A party isn't a party until someone - or me - jumps fully clothed into the fountain, soaking an elaborate display of fruit, carefully spun California rolls, and an enormous blue-headed parrot hanging upside-down from a jutting lamppost, from which hangs a blue light emitting the sparks and odor of a thousand charred insects.
It is late summer and there is a mist on the air, the same Fire Island mist that killed Frank O'Hara a few months ago, when your hair was longer and I was three pounds lighter.
Things grow still as the night wears out. You can see it in your grandparents, your own parents. Dark is as dark does. I prick your finger with a needle and mix the blood with olive oil in a sombrero shaped margarita salter and together we concentrate on what the dead might be saying. Someone in the crow's nest claims to have sighted a pirate ship, white sails shining on a moonless night. Avast!
It is ridiculous.
When the light begin to distill the stars into a mellow sky spread out in infinite angles, your husband finally falls asleep and you talk freely - at last - about how much you want a dog and how, when you were older, you would like to sell the house and buy a farm in Canada where you had heard that land was cheaper. And I have a lot to say about that for some reason, though it eludes me just what that is, and we talk our way onto the beach, combing seashells and driftwood, flinging seaweed into the slough, white foam wraps a black film around our ankles like a walnut husk until breakfast a need for coffee especially overcomes even my poor broken heart.
And summer ended just like that, with me three pounds heavier and a face more etched with care than I would have hardly believed yesterday.