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Last night I was drinking at Dropkick Murphy’s, a dusty Gothic-Irish catacomb with a long bar and a little balcony where a handful of souls danced with declarative abandon to a ceilidh band. I was melancholy and Tori had sensed that I could not be called back to the world. She sat drinking a little apart from me, fresh and alone, like a lizard basking on a rock. The last time that I had ended up in Murphy’s, I had been with Marcin, and the recollection of this evening was now unnervingly immediate, filling me with old, strange emotions, an inexpressible sense of beauty and poignancy, as if I had left a piece of my soul in this pub and I had now briefly got it back.

Marcin and I had been drinking vodka and beer – wading out further and further from the shore – but I had not grown sick or tired, the drink had seemed as light as air, my body had soared as mighty as a full moon – and when we got outside, into the dark streets, the moon had been up and full – enthroned in bleary, buttery light – more wild and remote than the whole cold world spread below – and I had wanted to reach up, poke my thumb into the moon, and hoist it up to get at the virgina – and the bars were no longer open and I was terrified that the spell would wear off, frantic that we would run out of drink – but marcin knew a chippie where they would slip you some whisky under the counter – and I had wanted the whisky pure, wanted its fierce, abrupt kick – and then we got the drink and we were wandering about the cowgate – and there was a kid in a hoodie and marcin wanted to kill him – and he was pushing the kid over, knocking off his glasses – and the kid ran out into the road, trying to stop the taxis, but the drivers all shook their heads and carried on – and then marcin kicked the kid’s heels, and pinned him to the ground, and whispered into his ear – and the kid was sobbing and marcin was intoxicated with cruelty – and I said come on man leave him and I took marcin’s hand and led him down the cowgate and marcin said aw man is it going to be okay and I said yeah its going to be okay its going to be okay and marcin said I feel good man and I said yeah I feel like I fucking rock