|Kelley is a poet from Pittsburgh who is working on her first book of poetry.|
© 2002 Kelley Beeson
confess I find great wisdom in Martha
Stewart Living and that's ridiculous
today she says the bamboo in the Chinese Scholarly Garden symbolizes
because it winters so well. I love
the discreet blossom of truth in that.
too winter well especially when planted in the city.
This week I am in Boston.
person I pass is dressed well. Nothing
I thought, like my weekends in New
City until I see the street performer on Mt. Auburn in Harvard Square who wears
red pants and suspenders like some kind of crazy Santa Claus.
I believe in the kind
confidence it takes for him to put a stuffed gray pig at his feet, head placed
at the edge
a small red water bowl. Beside him his mechanical Christmas angel in her
velvet dress nods her head in agreement. And
that startled Dutch puppet, cradling
own wooden doll in his lap, waves his hand in approval of this beautifully
family. The man is singing Isn't it Romantic? I
love that such strangeness
and so I buy strange postcards all day in support of this because I find comfort
the potential of the odd. I buy
them everywhere I go, not postcards of skylines though,
I buy postcards of scary Alices in Wonderlands, of Jimmy Stewart drinking tea
wife on the set of Carbine Williams,
the story of the famous rifle maker, postcards
Josephine Baker in a tux, of a cartoon pig racing down the middle of a highway--
seems everyone is in a big hurry.
between shopping in Cambridge we drink Ginger Peach tea and Creme de la Earl
sweet tea with a touch of vanilla. On
Saturday night at the Oak Bar,
drink a Raspberry Romanoff, a wiper-fluid-blue champagne cocktail which tastes
and with it in my hand I am important. I
tell my friend how Anne Sexton came
afternoons from Robert Lowell's workshop and that I was sure she would have
there, near the piano sipping those million martinis, allowing the dry vermouth
slide down her throat with the most elegance and ease the place had ever seen,
legs draped over the man-of-the-week's chair.
I imagine how sexy she looked
the olive at the bottom of the glass. God,
how foreign I am here!
my shoes feel tight so I steal a menu to write this poem and remember
I'm in charge. Secretly I wish I had a cigarette to sophisticate myself.
I suggest we talk about Kafka, an author I've never read--
all, doesn't this dark wood and jazz trio and the the prices
drinks which start at $10.50 demand intellectual conversation?
man across from me on the T outbound
to Alewife listens to my conversation.
is staring at me with a force that makes me warm, with a brilliant disturbance.
looks as though he has stepped out of a Woody Allen film--
crazed, half brilliant. I don't
know what to do with such
but ignore it. Two days later, I
see him again on the way to Logan Airport
he still looks half here and deluded. Again
he sits across from me and
my surprise I enjoy the possibility of a stalker for a few moments.
I smile and giggle
a girl I've never been. I think
about swinging my hair around before I remember
short it is and how much it looks like Pat Benatar's.
I feel completely pretty for 20 minutes forgetting how I ate one whole
bag of tortilla chips the night before,
they were the kind with Olean® so I could eat an entire bag and still not feel
somehow I manage to play cat and mouse with him in just the ways
been taught by other women to negotiate danger and safety in such an innocent
often I confess what I haven't enjoyed, not what I have,
after considering the chances of such a meeting, at our stop I pass him too
and like a bad slutty girl I confess my enjoyment, shock him with a coy Goodbye.
All work is property of Kelley Beeson. © 2002.
© 2003 SubtleTea Productions All Rights Reserved