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sung innocence has to be exposed before abandoned; cursive lining a napkin in fingernail strokes; the reality bordering our frame in faux, gold leaf. ellington and fitzgerald are born again from a vinyl tide pool, swirling like the other couples here keeping time across a mahogany sea. a pair of prophets warning their disciples of an age with end. the tempo swells and swoons as you fancy maybe getting lost. i steal a sip, to taste that scarlet stain that remains on the ring; to suffer your apprehension. all it would take would be a new band, platinum, gold, silver, tin, even brass . . . wails out as the players on the unlit stage execute their final notes. seconds, hours, years, are relatives, the tender remarks to the saintress, observing the candles and patrons dying out with each sway. no more for the road. birth is when we earn it, reflects in the glitter tickling your eyelashes. your hair bars me from the vista outside, as we shadow the last ambling, arm in arm, mine locked around your waist, searching the crushed velvet for a faint heartbeat that only this eve will feel again.
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