I throw back the white cotton sheet.
Laying naked, letting the air circulate over my skin hoping for coolness.
Padding barefoot I cross the room.
Sliding the glass doors open, stepping onto the balcony.
The slight breeze a welcome freshness.
Looking down, way down below,
I see the cars snaking through the city,
All cars are taxis at night, cabs running to and fro,
Making frivolous journeys for inconsequential people.
I see dots, little dots moving irregularly.
They are humans, tiny individuals,
A fire truck passes, lights flashing,
Multiple glints against the glass buildings.
The deep honk of the fire trucks horn billows,
Suffocating all other sounds for that instant.
I look out, around me.
Reflections, light and glass.
I see inside lighted rooms, empty offices, lounges, bedrooms.
Nobody has curtains, nobody draws their blinds.
Seduced by the height, blinded by reflection,
They think they are obscured from vision.
But I can see them, all of them.
I am standing in darkness, hidden in the shadows, looking out.
One pair of a thousand eyes, from a thousand dark places,
Windows, balconies, rooftops, all staring at the city,
Watching it move, pulsate, vibrate, gyrate.
Who, I wonder, is watching me as I stand here naked,
Breathing in the night air, cooling my skin.
I do not care.
Look all you want, feast your eyes,
Fantasise, ogle, masturbate if you wish, I do not know you, nor you me.
Even if you are there, in one of those thousand windows,
Or upon one of a thousand rooftops, if you exist anywhere but in my imagination,
I still do not care.
Another siren, echoes reverberating up the sides of the towers,
Lights flashing, reflected, refracted, distorted in the mirror glass.
I turn around and pad barefoot back to the bed.
The faint light falls on her skin, she sleeping with one leg out,
Twisted in the sheet I discarded, the other splayed wide and her arms akimbo.
Hair pouring over the pillows, a delta of soft threads.
There is no room for me now.
I do not want to wake her, or disturb her slumber.
I am not tired, I have no desire to sleep.
I grab a drink from the kitchen and go back onto the balcony,
This time I sit, open my laptop and light a cigarette.
I write this, my random thoughts of dark recesses, prying eyes,
Mirrored glass walls, and yellow taxis,
I write of my sleepless night in New York City.
© Paul White 2014