Professionally a structural engineer/Lecturer, I am from Kathmandu, Nepal. I stayed in Ohio for 6 years for my PhD and I worked with professors, scientists, students, technicians, machinists, janitors, truck-drivers etc. I was overwhelmed by the honesty, sincerity and hardships of her working-class. I realized that greatness of America lies in her people. My poems here are my few experiences as an outsider, which I hope to be more relevant in this post-election scenario. Let America and Americans be blessed.
The Floating Bars of Ohio
The summers were always nice and warm.
We used to go to lakeside bars on Saturdays
and have Bloody Mary’s and Corona alternately
till we got buzzed.
The old couples used to bring their private boats
and get wasted at around noon.
Once I met an old lady who claimed
to have babysat Patrick Carney from Black Keys.
Her 20-years-younger boyfriend
kept looking at us as if we were from Mars
and one nice Saturday afternoon
a girl came and started asking about my origins.
She was from down South.
Her cousin came, all red-eyed and said
‘Why are you talking with this terrorist?’
I had long hair and a beard at the time
and I responded with a very long laugh.
I was not offended. I dug his context
but I hated his teeth,
which reminded me of Global Warming and Nickelback.
Originally Published at Uneven Floor, Australia; May 2016
Hood for Thought
When I was in Ohio
I had a thing for The National, Swans,
Fiber Reinforced Concrete and Colt-45.
My lab was a shipwreck. It reeked of
resins, fibers, acetone and a whole lot
The only way to pass the day safely,
was to break concrete-cylinders and count fibers.
My apartment was in the middle of the hood
surrounded by junkies, drug-dealers,
freeloaders and the college kids.
There was a retired sniper who never
tired of boasting how many infiltrators
he had killed at Iraq-Syria boarder
and another kid of German-descent
who claimed that his apartment
was always loaded with semi-automatics.
And there were neighbors who used to bring me
a case of Carlsberg on some odd days.
My little America used to smell like Humanity,
the cocktailed air of violence, conformism and drugs.
Originally published at Mannequin Haus, Aug 2016
©2016 Sudeep Adhikari
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