The air giggles, full of cherry blossoms
and the shouts of college girls buying next season's $20 flip-flops
From under cover of cadet hats
, the hipsters
stop sulking and are peeking around corners with shy smiles.
They are in American Apparel
in big sunglasses,
nervously tickling the hot pants.
smells like incense and doughnuts today,
the smoke of one-hitters
and pedophiles' cigarette bribes,
and there was a time when I was young.
, glitter jasmine-scented lotion, handfuls of beads like cheap glass candy
, shoplifted cassette tapes --
(it was a long time ago).
We are all owed our summer romance
on Capitol Hill
School lets out and the newest teenagers,
tall girls tailed by stumpy, smooth-faced boys,
go trailing self conscious laughter,
waving to-go cups
and swinging accessory-sized shopping bags.
At night the hipsters and gay couples with tight jeans in the right rinse
shake their wet hair and laugh,
jaded looking into the sunset.
crowd at bus stops back to First Hill
or Lake City
an IHOP International Breakfast
, Swiss dots
, American thighs
The gutter punks
wash in and out with the rain.
Always someone coming and going, always a crowd to watch through the window of the falafel
always a buzz in the air and hang out for a few hours, you might find out where the party's at
the retro Boeing
-era heart crushed between condos and tacky storefronts
is the popular girl who was nice to everyone.
Did you walk by Dick's and no one was there?
No you didn't, stop lying
Deluxe, Special, cheeseburger
. Chocolate, vanilla, or strawberry
It's my street, my summer.
I've got it going on in those boots
, I do what I want.
If the American Apparel display alerts us that fashion has changed again
, my apartment is two blocks away.
My bags don't swing, paper pouches in the wrong size,
giant pet food or birth control in its red and blue clutch.
I don't hang out at Magic Dragon. Much.
At ten I go out, push through U District
imports, drink on Pike/Pine where the jukeboxes are good
2am shines its light on the world and we are pushed outdoors.
Elitists and tourists, what say you? It's too warm to go home.
We queue up in serpentine lines outside the drive-in
In the summertime, I eat a lot of Dick's