Katherine DeBlassie

Letter from Brooklyn

Iím keeping your bookóThe Russian, Mayakovskyó
I think we should just write letters
for next 10 years before we meet in Kyoto.
Lots of boundaries, no abnormal guiltó

not altogether unlike friendship. Iíve been listening
to the CD you left me. I find myself silently singing it.
Itís a compendium of heartbreaking workó
best listened to with earphones, while thinking of genocide

and other such stuff. The Aphex Twin song
(Alberto Balsam), in certain movements articulates a hope,
in a way that words canít. In the Dominican Republic,
it felt like you followed me, Paloma (a different version) played

on the bus and your name was everywhere . . .
the name of a supermarket? I wanted to call.
Instead I swam swam swam (almost to Cuba).
Iím becoming unhinged and just wanted to write, no drama,

no threat of violence, a quiet reformation,
the most meaningless revolution leaves me wanting
to end up on your stoop, that you might
let me in to sleep. I know youíre paralyzed,

predisposed towards the existential and fail
to reconcile the differences.
What makes you think everyone else isnít?
Iíll be in Albuquerque when youíre there, briefly.

Brooklynís warm this summer,
Iím living with my brother & his roommate.
I sleep on the green couch in the living room.
Iím gone most times with two jobs and friends.

Iíve cut my hair off. All off. Something akin to ďa bored housewifeĒó
to quote my brother after he asked if I was going to kill myself.
I walk across the bridges, of course
the Brooklyn, but the Manhattan has something,

the industrial blue, the subway cars tearing
by me as I walk, the used, the un-swooned sister of bridges.
Iím going send you something before I leave.
Iím sorry I treat you poorly. Like in the poem you sent,

itís the "little by little" part.
I don't know when I'll write again. I still have my stuff
at your place. Here's my address, just in case:
230 14th St. Brooklyn, NY 11215.

Katherine DeBlassie was born in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Winner of an Academy of American Poets Prize, her work has appeared or is forthcoming in Otis Nebula, Tidal Basin, Zone 3, Urhalpool, Court Green, and Cutthroat. She received her MFA from the University of Maryland. She was a finalist for the 2009 Joy Harjo Poetry Prize and received a Work-Study Scholarship for the 2010 Bread Loaf writing conference. (katherine.deblassie@gmail.com)

Boxcar Poetry Review - ISSN 1931-1761