-41st street

I leave my secret bar on 41st
and walk down to 40th.
then it’s on to 39th,
past empty bars
and their fading scent of hops
until I reach 36th and look up
at a pencil-sharp skyscraper
daubed with puny scabs of light.
at 35th, I talk to the street,
the way a good lover talks
quietly into his lover’s ear,
whether that lover is dead or alive.
I walk on, past a man
dreaming in a wheelchair on 25th,
past a window on 22nd of
someone I made love to in March.
street washers race past
with their quickly beating hearts,
but then I’m alone
and all is quiet except
a pigeon talking itself
into jumping off a ledge.
I keep walking until I reach
streets that only exist to
the four people
who walk this late at night.
on a street with a negative number,
I find a bar where the more I drink,
the soberer I get.
when I’m really sober, I
walk all the way back to
my secret bar, get trashed,
and start all over again.