David Eye, “Dance Bar”
Author: Poetry Editor
April 10, 2013
This week, two poems by David Eye.
Seven of us stranded on the tipsy floor.
The tall Polish guy wants me to take him home
but other lips are more insistent—Christine—
and he leaves me to her. We can’t stop kissing.
Her mouth softer than a man’s but with an ardor
in a sheath of softness. Like a hardon. I feel her up
say You know I’m—She’d thought maybe then
comes against the heel of my hand. On the sidewalk
she says Where’s an alley much as I like kissing I want
you to fuck me. I say Much as I like kissing I can’t fuck you.
Fuck you she says. In her green eyes, in her face gone slack:
What am I doing and Who is this guy and Faggot.
Four a.m. streets empty but for hissing taxis,
drizzle-slicked to a high gloss, streaks of stoplight
makeup bleeding red and green and Christine halting
toward 6th Avenue. I catch up, Can I put you in a cab?
No answer but tears.
I walk a block and when I look back
she’s following. She hasn’t moved. This
City. This: rain leaping up when a cab goes past.
December rain kicking up on itself
from the New York Public Library steps.
At the top, under cover, a paper
shopping bag between us: radio, shirt,
a book or two. I couldn’t wrest my eyes
from its brown, or think of anything else.
Not Provincetown a year before, cheating
February, the fevered makeup. Not
separate summer, or the chill evening
we left at intermission for pasta
and the end at Ralph’s on 9th Avenue.
In this mute epilogue, neither of us
wants to be the first to leave or the one
left. Until he shifts and I grab the bag
take the stairs on a diagonal and two
at a time between the stoic lions all I am
not their faces illegible in the midtown rain.
DAVID EYE earned a midlife MFA at Syracuse University in 2008, and teaches creative writing and composition at Manhattan College in the Bronx. His poems have appeared in Bloom, The Louisville Review, Stone Canoe, and others. His chapbook, Rain Leaping Up When a Cab Goes Past, has been selected for the Editor’s Series at Seven Kitchens Press.