It was summer stock
and season of blondes;
darker tones bleached
to an inch of white,
at first so fair and fragile,
tethered to nothing more than
temporary teases, interval acts
pitching and playing and parting
before the important performers
took their permanent positions.
I was high on a hiccup
of happiness that had long eluded me,
basking beneath the blinding spotlight,
a swing without a line on stale streets
whose stories I envied
as you slipped in between
the numbing neon distractors
and saw the blinkers that floundered me.
I was bound and breathless
before we’d even bent our bodies
into a bed that never quite fitted
the pair of us and yet still I stayed,
as you crept along the curb of the couch
not quite sure if you wanted to catch a star
or just court a curiosity.
We were players of unequal parts,
me too light on lines
and you too too busy
following those fragile white lines
that took you away from me
while I lay there next to you, waiting
to see if you might come back.
We lost each other
on another side street
after sunset, when the light
no longer blinded me
to those darker tones you tried to dye.
It had been my season of blondes;
buffed bodies that blurred lines
but your costume caught on reality
before the curtain made its final call.
We were separate journeys
caught up in the changing of the tracks,
too temporary to be truthful,
too tempting to not to taste.
Memory has not moulded us
into anything more meaningful
than a moment that was never really meant.
All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly