Sunset on 14th Street

Alex Dimitrov

I don’t want to sound unreasonable
but I need to be in love immediately.
I can’t watch this sunset
on 14th Street by myself.
Everyone is walking fast
right after therapy, texting back
their lovers orange hearts
and unicorns—it’s insane to me.
They’re missing this free sunset
willingly! Or even worse
they’re going home to cook
and read this sad poem online.
Let me tell you something,
people have quit smoking.
They don’t get drinks
but they juice. There are
way too many photos
and most all of us look better
in them than we do in life.
What happened? This is
truly so embarrassing!
I want to make a case
for 1440 minutes every day
where we stop whatever else
is going on and look each other
in the eyes. Like dogs.
Like morning newspapers
in evening light. So long!
So much for this short drama.
We will die one day
and our cheap headlines
won’t apply to anything.
The internet will be forgotten.
All the praise and pandering.
I’d really rather take a hike
and by the way, I’m gay.
The sunset too is homosexual.
At least today, between
the buildings which are moody
and the trees (which honestly)
they look a bit unhealthy here.
They’re anxious. They’re concerned.
They’re wondering why
I’m broke and lonely
in Manhattan—though of course
I’ll never say it—and besides
it’s almost spring. It’s fine.
It’s goth. Hello! The truth is
no one will remember us.
We’re only specks of dust
or one—one speck of dust.

Some brutes who screamed
for everything to look at us.
Well, look at us. Still terrible
and awful. Awful and pretending
we’re not terrible. Such righteous
saints! Repeating easy lines,
performing our great politics.
It’s just so very boring,
the real mystery in fact
is how we managed to make room
for love at all. Punk rock,
avant-garde cinema.
I love you, reader
but you should know
the sunset’s over now.
I’m standing right in front of
Nowhere bar, dehydrated
and quite scared
but absolutely willing
to keep going. It makes sense
you do the same. It’s far
too late for crying and quite
useless too. You can be sad
and still look so good. You can
say New York is beautiful
and it wouldn’t be a headline
and it wouldn’t be a lie.
Just take a cab and not the 6,
it’s never once in ten years
been on time. It’s orbiting
some other world
where there are sunsets
every hour and no money
and no us—that’s luck!
The way to get there
clearly wasn’t written down.
Don’t let that stop you though.
Look at the sky. Kiss everyone
you can for sure.

Alex Dimitrov lives in New York City. His third book, Love and Other Poems will be published in 2020.