hillary keel | writing


I am in Boulder, I am in Vienna,
I am in New York, I am in Norwich,
I am in Constanta, I am in Istanbul,
I am in Minsk, in Prague, in Bratislava,
I am in Philadelphia,
I am in Paris, I’m in Albany,
I’m in Spotsylvania County,
Herkimer County, St. Lawrence County,
Montgomery County, Tuscony, Burgundy,
Bucks County, Sullivan County, Pike
County, Bezirk Zwettl,
Ich bin in Wien, in Wien, in Wien.

I am in a coffee house, I sit in a park,
I lie on Freud’s couch, with my leg’s propped
up on a chair, my knees are bent, I sway
my hips, do an ocho, a plié, I pray.

I think of you, I don’t think, I
have sorrow, I am free, I notice
things, I stop.

I noticed you, I didn’t love you,
I loved you a bit, I loved you
a lot. For a minute. Not a minute,
it was a series of moments, it was
an entire year.

You are an immigrant, from New
York, where I am not from, I was born
in New York. You led me to a door, to
a stairwell, there was no door, it was the
N train, it was a street.

We stood at a bar, didn’t stand, just
hopped there, drinking smoothly,
you spilled your beer as we sat,
you stood up, undecided.

We are both interested in
Modernism at night, we
have nothing in common at night.
You speak of the golden ratio,
You are not mathematic. You are
a mathematic constant.

I study a map of Constanta, studying
a map of Constantinople, I
translate. You are in Queens, you
are in Pennsylvania, at the Black
Sea. You sit in my bath tub, you
stand there. I glance at you, I turn
away, you are so much older, you’re much
much younger, you are not much, you
are just my age. Your friends,
you don’t have any.

You are impossible, possible,
It is possible because we have
the exact same birthday, the
constant, I am so rational.

You say I like this, I don’t
like that, you hate my apartment,
I hate your apartment,
you like my chair, my towel,
my sheets, you say they should
have chopped off all those heads,
you don’t like to be rushed, you
are always rushing, you are
gentle, subtle.

You are an abstract concept, I
like it, no I don’t. You are so
grounded, I am the native
here, you!

You are traumatized by
Communism, I am traumatized
by Capitalism, we have
everything, nothing
in common.

I am sad, it dawned on
me quickly, I am happy.

Published (2012) in Gangway, issue 43