There’s just god when he’s drunk.
11th of the month so the reminder is always sharper, stings more. It’s snowing out and Kelsey used to love the snow because he saw it infrequently. The snow cooled him off, tamped down the heat that ran through his veins and soul, through his brain, through his nerves and synapses and chemistry. Now it’s cold out but Kelsey ran hot. December was his month and it’s hurt every year since he took the Big Sleep. Dogs and kids and snow and whiskey all remind me of you, kid. I wonder what went on in your head—what you wanted to be, what you wanted me to be, whether you wanted to be. You were so alone and miserable that last time, in the house I just left, left the last place I ever saw you and Ginsberg and the other one who meant so much. Now it’s just me, you little bastard. You always cursed me to live to 95 and then you bailed out. It’s winter now, it’s dark and it’s snowing. I like it. I’m in my winter. Why feign happiness and hope? Maybe you figured it all out? There’s just god when he’s drunk. You always slept too much overslept, but this is ridiculous. Your birthday is coming up soon—what do you want? We went to Vincent’s for your 21st, remember? Robert Horry sat behind you. You ordered wine and it was our last birthday. I think you knew people would turn on you, smile in your face and tell you how beautiful it was going to be and then shred you like a rabid Rottweiler and then casually walk away because they could. You got it and got out. And now it’s dark and snowing and I’m wondering why you left, why you had to get out so soon, why you couldn’t have just stayed for one more drink, maybe you’d learn to like whiskey, to see the dogs’ last years, to help me when I was in the shit, but you had to get out. You went out like you came in—full of fury and fire, moving, angry, hot . . . I get it. I know anger, have felt anger and hatred worse than yours. Hot. It hurts. People leave you and you never know why. I never thought that about you. You had somewhere to be. You didn’t bullshit me. Now it’s snowing and dark and I’m living the past you never really got to know. There’s just god when he’s drunk. You knew that promises were just words, just words, just words and there were warning signs on the road ahead. Grandpa Nick always had my back. I tried to do that for you but, Christ kid, you were tough. You had too much Medigan and not enough Siciliano, I think. But you kept it real—you never changed, didn’t lie and deceive, you just didn’t give a shit. And I respect that. Rispetto porta rispetto as Grandpa Nick and Tony S. would say. It’s dark and snowing out and I’m thinking of you, think of you every day but even more lately. Winter the season of loss and escape. Lots of losses and looking for the magic. When you reach the part where the heartaches come, the hero would be me. Ginsberg and Fidel left too. Now it’s just me, no one is left from the deck, everyone bailed, some politely, some cruelly, all gone, no more fires and beers, no more stories and songs, just anger and subterfuge. That’s today’s world. Maybe that’s why you got out. I found your cars and Grinch mask and gave it to the babies. They remind me of you. So honest, but not in your pazzo way. Now it’s Cutty Sark and a Cohiba, and no one to enjoy it with. One day you’re in, next day you’re morto and you don’t know why and it was too easy. Amputated and flushed–that’s the world. You knew that. Too easy. You never said goodbye, never told me anything. It’s what people do apparently, they leave you without a word, and just let the pain hang in the air.Don’t worry, I was never mad at you and there’s nothing to forgive, it’s just a lot less quiet and creative in the world without you. Anyway, you know how to get hold of me, and I won’t bug you. May your journey in the cosmic dust take you to the place you need to be. There’s just god when he’s drunk.