The Mean Reds
I’m still hung up on blue but I occasionally let red play a note or two
It’s bright and coherent, less misty than blue. Red knows what she
Wants and I think eventually I will let her have her way with me
But not yet, not fully because blue still kneads at me, she’s hungry
Although I’ve been dry for a long time now.
She’s sub blue, sudo blue, sous blue.
She’s imitation blue, a blue cover band but the lead singer
Can’t quite hit all the notes and the drummer is too fat.
No I don’t get true blue anymore, that’s rare and not a fabrication
It’s one of earth’s natural resources, no synthetic materials.
I had an abundance of it on the prairies, where it forms naturally
Below my feet, in the bedrock.
It falls in the snow and bursts out of tree buds and spots your
Skin with the sun and bubbles like thick crude in a well behind your house.
But here, in New York, the city that makes it all, there is no blue.
It doesn’t grow here, the geography isn’t right.
You can bring it here but you better hope you have enough to last you
It goes quick.
I brought some in July and I thought it was a week’s worth
It lasted me two hours.
It lasted an elevator ride and a walk through central park.
Once the blue was gone it was all red.
“The Mean Reds”
But only mean because I had not asked for them, I was not equipped to handle them
And they burnt my fingers and my tongue for I naively swallowed them whole
Starved for any color I guess, anything to repress my longing for blue.
Here red runs abundant.
Because red is manufactured. Red is created with steel and plastic and smooth paper and ink And if you’re ready for red, it rewards.
It lines your pocket and you forget about blue for a while. You further your mind
You tap into the well, Brilliant, Brave, Business, but not Blue.
One doesn’t need blue to breath though.
At least one tells one’s self that one doesn’t need blue to breath
As one sifts through Amazon Prime style dating: “I don’t think this one will go with my sofa.”
Red is not the color of love, it’s the color of the absence of it
So we splatter it, paint it, drench ourselves in it to say
“Look! I’m lonely! I’m lacking blue, I’m red!”
New York believes himself to be blue. He is not. He is red.
And when we figure this out we make a choice, to revel in the red
For a while at least. To eat the fruits and suck the teet of it
Or, we choose to flee to bluer pastures.
One day I’ll go back to the prairies and dive into an ocean so blue again
So blue I may have little blue children with a little blue lover and we’ll
Eat the stuff exclusively, enough of it that we may even be able to return to New York a while
Insulated in our blue bubble, our bubble of blue.
Acquire money, success, fortune, fame, yes, yes, yes.
But also hold onto blue. Stuff it away when you can, it doesn’t go bad ever.
It just goes.
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Written about my first 6 months here in New York city.