My head’s a Ziploc 

bag of water,

totally Zoomed online & out

from an Amtrak train

it’s plain to see

my mind’s not making

any new thoughts—

they swim away swiftly 

like hot tuna 

& my body’s wrapped up

in a black bathrobe,

200 lbs of new fatted flesh

& my legs are frozen 

from hours of traveling,

& I want to think 

new thoughts again

like I used to 

but here’s the Olympics!

they are all tan & toned

& incredible,

no frozen fat here

I wonder what they think about

before they compete 

for the gold?

I used to have golden thoughts 

& was thinner before 2020

(not blaming COVID, maybe

peri-menopause?)

we didn’t have sex

in the beautiful hotel room

(another damn period),

but I still felt golden

because I was exploring 

another place

with my love.

When the founding Fathers first envisioned 

Washington’s District of Columbia,

would they see the numerous 

crowds of believers & cheaters

swirl around different food trucks 

at the Washington Monument, 

with those enterprising vendors

of ice-cold drinks from makeshift 

Igloo coolers (only $1 each! they shout),

all those people crawl towards the Mall,

and the visitors who peek in 

to see Lincoln at his memorial at sunset,

they don’t respect the sanctity of 

the occasion; they are too loud,

their party voices spill out towards the stairs outside

each one feeling the whole heat outside

affecting their skin and bones, 

a mixture of flop sweat / hot flashes, they press on

this land of historical wonders

was built on swamp land; 

two unusual men who dove / rode the Potomac

into Virginia, those who fought

for their country resided, trained

and/or were laid down in Arlington,

& we, the visitors were watching it all as if it happened again—

Wednesday is not a great day for museums

we found too late; too late in the year

for pink cherry blossoms, these trees 

are too green in summer—summer is an intense season 

when everyone wants both your money & voting influence—

the colors of the Metro run true as the trains keep moving,

even when the cars are mostly empty on Wednesdays—

but Thursday is coming slowly, it’s still nighttime, 

the gin & tonic is doing its magic, the 4 versions 

of 2020 Olympics play on the massive TV, 

I try to write a poem on a bed finer

than the one I sleep upon at home—the vacay digs are nice, 

too nice compared to real life (but that’s the whole point), 

& history trickles in a peppy counterpoint—past & present 

bow & make an awkward dance, they keep us moving as our visit continued on.

Thursday was a wash before the afternoon rain;

both the Library of Congress 

and the United States Holocaust Museum 

denied us access; we did not sign up

for early entry, or any entry.

The movers and shakers of Capitol Hill

all eat at Le Bon French Cafe,

where we stopped for a few cold drinks.

Now, 

before we take over Georgetown tonight,

we drink our salves at the Delegate Bar, 

waiting for our room to be cleaned.

Georgetown has the tastiest pizza outside of Naples at il Canale. 

My soul almost levitated out of my body—my man’s 

fruits de mare fresh pasta dish made him speechless. 

Since the other lawyers at his firm think he’s kosher,

he can’t tell another soul, besides me,

of this temporary food nirvana.

I placed two slices in a to-go box at a trash receptacle, 

hoping that the beggars would discover it and feast, 

but a long-haired, grubby hipster who cleaned 

the same trash can with cloudy Baskin Robbins 31 flavored water, 

opened the pizza box and promptly threw the heavenly slices away, 

taking the box for recycling money.

Does he know, I wondered, what riches he was dumping out?

Friday: check-out day. 

Free breakfast still bland, even with a surprise apple turnover. 

We walk towards G street on 9th, for shits and giggles.

The Smithsonian American Art Museum can take us in! Yay!!!

Great art, good walking.

Still more hours until we get back home—

With memories made at the neighborhood pool,

we were slick & wet like Californian seals,

& I was dared to dive off the high dive

but I just jumped in—

We were slick & wet like Californian seals

floating in the cool water.

But I just jumped in

wearing a tiny, red bikini!

Floating in the cool water,

the female Lifeguard tossed out a floating pool noodle

wearing a tiny, red bikini.

Ah, what a day it’s been!

The female Lifeguard tossed out a floating pool noodle

& I was dared to dive off the high dive!

Ah, what a day it’s been

with memories made at the neighborhood pool.

An ancient fear of water

keeps me frozen on the shore.

But in dreams,

I continue to swim

in moss-green waves

as crystal stalagmites 

glittered in the cave; 

phantom dots glide in, 

where the sunlight

tries to trickle in 

from the opening.

My heart tries to slow down.

The ocean still calls to me:

“Jump in.”

My breath warms me up—

imaginary palm trees sway

& my toes sink in the sand

& I feel the wind 

rustle the tall beach grasses

before I wake up.

Summer has just started

with a cool breeze! Very unusual

for late June. The heartened heat

will kill us—soon.

I missed the imagined, pink-hued, 

Strawberry moon this morning.

With every movement—I feel stronger.

I want to breathe deep.

Even in vacationed times,

I work as hard as I can.

I barely remember not-working,

when I didn’t have to help provide

or lend a hand with chores,

or earn my keep. Freedom 

was a lifetime ago, when kids

loved Summer the best.

Now

I think I’m in love

as if I saw a rainbow

in a cerulean sky

Why

I give my heart

so easily, before the madness

& before anything else starts

Yes,

I’m still on the train—

the signal will cut out soon.

Why can’t you understand?

the inner pain—

& yes,

I’m still wearing a mask

so I can protect 

others from me

from any stuff 

I might be carrying

But is it enough?

We all have to be tough,

even though 

we are still vulnerable, 

pushing the red wheelbarrow 

up & down

& all around—

& when rainbow flags shine,

I wonder where is mine—

are bisexuals part

of the equation,

& color scheme anymore?

hidden romance 

under a cerulean sky,

fading into lavender?

Why 

are we still hiding?

I still wonder—

He wishes he was friends with a giraffe.

A mouse wants to climb up the high trees—

he wants to see everything.

What if he could be any other animal?

A mouse wants to climb up the high trees,

who maybe could even fly!

What if he could be any other animal?

Bats are strong mini-foxes

who maybe could even fly,

but he grabs a popcorn kernel instead. 

Bats are strong mini-foxes.

A sparrow tries to grub for worms

but he grabs a popcorn kernel instead. 

He wants to see everything—

A sparrow tries to grub for worms;

he wishes he was friends with a giraffe.

Did a Dreamtime walkabout

today in Australia 

couldn’t wake up for many hours 

sorry for letting you hang out

as I tried not to drown

sweating in our bed

guess my busy head’s 

been both up & down,

my feet flying off the ground

& I wish I could see us

traveling

to anyplace we’ve never been before

& the infection 

has grounded all the planes

& boats

circling the shore

& I want to spend summertime 

in December 

with you,

but remember

only in Dreamtime 

it could happen,

but no one else 

was granted a key

to my imagination 

where koalas were

are big as kiwis,

where trees

sang the sweetest melodies 

at the shore

Wish you were here—

just 5 minutes more—

Tulips are exploding with color—

It’s the first day outside

without the rain! The sun is shining bright.

Petals are falling from trees.

It’s the first day outside!

Everyone is walking their dogs to the park.

Petals are falling from trees.

Strong breezes tickle strands of hair.

Everyone is walking their dogs to the park.

Poets’ voices become raspy while reading aloud.

Strong breezes tickle strands of hair.

Children are laughing & playing across the street.

Poets’ voices become raspy while reading aloud.

Without the rain, the sun is shining bright.

Children are laughing & playing across the street.

Tulips are exploding with color.