The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Thursday and Grover Cleveland Home

It would be neat if with the New Year...
By Jimmy Santiago Baca

for Miguel

It would be neat if with the New Year
I could leave my loneliness behind with the old year.
My leathery loneliness an old pair of work boots
my dog vigorously head-shakes back and forth in its jaws,
chews on for hours every day in my front yard—
rain, sun, snow, or wind
in bare feet, pondering my poem,
I’d look out my window and see that dirty pair of boots in the yard.

But my happiness depends so much on wearing those boots.

At the end of my day
while I’m in a chair listening to a Mexican corrido
I stare at my boots appreciating:
all the wrong roads we’ve taken, all the drug and whiskey houses
we’ve visited, and as the Mexican singer wails his pain,
I smile at my boots, understanding every note in his voice,
and strangers, when they see my boots rocking back and forth on my feet
keeping beat to the song, see how
my boots are scuffed, tooth-marked, worn-soled.

I keep wearing them because they fit so good
and I need them, especially when I love so hard,
where I go up those boulder strewn trails,
where flowers crack rocks in their defiant love for the light.


It remains very cold in the DC area -- not nearly as bad as other parts of the country, and with much less snow, but still too much so for me to want to spend much time outdoors. So I was not sorry to have a bunch of work to do on Thursday while Daniel was working here -- he had two phone conferences, so I got him California Tortilla and myself Goldberg's Bagels and we ate in the kitchen. He has plans to meet friends on Thursday at a convention downtown, so we're hoping not to get too much snow tonight.

After dinner, despite the fact that Daniel has not seen The Room -- though he is familiar with the Rocky Horror-type presentations of it in L.A. and Seattle -- we went to see The Disaster Artist, which is both extremely funny and far better acted than The Room. The comparison shots over the credits are so much fun to watch. And here are some photos of Grover Cleveland's birthplace in New Jersey, including holiday decorations, his father's church, a bathtub of the area, and family needlework:









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