Spring 1997 • Vol. XIX No. 2 PoetryApril 1, 1997 |

A Room on Washington Avenue

On your way to meet a client at Mick's or that other restaurant in Underground your secretary sends you to, the one with the French name you always mispronounce, you detour again through the park. A month of heat and even the pigeons look oppressed, slack and dopey in the green shade of the cherry trees. But here you are, two blocks out of your way and sweating in the thick light going watery green, craning around the fountain to catch the bench where a girl in headphones sits with her legs crossed, smoking. Her hair is shorter today and black as your shoe. All right, you say, a girl. Because that's what she is, fourteen, fifteen, and you mean it as a chide for gawking. But no good. Even the way she holds her cigarette is like the hand slowly vanishing in the room you carry with you. You admire again her fingers turning a page, that slender wrist hovering over the chipped iron footboard, as vague now as those mystic guitars distorting through the hi-fi. That s

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Dress Blues

By David Bottoms

On your way to meet a client at Mick's or that other restaurant in Underground your secretary sends you to, the one with the French name you always mispronounce, you […]

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