the city is afraid of itself. it licks its own lights and smiles a bulletproof glass. the city hides its nipples underneath the suds of lamplight.
it's always looking for its own shot out star. its friends kiss with one eye open. its lovers take their hair down, back to the wall.
and women in their turned lips and skirts that hang down from the bar stool. they sway and keep an eye glued to the barback mirror.
the cooks are always wearing latex. the manager is in the back behind the mercury. hand on the cellphone. one foot out the door. and everyone knows the pimp walk is archaic, but we all keep leaning down into it. one hand tucked somewhere a knife might be.
the night is under a bushel of wind. the moon is overkill. must be something up. the busses slip through the night dodging the cops with nightvision windows of green glow.
the cops try not to smile. they try not to smile and they whip through red lights in the cold.
we go back to our old ways. the reason brothers used to clink their steins. we slosh our poison back and forth between glasses just to make sure. we taste each other's tears for salt. we check each other's sleeves for swords. we listen for the saliva we make when we take off our clothes.
that's how it is, here. the chain on the door is restless. the wind is in the walls.