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.


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.