My arrival was pure trickery:
first, the knock at the door, and then I sailed
over the slates to the back and knocked again. Hello.
The last you’d expect, as if
I were dead and you owing me money
but I did it for the effect and
from the look on your face it was working.
So we opened the bottle I’d brought
and got going while I watched you
trying to figure out which of us was pouring.
When you started telling those stories about yourself –
humbling, but they showed you in a good light,
except that I was acquainted with the truth of it –
for a moment I doubted that you knew who I was.
That’s why I put on the old record.
And your getting up to fry eggs didn’t fool me
at all; besides, I’d already called the cab
and – whisky or no whisky
left in the bottle to wink us Goodnight –
I wasn’t about to shove off on my own. Go on:
smoke as much as you like here, and Welcome.