Wednesday, July 11, 2018

NY Summers

There is a moment in Prince of Tides when the author’s brother visits 1980’s New York.  He stops a mugger from robbing an elderly woman and tries to feed every homeless person he sees in the streets. Why does the city leave its poor to fester, neglected and in the streets, the brother lamented.  I wonder the same thing, but the poverty is everywhere, so are the homeless people, everywhere, every subway ride, street corners,  everywhere.  Riding back from a rally to Save Roe at Union Square, I saw a man laying in the street in front of a bus. I stopped to help him up.  Another man helped me, calling 911.  He had hospital bands all over his body, looking like he’d just discharged himself from the hospital.  We gave him water.  His pants were falling down.  Some tourists looked on.  He started to curse.

Everyone is reeling.  Some are cheering world cup games. Others are screaming about Kennedy’s retirement and Roe v. Wade, standing up and speaking out about the fascist tilt history has bestowed upon us, with four out of nine Supreme Court justices from presidents who did not win the majority of votes.

NY summer brings so much. 
Just back from Charleston, we had a few days in town before going back to Italy.
My old rebel friend Ron was in town.
We went to the beach, riding the cyclone like rids.
His kids are growing, so are mine.
Just yesterday, he celebrated five decades.
Now, he’s celebrating six.
And time is passing.
He’s no longer here.
San Francisco is home now for him.
So we see each other there.
And here, talking politics and careers and the streets of New York City.
Don’t make us older than we are, his wife said when I asked about their twenty years of marriage.
The kids rode ride after ride, the Cyclone, the Tickler, the Steeple Chase, playing in the arcades, bumping bumper cars like kids.
The little one does not ride water rides.
We all have to take life even in stride.
And so on we meandered, to and from, a bbq with Greg, a trip to the Bar Tobac, with Red, White and Blue everywhere.
Everyone loves boys without shirts on shooting champagne. 
Don’t be arrogant French, the bartender cheered, dousing everyone.
New York summer, full of the comedy and tragedy and splendor.

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