Poem – In the Bar

this is one of the poems of mine to be published in the upcoming anthology of the Mariposa Writers Group November 2011

In the Bar


we stand behind our high chairs at the bar

like matadors ready for something new


the women come in & go out

or wait      they watch      we look


our conversation about them

or not      rating          losing all ability to think

derailed when one beauty


or another walks past

we drink too much       it is almost enough


the game is on the TV

suspended 15 feet above our heads.


you have a toy bet with one of the waiters

just for $25   a sliver of distraction


beyond the glass wall the taxis slide north

the snow falling harder     in diagonal stripes.


“another day in paradise” you say, and then

“you have to share the love.”


I think about the meaning of something

as I always do and remember what I said before


“eveyone in their mind is eighteen forever

no matter what lies our bodies tell us.”


I remember when we were young

and knew better        at least we thought we did.


then you start talking about God

and eternity            then take out your cell phone


to see the number of your latest call

and I start to laugh because we are not killing time


we are out playing            drinking     talking     smoking

laughing                   being a little stupid & more bitter


than the lemon        on the asshole’s bottle of Corona

standing next to me        who keeps asking me about golf.


I look past to last week & the young blonde

we talked with in here    & her girlfriend who was going


to New York City to act & wasn’t pretty enough

but the blonde was               & when she slipped off her


black leather suit jacket      my eyes fell on her bare

shoulders          her twenty-four-year-old honey skin

that led past the gold chain & locket

to the tops of her breasts          & she laughed



& it was summer & I was over there

          & had      been swimming for a long time & my muscles


          my back      & legs     

          & arms hummed     quietly

          over & over again       the same curved line


          the pure curved line

          in the sun       that was nothing

          not magic        not thought       not any damned thing


          my body tired with the sweet

          tired of play     without

          my mind turning      over the pieces of the mechanism


          like the old watchmaker I have become

          never dreamed I             

          would go directly there     my life


and I knew absolutely that my lips would

never slide to the nape of her neck


and only the last thought was in her head too

she drank dry martinis until       the guy showed up


she had been waiting for    who ignored us politely

he was dressed exactly      like a magazine advertisement


the ink still wet     she talked to two other guys

to keep him                 in the right state of balance


we watched him panting for her for an hour

he hid it brilliantly & they left


for a party or something    you drank scotch     doubles

I switched back to beer           you won the bet in overtime.


at last     my taxi driver & I did not speak     about God.

the snow fell harder & harder                   making


the streetlights & the Christmas lights

very very pretty.



Author: William J. Gibson

62 year old - writer/photographer Canadian, survived open heart surgery, received kidney transplant, sometimes dour, sometimes amusing, over six feet in height, severely follicle challemged

One thought on “Poem – In the Bar”

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