Disturbance

by Jeff Glovsky

As I write, there is a noisy, messy creature tearing agitatedly through her homeless bag.

I want to take her photograph.  I want to steal that bag and take time sifting through its contents:  How did she become this way?  Where did those belongings come from?  Apparently of enough sentiment to her (tethered to some better days?), so that she wrestles and tears through them, agitatedly.

Hopeful still, she wakes each day.  Maybe prays, finds some comfort, a warm cup of dignity…

I steal her soul, but it’s not exploitation.

Could … ?

by Jeff Glovsky

Will you really stare, my love?  Like you expect I’ll give my seat up?  Do you really think I’m interested in how your feet are faring?

You might contemplate removal of your eyes from off my shoulders; weight oppresses me, and I’m not moving…I’ve not finished eating yet.

My coffee’s not quite cold.

You’re cool, though…got it going on!  Aware at least of how to seem in public, what to be, and wear…Might like you.

…Do you really stare?

TGI

by Jeff Glovsky

The shouts continue.

“Extra caramel macchiato!”.  “Grande, triple latte chai!”.  “A ‘skinny’ decaf Frap, light ice!”.

“…three ‘pumps’, with extra ‘room’ please?”

And nobody’s embarrassed!

All these selfish inhalations, spoiled preferences, demands.  How do they purge themselves?  Expel such waste?

The stupid, herd-like slobs!  All waiting docilely in line for “coffee”…filling up the popcorn store (…a ‘popcorn store’!), the yogurt shops…

“Can I just…taste…the peanut butter pecan fudge?”, rude tongue and hands out.

Friday afternoons through Monday.  Most nights through the week!  I watch them preen and prate, and sate themselves…

Thank God I date alone.

New Season(ed)

by Jeff Glovsky

The snow in April tapers off …

He lightly brushes off his collar, shakes his hood, removes his gloves.  He’s cold still, as he pulls the zipper down on his vast jacket.

Though it’s spring now, he’s got sweaters on.  The first, with hair, and bacon smells, drips heavily above the second:  green and sleeveless, covering a red plaid woolen shirt.  He shrugs the first one off.

Sits down now in his sweater vest … Crosses polyester limbs and orders coffee, and a cup of fruit.

He lights a cigarette and puffs in peace, another morning.

Diner

by Jeff Glovsky

Trying to sit and have breakfast in peace.  Construction slobs scream, laugh and howl … The little bell rings constantly.

I order a plain, light-toasted bagel.  It’s instantly slid across my booth – apparently a mistake for someone.  Or else it’s been prepared in advance of the loud and shrieking onslaught here.

A waitress coughs and blows her nose … stares wildly in my direction.  “Atkins diet to crullers!” a voice cuts through.

The waitress serves a sickly grin.

Need to Know

by Jeff Glovsky

I sit down beside her on the train, and overhear this conversation (She is drunk, it seems, and willing, and the poor guy who’s beaten me to her blows it!):

“What’ve you been drinking?” he mutters (afraid to reveal he’s making moves) …

“Does it look like I’ve been drinking?”  Smiles.  “Wine, liquor.  Then hard liquor … Not good!”

“What’re you celebrating?  Where’s your friends?”

She looks right … looks left.  Smiles, shrugs.  “My friends are gone,” she intimates.

There’s at least a fifteen second pause … into which I would’ve dove without holding my breath!

But not he (our simple hero).  Asks instead, after this pause, if she has lived out of the city long.

Inanity ensues.  He comes from Newark, she stays in Hoboken.  Her roommate is a cat … He shuffles, mutters, I can’t quite hear … Another train screams by, his lips keeps moving, like an Asian flick!

This pretty, drunken chick, she lolls her head now, tired of feigning interest.  Right, then left … done eyes grip mine.

She rolls them at me, shrugs and seems to indicate the simpleton.

We have to change trains then, she and I.  The guy stays on to get to Newark …

“A pleasure to meet you, Melissa,” he mutters … sliding a hand up her ass as we leave the train.  “Fuck off,” I smirk, victorious.

I traipse across the tipsy platform with her.

The doors of the train to Hoboken close behind us as we stumble on.  Now she can be all mine, think I …

We stand and stare and sway (there are no seats), we grip each others’ eyes … We hold fast to our gazes, and we bop in gentle rhythm to the rocking, loco motion …

But she doesn’t recognize me!

Lids her eyes shut, open … stares unsmiling at me, like contempt unknowing me!

Then spies a seat and dips beneath my gaze and arm, and pours into it.

I hang there standing … clinging to an aisle pole, pretending not to be hung up.  I turn around after a few and look toward her; she’s dozing now.

Approach her …

Tap her arm and mutter, “What’ve you been celebrating?”