I turned nineteen amongst the shelves of a record store, slightly tipsy, vaguely late, & very much in love with no one in particular. My hair was ridiculously messy & my perfume had all but gone. The store was cool as a ghost, unlike the wet-bodied heat outside, glazing over everything with a smoky sheen. It was me with one hand in a girl’s & another around a wine bottle in the dwindling summer, memory hooked & clasped in the infinite rows of shelves, something jazz—Miles Davis, maybe—spinning in the background.
I think that is what I want to take into this new silken year: eyes wide, cheeks rosy with laughter, perplexed by the possibilities of those glossy infinite shelves. Lipstick half kissed off but still very red. Soul a little tired & body full of stories. Revelling unimaginable smallness of being, the unimaginable largeness of being here.
& allowing myself, for once, to show up late. To spend money on good wine & better records. To hold a girl’s hand & fall in love not with her, but with the air that curved around her, the fountain-eyed sun-smoked afternoon, the wholeness of this tiny enclave of long-limbed shadow. Inhaling slow with jazz singing in the background & wine bottle sweating in my hand & poetry lingering in my mouth. & never once looking down.