Damian Rucci: “Here’s Looking At You Kid”

Here's Looking At You Kid

of all the beer joints in all the towns
in all the world you walked into mine 

here’s looking at you kid
here’s to walled gardens left to rot
here’s to sigils on the napkins of 
dirty bars on the jersey shore 

here’s to Cemetery Drive muffled
from the wind of an eclipse at 90 m-p-h
here’s to a setting sun on the backs
of the wanderers waiting outside the hotel drunk 

here’s to two bottle of patron nights
here’s to backseat minutiae
here’s to punk rock shows in sheds
in the woods of Flemington, New Jersey

here’s to missing work, to misunderstandings
to half truths, to stumble under sinister moons
here’s to you’ve never seen me sober before

here’s to everyone in Long Branch has problems
you may be the one to sort yours out
here’s to I may be the only cause I’m interested in
I never know which lines to cross or which to sniff

here’s to the boardwalk, the arcade, howling 
in the basements of New Brunswick, church 
is in session and the priest has smashed his guitar 
here's to new beginnings and swan songs 

here's to I've heard your poems, I raise you 
a bible of circumstance and clever words 

here's to friends and long nights 
here's to we may never have Paris 
but we will have the basement
the Eiffel tower is an obelisk 
at the center of our pounding hearts
here's to next time, kid

About the Author: Damian Rucci is the author of 8 books of poetry including Poets Ruin Everything (Honeybee Gazette) & Corrupt the Youth (Between Shadows Press). He is the founder of the NJ Poetry Renaissance and host of nine poetry series. His email is damian.rucci@gmail.com 

Image Credit: John Margolies “Boardwalk, Long Branch, New Jersey” (1978) The Library of Congress