Jetlag by Ali Alshammari

Across from you in a restaurant you read about online,
intoxicated and I haven’t even seen the menu yet,
maybe it’s the blue fluorescent lights layering our skin like anthropomorphic Smurfs,
maybe it’s how our reservation was on a throwback night, complete with loud pulsating 90’s euro techno,
I choose to think it’s the way I’m caught up in you,
we laugh because we only hear the beginning of each other’s sentences before that Aqua song comes on again in a roaring blast,
I don’t mind because it gives me a chance to see your smile,
something I’ve been using as a beacon in recent days to guide me back to equilibrium,
a blur of human chemistry and connection dousing the fire,
before we go our separate ways, I make some stupid reference that gets you laughing again,
a feeling of dread in the pit of my stomach because the night’s almost over,
you’re your own time zone and not in a corny “Yo momma” joke kind of way,
but in the way hours with you feel like feathers against a fighter jet turbine,
driving away from your doorstep and onto a highway of my own reflection,
I’ve been planning this for the past week, fading away in a stagnant routine,
now my mind’s already away in fantasies of what our next rendezvouz could be,
isn’t it strange how it’s hard to fall asleep at night when you’re deep in thought about something that’s already happened?
the differentiator between jitters and butterflies,
work the next day and I know I’ll be tired,
but that’s the way it’s been ever since you’ve become my favorite kind of jet-lag.

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