Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Move to the City




Move to the City  
by Nathaniel Bellows
live life as a stranger. Disappear
into frequent invention, depending
on the district, wherever you get off
the train. For a night, take the name
of the person who'd say yes to that
offer, that overture, the invitation to
kiss that mouth, sit on that lap. Assume
the name of whoever has the skill to
slip from the warm side of the sleeping
stranger, dress in the hallway of the
hotel. This is a city where people
know the price of everything, and
know that some of the best things
still come free. In one guise: shed
all that shame. In another: flaunt the
plumage you've never allowed
yourself to leverage. Danger will
always be outweighed by education,
even if conjured by a lie. Remember:
go home while it's still dark. Don't
invite anyone back. And, once inside,
take off the mask. These inventions
are the art of a kind of citizenship,
and they do not last. In the end, it
might mean nothing beyond further
fortifying the walls, crystallizing
the questioned, tested autonomy,
ratifying the fact that nothing will be
as secret, as satisfying, as the work
you do alone in your room.


About This Poem
"What can one learn from anonymity? Freedom, flexibility, invention, the chance to know who you are by acting out who you may not be. There is a lot to be gained from participating in the world around you, from engagement. This poem is an homage to the art of autonomy." 
 --Nathaniel Bellows

About this Poet
Nathaniel Bellows is the author of Why Speak? (W. W. Norton, 2008). He is also the author of the novel, On This Day (HarperCollins, 2003). Bellows lives in New York City.

Many of us who write blogs do so in anonymity, so we know that we can learn much from anonymity.  As an anonymous blogger, I continue to learn more about myself.  There is so much we can learn from Mr. Bellows's poem.  I chose this poem the same way I choose many poems,  after reading it and reading what the author said about it, the poem spoke to me.  Poems that speak to us, are often the greatest of poetry because it brings its own meaning to our soul.

5 comments:

jlo said...

I would love to follow the advice in this poem and just for one night go some where that i could be unknown to everyone and just be. I also really like the pictures that you choose to go with these posts. LOVE AND HUGS

Jason Shaw said...

Great words, well put. I've always found either working or living in the city it's either heaven or hell, never just mediocre. You're never as alone as when you're alone in a big city, yet always surrounded by people. I'm glad I live by the sea now!

Jay M. said...

I love this piece. Anonymous or not, there's so much truth and meaning in these words. Thanks for the post!

(Oh, and I'll have what's behind door number 1!)

Peace <3
Jay

Amanda said...

I like the poem and the pic! Thanks for posting this. :)

Adon said...

Same here.