Burgers were burning. Lights, a kind of omen, strung across the night sky, flashing green and red, like Christmas. The party was in the garment district, a roof. Empty hammocks hung between metal posts like props.
You knew the track by name. I was Stella in my vintage shoes – taller, a little tipsy on blood red fruit punch. We’d been drinking out of paper Dixie cups. There were sailboats on the cups. It was summer, after all.
And this was Manhattan. There was no water that we could see, even from the roof, even on an island. We talked over the horns. I watched your lips, played with the buttons on my wool cardigan. I recall only about half of your sentences.
You told me it was not the season for wool. You were skeptical; I was not. I remember your warm hands at my clothes, button coming loose, red thread hanging. I remember getting in the rattling elevator with you, reading the graffiti above your hair.
It was the first time I ever put my hands in your front pockets, fingers feeling through fabric, to your thighs. I remember how we floated past the stories full of lovers who were surely sleeping; down twenty-six stories. Outside, the sun rose up behind a Seventh Avenue skyline – the morning, almost an elegy.
Amy Schreibman Walter is an American poet living in London. Her work has appeared in numerous journals, both online and in print. Her debut chapbook, Coney Island and Other Places, was published in 2013 by Lulu Press.