Ashen aspirin for volcanic fading heart

When there is one who wants,

and the another one wants

too, but

is treading and stomping


in the way of blurred

busy-ness just by

walking in hurried cirles

with clip board in hand,

away from some old


rediscovered over drinks and

grilled food at a beach restaurant,

for example,

or puckery, soft touchy

warmness that suggests


there is enough to write something

and clean and rearrange the kitchen.


The red bricks

were warmed from the sun and softened

the sound of a jet plane high above

that slipped through the thin clouds

and there was

a dark purple swallow

that hit the neighbor’s window and

fell through the lines of drying clothes.

Inside, the shiny floors smelled like lavender

and ammonia and

he asked her a question

while they were on the couch

because he saw her eyebrows move in that way again

and she twitched and

reached for her keys on the coffeetable.

His head felt loose and painless on her soft leg.


He breathed in a breath like the gulp of a cold gin drink.


“Can’t I lay my head on your lap like this, or what?” he asked.

“No.” She said.


He got up from the couch and

tried to light an old cigarette

in the ashtray,

and she left

and she didn’t close the front door all the way.  He could hear

her keys and heavy footsteps

through the hallway and down the stairs.

He rubbed his

temples and

thought of her long black boots

and her breasts.

He looked out the window and walked over

to see outside.

At the thin cloud

and then down at the swallow

on the ground,

which had a wing that stuck out


still twitched in little nervous death throes.

It had left a mark of blood

on the hanging, yellowed slip of the old woman in 2A,

who had

mean-spirited eyes

and never

said hello

in the morning as she walked

with a warm baguette

back to her over-carpeted flat.


He smiled and thought of the volcano he saw on the news,

and how the hot flow

slid through

the tinder-like houses and palm roofs of some Hawaiian town.

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