Your hand sails its gold ship around the small of my back
and the streetlights blush, oranges peeling into their more naked selves.
With you, it’s always this tender and waiting, the entire city opening
just to close us in together. I mean it’s New York, New York isn’t it? and
This has always been its story. You’re not from around here, and I’m
always about to leave, and these cobblestones collide around us,
roads pressing into roads as people walk past us, their heads thrown back
in laughter, mouths all spit and fire, new tar forming from the oil of their sneakers.
I don’t know how to fall in love here. It’s never quiet enough to know
what I’m thinking when you pull your hair back and smile, but I know
that I don’t want to leave, not you, not here, not with this, with everything
feeling so delicate, the space between us a branch I’m not sure is worth breaking.
And we are standing at Allen Street, and I’m not asking you to stay but
I’m holding an apple to your mouth and saying Bite, and so you bite,
and I wipe the sweet juice from the side of your mouth, and an old mister calls out:
You better treat this girl right, boy! and you laugh – What else can you do?
This is New York, New York, remember? – and neither of us will be here for long.
So we pull a little closer. The bough bending before it breaks, and when it does,
Some light in me snaps —
pink, pulse-pulse, and hold.