Wednesday, 27 May 2009

Winter coat.

The winter coat kept the chill from my skin
I walked through a twilight, street-lit central London
It was London but a quieter, emptier one
And despite wearing such a large coat
Being alone on what’s usually
One of the busiest streets of the world
It started to get a little cold
I had left from the beginning of an after party
A place where the conversations no longer seemed to suit me
I remember it dawning that
This was a re-occurring case
Though this was the earliest I had left such a place
I swigged from a small bottle of scotch
Only for myself I had bought
Hoping to drink the whole thing in a night
Without giving a second thought
To my sobriety or the dip in the road ahead
But while crossing that road
I stumbled and fell
Twisted my ankle
Needles to say, 2008 hadn't started too well
After being fed-up of waiting for any cars to drive by
And failing to see any stars in London’s sky
I realized I had been lying in the middle of a road
For too long
So I decided to get up
And walk on
Although it was now done with a limp
I was about to venture home
But as I stepped on the bus I was struck with images
Of cold rooms
Empty beds
And microwave dishes.
It’s an indescribable moment
When you’d rather walk alone
Than spend a night in an supposed home.
I didn't know what it meant
Just felt a need to keep my feet to the pavement.
Then shown to me was the only soul that night I would see
Of course on my central London journey
I had passed others
But souls were no longer with these people
Sold to the bottles and to the needle
And other things I’ll hopefully never know or comprehend
Selling souls for objects
Then again, on a night like this
I could almost understand
She too,
Was alone
And notably without a coat of her own
But her dress was vintage prada
Her hair was up
She sat on a step leading into pret
I was thinking about her back on that glass
And how cold glass can get
Now I’m not one for talking to strangers
But at this moment not talking seemed stranger
“Are you cold?” I asked her
She lifted her head
I saw the street light stare
And get lost in her hair
Her eyes connected with mine
And something instantly
Inside of me
Straightened my spine
It took her about four seconds to reply
But there was no awkwardness
The seconds flew by
Keep in mind what you would do
If you saw a scotch smelling, desperate looking, limping
Nineteen year old staring at you
But despite the reaction feared
She could see that she was the same as me
Or maybe it was the scotch poking out
from my pocket
Either way, she nodded and patted the space next to her
I sat and sighed as I lay by her side
“Do you want to wear my jacket?”
I don’t know why I called it a jacket
Or even why I offered it
It was my winter coat
And it was really cold
She declined
The first words she spoke to me
Were “no, it’s fine”
I really liked my winter coat
But much as I liked it on me
I couldn’t help but prefer
To want to see it on her
I offered scotch
And she swigged like a pro
She apologized for having nothing to offer
Though she had clearly forgot
She gave me the prêt stair central London hot spot
We laughed and exchanged
Names and trivial tales
Stories that rambled
And availed
To really nothing
But we were both laughing
So I guess it meant something
I was in a moment where
I was no longer in my own moment
But instead it was together
A time where the sky didn’t change
No cars or people passed us
No need to con or want her to be with me forever
Because there was no future and there was no past
It was a moment in time made exclusively for us
It was now around four
And I had managed to get the coat on her
Her head rested on my shoulder
We spent the night huddled together
Woken at around six thirty
By a disgruntled prêt employee
Who thought we were hoboes or drug addicts or something
Either way he sure didn’t want anything to do with me
I walked her to the Holborn underground train station
The winter coat I had convinced her to keep
To this day I’m happy she has it
Over that decision I have never lost sleep
She gave me her number
But I don’t think I could ever call her
For in that time we were the only Souls outside
On a cold twilight, street lit central London
And we were both so desperate
For someone to lean on
And one night together was all we needed
To face our day to day lives again and not become defeated
Maybe when a cold winter comes
And I’m in need of a friend
I’ll look for my winter coat
And we can see each other
Once again.