“(Brooklyn) Is Magic” (poem) (mine)

(Brooklyn) Is Magic

Brooklyn smells like palo santo
and wet daffodils as I schlep
to the next set of stairs
that leads to someone
I love.
I’m never in the city
and when I am
every second
is so city
I have to laugh.
The dogs dressed better
than I. Everyone clutching
their phones
like children on a rollercoaster
in need of their mother’s hand.
Even the bookstore is curated
to please the eye
and it pleases me
to see people I love stepping off the subway
like celebrities
and it’s pleasurable
to be one of so many
at once
over brunch
and for just a moment
the weight of breakfast
is heavier and sweeter-smelling
than the spring clouds bearing rain.

“Wish for a Thursday” (poem) (mine).

Wish for a Thursday

In a soulmate we find not company, but a completed solitude. -Robert Brault

What I would’ve give to be settling in to eat breakfast
at Eaton’s Sugarhouse with you. The sky would offer
no commentary as we stripped off our scarves, unlatched
our jackets. We’d slouch a little in the chairs designed
for hunters on opening day of rifle season, for families
who’ve fed their cows hay from their own fields
for generations. We’re not those people; we’d only be
ourselves on a Thursday, a little sleepy still from summer’s
hot swipe of mayhem which we survived with long porch
lunches, sweaty bandanas, tulsi-scented winds. The windows
which appear cloudy from the road would be adorned
with hand-sewn curtains as if the diner were a living room
where anyone’s languor was welcome. Plates full of food
would arrive and greet our noses with their names.
We’d eat eggs and hot sauce over toast and split an order
of buckwheat waffles. It wouldn’t be the best meal
we’d ever eaten, not even the second best, but we’d be
unhurried and together: buttering toast, passing ketchup.

Love & friends & verklempt (something in prose).

I don’t think I’m a poet of the atrocities, or even of the victories. I think I’m a poet of the people I love. I’m trying to make sense of how much there is to love in the world. I’m trying to put into words the moment when someone reaches out to touch someone else’s face, but then doesn’t, and then that person never knows that that other person wanted to touch them. And so that touch will never be in the history books. But I might just get it into a poem.


Do you have any famous friends? Friends who people know because of something they did or wrote? I have a couple of great friends in a band and it makes me insanely proud and insanely baffled to know them and to see them progressing in the music world and to know that they are an entity outside of the dudes that I got to know in college. And to think that I knew them in a dorm hallway, with their morning hair and their late night gaits. How I’d leave the coed bathroom when I’d see one of them with their sneakers facing outward in a stall (pooping!). 


I have a lot of friends who really impress me. Not just because of their jobs, but sometimes because of their jobs. I have some friends who were born knowing how to be great friends. A lot of my friends aren’t the same as each other. A couple of my friends are attempting similar back-to-the-land plans as I am, but most of them aren’t. I’m here as a human and as a girl and as a poet and as a farmer-in-training to say: my friends, I love the shit out of you. I know you know it already, maybe because I told you recently in an email or textual exclamation or maybe I sent you something recently or maybe you read a poem here that reminded you of it. Either way, I might as well say it often, because life is short and fast (especially in summer).


So here’s a music video that really impresses me featuring some dudes I know. For some reason this video is making me want to hug people (BAD), probably because I’ve been drinking wine and I live with a man I adore and because it’s summer and there’s quite nearly enough sunlight to provide for all the words I want to write and say each day. Amen.


Belated brunch sonnet #7 (mine).


I want to walk around Hastings but nobody lives here

anymore. Pretty soon I won’t either. My home will be

some yellow morning in a place with seasons, a couple

of strips of bacon still scenting the rooms near the kitchen.

Tomorrow I’ll show friends the spots on my tour of Hastings:

the tennis courts, the entrance to the woods, the back door

of the bar where you can smoke anything, the long lightless

road along Reynolds Field. I haven’t lived here for years,

proved by today when I tried to mail my letter in two mailboxes

no longer in service, painted brown but still standing, handled

mouths glued shut. When I come home, the cat relearns me.

