The night is full of sirens, distant ambuli and poleece at our beck if we wish, to bring down the sweatervests beating the yarns from another sweatervest, stories in hollers, last breath, “No, Officer, I didn’t get the gist,” even though we stopped for it, violence is loud. Deafens other sound.
Should we call the cops?
What if they kill him and we watch?
What if they beat their women.
But what if they’re just having a bad night. The drink and passion poison, Katy Perry at loud volume, any is enough to trigger aggression, hell, son’ll put a steak on his face in the morning. Right as rain. Officers of the peace will bring war to their future. What if Assault and Battery prevents their profession, these young, preppy men, students of law, of medicine?
What if it doesn’t.
The popped-collar gang backs away but the boy who got beat rushes the fray and it all starts again.
If it is your first visit to my apartment, it’s cool, go for it. Lie on the floor and roll around in my carpet, everybody does it. Hate to give way all my secrets, but it’s how I know you’re okay. You’re one of me.
Priming shouts to dance we check the time, our teeth, our Janus heads chewing forked tails with ales tales! mixed drinks and metaphors, a dense lush deep flush, the ouzo Ouroboros. Hurl the hurt that ain’t, dumb ache and tremor, the promise of fornever RUN FOR COVER! so terrible to trust but so wonderful to wonder how one hand will wash the other.
What’re you gonna be for Halloweeeeeeen? Hell if we know. I still want to be an equestrian in stark, slim riding clothes capped with my horsehead, cracking a crop, but the mask should probably be stowed a couple years or so. Let folk forget. Disabuse that I’m obsessed. I’ve long been intrigued by the athletic challenge of being the Dancing Banana Gif, and some year I’d like to try Carrie White, a costume and performance that would evolve over the night from mild, sweet thing to blood-sopped psycho, though probably minus starting fires with my mind.
We could be sirens, Anna says. Or was it furies. Gorgons. Some version of evil womens, alluring and destructive because I guess that’s what we’re good at, stomping spinning dancing danger and deception. True declination but false elevation. We put you in your place because you get in our way. No soft spots. No hard feelings.
Fleeing the crime scene when the authorities arrive, I must admit: I entertained the fantasy of daring a drunk to punch me in the face then whisking the ruffian victim away, feeding him eggrolls and mp3s to coax come out, wherever you are sobriety. We’d shame him like a brother, threaten to call his mother and tough-love his life away from the brink. Deranging his darkness. Rattling his deathwish. We probably aren’t so different. There’s more to life than this.
Before he remembers he’s sane, could tell us off or tell us his name, before the liniments soothe the pain, within minutes he’d think he’s testing limits, stripping to his ligaments to swim in the shag.
But who’m I kidding. Cut the shit and kill the light.
We ruined more lives than we saved tonight.