A funny thing or two happened on my way home from a reading last week. After spending the evening with two of my favorite people in the world, having dinner and listening to poetry and music at the Bowery Poetry Club, I got on the train to go home and looked at my phone. An old friend had sent me a link to the video for a song from the 1980s that began as a “scribble on the back of an envelope on a wintry New York street” according to the songwriter. I listened to the song and then visited another old friend’s Instagram. I know her page is private and I wouldn’t see her pictures, so I’m not sure why I went there but, for some reason, her page was not private that night.

photo by @heath_antonio

The next day all the thoughts and feelings from the night before settled themselves in my mind and came out in this poem, Tripping:

I tripped up the stairs
on the way to the stage last night
My glasses went flying
My feet are too big
or maybe the steps are too small
My heart beat too much
the way it sometimes does these days
but there was love in the room,
for me and more generally
so everything turned out fine

On the train ride home
a brother sent me a song
that helped me see a larger portion of the moon
I looked at some pictures of
a beautiful family
out in a field picking apples
and I felt lucky for
love’s twisted pathways
and even luckier to know what love is

I’m lucky for all of the things I was born with
and for the magical people I’ve known
I wish I could put all that luck in a ball
and roll it to everyone I see
but I trip myself up
That is no metaphor
I do not mind all of this tripping
as long as I am tripping home to you

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