Weekly feature by: A.R. Williams

In the spirit of the extraordinary Frank O’Hara who said,

Oh god it’s wonderful to get out of bed
having just moved back to the city.
It might have been a dream, but I think you woke me up
with your farts last night,
or maybe it was just a draft from the window.

If you feel like an empty hallway,
let’s walk the Stone Arch Bridge and get misted
by the dam on Saturday while watching the kids
who almost get trampled by the Segway tours
and the hyperactive dogs that bark
at the clipped-in, spandexed cyclists.

The Jains have a parable that everyone is blind and touching
a different part of the elephant,
which is true. We don’t know life’s trunk
from its butt, but
we all live together
and we all ride the green line to St. Paul,
from the Somalis to the conceal and carries
to the field hockeyers in fur coats.

A man grins on a park bench
when he reads about a five thousand dollar reward
for the person who whipped shitties on a Wheaton golf course,
and the Pokémon goers go
and tumble into one another on their animated hunts.

Kyung Lee lives three doors down from me,
and his cooking, so greasy and unskillful,
nearly burned down
the whole building
while the cats,
scratching and hiding,
remained adamant
about not being saved.

This year all I want to do
on my birthday is sit on the toilet
while you’re in the shower,
open the curtain and say
I think we’re doing something right.

Title inspired by the song “A Message to You Rudy” by The Specials, and the first line is taken from Frank O’Hara’s poem “Steps.”


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