tonight after poetry class, rob, veronica, jonathan, dave and i went to chapultepec for dinner. i was wearing the good-luck bracelet veronica had made for me out of beads and modem cable and flowers and stars. we played r.e.m. on the jukebox and sang along, eating tortilla chips soggy with lime, yelling across the table. i had to get out.

the women’s restroom was up two flights of stairs past a fluorescent mural and a blasting air conditioning unit. it was just one room; sinks and toilet, mirrors and a small window, which was open. i stuck my head out the window and discovered that the rain-slippery roof was only a few feet below, and the window was just large enough for me to climb out. so i did. i stood on the counter and stuck one leg through and then the other, pulled myself over the sill and i was outside on the roof of the restaurant.

i stood there on the shingles for several minutes, listening to the rush of rainwater through the drainage pipes and the soft buzz of the red neon sign, which from my angle read “chapulte.” i could see the tops of the downtown buildings a few miles away, blue and green and white lights blurred by mist and distance. i could hear the faint strains of the jukebox downstairs, of voices and laughter.

i’m less lonely when i’m alone.