img_0190

My fingers numb with pain

as we walk cold-stricken streets,

my right hand holding my phone’s GPS high

like holding it to the sky would help us navigate NYC,

and more snowy wind slices the melanin on my face.

She turns to the street-ranger I’ve become

looking to me with warm eyes

and wearing a glove on her left hand–

unlike me–

And I realize that along with her eyes warming me on cold-stricken streets of NYC

she will always have a left-handed glove to spare for me.

My smile is not bright enough, too dull

for the tall buildings and treacherous traffic,

which I have misled us through–

which I thought I was prepared to do.

I had Googled

popular Manhattan attractions

and spent the time constructing an itinerary

studying the best routes

to all of the predetermined destinations–

And I realize that she is fine exploring without a compass or best route in-mind

while always having a left-handed glove just in time.

I drink too much Starbucks,

a type of waking potion,

and pretend that walking and transits are

preferable to driving in Kansas City,

when I know it inherently isn’t.

I have to go to the bathroom

like a normal person–

I thought–

So we ask the closest NYC native in Starbucks

where the dark hole of excrements might be

for me to relieve my boiling vessel.

And it turns out not all Starbucks in NYC have bathrooms and she has to lead me across the street for one,

with a left-handed glove ready just in case I get too cold in our short time outside.

I sit by myself in a cold crowd filled with

artistic storytellers of the Nuyorican Cafe,

and I surely know it’s time to bring my best.

I go over poems in my mind

knowing that it’s almost time–

subtle anxiety replaces my lines–

Gazing around the cold-stricken

no-bathrooms-across-the-street-havin’

tall-buildings-and-treacherous-traffic-encompassing

artistic-storytelling

NYC-natives,

and she brings comfort and warmth when she sits beside and goes over my lines with me,

with a left-handed glove to spare in case anxiety consumes me and a quick getaway outside is necessary.

So I take off my coat

and intently listen to the open mic host.

She encourages me to put on

my metaphorical artistic-poetic-storytelling hat,

and my name is first to be called.

I fix the scarf around my neck

and lock eyes with a guy in the crowd

who seems to be another nervous foreigner

only without a supportive partner at his side.

I step to the mic

and the cold-stricken crowd,

and her warm eyes

In search

of an opportunity to inspire anyone willing,

I begin.

“This is an All-Star Session

for all you newborns bursting inside out,

and struggling to bring what’s inside out…”

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s