Scene From a Café

Brendan Sullivan

In his head he’s Baudelaire,
in a dark silk suit
and hand crafted boots
of butter suede,
and he’s sitting in a cafe
with leaves swirling around his feet,
waiting for the girl of his dreams
to drop from the bright blue morning
and bloom under a red umbrella.

He will whisper crimes
and confess thoughts of chaos
as she slowly pulls off her gloves
and pours too much wine
in his glass
and tries to imagine
how he tastes under his shirt.

He will write her a poem –
something about flowers,
on a napkin
and tuck it
into her sleeve
and wish he was running his hands
under her petticoats.

She will smile
and wet her lips
with the tip of her tongue,
making sure that her thigh
is too close
and that her thoughts
sound scandalous
to the jealous women at the nearby table
and make the waiters’ attention
grow hard.

She will snap open
a thin black fan
of ivory and silk
and let it do the talking
and her laughter will echo
in his glass
as her head turns and the light catches
her tiny gold earrings

and makes him
drain his glass
and feel free again
and lighter
and suddenly press a kiss
against her throat
while her hands tremble and her eyes close
as the sidewalk falls away.

and the gentleman
walking by with the small white dog
will feel young again
and whistle an opera tune
he used to know
and dream

of glorious mayhem.

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