This Time, What It Was, A Time

This time, last week,
we were having a lot to drink
but none so much that we couldn’t dance or speak to strangers
ask for more toilet paper
from under cubicle walls in a shithole, foxhole bar in London, England.

I think we danced so much, got pissed, we practically pissed our drawers.
It happens when you’re having a blast, that —and too drunk to fuck in early hours.

This time, last week, add one hour —2:43:
she’d get lost in a rickshaw.
He’d be making a phone call to a girlfriend or say he’s “getting money”
and the Indian driver would take her down a side street:
“I’ve got wine! I’ve got wine! Plenty!”
She’d say, “I am waiting for him — he is coming for me.”
The Indian guy snogging she, somehow she loses her keys.

This time, last week, he has seen us safely to the front door.
I think he was worried, saying: “I looked all over for you.”

This time, last week, there’d come a blackout
and a slight remembrance of a shared toothbrush?
Of questions of toiletries and maybe removing her make-up?
Of pants being yanked off?
Of an iPhone gone missing, “What about my photographs?!!”

This time, last week in three or four hours,
he’d take her for old times’ sake
he’d blame her that she was the one who initiates
he’d fall back asleep in time to awake
to see her living that Beth Orton track that Oliver gave 13 years ago like a fucking cliché …

“going down to Central Reservation, last night’s red dress,
I can still smell you on my fingers and taste you on my breath.”

The morning’s red dress was Paris vintage Roma-flowing peasant sleeves she ripped on the bathroom door handle, which surprisingly didn’t make her wince.

The smells and tastes would settle in, and inside, for no time for a shower since a plane was leaving trans-Atlantic.

She’d be standing at Customs amidst strangers with a scent from the hours before, unwashed hair and their DNA mixed 36,000 feet in the air on Air Canada inside her.

Oliver, was that Hoxton Square Circles where I tried so hard to fit in?
Oliver, you should have seen me, I wrote in my journal that I could not stand him!
Oliver, I slipped when he walked in, enigmatic, alluring and a force.
Oliver, he cherished nothing at all, not in the ways you’d support.
Oliver, you would have seen right through him and punched him right where it hurts.

From Hoxton Square circles to Russell Square station, from sexless one-night stands, to a morning fully loaded, he told her never to veer from the main streets but the side streets is where he rescued her. He said always remember your Bloomsbury runs North and South, but it was too late to remember as much.

From Hoxton Square to Russell Square where he walked the park with her belongings, he had made his mark alright, the reality was stark, alright – she had been going and going and going around in circles that night.

Following Hoxton Square, Oliver disappeared wanting more than a friend, he was looking for a lover. Following Russell Square, she disappeared, questioning whether He was ever a friend and pitied his many lovers.

Bombs had gone off in Russell Square Station and lady activists encouraged the suffragettes. She laughed to herself when he said that the movement was intense but none such a great effort as her travelling with her period.

He said, “you can’t get pregnant then, you had it last week” obviously knowing nothing about ovulation. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was a fertile time ripe for imagination that this time, this time, this time, could be whatever I wanted it to be.

A sneaky little brown-eyed beauty with pudgy face for my squeezing and loving.

A tired, 39 year-old brown-eyed gal with a face burning from weeping.

© Sylvie Hill 2013

Russell Square

Photo | Russell Square, London, UK |