“You ever play quarters?”

He grinned at me

the tip jar halfway 

‘tween us and

the boiling coffee:

bubbled brew

and I felt just as black

inside my head. 

But his eager effort

to get me 

to play

knocked me into the spill

of an under-caffeinated

“well, sure, okay.”

I’ve been to Versailles

and Istanbul’s mosques

swarmed delightfully by

stray cats and dogs. 

But the cities of France 

the undue romance 

of the walls of Italy 

never once told me, 

“I love you”

like you have.  

I caught another’s eye 

at the light turned red

we smiled

with pause

whatever needed to be said

held in the rev of two cars

nosed the same way:

the exhaust 

dirtied the street

leaving behind

the ghost of two eyes

meeting mine

and I couldn’t help

but think of you 

and your arms

wrapped ‘round me. 

He may have been 

to Versailles 

or graced those Turkish

Mosques or the Rhine

But that was the only time

in this space of the world

where my eyes 

locked with his 

when what I realize is

you haven’t once

taken yours

quite off me. 

“Yes, of course 

I’ve played quarters,”

I laughed, as he missed, 

told him to drink

and the tips jangled

their way to the floor

lips turned their way

up to a smile

and well, nothing more.

2 Replies to “Eyes on Me”

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