montreal, lcp agm 2004

I rimmed my eyes in black and wore plastic

and metal around my neck. Sheri-D piled

her hair on top of her head and danced

in pointed black boots. Ali’s black dress lingered

against her skin like kisses and a fist-sized poppy

bloomed in her black hair. When the three of us stood

beside each other in front of the bar the only other

colour was my pink shirt, bright as candy. The band

played “Under the Boardwalk” and “Mustang Sally”

while aging poets danced around us, blue jeans and red

velvet and something approaching abandon. We sat

at the back of the room. Ali spilled a pint and it spread

like a rumour across the white tablecloth. Sheri-D whispered

that the three of us were really in a Tarantino movie and that I

should drive the getaway car even though I can’t drive. We

decided there must be a heavy black gun duct-taped inside

the toilet tank in the washroom we shared with the family reunion

in the banquet room down the orange hallway. The band broke

into “Runaway” and Ali began to freak out. I gave her Ativan

from the little brown bottle in my purse and reminded

her that sometimes a bar band play list is just that. Sometimes

there’s no such thing as confluence and sometimes there is and

sometimes you can’t tell until years later and even then you wonder

if it’s just a story you tell yourself to make it all mean something.


The bare facts of a poem: Red lipstick. Red flower. Black dress. Pink pearls.


Three throats opened in laughter at the exact same moment.


An approximation of music. Dark room. Bodies.


No duplication. No repetition.