Hallowed

Pacing through the night, I feel the tingle of a poem coming on- I imagine this sensation is similar to the prodrome of a herpes outbreak or a migraine aura, though I have been blessed to know neither.

College in the city- classmates were falling in love as I fell into prostitution.

Are you a drug addict? One of my male customers asked me, inquiring as to why I was working in the world’s oldest profession.

No, I’m just a college student- came my honest reply. Perhaps studying is a more expensive habit than drugs, and the result just as ethereal.

My classmate’s parents supported them with a stipend and they complained to me that $600 a month was too little, as they bought booze and cigarettes, mean-mugging the clerk at the Chinatown liquor store to appear old enough, a grungy exterior disguising their trust fund privilege.

My parents sent me nothing but a too-late berating on how I should have asked for money if I needed it after they discovered my unspeakable scandal, which they have not mentioned since- nor did their unearthing of the truth result in financial assistance. I thought that my empty bank account and empty belly spoke for themselves.

On a cold winter’s night, I still hear the howl of those hallowed halls, the tunnels of avenues lined by iconic sky scrapers, indifferent to my frigid body below bent into the wind

With frostbitten feet teetering in heels, dresses so cheap they were nearly disposable, and the most threadbare of coats, I did have fun from time to time- prowling the city like a stray cat, discovering the serenity of late night corporate art as Wall Street slumbered except for a few coked-out, drunk men. Like me, they were lonely.

From time of time I still feel the unloving alcohol in my throat, the tears in my eyes from choking on cocks and the iciness of the night air, the flavorless meals and banal conversations, the false promises to pay me afterward, the faulty checks written, the wads of gritty cash I shoved into my shoes for the long subway ride home.

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