Bags we did pack, New York we were bound
Sweaters and hoodies, T-shirts and socks,
Chargers and earphones, kids must have their sounds
Shampoo and conditioner, knickers and jocks.
Departures was bedlam, check-in easy
Security would make you tear out your hair,
Two hours later began to feel queasy,
Like cattle in a pen, all waiting to get in.
Finally on aboard, our seats we found,
Pringles and jellies and back of seat screens
Refreshments from crew, green ladies dead sound,
Heads on shoulders, movies unseen.
Touchdown. New Jersey we land,
To Manhattan we speed - eyes darting and wide
Skyline familiar, glistening and grand
Déjà vu feeling they have been stateside.
Jug handle junctions, battered buildings and turnpike
Shimmering behemoths across the Hudson,
One World Trade Centre a middle finger spike
$75 billion reprisal reconstruction.
23rd on 10th red brick blocks boho
Iconic ladders outside of each floor,
The Chelsea Hotel we shared with Leonard and Brendan, pure soho,
When will it re-open its door?
Diners and psychics and dogs wearing shoes,
Drugstore enema kits, diapers for men,
Lucky Charms, Reeses and cheeses in tubes,
Hyper and silent, freaky and Zen.
The High Line, above the streets it rises,
We peer and posit through windowed apartments
Built by Mexican navvies Trump criticises,
Jenga buildings with art and attachments.
Apt street art for contemplative talk
I want a president Zoe Leonard demanded.
We read and think and ponder and walk,
The lessor of two evils, US future stranded?
Peaky Blinder on balcony, Irish brommie
Costumes galore for Halloween high jinks,
Zombies, witches, Wallies and mummies,
Jet lag the better, for us, forty winks.
Pancakes and waffles and thick butta’d toast
BBQ wings, Carlos cannoli’s, lashings of Coke
Cawfee in mugs from sweaty Greek host
Pizzas, omelets, the portions…a joke.
Matilda’s Martin a true old New Yawker,
The flashlight he keeps
Like a ghost, a sleepwalker,
From vaudeville past, shows us our seats.
To Tiffanys we jaunted, just for a gander
Blue boxes, blue bags in Chinese ladies hands.
Ground floor we meander,
Emeralds and sapphires from exotic lands.
The Belly of the Beast we ventured
Air rights built him up
Trump Tower’s pink marble for his favourite gender
Epitome of ostentatious man’s one up.
From a Nescafe jar the old man drinks
Tips pills into shaking hand,
Into Cheetos camouflaged bottle he sinks
His possessions in a trolley they stand.
Others hear voices, loud and clear,
Talk to themselves, ward off the demons,
Choose they cannot what they want to hear,
Mental evils, complex the reasons.
The madness of Macy’s on 34th street
Make-up and perfume, left right and centre
From black bosomed beauty, bright white teeth
Medby’s lipstick and liner bought from a mentor.
Skating in Bryant, the blades cut the ice
Legs arms flaying, not graceful at all
Our girls brought home bruises, tumbling thrice,
Great memories we have, despite the fall.
Weird, wonderful, wistful, woeful
Strange and selfish, a solipsistic conundrum,
A beacon to narcissistic pre-disposals
Sure to return, escape the humdrum…
...or perhaps not, as we may not be let in.