I sleep under a mountain of blankets. My appetite is misplaced

and I get lost driving simple places. All this not-knowing

is a sort of exhaustion. All these knots have pull.


Brunch Sonnet 6: Patti Smith at St. Mark’s Bookshop (mine).

Brunch Sonnet 6

Patti Smith at St. Mark’s Bookshop


Patti kicked the g’s off the ends of words—thinkin’,

fryin’. She had long dyed hair with undercurls of grey,

no secrets there. She arrived on time in a black beanie,

her voice skidding out of her throat like wet feet on sand.

She was amazed to have her name on a New Directions book,

she waited fifty years but it happened. Fifty years isn’t so long

for a dream. Her neighbors in Detroit used to spiff up her lawn

while she was gone on trips, she hated that, she wanted

those flowers for tea, for wine, the dandelions. The worst thing

about Detroit wasn’t the lack of a coliseum or museum, but

the lack of a café. She said she’d sit in some whitewashed

corner at the nearest 7-11 and try to read, pretending  herself

at the Café des Poètes with a mug, a watch, a bit of time,

a few sips left, a cigarette, the table wooden, stained.



New Year’s Eve Brunch Sonnet (#5) (mine).


Max is also a Pisces

He hands me the astrology book while reading my “Lovepoem” out loud

My photograph is on the refrigerator

This is my first time at their apartment and my photograph is on the wall

At midnight a blonde girl lights my sparkler after two minutes of matches

Sam in her black turtleneck with a small cup of water and grooving

Kathryn dancing with her hair

Mallory on the couch getting the scoop

In Andrew’s room the bed is stripped

Max makes coffee and the room is mugged

No taxis in all of Brooklyn, no taxis in all of New York

After 4am I’m not especially human

Math and sleep are both about the numbers

This year, again, is all about the words



Brunch Sonnet 4 (mine).


The river was swollen. There were rocks

covered completely by water. We three stood

by the water. It was too cold for smells.

There is nothing so serious as each instant

occurring right after the last. Only this. Then

this. We unribbon. We peeled back, pulled open.

And from our mouths: sets of words. Laughs

of white breath. The story of a star. We are anything,

except that we are only this: this single minute.

One truth after another. My hands were in

my pockets. The river licked at rocks. All

that liquid, all that thirst. The temperature took

away my toes. I see some people twice a year.

There is a fullness to the sky, an emptiness.



Brunch Sonnet 3 (mine).

Brunch Sonnet 3


As for the butterflies, I dismiss them. I can’t love

well a thing I can’t hold on to—the petting hand,

the elbow slung around the neck in jest, the shoulder

grab, the single finger poke. To touch is to attach—

at the very least there’s cells of mine left on her shirt

or on his bottle that I handed him. As in every poem,

“she” and “he” are every man and woman that I’ve known,

though I won’t know everyone forever, and it’s come to

my attention that I have a choice regarding who it is

that gets to stay. I will or won’t continue in the patterns

that I’ve made. The butterflies will have their way; they’ll

land or skitter off into a better set of petals, and I will

move to touch those in close proximity, using words

or polka-dotted feathers, using what I have at hand.



Brunch Sonnet 2 (mine).

Brunch Sonnet 2


I hear you’re writing brunch poems again,

says Eoin. That’s very dangerous for me. He knows

anything he says or does may be used against him

in a poem. Last night I gave ten dollars to one person,

tonight to another. I spend my money on whiskey

and pens and paper goods and friends. They pay me

back. I wear my hair to the side and listen to Camus:

Today we are always as ready to judge as we are

to fornicate. It’s so easy coming home, yelling over

girls I learned to drink with, talking to boys I kissed

and afterward befriended. I get called by my initials

and thrown up into the air by someone who still

walks like a football player. We can’t escape ourselves,

not that we would want to. Not this holiday at least.