The Death of the 50mm

I stuffed my 50mm lens—wrapped in a yellow handkerchief—into my left, 16oz boxing glove and placed the boxing glove deep in my 40L backpacker bag for safe keeping during transportation from JFK to the Dominican Republic. I thought I was so smart.

16oz of padding. Saving space in my bag. Genius, I thought.

It was over a week after arriving before I went to my bag, on a total whim, to pull it out. Maybe take the lens for a spin around the block on my new camera in this foreign place.

I unlaced the dark red glove and began pulling at the handkerchief wrapped lens, all the while thinking to myself I almost never use this lens. I shoot almost exclusively with my 30mm.

Just as these thoughts passed through my mind, the lens rolled out of my hand and crashed right into the tiled flooring.

Shit.

I stared at it on the ground.

Maybe it’s okay, I thought.

I scooped it up. Rattling. Crunching.

Shit.

I took off an end cap and glass and parts exploded to the ground.

And that’s how I came to shoot exclusively with a 30mm lens.


Dominican Republic. July 17, 2016.

The Best Sunsets

You would think a clear evening
Would produce the best sunsets
But I propose the sunsets
That leave me sitting and staring
Long after it’s gone
In awe
Are the skies with cellulite
Wrinkles and folds
Shit has gone down in those currents somewhere

184


This poem was in collaboration with Julie Campbell, who gave me the prompt with this photo of a gorgeous California sunset.

Saboteur

In truth,
My ambition drives me to success.

The hardest part—if I were to be really honest—
Is to not let my success burn too painfully in my veins
My skin suddenly too hot on my muscle. My bones.

That’s when I sacrifice it all
Start over.
Ever operating in extremes.
The self saboteur.
For no better reason than to control the destruction.

Success more painful than failure.

112

A Doctor’s Visit

Say “ahh”
Said the doctor
Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
He looked at the city on her tongue
The gears in her teeth
The light in her tonsils
Movie playing real deep.
Looks okay to me, he said.
She nodded.
Maybe a second opinion, she thought.