -- it's gotta be
something Arabic, right?
Without missing a beat, I reply "Halal,"
and as the guy laughs, I still can't believe it's nearly fall.

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