Volume 1 Number 1
My friend Teri's perfect parents
took us for her sixteenth birthday
on a trip to New York City
to see a Broadway show.
From the very top of the World
Trade Center, we looked down on the
city that spawned our grandparents.
New York was our dream.
Unlike my folks' seesaw marriage,
Teri's parents seemed to share a
happy union. I remember
sitting in the park
sharing a bench and hot chocolate,
with her mother's lipstick rubbing
off of the cheap styrofoam cup
on our lips like kisses
as they listened to our dreams of
a city we knew only as
home to opera and the Yankees
where we could be stars.
Teri's mother told us that when
she grew up in the Bronx, all she
dreamed was that she'd marry a man
who'd send her to college.
When he was younger, Teri's dad
had an Army-Navy store, and
for three years after they wed he
worked weekends to send her.
Teri wanted to skip college
and go straight to acting classes;
get a place in Greenwich Village;
I would be her roommate.
My parents would not consider
letting me go off to New York
other than this one weekend for
museums and the theater --
so since I had two tall escorts,
I got my trip to the Towers
rising up like birthday candles
over a silver cake,
where during the elevator
ride to the top of the city,
I listened to Teri's parents
tell her she could own it.
They were proud of her even though
I got better grades than she did.
What they loved best of all was to
come to her recitals