if you are picturing christmas lights strung up where the walls meet a ceiling, you are right on target. if you are picturing an "american beauty" poster half ripped off a mental-ward-white wall you're right on key. days back then were like poems you write out and then chuck, balled up papers around a garbage can. i'd sit on the window ledge of the 12th floor sky-rise, the window cracked as much as was permitted, a lit joint between my fingers, alive. the buildings across the street were so close, the space between a customer and a bartender, the lights in the windows like television screens. we existed then, mid-air, a moment in the crowded nuances of life that i still have in the palm of my hand, i still have it. i'd have spoonfuls of peanut butter for dinner and refill a glass of ice water repeatedly, i'd write poems all day and night, skip class and play joni mitchell. your hands i kept in a box on my desk in my head and whenever i felt sad i'd touch them.
you met me on the corner of 65th and 3rd and we greeted each other clumsily, tripping over hellos, a hug or no hug, we thought, and then kissed because our mouths were sure that was the right thing to do. we walked into a starbucks, i remember the way you held the door open for me, i remember the people sitting along the counter, i see them clearly still, a colorful cluster of humans. i don't remember what we ordered but it was snowing, the hot drink in my gloved hands most definitely involved a little egg nog but the cinnamon i found in you.
in winter the city is an actor, it's a playwright, a newborn snowfall and lit up store windows slow dance and sometimes they play jazz, the cymbals crashing softly against your heart. "heaven is a snow globe" i remember thinking while we walked. we stood in the elevator of my building, heated hearts, i leaned against the silvered shining wall and there were roses blooming from my lungs. i knew you knew, after all of the attempts at forgetting, and you knew i knew back. you climbed up the ladder to my loft bed, your face i had memorized and yet i still could not breathe. we were feathers and air, thats all. i know we were because this was the last time, after that the air sipped us like hot tea until there was nothing else. i can't remember what you look like.