|Mr. Sonnet himself|
When I was 18 I wound up in Manhattan with two friends, Paul Tracey and Cate Conniff. Our first trip to the Big Apple, we had a discount room at the Sheraton, because Cate worked at the one in our home town - but that meant one room only.We were pretty broke - so we three shared one bed.
|Not these four -|
but here's Kathy D, Paul, Janet T and Me circa 1969
Amazing how YouTube can locate actual footage from that particular day. Here's the Eagles in Central Park in 1973 the same day we met them.
But this isn't about the Eagles.. It's about my sonnet.
Later - when Cate came back to the room about 2 a.m., she was flying - and proceeded to chat up a storm... Paul was trying to sleep, she was talking a blue streak (hmm... wonder why?) I tried to sleep on the floor and then gave up - found solace walking the streets of Manhattan at 4 a.m.
It was raining, so there weren't many people. I walked all the way from 57th to Times Square and back again. Saw just a few folks in the rain.
|1973 the year the towers were dedicated; when I stepped foot in NY.|
|Me at BU circa 1973. Photo Ellyn Toscano|
"New York City 4 A.M."
New York City lies in a quaking still.
Streetlights reply to the silent alleys
while Bowery confessors lie in their swill.
The rain drives the pimps to rat warm'd galleys,
The only doors open boast lewd desire.
The gay movie crowed stays out of the wet
in all night freak shows that never retire.
It's 4 a.m., the hooker ends her set
Back to the corner she finds a dry spot.
Scanning the parked cars for a John to meet
Like erect buildings determined to rot.
The smoke dissipates from cooling concrete.
A city in rain can only perspire
when the city's pulse is the devil's fire.
But I dodge drops from the park to the square.
trying to remain the unseen foot tread,
crossing the street to hear corner girls dare,
I smile wink once and shake my blood filled head.
"Tis too early for love," I tell the wall...
The bricks laughed back at my foolish wishes:
"Don't you know you're not old enough to crawl?
Give yourself time to sleep with the fishes!"
The wet Boulevards will soon fill the ears
With the honking, dodging shouts in the street
Her ghosts disappear from thousand of years
Manhattan returns to staggering feet.
Just as my storm clouds begin to grow few...
the sun soon enough decides to break through.
AbAb, CdCd, EfEf, GG. Twice.
But it adequately captures the memory. (And the last four EfEf lines are lost, so they were written 45 years later. Kinda like Goethe writing the second act to Faust 57 years after he wrote the First Act.) Cheers.