Monday, April 4, 2016


were old friends
from Brownsville
Brooklyn in the forties.
Both had failed
at life
from an early age:
they packed crates
& read
The Harvard Classics.
Each had that old school
sinewy thing happening
and now were stevedores
on the docks.
They worked
& whored
Dutch smoked Pall Malls
& Mo Camels.
Drank straight
whiskey. Slept
when they could.

One day
Dutch spied a chick
coming out of chic village brownstone.
he said,
to Mo.
Ya see that chick?
No, where?
There where?
There, there.
Mo wore those coke-bottle glasses
and had to squint through them.
No, where?
There you idiot, there. And spun Mo's shoulders around.
Yeah, yeah, OK. What about her?
Dutch repeated. I want you to go over and bother her. I'll count three beats and go over and get ya off her...then I'll make off with the chick.
What the hell? Mo said. . Let's get a drink.
No, I like her. I really like her.
What are ya gonna do?
I'll throw a punch, you go down. Simple.
I don't know.
C'mon, Mo. C'mon.
OK, Ok.
Dutch watched as Mo went across the street and sidled up to her.
He saw her twist and squirm and try to get away from him but Mo blocked her.
Dutch walked across the street.
His blood bubbled.
He didn't pull the punch,
but hit Mo square in the mug.
Mo hit the ground
bounced up
& hit Dutch.
Dutch went down
bounced up
& hit Mo.
Then they grabbed each other
in a head-lock
& both went down.
The chick walked off.

She was stupid:
she was surrounded by love
and never saw it.

Norman Savage
Greenwich Village, 2016

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