Cowering from the caustic boozing, his liver-nub sits, bruised and bruising, like the woman who quivers in the office toilet feeling the knuckles kiss her eyesocket Starbursting brilliant lights.
The cool tap-tap of his nail against the bottle-neck reassures him against the uneven rapid-fire of his heart.
What is that blood-pump even worth? he thinks with disgust.
A stained grin: it must be pickled by now.
His companion’s head dips down to rest on the sticky-stained bar top.
Slipping down, his glass hits the floor from fingers loosed by liquor snores.
Soft thud of spreading suds underneath their chairs.
That face, like an overgrown onion – all raw flesh and sprouts of hair –
Moles like muddy water splashed across his neck with a tide mark to his jaw.
Hard getting laid with a face like that.
Must be why he’s sitting here, dribbling on the sticky-stained bar top.
Mumbling, his companion’s sleep-words burst bubbles.
Round, wet spit-bubbles.
He smiles: the acrid popping sweet-notes his swaying, tuneless swaying to his friend’s burping melody – that rotten jazz, steeped too long in dark-club-barley-smoke.
He’s ready for air, ready to retch at this stranger stuck to the sticky bar-top.
Ready to reel into the dark-edged night and fall on some soft rest,
A bed or park-grass,
Just some peace from shaking hands and shaking strangers.
Flashes of pale fingers, jasmine, morning light on red hair on rumpled sheets.
A seldom-seen memory, now.
It’s rent and ripping at the seams, bare threads shivering like quivering nerves.
Gun-shot: jerk awake.
Just a car.
The white sheets fade in the dawn-blue-tinged-night.
His sweat mixes with dew-grass leaving a cold dream-chrysalis.
©Liv Satchell 2012