Cocks came between us. My own erected
a wall; bricks of desire, raw and damaged
by repression and spackled by need. His,
which I never saw, was more like an invisible
fence and me a denatured dog yapping outside

its bounds. We stayed friends, from Junior
High, through college, and into my spiraling
orbit of depression. I dropped out and drank
and worked at a motel, my unbalanced self
balancing the nightly ledgers. He came

through the front door of the office bearing
two cans from the vending machine out
back: Mountain Dew for him, Dr. Pepper
for me. This is important, you see, for he
knew me well enough to know my favorite

drink. And when I think about that night,
I can’t recall too much of the conversation,
being all wrapped up in how beautiful
he looked with his thick eyebrows jutting
over thoughtful eyes. I simply took

the can, cool to the touch and wet. I get
sentimental over that offered soda. Sure,
I would have liked to have been thought of
in a way that would quench my other thirst,
but being thought of at all is not something

to be taken for granted. But I did, as that
was before he ran a light and a semi jackknifed,
erasing him from the earth. He left me
alone that night, and, full of want, I went
into the lobby and put a pot of coffee on.