“Cigarettes and Coffee” by Otis Redding
I play this song when I want to return to a living room in which I spent a set of late nights in good company. Otis Redding excels at fetishizing time, at creating a fantasy of never leaving a cherished place. It’s about absorbing past and future, being held by a connection. It’s a history of human affection, the hours of the early morning like a bond.
This is a song that knows but eschews beginnings and endings, the impossibilities of desire. It commits to the intensity of feeling perfectly at home, every cell of the body attending to the atoms in the atmosphere. You’re on fire but completely extinguished, in a moment worthy of obsession.
Dara Cerv lives and writes in Jamaica Plain, MA. Her first chapbook, Bath Poems, was published in 2015 with Sixth Finch. Recent reviews appear at Sink Review.
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