On H Street Late Monday Evening

Outside I heard the slapping of skin
as I was revising yet another essay
and I heard a cry
I wondered if it was yet another woman out of gas
Then I heard a man groaning
and I finally lifted my blinds and saw something
what one songwriter wrote
a woman just ain’t supposed to see,
I looked away, thinking Oh.My.God.
Why are they doing it outside?
It’s late January, it’s cold.
I mean, not New England cold but still cold.
There are two motels down the street
can’t they go there?
I thought about knocking on the window,
saying hey, I know you’re busy, but may I ask why here?
I mean, out of the random streets in Fresno,
Why pick mine? Should I be honored?
And how old are you?
Do your parents know where you are?
Should I call the police?
What do I say?
Well, this isn’t an emergency, but I have two people
going at it like rabbits outside and it is a school night.
It became quiet. I looked again.
The man was zipping up his jeans
the woman’s bottom was round and supple
Another car drove by.
They sped away before I could put on Herb Alpert singing
I need your love, I want your love
say you’re in love, in love with this guy
if not I will just die.

Jennifer Kathleen Gibbons


Jennifer Kathleen Gibbons has been published in Salon, Stereo Embers, New Southern Fugitives, and Chicken Soup for the Soul. She lives in Central California and is working on a memoir.

Lyric reference: ‘This Guy’s in Love with You’, The Beat of the Brass, Herb Alpert (1968)

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