of silver days gone by
the purple rain eases into the panes -
the humidity fogs my glasses
and I can still see your love lit
against my retinas;
you made me your weekend lover,
just another hit and run in your ledger
you couldn't see the headlights that had consumed me
you knew I just wanted to have you in the pouring rain,
and left me dry with my umbrella
as you turn the key in the ignition and the smoke
starts to sputter—you can't smell it, yet, only ink
under your fingernails and that half-full glass
of vodka whose twin burned a half-lit smile
on the face in your fogged rearview mirror.
consider the first time you'll look in a mirror
and see old eyes—the world's babyfingered grip
around them pinching crows'-feet when you smile
your forced smile—through your exhaled smoke.
like a death-echo of youth you'll grab a glass
of mediocre vodka and stain your lips with ink
from a thirty-cent black pen—the same cheap ink
you used for your wedding invitations. the mirror
will be your muse—that villainous square pane of glass
that confronts you with your reality: you've lost your grip
on your metabolism and all those cigarettes you smoked
made your mouth look like rotting corn when you smile.
you'll close your mouth, and at least then the sadist smile
will abandon you.