French Blue Nights by Courtenay Schrembri Gray

On a French blue night, dowdy and nihilistic,

I collect a Café au lait from the local Dunkin’.

Naked, in a public bathroom, I trace the veins

in my breasts, checking for any abnormalities.

While the painkillers set in, I change into my

malachite ball gown, still imbued with your vomit.

I am in debt to death; therefore, I am obliged

to indulge in a few Cosmopolitans at the bar.

God, I feel so nauseous at the sight of men.

A kitten in the skin of an underage wren.

Don’t they see that I’m just one of them?

I read Bukowski — Ham on Rye.

They’ll never take me to their bed, god,

if they don’t, I’ll finally find a way to fly!

On the evenings I pay for sex, I tell him
that the Métro stops by the gates of heaven.

He doesn’t believe me, of course, but I know
that the cigarettes he smokes will take him soon.

“You’ll die, you know?”

“Why do girls always talk of dying?”

“Because we’re closer to it.”

He drops his head into my lap, and I flap
my wings against the headrests, revolting again.

Courtenay Schembri Gray is a writer from the North of England. You’ll find her work in an array of journals such as A Thin Slice of Anxiety, Misery Tourism, Expat Press, Rejection Letters, Hobart, and many more. She will often post on her blog:

Twitter: @courtenaywrites 

Instagram: @courtenaywrites

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