The rain was running late, still pattering
on the muddy puddles of the city sky,
and the street was smeared with cloud
star-ridden with mercury lamps—
a world as dreary as long-lost
infatuation, as a friend’s anger,
as empty jealousy.
Like a moth attracted
to the flickers of fluorescent lights,
I chose a frayed café where
my dairy-whitened instant coffee
with artificial sweetener
—all its chemical delights—
put me in the writing mood.