Like hard werken and
Roasting decent beets,
Someone or some
New thing or place
Making a fool of you,
This fight between
Them and theirs,

What it is making you
The fool, the aging
Fantastic man, you
The gentlewoman more
Adventurous, more
Of a someone, more
Yours and mine,

Love the maze all
Between countries
In mass-produced glass,
The pleasure resting
In writing and not
Getting a reply,

Supermarket smiles
By Kafka’s apartment,
A bent cigarette and
Mango tea, a theater
Of airplane seats and
Windows, extra extra,

All this and you cannot
Miss anything but love.

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2 thoughts on “SEPTEMBER AGAIN

  1. sanberdooboy says:

    Travel between countries sounds like adventure, a chance to discover (how to roast decent beets, for example). But is it a way to hide: “The pleasure resting/ In writing and not/ Getting a reply”? And is it also a means to avoid love, as per the closing couplet?

    Speaking of which I love the droll irony of “Supermarket smiles/ By Kafka’s apartment,/ A bent cigarette and/ Mango tea.”

    • Definitely a way to hide. But there’s also an inevitable being-hidden, an enforced out-of-sight-out-of-mind. The forgetting cuts both ways.

      I was also thinking about the pleasure of writing emails and not hoping for a reply. This easily happens when you’re in another country, writing to a friend “back home”: you write to sound out what you’re seeing and doing, maybe theorize it a little, and the longer you spend abroad in that dynamic, the hope that they respond to what you’re saying factors in less and less. It’s rather sad, but just in the way that writing and throwing things out into the void is: the pleasure and meaning must rest in the writing act itself, not in the hope for reception or audience.

      And yes, perhaps a means to avoid love: travel is certainly a great way to forget or erase love. But in my experience this is ultimately the one thing you cannot avoid missing or contemplating when traveling or living abroad. You can avoid missing everything else – you can forget about the BBQ, baseball games, and Midwesterm summers to a large degree – but eventually you cannot avoid missing love, which just takes on new shapes, perhaps, between the countries you traverse.

      Thanks for reading and commenting!


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