One ordinary, rather hot summer night, nothing special,
nothing different, in my mind I ran my finger down
the line of hair that ran from your chest before disappearing
beneath your shorts as the breeze blew open your shirt
and I caught the smile in your eye as you read thoughts.
You, with your short dark hair amid a season of blondes
I was tiring of, you, who I never kissed or lay with,
who I never undressed outside of that dizzy dream.
Later that night, while fuelled on cocktails, you brushed
my finger along that same hair line, nothing said,
nothing promised, just that fine line between you and I,
you, with your eyes which shone that breathless night
towards a blue side of green, black jeans, red shirt
and a tan to stop just short of where that line disappeared.
You seemed like the first man I’d seen in such a long time
having been lost for a while in a sea of bleached boys,
all as harmless as they were hairless while I cavorted
about their sweet skins with careless concern for complacency.
But you looked like something else on that fortuitous night
as the setting sun sizzled and breezes briefly blew bodies bare.
That tremendous night when nothing really happened
except for the soft touch of that line I never managed to cross
and, more importantly, never managed to forget.
All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly.
This month is about looking back and the life and lust of summer nights in Paris in order to move on. The bar was La Tropic, a gin fizz on the terrace, by Les Halles, the summer was 1998 but the location of both the line and the man are now a mystery only the summer stars can shine a light on.