On missing each other

It’s so easy to miss each other. You look, and I’m not there. Or I’m there, right on the spot, and you miss me even as you keep, you say, you keep your eye peeled. Even though you keep an eye out for me.

The watchman: “You Gods in heaven– / You have watched me here on this tower / All night, every night for twelve months / Thirteen moons– / Tethered on the roof of this palace / Like a dog. / It is time to release me.”

Giving up, and all that, takes time. And then there’s the human bondage to mark up, you know. Lots of marks.

“I’m not so sure about tomorrow. They say it could be sleety.”

“You want to stay in then?”

“I don’t know.”

I called your name I don’t know how many times and I thought I heard you but no that was well I don’t know what that was. But it was something.

“My life is dreary; he cometh not.” Is that all you have to say? “My life is dreary.” Is that all you’ve got? Don’t talk to me of your oh weary weary and of your wishing you were not.

In the beginning you saw me. That was what I liked about you. You and the Andalusian girls. You didn’t just look; you saw. And the way you kissed me. You looked in order to see. And in order to kiss. But that was in the beginning.

I kept an eye out. Now and again I opened the curtain and looked out the window. At 1:30, I saw you pass by. I don’t think you saw me looking at you. Truth is, I wasn’t interested that much anyway.

“I just don’t get how we could have missed each other. I was there. Where were you?”

“At 400 Hudson. I was standing right on the corner as we’d discussed.”

“Well, I was too. At 4?”

“Yes, at 4. Right on the dot.”

“a.m. or p.m.?”


“OK, but where were you standing? I mean did you see the church across the way?”

“Yeah, it was next to the canal.”



“In New York?”

“No, in Amsterdam. I thought you said Amsterdam.”

“But I live in New York. You know that.”

“Well, you said something about moving.”

“I’m a travel writer.”