Cities and suburbs, real and imaginary.

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

nyc in the bloodstream

i’ve been reading all these blog entries about book expo america, and i’m sorry i missed the event. perhaps next year i will make certain to attend. in the meantime, let me offer this humble prayer to a city i do love very much, (though i have only visited her on a few occasions, and have never hunted for an apartment in the late spring months or been to sunday brunch with people I know only because I slept with their best friend the night before so I am really no New Yorker at all.)

still, my grandfather and great-grandfather lived there, and my great-great grandfather washed ashore there from across the sea. like Ireland - like Africa – NYC hums in my bloodstream.

NYC, our secular mecca. a whole continent turns east in the morning and the evening when television screens feed us sunrise from times square, and the day’s world news from a tower of cable.

and now, a brief prayer to be recited by everyone that must leave New York City from Newark

by the jersey shore, we sat and wept
from the dirty windows there we hung
electric guitars by strings. we wept,
wept for the mind dust that spills over
empty streets behind junkie footsteps
tracking forget-me dust, as we sleep far away

my cabin stewards beg me for songs
of Broadway. but how can i sing
of love in newark, new jersey?

if i should forget you, Manhattan
may my tongue forget the f-word
may my right palm forget self-abuse
if i should think of anything but Manhattan
girls, with their high heels and chewing gum.

happy the drag queen that cuts
my midwestern, phantom-singing boss
in the family stones to castrati him!

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