#1: AMS to PDX in 50 words or less.
A hundred-year-old wood boat,
A thousand broken bicycles under foot
Canal houses lean brotherly into each other
The captain confidently offers me the wheel—
His lack of worry is UnAmerican.
We slide under stone arches close to the sharp edges
Now soft like cream pastries In early spring’s nightly encore.
#2: Exploring the thin line between courageous or stupid.
The Drive By Truckers in a grand old church
Above the stage hangs stained glass streamers
Bought me some merch
Singing “hell no I ain’t happy”
With a room-full of dreamers.
#3: Amsterdam in 50 words or less, through a Portland lens.
Elvis Costello serenaded two-thousand of us
For “Alison, My Aim is True”
He stepped away from the mic and with only his own voice
and an acoustic guitar, he reached the rafters.
No amplification, you could hear a pin drop,
Didn’t need the electricity.
Elvis provided the juice.
#4: Sockeye notes from Amsterdam
There’s a great breezeway in the Rijksmuseum
The cellists there favor the acoustics
They drop a hat or open their cases,
Coins dance in appreciation
The pigeons whir, flap their wings
Music pours over all of us
I’ve run three miles so far
And applaud as I fly by.
#5: Sockeye notes from Amsterdam
Land of ex-pats,
Circling for beer on a sunny table
Amsterdam is a hub,
A great wheel spinning Europe
Through miles of cheese rounds and cheekbones
Iron lattice lacquered with sun, turning and turning
No matter if we keep up, or just need home
Or just want another beer.
#6: Sockeye notes from Amsterdam
Walk along the Singal Burrow through the Kalvertoren shopping center
Hit 3 on an odd-angled glass elevator
Rise to Blue, both sky and cafe
Behold the view above canal houses
Look, there’s Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory.
And behind the bar, red faced with a sly grin,
It’s Augustus Gloop serving regret.