Midnight ramblings of an old beatnik wannabe at 1am.
It rained alright, it rained so godamn hard that for a moment I couldn’t think, I could just hear the sound of the rain as it used my roof for jazz practice, only it wasn’t that soft mellow jazz that sends you sleepin, no this wasn’t that, it was the scatty type of jazz like some eight year old kid who finally learned to bop real good, jiving so hard like it would be his last. I lit a cigarette and watched as the rain kept coming and thought that poor kid, sucks to be you pal, but I got a dime right here so you keep em coming.
She came in outta the rain with a look so wild; it’d scare the fleas off an old alley cat, have the bums pissing all the way through the midnight hour whilst tryna shake off a stare like that. Yeesh, it was nasty. I took a drag and called out to her, why hello darling, god awfully drab isn’t it? I hope you wore your coat, (knowing full well she didn’t), mustn’t catch a cold now dear, wouldn’t want that.
I shook my match and chuckled, would you listen to this guy, I could pull it off you know, head for the Beverley and be a big swinger, instead I get my kicks outta smoking and poking the bear so good you could see the bruises start to show, watch those hairs as they start to bristle, hell, gotta get em in while you can now Jack, aint that a fact.
If I had demons, which boy do I gotta few, perched right up snug in the perennial sponge, right now they’d be inclined to vacate the premises. For Alice pushed me up against that wall so hard that it damn near cracked my head, I woulda been dazed if I wasn’t already. You want to end up like Johnny Bones! She yelled. Now for those that don’t know, (and by that I mean you pal). Once they got a squeeze on Johnny Bones, they rolled his head on the railway track and when that train kept coming he rolled his head all the back and that was that, no more Johnny Bones.
I was woozy and she knew it. This isn’t a joke Jimmy! You owe Dean a lotta money, helluva lotta money. Got haffa Bays looking for you.
This broad, telling me things I already know, she had a mouth that could swallow you up like a gully, like an infant bird flappin for her momma, but I’ll be damned if those eyes don’t strike a man to his core, they see the fire in you and blow til you aint nothing but smoke. Some say they seen the devil in em, I tell em that aint no lie, I knew a boy over at Milo’s that could take a punch or two, he gave it back just as good, hit a pound of flesh almost as hard as he hit the bottle, but he took one look into Alice’s eyes and the boy never touched a drop again, been on the straight and narrow since, six years sober, what a peach, but the devil shall reside in Alice Levine’s eyes…
Click click click, Jimmy! Fuck did I just say? No zoning out…
I wanted so much for the city to take me in, the translucent glow of an evening bar. I wanted the stomp of the glass eyed junkies two steppin their way for a fix.
Night like this I could see em. The doo wops sitting out on the street corner crooning for a dollar, fill they nights with whisky and good time girls with smiles so wide and sequins shimmering on their edges. See em as they spin, lord they twist and snap like sommin wild, like the dogs are nippin at they heels.
I pined for the streets. Instead I was at the edge of the docks blowing smoke rings out my fingers waiting for Dickie and his crew to finish patting me down.
If I knew I was getting a reach-around, I’d have worn cologne. My lungs exhaled quicker than I expected. Looks like sparky here had been to the hardware store and traded hands for hammers.
Protocol Jimmy, you know how it is.
Yeah Dickie, I coughed, I know how it is.