When you are a hotel

Tell me a story, you say,
Late at night,
under the comforter,
on a cold summer night.

You’re a writer—write me something.
Something beautiful.

When you are a hotel,
I begin,
Each night when I check in,
I will open up each room,
to discover different memories of where we’ve been.

The states we’ve visited?

Of mind, I think.
Of the anger that rises
With the memories of my hips under yours
Of the confusion trying to pace through old arguments.
Of the sorrow when I texted you
At the Grey’s Papaya
Was I drunk then?
Maybe.
I might as well have been,
The world blurred in dingy smears
That might as well be alcohol.

That’s terrible, you say,
And bury your face into my neck.
It won’t be like that, ever.

The night clusters around
Our quiet festival,
Two bodies strong.

What about the joyful rooms?

They become sad when you go.
Well. Then I won’t go.

But you are a hotel.
Where stays are fleeting
As the Dalí compilation at the existential bookstore,
As autumn in this environment
And economy.
Going is part of your ethos
Or telos. I can’t remember the right word.

You’ll visit? (While running your fingers through my hair.)

Occasionally. Spontaneously.
When life takes me to Carmine Street, sure.
I’ll walk down and remember the way your coat smells in the cold.

I’ll check in occasionally,
I promise.
I’ll ramble through old halls, remembering when they were familiar commutes
And daily passages.

I’ll stay in different rooms,
Test out their shower water pressure.
But I’ll leave, in a morning or two.
You’re not hospitable to long-term residency.

You kiss me softly before you sleep.
I stroke your hair,
slightly greasy with sweat,
And watch the stars through my window.

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