[poem] Raemundo

7:40:00 AM

For Raymond, whome I met at Carl Schurtz Park, Yorkville, NYC on Friday, July 8, 2022 and who I hope to be face-to-face with again. Safe travels, sojourner & wayfarer. You will be in my thoughts and praise until eternity ends.

Minor edits, Carl Schurts Park, Sept. 27, 2022.

 

You seemed like the sort,

I'd've like to have met,

In St. Thomas where we both had,

Respectively,

Moored.


You … with those you traveled with and

endured;

And, me with mine.


Admiring the age on your face.

Cows nest … crabs feet,

You, so tan in your navy-blue bikini

The patina of burnt wisdom glazed with brine on your torso when you changed from,

a larged-brimmed hat from L.L.Bean --

Its chinstrap chopped off long-ago,

For ad-hoc laces on that tropical trail,

Using now a silk scarf to keep it, the hat

(and your bust — or hips)

buttressed against the passions of the Caribbean.

Though that was exactly the thing to embrace now (if ever).


Life begins and fifty, you'd shout!

Fifty is the new forty, I'd reply!

It was our common refrain, like the sails flapping on the tack when we went wherever we wanted to.


You always had your reasons for your moods,

And I, decades prior, learned,

You had your reasons for them …

So, I didn't question or try to understand them anymore …

So long as I could gaze on your sleeping face, and press myself against you every once-in-a-while.


More often than not, you preoccupied yourself with the BLTs,

Reveling in the pure piracy,

(or gentlemanliness)

whatever it's called nowadays;

- or- 

with making sure —

calling out from the bow,

the anchor had dug in deep (to your satisfaction);

And, now we could rest and bask in the glory of creation.

(Sometimes that would mean my having the pleasure of your nakedness …)


 got off, really, on your bending over the railing, taking this enterprise so seriously.

I'd push the levers in and out of neutral,

Enough to jerk the boat from it's slowl drifting port-side, back to starboard …

just enough torque to let you know I was still yours to direct,

though, really, the tide and the current did most the work;

Looking over the binacle at your bustling,

and at your boobs which never, ever have gotten (nor could they have gotten) old with me.


As many times as I had had you,

my forearm around the small of your back,

pressing your torso up into me,

Bending your back and lifting you off the bed

So that we

Could be

One …

Your digging your nails into the back of my neck (and, you weren't one to make a show about such things),

Those days being all about:

Fenders;

And cleats;

Lines, and Sea Bass, and the

tops of one's soles re-radiating,

All the sun they'd gotten beaten down with all day long;

Measuring out the days with teaspoons

— literally,

like the kids say it nowadays, hitting the "Tees" hard: LIT'really;

and, not like the lax "Dees" of lidderally drunks.


Earlier … when we had met and broken the ice with what had led us both here to this place: A dockside restaurant,

Enjoying a "Jamaican Black-and-tan"

Dragon Stout + Red Stripe

Discussing how we'd later take our chances with the trollys

Or the taxis we could hitch

Just beyond the gravel and chain-link fence of the marina …

(Flagpoles and the smell of diesel),

To find some place to have a cosmopolitan and dance together

(Dance kompa),

And be like a compass for each other,

Even if just for this night only,

orientating our movements much like the winds or aligning each other to magnetic north —

To each other's body, and the way each of us liked to move,

Or be touched,

And to know in it

That we belong, even if only to each other and our particular way of cruising around this world,

like:

Albatross.


That night, we met,

The tides of fate having us drift apart,

Only to find each other again in Tortolla;

And, with all those subsequent years of patchy comms

So that we'd each, eventually, learn to love, or at least, make do, suffering the fools;

Having always something to re-criminate besides each other.


That first night:

floodlights out there rippling in the harbor, independent of anyone, but, always,

seemingly,

shimmering like The path to eternity,

Paved on the surface of the water, specifically for you or for me

(but, not for anyone else);

One of us dangling our feet over the bow or from the deck chairs near the transom.


Years later, heaven unfurling for us when we were being silly between the bed sheets: innocent (and, dirty) all at once.

Breathlessly reminiscing of those first few nights,

When we confronted our desolation independently, but

Already hooked with each other —

Restless, and unable to sleep,

Fetching some more drink from the ice chest,

Finishing it and another while resting our chin back on the spit and polish,

Before the dizziness had nothing to do with the surf, but,

Instead

The inevitable of what we'd grow inured and ambivalent to:

passing out, senseless, alone and wanting,

Amidst the sounds of the harbor lapping up on the hull.

Or, unable, to loose consciousness,

Filled with anticipation for tomorrow,

And watching the sun rise over another pristine horizon,

Anticipating another encounter,

Feeling hopeful,

for the first time in a long time.

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