good advice I have not taken

we sit vigil for the rainstorms that
dance and die
beyond the railing, leaving us
misted over with the force of their passing. I,
red wine lips and cold feet,
pick the stuffing from your mother’s sofa as we wonder
how manatees breathe, and
what it’s like inside the mind
of Donald Trump.

You drift into my lap and then
into sleep, your breath weaving through the leg hair
I forgot to remove because you showed up
carrying merlot and a promise of adventure
and I followed you into the night.

I do not close my eyes until after the sun cuts open
purple clouds to bleed light
across the sky and over the planes
of your quiet face.


She says,
your skin is tired. Are you getting
enough sleep?


The wine lingers, but we give it
no quarter. I am taking you surfing because
you’ve not yet learned how it feels
to stand and fly
at the same time. In the roar of the sea
my mind is quiet, listening only
to the taste of salt
and the slipperiness of your skin in passing.
The brown fades from my hair but it will turn up
tomorrow on my shoulders and strewn
across my nose


She says,
now’s the time to start: to prevent wrinkles
you should avoid the sun


We lie winded under palm trees and you say
promise me we’ll come back even when
our knees don’t bend but
our backs do
and we’ll eat fish and chips and ice cream
for breakfast
because we can
and I say
promise me
you’ll want to, even when
you’ve forgotten who I am


She draws a potion from the pocket
of a tie-waist coat that is just a foot of sleeve
away from a straight-jacket.
Apply this, she says,
it’s anti-ageing.
And I pay her for it because I am no better
at saying no than I am at
taking sound advice.


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