Friday, March 23, 2007

The Poet's Insomnia

I helped the Poet read her poem for two voices last night. It was a duet; I originally thought we would read in alternating passages, but she wanted the voices to be together, a cacophony of frogs. I thought it went well. We were both nervous, but I don’t think it showed (she read two other poems and her presence was very self-assured). The place, Housing Works Used Book Cafe, was hot, though, which is always uncomfortable. (I run hot.) There were nine other readers, mostly young and dewy. Before I arrived the Poet had found a paperback called The Sandwich Party, pulp erotica that had me quipping that nothing was hotter than a PB&J. We were much more comfortable with each other this time. Afterwards we had dinner at Pearl Oyster Bar, conversation lubricated by some nice white wine as we waited for a spot at the bar. I learned she had a sort of relationship back home, but that it was quite open. She thought from something I had said Wednesday that I had a girlfriend. Once all that was cleared up… I asked her on the corner as we heading to subway options if she wanted to come to Brooklyn. She wasn’t expecting it, and didn’t know right away. Sometimes I’m bold. "Do you want to come over and not sleep with me?" No, that’s not what I said; she came up with the line in the morning. It’s true we didn’t sleep much. Don’t take that as innuendo: she was insomniac, and I just don’t sleep so well with a semi-stranger in my bed. Still, it was delightful, talking and kissing (her “I’ve haven’t been a boy’s room in the longest time” was quite endearing), even if I did get an elbow in the back in the middle of the night. C’est le guerre. But, damn, now I need a cold shower….

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