"Betrayed, I am betrayed!" he says,
wobbling in a drizzle of rain
with his coat unbuttoned and no hat on.
We find him in the middle of the street,
his shoes in a puddle,
the soaked city all about him.
"She's left for good, driven off
with my life!" he cries out
to the tallest buildings as we try
to maneuver around him.
Maybe she's miles away
in a breezy convertible,
maybe she's managed to go as far
as the other side of town--
but what a spectacle he is among us now
with his arms upraised and his mouth
stuck open to the sky like a pullet's.
"The end of the world," he shouts
flinging off his coat and shirt,
and water dripping from his head
like a circlet of tears.
Won't someone steer him gently home
before the whitecoats come
with winches and manacles and straps
to keep our peace, and keep him quiet?
We press closer together, one body
smugly against the other,
pull up our collars against the cold and wet:
Not our fault, we think, moving on,
not our life, or what our life will come to.
We walk a long time hearing him
behind us, his voice around the corner,
or finding us now from over the rooftops,
and just as we feel him bearing down
too quickly and turn to look
we see there's no one there,
no one at all following us home,
and no one putting the key to our lock,
and entering, and knowing
where everything is.