March 8, 2010

Nothing Good Happens After Midnight

by James Babbs

I guess I must have passed out
because the next thing I knew
I was waking up to
somebody pounding on the front door
okay, okay, I said as
I watched a couple of empty bottles
fall to the floor when I
got up from the couch
whoever was out there
kept on pounding and I screamed,
alright, I heard you, already and
my head started to throb
when I, finally, opened the door
Candy came stumbling in
she was a cute brunette
I’d met a couple of months ago
down at the bar where I hung out
she was lonely so I bought her a few drinks
I thought you had a boyfriend, I said
Candy kicked some bottles out of the way
before she fell into the chair
I told him I had to visit a sick friend, she said
that’s more true than you realize, I said
I went back to the couch and sat down
started feeling around on the floor among all
the bottles and got one that wasn’t quite empty
here’s looking at you, I said
I drained it and tossed it across the room
so what’s up, I said
oh, I was just bored, she said
so I thought I’d come over and give you a thrill
on any other night, I said
that would be great
I thought you liked me, she said
I do, baby, but I’m sick, remember
she didn’t get the joke
Candy got up and went into the kitchen
I heard her rummaging around in the fridge
ain’t you got any food around here
I heard her say
no baby, I said, we can live on love
I heard a car pull up outside
somebody got out and started screaming
the voice came closer and closer to the house
Candy, you bitch, get out here
I had three guesses who it was and
the first two didn’t count
he started pounding on the door
I groaned and rubbed my forehead
oh god, Candy said as she came out of the kitchen
she went to the door and opened it
what the hell, Ray? she said
whaddya do, follow me?
you bet your ass I did, Ray said
he was as big as his voice
he thrust a finger toward me
it’s a good thing I did, Ray said
what’s that suppose to mean, Candy said
she got right up in Ray’s face
she started shoving him
whaddya gonna do? she said
be a big man and beat him up?
I tried to squeeze myself into the corner
trying to make myself disappear
Ray walked right over to me
you been fucking my girl? he asked
jabbing his big finger into the middle of my chest
I felt like I was going to vomit
Candy grabbed Ray’s arm
nobody’s fucking anybody, she said
leave him alone, Ray
this your sick friend? Ray asked
yeah, Candy said, can’t you see he don’t look so good
suddenly, on top of everything else
I had to take a terrible piss but
was afraid to go to the bathroom
I crossed my legs and bit my lower lip
c’mon, honey, Candy said
she started rubbing Ray’s shoulders
c’mon baby
she kissed him and
they turned toward the door
as soon as they did I headed for the bathroom
but Ray spun around and screamed, hey
and I felt the piss warm and wet on my legs
you better leave my woman alone, Ray laughed
goodbye friend, said Candy and
they disappeared out the door
I heard Candy giggling in the dark
heard the car roaring to life and
I stood there shivering from the cold


Danielle said...

There's something about this that reminds me of parts of Salinger's writing. I really loved your piece.

Anonymous said...

good writing. question whether or not it's prose

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