Looking Back – Day 27

On a Thanksgiving trip to New York,
taking boring boat tours and amateur pictures.
Grey skies, grey water, green lady,
cold rain, cold wind, cold city.
I see the backs of old friends’ heads,
wonder who we were then.
Red jackets were how we found each other,
that background bridge is very dirty.
Someone won’t smile,
someone else takes the picture anyway.

Central Park in Fall, barren and grey,
a green light saber the only flash of color.
Buildings loom in the distance,
but we’re safe in the haven.
Is that old man reading a book to a duck?
White horses with dead eyes
clip past us while a fellow tourist stares.
Yes, we are two-hundred strong,
wearing our red coats proudly, staring back at you.
The old façade is not flat enough for the rest of the city,
too many gargoyles, not enough chrome.

Empire State, surrounded by glass and wind.
Is this what it is to fly?
If I reached up, stood on my toes,
would I touch the sky?
Those people look like ants from here,
that’s a long way to fall.
I can see the park down there,
those trees are smaller than we thought.
We’ve pressed up the clouds into frazzled white pancakes
Do you suppose it’ll be clear tomorrow?

Good food at four in the morning.
Today’s the day, line up!
It’s so cold, can’t feel my fingers,
the music and marching will help.
Relax, kids, smile and wave,
you’re in a parade, have fun.
Miles later, step off the stage,
legs shaking, sweat dripping, good job.
That was awesome.

Party time, the floor is moving.
Blurred orange lights and misty black waters.
It’s cold, but we huddle and share warmth.
The lady at night is magnificent,
though rain obscures the lens.
There’s the food,
there’s the Christmas tree,
there’s the sock?
Echoes of laughter, sepia tone,
smear the colors, smile for the camera.
Tomorrow, we go home.


Inspired by the Poetic Asides blog prompt to write a “looking back” poem, and also by some old pictures I found, taken when I went to NYC with my marching band to march in the Thanksgiving Day Parade. Enjoy the memories 🙂

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