Closing in on closing time
The DJ plays matchmaker.
The ballad thins the crowd.
Bleary eyed from much too much
drinkers that danced
and dancers that drank
Long gone are the one-night stands,
their feverish, furious gropings
in the back corners have become
intolerable journeys to one bed or another
Sneaking out the sides are the energy kids,
those brightly dressed retro-glam parakeets
strung out on taurine and vodka.
This music is so slow it hurts their ears
With them go the slam dancers,
Their brazen, impotent playfighting concluded.
Politics they don't understand set to rhythms they do
Will echo in their dreams
Now is not the hour for the painfully shy.
They are home, making love with diversion in their single beds.
Pages turn, televisions flicker, and the internet gives birth
to another social media superstar
The ballad plays on, and
Next to no one is left,
but next to isn't no one
Couples coalesce at the edges of the dance floor
Just outside the remaining light
With mingled desire and resignation
Exhausted arms drape across sweat-damp shoulders.
Clammy hands encircle untucked waists
No one is really sure who is propping up who.
Side to side
Side to side
Creativity is gone.
It's out on the sidewalk with their other plans.
This is not who they saw themselves with
When the night began.
The ballad hits its coda.
Fumbling, desperate, awkward kisses begin,
promising nothing beyond the moment
DJ, please play another song.
And leave the lights off.