They say that’s where London used to be, but we don’t remember. We’ve seen pictures – sodden, then dried out, faded pictures. We’ve heard the stories – alcohol-soaked, never-to-dry-out, kaleidoscopic stories. We’ve felt their pain – sob-drowned, sinking, seeping pain. Up here, we say we’re drookit when we’re wet, but they don’t know the word, so they haven’t started to worry yet. We say, ‘Dinna fash,’ instead of ‘don’t worry’. They hear it as comfort. And it is. Though false. If we used their tongue, they’d hear the lie. Up here, even this high, we all lie. And I never did learn how to swim.
Karen Jones

Hindsight Party Invite

To: Date: That summer night, katydids and the shimmering air, and when I came to the door, you a "plus one" in a red floral summer dress standing rosy cheeked from the sinking sun, gift in hand. Time: Minutes brought bodies, brought heat and all moved like molasses through the night, you a red blur in and out between dancing strangers, their hair sweat-stuck to glistening foreheads. Your date left the party late with the thinning crowd, drunk and mad that you did not follow. Place: My fetid house chased the stragglers out to the pool where you sat, feet dangling. I handed you the whiskey, you pushed me in and followed. And when it began to rain we danced drenched on the lawn to the The Beach Boys and Glen Miller till the sun came up. R.S.V.P: You were there. I wish I'd asked you your name.
Rory Bouffe
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