The bartender pours the last flicker
of the open neon sign
into a row of shot glasses.
The crowd swirls the liquid
around like a parting bouquet
and each sip is a fanged kiss
biting their lips.
By the end of the night,
they will trade in names
for strangers’ jackets
and sweat scribbled numbers
on inside wrists.
Last call becomes selfies of girls
with running mascara and smearing lipstick.
Each snap fills the liquor bottles
lining the back wall.
The crowd fumbles through retro hits,
Saturday nights, and quick hook-ups.
They wear desperation, sweat and lust
They clatter and clang out names,
and the crowd listens
to each sound; hoping
it is the sighing of someone’s name.