THE SLAUGHTERED LAMB IS MY PLACE
Hey, remember the summer before med school?
We rented that little apartment on the Upper East Side,
the one with that old kitchen and fold-out bed.
And we cooked spaghetti with butter, almost every
night, washing it down with ice-cold beer
from the deli around the block.
Sometimes we took a break from the science stuff
and read Ibsen plays to each other.
Then you wanted to show me downtown New York City.
That was my first subway ride. I was scared
someone might mug you, so I hovered like a hawk.
We found our way to The Slaughtered Lamb Bar
in the West Village. And I will tell you girl, although we
were barely of drinking age, I felt like Jack Nicholson.
Our sneakers and T-shirts were sadly unfashionable
for the village, but I don’t think we realized or cared.
Who drank more? Probably me, but you kept up.
I can still see your smile widen into bursting with
laughter when we left the bar and stumbled into
The Pink Pussycat sex shop across the street.
That night was long ago,
as long ago as you’ve been history,
though I’ve been back to The Slaughtered Lamb,
many times, like an old pro.
But that bar exists because of you
and nowadays when I pass it,
I recall just how great that last summer
with you was and how much I loved
everything about that night: your smile,
your smell and even that spot of dirt,
you didn’t notice, on your sweaty, sunburned forehead.
--Published in the Blotter.