(from 1976, while traveling on business,
after driving in from New York City. Manuel Orantes
is a Spanish former tennis player who had recently
won the U.S. Open).

This Holiday Inn poem
leans towards the second floor rear,
where the air-conditioning plant
& the laundry room carry on
a lively reverberation.

No Rolling Stones or Manuel Orantes
staying here,
Connecticut’s sun
after the South Bronx’s pyre.

No muggers to civilize you –
at a nearby stream
the waters keep agreeing,
“must rush! must rush! must rush!”

Again the presence of my Colombian friend Andrés,
killed in his taxi by a robber a few weeks past,
and of the rabbi who said in his mini eulogy,
“I never met Andrés, so I can’t say much about him.”

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