Hearing her story jars memory back to those jagged nights waiting for the driver to run his game pacing half-pumped half-charged a delirious dance of lines & spoons heart-throbbing vein-popping rituals gone bad.

In my dream she disappears upstairs with him while I’m driving in the rain his two dogs panting after the car. I see them in the window he’s laughing his tongue in her ear her hand down his pants.

In the next frame, beside an eclipsed moon, a troupe of Rumanian dancers skim the razor tumbling through hoops-on-fire, smoke & shattered glass, balancing ballet with terror.

There are dogs barking & orange blossoms. Only after the unmistakable screech of rubber churning on asphalt brings me back can I be sure I’m alone. Chasing shadows down alleys will toughen my resolve.

Will anyone repair the lights? Whose mistake was it anyway? Will you be sure to write? I’ve only $40.00 left & a sink full of dirty silver. Can’t you see the walls are closing in? Watch out! We’re not alone…are we?

In the penultimate frame, a magician in a black greatcoat wills a snake to slither from the mouth of his young assistant. She has green eyes & flicks her spirited tongue in my direction.

The light is still lit & I can see her. She’s on top now & sucking his cock while he deftly peels a pear letting its amber skin fall in tight coils on her bobbing hair.

A queen bee settles in the palm of my hand driving her spike to muscle. Will dinner be late? Who’s left to take stock? Will there be enough time to say good-bye?

In the last frame, a tanker steals from the dock & is soon out of sight. If I listen closely, I can still hear the faint beat of cormorants & gulls trailing in the fog.