Oct 2013

that i knew

A girl that I knew took my picture once
in the kitchen of my two-room apartment.
We had to make the room very dark
For the flash to light up my face.

She brought takeout from next door
and we ate meat and noodles from a little box
and thick prawn crackers
wicking pale pink sauce.

Years later I met her in Chicago
doing country covers in her kitchen.
She had an amplifier in each open window
and sang loud, sad songs that I didn’t know.

Today she moved to New York City.
Drove there in a very big car.
I wish I had a picture of her bald spot.
I wonder if she’s still tending bar.

Nina Sainte-James, writing in my kitchen in Santa Monica, 1976