Don’t you notice?

A caravan of clouds rolls over The Ludlow. Streetlights and taillights and shop lights spin themselves into a pale yellow ambience and alight its underside. Night never dark, never full of stars. I’m watching from bed, through the window. And I’m thinking of when, if ever, The Ludlow wasn’t under construction. Sally is still out there, one imagines, pawning some corner of her skin to a stranger for the laugh of it. She made such a deal about her hair earlier. “Don’t you notice?” she asked. “It’s shorter?” I said. “Oh I love you dearly,” she said, “but you’re never going to get laid.” I kissed her on the temple: “We’ll just see about that.” The moon reveals itself through a crack in the clouds, a bruised eye. The temperature drop shows on the windowpane: crystalline frost patterns grow at the edges and corners. Sally will have to walk home in it: a skirt and a light hatched sweater, stockings. Not to worry, the cocaine will keep her warm. The city will see to it she makes it home, across well-lit avenues.

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