The Solitary Wanderings of an Extrovert By Nathanael William Stolte

The Solitary Wanderings of an Extrovert

The first day of vacation left me feeling so restless
I decided to go see my friend with the harmonica
With only Sam Cooke, Diana Ross and
A Boy Named Sue for company I head east
Everyone in my rearview mirror is mad at me
For protecting my own interests,
Just like them,
But it’s easier to be bothered by someone else
Than to look at your own part.

All the trees are sleeping to the lullaby of the Susquehanna
While NPR is a threadbare time machine
In need of a tune-up
All the west bound drivers are ghosts
Wearing masks that look like you when you are disappointed in me
A face I know too well

It’s cold here but I like it
I keep better in the cold
I’m comforted by the constant
Yellow service engine soon light on the dashboard
It’s as if I have something in common with this old car
We are both somewhat damaged
One difference is I could pay someone to fix this car

I get to Brooklyn and the driving
Has my jaw clenched and
My knuckles white until
I’m greeted by a platoon of snowplows on 2nd street
They are lining both sides of the road
Like hoplites and I realize that it’s all about preparedness

That’s the answer
Have faith in the unknown and make ready
After all the unknown is all there is left to put our faith in

So I wander the slushy streets with impunity as
Every Rude Boy in Brooklyn comes out
In their scally-caps and I notice
Brooklyn is caged in fire escapes and
Everything is an exquisitely beautiful and dirty matte grey

It’s cold
My feet are wet and
I wouldn’t change a thing.

By Nathanael William Stolte


Nathanael William Stolte is the author of four chapbooks, A Beggars Book of Poems, Bumblebee Petting Zoo, Fools’ Song & Unformed Creature. His poems have appeared in Ghost City Review, Guide to Kulture Creative Journal, Five-to-One Magazine #thesideshow, Rusty Truck Zine, Poems-For-All, The Buffalo News & Plurality Press. He is the Acquisitions Editor for CWPCollective Press. He was voted best poet in Buffalo by Artvoices’ “Best of Buffalo” in 2016. He is a madcap, punk-rock, D.I.Y. Buffalo bred & corn-fed poet

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