musical interlude interruption

What is the instrumentation of smoke?

A wince of nose curls against the aroma/ drunk man ashes against lap/ there is sadness found in his almost-inflamed thighs.

Music wraps itself around me as the sun grows stifled by a rainstorm. The sky is sniffling. I offer it a giant handkerchief, which it declines.

Everyone’s body looks different here. Though many wear the same costume of designer rain boots, short short shorts and tank top, fabrics lay differently on the wide array of stretched out skin.

I notice these things while at a semi-local outdoor music concert set against the backdrop of water, bordering New York City and New Jersey.

As an explosion of live folk music fills the air, I’m mesmerized by humans.

How amazing to watch a body respond to sound.

Two young men begin to curve spines, wave their hands up and shake in a way comparable to a religious zelot quivering from god’s language.

I cannot help but smile when I watch a young couple kissing uncontrollably, dancing with their mouths and tongues.

A beautiful woman in ponytail and rolled up jeans, hops on each ankle, snaps fingers and I fall in love with her lack of concern and self-conscious hesitation.

I want to breathe in
I want to breathe in the odor of bodies sweating.

I wouldn’t mind inhaling the food trucks nearby selling grilled cheese sandwiches and tacos.

I’d like to smell the ocean, all salty and pungent.

Instead, I smell cigarettes.

I count the rings of smoke landing on unsuspecting heads like cancerous halos.

I can no longer hear the music when a man sits beside me, wearing a drunk slurred stare. I watch him awkwardly light his cigarette, then forget it’s there as ashes drip on his pants. He becomes a human ashtray and I wonder where his friends are. Or, is he with a partner and where is s/he? I forget to hear the music because the sound of his inebriation competes with the bass and forcefully strummed guitars.

When he leaves, I fall back inside the music. The narrative of love and resuscitation. A collision of stories.

What happens past the interlude of humanity.