I rode the train to the
New York World’s Fair,
Denver Zephyr to Chicago
20th Century Limited to New York
in 1964 ,
I don’t remember the rattle of the rails
or sway of the cars
the dark thousand-mile night
Colorado – Nebraska – Iowa – Illinois
Chicago LaSalle Street Station
the view along the Hudson
rolling into Grand Central Station
New York, New York:
My Kind of Town,
which is so far from the truth
it doesn’t even wiggle the needle.

Met some women on the train
in the smoking car
a mixed drink and a lubricious smile,
“… you going to New York, sonny?”
“… me too, I could show you the sights…”

… and she did,
her Upper West Side studio apartment
92nd street
halfway between the park and the river,
but she did nothing half way,

She was 25, tall and too-thin
she wore black jeans and a black turtle neck,

Had roles been reversed,
me 25 and she 15,
I’d be up the river
doing time,

We walked from Grand Central to her place,
I strained my neck
looking up at the buildings
dodging pedestrians
smelling the city scent
absorbing the city noise,
she smoked the whole way,

At her apartment
she poured a drink
a water glass half full of amber liquid
in the middle of the afternoon,
she kicked off her shoes
pulled a joint from the bedside table
“… you a virgin?...” she asked
I said I was,
she smiled and took a long toke
holding the smoke
for a minute or more
then exhaled slowly through her nose,

“… you want to see my tits?...”
she asked, and I did,
she handed me the joint
and I took a tentative puff
then a longer one
which I held
as she pulled the black turtle neck
from her jeans and up her thin torso,
the hem caught on her nipples
then jumped free
over her head and down her arms,

Her breasts were small
and pointed right at me
each nipple inviting me to suck it first,

I exhaled the marijuana smoke
onto her breasts
then, slowly as I could,
sucked each nipple
with my eyes closed,

I lost my virgin state to her
that afternoon
on the Upper West Side,
to make sure it wasn’t a illusion
I lost it again, and then again
and twice the next morning,

Down to a corner diner
We had scrambled eggs, bagels and lox,
first time I ever ate lox,
I guess there is a first time for everything,

We walked across The Park
down Madison Avenue
all the way to The Village,
she smoked
I didn’t, but took a puff of her cigarette
now and then,
I continued to stretch my neck
looking up,

We ate lunch at another diner
both had a cheese sandwich
a root-beer float,

Did she have a name, I asked
she said she did
but didn’t tell me,

We took the subway back north,
first time I ever rode a subway,
it was crowded, noisy and dirty
we stood the whole way
her body pressed against me
the feel of her small breasts against my chest
aroused me and she knew it,
she touched me there, once
and smile
“… again?...” she asked,
she pressed tighter
I smelled the stale smoke in her hair
cupped my hands on her bottom
her tight black jeans
which I knew now
were the only thing she wore,

Back at the apartment
she sucked me until I came in her mouth
then fucked me until I came again,
I buried my face her crotch
soaked with my semen
tasting her, and me, and us
while she sucked me again,

She said I had a nice penis
I said I didn’t know
she said she did
and I did,

Then, she told me I had to leave
which I did
both eager and reluctant
a mix of both,

I saw her twice more that summer,
we screwed a dozen times and
made love once
after which she told me her name,

I languished the rest of the summer
at my Uncle’s house in Queens,
I did visit the World’s Fair
and the top of the Empire State Building,
walked the skyscraper canyons
rode the noisy subway
walked every path in Central Park,

In August
I took the train back to Denver
and to High School,

That fall, I wrote two essays for class
“How I Spent My Summer”,
one was fact
one was fantasy,
I typed them on my Royal Safari typewriter,
put both essays in blank envelopes
shuffled the envelopes,
I handed in one essay to my Writing Class and
I mailed the other essay to New York,

I received an A+ with a note saying
“… you have a very good way with words
keep up the good work…”,

I received a post card from New York
black-and-white photo of Seventh Avenue
hand written scrawl
“… well, OK, so what else did you do…??
f--- me!...”,

I still don’t know
which is correct
the fact or the fantasy
or a mixture of the two,

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