Sorry to leave you alone (though I’m even-handed,
Estranged as I make myself); I can see you, stranded,
Lingering, glass in your hand: you adorn the corner
Just opposite mine. I see you affecting scorn or
Yawning (I know all the steps; I don’t need to fake those),
Or scrying indefinite space, hoping someone still knows
How to spot half-hidden, longing and wistful glances
Betraying your needs and pleading for kindly chances,
Greetings or gestures. I know, and I’d love to do that.
I sympathise, really – I’d hate to be misconstrued at
Any rate – but I can’t strike up a conversation:
I’ve nothing to say to you. If your expectation
Tends towards regular banter or small talk, too much
Depends on an easy manner to let me do such
Things when I’m out of place too. Not a word of comfort—
But honestly, I’m unsure why we’ve even come, bought
Drinks, stood around in deluded anticipation,
Or boredom, or hunger, or empty desperation,
Waiting for grace with no trace of a saint’s devotion,
Or patience, or faith, or hope. Living in slow motion,
Passing the time here or killing it, what could I say?
But some of the other guys will take pity—won’t they?
Then you’ll be fine. (I expect. If there’s no predation.)
They’ll notice, I’m sure, and leave me no obligation,
Needless when someone will certainly greet you sooner
Than later—just wait. No help, then, but no marooner,
Castaway too where my own comfort zone has drifted,
Sorry I’ve left you alone, with my smile ungifted.