Laura Albrecht


We sit behind our vague

Cold faces, arms crooked

On the counter top, fingers

Rolling cigarettes up, down.

Fluorescent lights line

The low paneled ceiling,

Bleaching until our faces

Blur, take on the round,

Dulled reflection of ten

Year old dimes heads up.

We don’t look like much

In our dark creased jackets

And scuffed up shoes,

Mumbling back and forth

Into each other’s ears,

Slouched over steamy cups.

The tail end of the night

Presses in against

The restaurant’s pane

Glass windows, temperature

Falling off a few degrees

Anticipating the split

White warmth of morning.

Between breaths, we hear

Neon buzz, frost spread.

The few people scattered

Close, the jouncing waitress,

The unseen cook, none hear

The choppy stories we tell

Over each other’s shoulders.

No one notices how

Aluminum sometimes flashes

Up, tinny and high,

In your dark eyes,

How ink, between blinks,

Occasionally splatters in mine.