Wee a.m. 

the cat sitting on
my right hip bone
kneading my side

heavy voice outside
drunk, in a language
I can’t make out

woman-shriek
pierces the night

dull thumping
shirt on shirt

half asleep I
egg on the fight
atta, go at ‘em go

I hear
scuffling
my organs 
under the cat’s 
administration

Jog my memories: Eight Stops on the Train from Amsterdam Amstel to Gouda

=

My first year in Holland: I was told that I’d save money if I got off at Amstel and took the metro to the opera house and I can still remember the round face and blues eyes of the person giving me that advice in the Utrecht Conservatory canteen in between sips of bad coffee.

—-

My accountant, who chose not to humor me when I insisted I would buy real estate in Amsterdam’s city center, sitting in his office taking in my next new artistic plan and calculating in his head how much of a tax break that might make me and curious as to how much longer I would insist on keeping up this parade of losses.

——-

The night when Beyoncé nearly blew my eardrums out and I struggled back home, elated to have gone and relieved to be allowed to regain my senses in peace.

The day, thirty-five euros richer, I climbed out of an econo-vehicle after a performance in the polder.

———

Where I always wonder what it would be like to have to go to that… what is it – a village- a suburban hell – a jolly place to be inside on a rainy day with an option to muck out a horse stall always on hand – out on some errand/social call/pretense. What on earth will possibly take me there? Of course, I would never resist the invitationwhenever it comes.

————————-

Gamely pushing my old dog in a red stroller over the loose gravel and mud, getting picked up by an econo-vehicle for a rehearsal out in the polder.

—————–

The birthday party for a singing student who was an official government squatter, occupying a whole floor or hundreds of potential cubbyhole spaces, in a 1970’s building on an industrial terrain. Admittedly a tough home to decorate.

———————————-

Yes, look, on the left there’s the house where a friend’s husband physically and emotionally repeatedly attacked her and, on the other side of the tracks, the woods where I took my old dog one day for a treat away from the city and we both ended up peeing in the bushes.

—–

A place where I hardly recognize who I once was and don’t know what to feel anymore, but it is a nice town and my friends tell me they are never going to make it out of there.