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Sidney P. Roberts II

Rookie (1970- / Fort Dix, New Jersey)

I'm gonna kiss her


Outside a hotel in San Francisco
I am shivering
Cheap cloth jacket, black
Grey cotton hoodie
Smoke smelly, drawstrings tight, fatigued
It is drizzling glistening rain
And musical as it is
Like drum-taps marching
And much as it reminds me
Of younger days
In forests outside Frankfurt
(My comrades all about
'You eat in the foxhole, '
I remember telling a young private
And that muddy hole
All slippery filth
In the days I smiled
Happy and young
As a soldier)
But even this rain
All silvery draping down…
No I'm softer now
And my cigarette is wet
And this notebook and pen are rotten stingy prudes
Who know damn well they want it
But give up nothing at all but crap

Off I go then
Tennis shoed, light hearted, wet and silly
Inside right up to the bar
To find a brandy is eight fifty
And you know me
Any price is just fine, depending of course
But if there are two candles I squint
Two lights I am blind
Two other people and
It is a batallion of lusty strangers
All feigning disinterest
Well tonight there is a brigade
Saturday night, what do you expect?

And there is no smoking at all
Except back outside
Where I peek it's now raining buckets
Buckets of tiny kittens and puppies
All squirming and whining and writhing
In wet pleading breaths
Of vain existence
Schopenhauer comes to mind

But romancing the clerk,
He gave me his card
And had the bellman take me to Lucky's
(Anything you need at all Mr. Roberts,
Oh you're too kind, I said, thank you
So very much, as we shook hands
Believe it or not I even smiled, yes,
As his finger stroked lightly my palm)
Where I got a Lucky bottle for seven
And eight pieces Lucky stale chicken
Lucky fries and Lucky bread
Another seven
I'll drink water from the tap
To wash it down
Add a five buck tip
Makes nineteen dollars
Sundowners, gentlemen,
All around

On the way back
In the hotel shuttle
That grey dingy van
Under tortured puppy and kitty cat rain
Starving orphans meowing and yelping
Like their mama just got run over
By the garbage truck in the morning
With the illegal alien driver
Who could use a shave
While he babbled in tip-interest motivation
(I tried to give him ten
But he only took five
Bless him)
As the Blues at Sunrise song wailed in my head
I thought about a certain girl
My own little wound dresser
(Or so I would like,
Or so I was hoping she'd be)
And I could see her clearly
That fine light hair
The natural smile
And I could feel clearly
I could almost

just

taste

How she kissed me
Quite a few times
HOT

Then I realized oh my
I had barely kissed her at all
I had only responded
Happily yes, but still
I had never just grabbed her
And kissed her
Que injusticia!

I'm gonna kiss her, I thought
I'm gonna kiss her HARD
Soon as I see her
You better believe it
Watch out, I thought.
You better hold on to something,
I thought, from far away
Yeah

And I hoped she would call
But if she didn't, I thought
Sitting in my room
As Lucille wailed
Smoking the ever present Marlboro
As B.B King gave the setting
(At the Philmore West…)
As Stevie Ray imitated Jimmy Hendrix
(Who was dead of O.D.)
As Janis walked in with her little glass
(Also dead, and she was 27,
That li'l beatnik crazy girl,
Always had a little glass, too,
But that's not why I like her,
Okay maybe it is,
But only just a little)
And if Janis was here
Like it or not
I might just have to kiss her too!

As I chastised the phone
Which kept refusing to ring
After I shook and tortured the phone
Which still refused to ring
After I asked what it had to say for itself,
I thought,
Oh well
A night alone
Nothing new
And nineteen bucks
Hey
Even alone
Not too bad for rations and privacy
Not too bad at all

I'm gonna kiss her though
When I see her
You watch
I said to myself
Just you watch and see
I'm gonna kiss her

And that
As they say
Will be that

Submitted: Saturday, January 05, 2008
Edited: Friday, January 25, 2008

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