Friday, 24 August 2012

Day 63: New York

For some reason, I love reading Frank O' Hara on a Friday. 

Maybe it's that New York Friday vibe in his poems - busy, bustling, anticipatory, exciting. And the energy of his almost prose-like stream of consciousness observations. He said that poetry should be written 'on the nerve', not planned with the precision of rhyme and meter and such. And the result: immediate and fresh and skip-along excitement and true.

It's hard to read this poem and not picture New York. And hard too, not to feel a swing in your step, like today is a V-Day not a D-Day, that we are all winning cause we are all alive and able to experience anything, everything, whenever we want, whenever we become aware of the world we're in (and the world in us).

Have a great day!

Steps - Frank O' Hara
How funny you are today New York
like Ginger Rogers in Swingtime
and St. Bridget's steeple leaning a little to the left

here I have just jumped out of a bed full of V-days
(I got tired of D-days) and blue you there still
accepts me foolish and free
all I want is a room up there
and you in it
and even the traffic halt so thick is a way
for people to rub up against each other
and when their surgical appliances lock
they stay together
for the rest of the day (what a day)
I go by to check a slide and I say
that painting's not so blue

where's Lana Turner
she's out eating
and Garbo's backstage at the Met
everyone's taking their coat off
so they can show a rib-cage to the rib-watchers
and the park's full of dancers with their tights and shoes
in little bags
who are often mistaken for worker-outers at the West Side Y
why not
the Pittsburgh Pirates shout because they won
and in a sense we're all winning
we're alive

the apartment was vacated by a gay couple
who moved to the country for fun
they moved a day too soon
even the stabbings are helping the population explosion
though in the wrong country
and all those liars have left the UN
the Seagram Building's no longer rivalled in interest
not that we need liquor (we just like it)

and the little box is out on the sidewalk
next to the delicatessen
so the old man can sit on it and drink beer
and get knocked off it by his wife later in the day
while the sun is still shining

oh god it's wonderful
to get out of bed
and drink too much coffee
and smoke too many cigarettes
and love you so much

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