I know I’ve grown so much as a poet since the writing and submission of this poem, but it still retains sentimental value for me. I wrote during my brief little tour of New York City in January of 2006. A country girl from Vermont in the big City for a weekend, I sent short emails home to my friends of my first impressions:
Finally got a taste of a real chocolate souflee, which I'd been dreaming about since the dessert party this summer, where it was noticably absent from the menu...found myself in an apartment with two guys playing Go, and a woman about to leave for Bejing early the next morning. the smell of take out lingering in elevator carriages, the sounds of unidentifiable languages, people so familiar yet not my own. I could walk a long time down these hard gray streets before I needed rest. Bent pizza boxes, posters weathering off the walls, jewel-colored lamp shades in the park, the ghost of myself in the windows I walk past. So much tactile sensory information.
I had taken the trip to New York to read at a Kundiman-sponsored event at Verlaine. I stayed with another Kundiman fellow, Rona Luo. I had drinks at the Telephone Bar, where fellow Kundis were reading. We went to Chinatown for dinner and ice creams.
I was broke and dreamy-eyed. I had been practicing daily meditations on gratitude and love. And as I waited for the train, I closed my eyes…
Slept in, per Rona's suggestion. Squatted on the station platform and meditated in the sun. Gorgeous no jacket day. Perused bookshops, killing time before lunch. Mongolian pepper steak, halo halo, Thai iced tea, gossip and poetry shop talk with one of the most beautiful women I know.What do I want? Someone who is comfortable in his body, and who can cherish mine. We ate next to fish the size of my head in their blue tank.
Oh, how young and dreamy I was then. And in love with every new experience!