privilege, culture, appropriation, stories
sexist self-righteousness a la mode

last trip to staten island


Out in the morning in the dark
stumbling from bed to bathroom
to kitchen and out the door
with a detour for a muffin and tea, to
a long, slow ride on the train
from the Bronx, yawning,
to stand on the corner blinking
into rising sunlight
reflected off
the Empire State Building,
the Metropolitan Life Building
and a glittery newcomer like
stacked boxes, then nodding off
on the bus
as it rocks through downtown
Brooklyn, and across the Narrows,
for my last day.

And coming back:
another bus to the ferry
with the sisyphean bag of papers,
the John F. Kennedy coming into a slip
as we board the Samuel I. Newhouse
a blast of the horn
as we leave ours
and out on the water:
a long limbed bridge
spanning the Narrows in fog,
three pale ships in the harbor
and nothing beyond
except a turning for home.

© Lee Kottner 2010


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