Stranger American

For James Baldwin


The whole month I was in Trinidad

I played “Purple Rain” constantly.

The second time,

I rode “Tar Baby”

Like an emotional inner tube

Preventing me from drowning

In the absence of my own self.

In London I hunkered down between notes of Norah Jones

And Starsailor.

They provided a buffer

Between the stranger I traveled with,

my boyfriend

And the even stranger American

That was me.


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