the neighbors who were loud in bed when i was 14, by rich boucher

“The Neighbors Who Were Loud In Bed When I Was 14,
A Celebration and Remembrance


I remember feeling like I was fourteen years of age when you probably moved in back then. I knew I must have been fourteen because of a recent birthday. My family lived in an apartment house across from yours. We were separated by a little yard composed of grass and fence and economic stature and class divide and my parents were wary of you. You were a young couple, and I think you had a baby or some kind of child. Something child-shaped lived with the both of you; I know that much. Not an important detail. Not something I want to discuss. Not now. Not ever. Instead, I want to celebrate now, as I get older, how old you were then and how rough. If memory serves, you both were bikerish. Like bikers. Wild on the edges, some parents would say. Guy half of the couple, you once cussed out the old man who was the landlord for my family right out there in the yard, and when the old man came at you, my father had to run downstairs and restrain him. I remember a father yelling you’re not a young man anymore, Mickey! and you stalking back into your house with your angry back blazing in the Massachusetts youth of me. My bedroom window in our second-floor apartment faced the one in your bedroom, and on several summer nights, you and your lady made what sounded to me like dangerous, agonized love with your window open. I listened. How could I help but listen when my window was necessarily and importantly open because of August? I’m fond of the memory that maybe you don’t want to have. The way you moaned, lady half of the couple, sounded to me like you were becoming a ghost while it was happening. With what was he stabbing you, lady half of the couple?


man and woman lying on bed
Photo by W R on


Rich Boucher resides in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Rich’s poems have appeared in Gargoyle, The Nervous Breakdown, Soft Cartel, Menacing Hedge, Drunk Monkeys, Cultural Weekly and Tinderbox Poetry Journal, among others. He is the author of All Of This Candy Belongs To Me, a collection of poems published by Jules’ Poetry Playhouse Publications. For more, including works unpublished anywhere else, please check out He loves his life with his love Leann and their sweet cat Callie. 




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