I had no interest in that country, but I went
All the same. The streets I left behind were
Not mine. There was no whisper or mark of
Me. The summer rain washed the tennis courts and
We ran laughing (crying?) back inside not home,
But like it. Not real family but I soon forgot.
Hallow’s Eve in the cemetery. Night. It’s dark.
We are all drunk laughing (crying?). Scared stiff.
And then someone stands up, pulls down his pants
In front of a cherub’s grave. Laughing (sobbing?) mad
He’ll piss on it. Stop asking him to put
On that dress. The adults never were there to care.
We crawled out the window onto the roof
To smoke cigarettes, drink beer or vodka.
We got to choose our poison then. Standing,
In a circle, behind the bushes, under a
Tree, we laughed (angrily?) passing the
Smoke, from my lungs to your lungs to his lungs.
We were family then. Hallow’s Eve, he didn’t piss.
We told each other nightmares seated, cross-legged
Until the giant with the deep voice came to join
In the drinking games. But he was too loud,
And in our drunkenness (fright?) we scattered in all
Directions. Shouting promises, like always, to meet inside.
We were all from a far away place, each in our
Own right. Each of us a character: unique.
When our supply of alcohol ran dry, someone would walk
Into convenience stores and look around. We would
Follow her, then leave upset, thinking her empty.
But back inside the room, she would make
Magic, pulling out, laughing (crying?) vodka wine,
Whiskey. But sadly never beer.
Her friend had red hair. Her friend had red arms.
We said the right things at the right times.
Someone jumped in front of cars only to be
Held back. Someone hid broken needles upstairs, only
Found after he was gone. He
Left letters in the oddest places. But then Who were
We to judge? We never went to class but somehow
Always passed. We were laughing (crying?) running
Too fast. Looking too much, and too deeply at the world.
These scars run deep from the rails we jumped
Over to get down to the ruins from
That statue that made us pause, but never for long enough.
After all, it Was just a rock! We were always drunk (scared?),
But never quite enough. We smoked too much. We cheated at cards,
Each in our own way and each scowled in time.
We were laughing (shouting?) our way
Through days. Living far too wild but not enough.
We did not dance. I never learned to move
That way. I never did speak on stage either.
We sat together, we cried that way, and
Sometimes we thought we’d die like that. We were
Laughing (quiet?) planning trips back home. To where
We did not know: Someone wanted to see
The Berlin Wall and get lost behind a
Curtain that was already gone. She had a voice
Of a songbird. And when she went dry, she
Said goodbye. We were never sober enough.
We drunkenly (sadly?) stumbled around and somehow that
Was enough then. I ran laughing (sobbing?) through
Those streets and soon saw I was alone. Drunk (confused?) and
Still not sober: bleary eyed, pounding head, not good
Enough even then. No more red arms. No need for
Me then? No more dry eyes. No more of them.
And no, no going back. No, there is still no
Time Machine. No way to find that home again.
No way to say hello in the right way. No time to say goodbye.
We are not those laughing (scared?) drunk (loud?)
Young things lost on the busy streets.
We are not young. Maybe we never were?
I was drunk (laughing?) running (dying?) on
Those streets. I was going too fast and now can
Only look back with strange eyes on those days when
We laughing (still drunk?) ran on that cobbled road.