Goodbye New York

Dear New York, You have been cruel and you have been kind You have sucked the life right out of me and you have energized and sustained me You have inspired me to push myself in directions i never saw on maps You have made me filthy with grit and forced countless commuter armpits into my face I have spoken with your trees forever growing in Brooklyn Your tiny front stoop flowerpots have inspired more joy than the forests and gardens i took for granted during the first 24 years of my life Your busses have almost run me over You have fed me so much pizza I have ridden your trains for probably hundreds of hours staring at all of your tired manic dissociated mental contented faces I have been bludgeoned by your cacophonies and witnessed your terrorist attack and loved your women and rescued your cats and lay in your parks and seen your spaces shift and change and stared at your skyline from dozens of rooftops I have served your people coffee I have sung myself into exhaustion on your stages I have ridden my bicycle down your finally empty 4 am streets which offered a silence that felt like none I had ever known I have stared longingly at your rivers wanting to somehow drink them In my pockets i have jingled the coins that have been in the hands and pockets of your people Your people from every country on this planet My hands touching the coins that touched the hands of the people who touched people all over this planet On your streets and sidewalks i have worn down the soles of at least 19 pairs of doc martens New York i love you as much as i cant stand you You are just like one of those girls i can and cant live without I have stared in wonder at your black squirrels and ran in terror from your fat fourteenth street rats I have given money to your beggars especially the ones who think i am a heathen I have smelled your worst smells i have gazed at your moon night after night after night I have taken your dark and your light into my cells I have looked in awe at your interiors And all of the paintings And all of the beautiful people With euphoric east village nights You have educated me You have inspired and terrified me With your air and your light and all of your jagged edges and noncommittal shapes There has been so much longing and so much pain I never felt like enough for you But now i understand that we were in this thing together New York I have buried your dead birds in parks Watched your buildings burn Waded through your flooded streets Carried groceries down blocks and up five stories of stairs for years and years You have given me food poisoning You have offered me angels

Oh you've got green eyes oh you've got blue eyes oh you've got grey eyes

Thank you for helping to create me Thank you for never mugging me Thank you for Jackson the Siberian Forest cat who was born in Queens Thank you for all of the painters, CBGB's, the parks, the gays and the guerilla girls Thank you for never becoming a dull repetitive predictable story You have taught me about relativity You have helped me learn how to feel more of what is worth feeling and less of what is not

You, you are vital You stinky noisy menace I want to stuff you into my suitcase

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