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Chicagoetry: I Walked Into Rainbo

I Walked into Rainbo

I walked into Rainbo

I was naked, of course,
I was dreaming, of course, but

The place was packed and
I became naked (I
Didn't walk in naked)
But I was suddenly naked so
What do you do?

Where was Grigoroff?
I was looking for Grigoroff

Or was it Johnny Wetzel?
In this dream

We'd just marveled at how easily we went
Right back nearly 50 years
To familiar routines

In Moser Highlands
In Naperville

To sleeping bags on the floor of the
Rec room in front of the TV
For "Creature Features"

But I was also just in an apartment
With Grigoroff
And Blue Oyster Cult

They started the riff for "Don't Fear

The Reaper" and Buck Dharma
Had metal blades for legs
Like that guy from the Olympics

Pistorius, right, Oscar Pistorius

I knew the band was doing
Hard drugs and I said so
Afterwards to Grigoroff

"They were doing hard drugs,
Weren't they?"

Then we were in front of this diner
Near Ashland and Grand

Feeding plants with a clear gelatin
And I was singing "Chewy Chewy"
By 1910 Fruit Gum Company

Then we went into the diner
And I lost Grigoroff

Then I became naked again
And stressed about my naked butt
Brushing up against the tables
Full of people

Then I thought maybe
I was looking for Johnny Wetzel
Who wasn't there either

I was really uptight
About being naked in front
Of all those people
But what can you do?

You're embarrassed and anxious but
There's nothing you can do

And maybe you're just dreaming
But you're still embarrassed
You have to endure
The anxiety anyway

Then I had clothes on again thank God
And went outside
To find Grigoroff
And to remember the name of this diner

But it had just changed
And in fact they were changing it again
Right there as I stood in front with a few people
Asking if anyone remembered

What the old name was

And some guy said
It used to be a tire shop
But I didn't remember that
I couldn't figure it out

So I headed home
And that guy came along
Even though I didn't want him to
Heading west

Through backyard gardens
Just south of Grand
Heading west from Ashland to Western
But it was more like

Backyard gardens back

In Naperville
On 75th Street
Heading west from
Washington to Modaff

But we were just south of Grand
Heading toward
My old flat in West Town
When the guy ran ahead to my relief

Then I remembered

I live in Oak Park now shit
I actually need to get to the Blue Line

But then I was suddenly
In another diner where the Busy Bee
Was and I went up to the second floor
And out the window

Onto a ledge above Damen
And the waitress closed
The window behind me

I was stuck out on a ledge
Only a story up but still
No way down
And then I woke up

That always happens
In dreams
I'm heading to a home
I no longer have

Often in a landscape of
Compressed locations
Combining Naperville and Chicago

Like I'm nearing my boyhood home
Near St. Raphael's and I want
To ride my bike downtown
To Phyllis'

Then I remember Phyllis' is
In Chicago in Wicker Park
Not Naperville

And I need to take the Metra BNSF
And there's just no way

Almost home
Near St. Raphael's
When I remember
I don't live there anymore

And my mother is in fact now
Near the Carillon on the Riverwalk
At least that's real

Or again I'm headed toward
That old flat in West Town
When I remember
I don't live there anymore

But at least my sister
Is just a few blocks away
Then I remember
She doesn't live there anymore either

And in fact
I have to get back
To Oak Park

That naked thing in public
Recurs as does losing
Teeth; for some reason the teeth
Thing is one I recognize as likely
Being a dream

But am never convinced
Until I wake up
The naked thing is not so easily

And you're damned embarrassed
But what can you do?
That embarrassment, the anxiety, is real

I also often
End up on ledges but
Usually super-tall ones
This one was only about

A story up above Damen

But still
No way down
And I had to find
The Blue Line

I woke up to more
Sounds of night jet
Racing bikes on the
Expressway out front

That some of you may remember
From a previous poem
More of them than usual
Which must be

A Saturday night thing
And I pondered the
Anxiety that brought the dream on

The anxiety
Is real

And I know damn well
What that anxiety is



J.J. Tindall is the Beachwood's poet-in-residence. He welcomes your comments. Chicagoetry is an exclusive Beachwood collection-in-progress.


More Tindall:

* Chicagoetry: The Book

* Ready To Rock: The Music

* Kindled Tindall: The Novel

* The Viral Video: The Match Game Dance


Posted on July 20, 2016

MUSIC - Chief Keef Changed The Industry.
TV - Vizio's Best Product Is You.
POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - More McCaskey Malpractice.

BOOKS - All About Poop.


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