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Leaving Santiago

Zuzu Tadeushuk

In a snuck-up rush and 

with a pitted heart I

scurried out the house, and left

them an I ❤️ NY chocolate bar

and a clogged toilet. 


~ ~

I forgot to pick an orange!

I forgot to pick an orange on my

way out of the gate

as I left Chile for Chestnut Ridge.

Cha cha ch—

cha Chestnut

cha Chile

and no naranja for my crossing. 

~ ~


Solo travel,

lull lull

Lista, we are all long lista

to go go go to our seats-

14F.  F by the window, F over the wing,

F, eff,

eff you, F this back ache and long wait.

Something new: bring me something new, 

lots of people to know and something to do. 

Solo travel, lull lull lull. 

~ ~ 

An Argentinian boy next to me on the plane is wearing a designer hoodie, oversize baseball cap, intentionally shredded black jeans. He looks about 11 years old. He looks sort of Coptic, as in the coptic Egyptian mummy portraits in gallery 138 of the Met. He has large round deep dull eyes and stares indifferently ahead. The plane begins to taxi to take off and in a flash he, too, whirrs into motion— and crosses himself.

~ ~

Boringness, there is so much boringness

before me: hours and hours

(sixteen of them to be precise)

of burst-bubble blandness. What

will go by in this head?

~ ~

What will I do, the boy next to me fell asleep now and no longer prays for us. I am idle, all idleness and a spoon. Stir me around! Dip me in the divine, for I want to pray too! I want so bad to be part of a tradition and to believe, but I always feel an imposter, a pretender, genuflecting for a genie of my chilly silly child head. Try to sleep now.

~ ~

We are high enough now to see 

the clouds like a sea,

and I see

them roll against the Andes in rumpled waves,

white and spumy and

spilled on by cool twilight light. Not golden,

but blue. Silver,

silver like swells on the sea. 

~ ~

And now the boredom comes, and

the blandness sets in, and

I bake, I bubble, I break.

View above the Andes