Stephen Newton The 2River View, 9.4 (Summer 2005)
She Was Outside the Bar Smoking

She was outside the bar smoking
in the alley and watching the moon
rise over the tracks wondering if he
was thinking about her all these years
later not sure why it occurred to her
what an idea that he might be thinking
of her but it came to her nevertheless
sitting in the twilight in a cloud of
smoke alone on this earth a woman alone
these things that come to us when no one
is watching the ideas that bring us closer
to an imaginary place where we matter
and we can rewrite our stories until they
make the sense we never could make them
say when left to their own devices these
stories that rely on the truth whatever
that may be and wherever it may come from
this pressure shaping our lives all of the
air above pressing down on us all of the years
compressing our thoughts until they conform
to something approximating coherence
and yet when we are least expecting it our
hands clasp and our knees buckle we find
ourselves in the position the one where we
are supplicant the one where we are saying
this is not right and there are deep scars and
I can't find my way out so if you are there
you had better listen or not but it would be nice
to think that someone was listening in this dark
the same dark where nobody was listening back then

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