The Traveller: a Poem for Claudia

Today’s poem is for Claudia Schoenfeld, who has been visiting New York and writing poems about it. Today she posted “just about arriving” on her blog. This poem is my response.

All those swirling feelings!
You, a traveller in a foreign city
loving it
wishing the trip would never end.
Your poems are your letters home.
Disorientation, excitement—
your disjointed / parenthesed / em-dashed / verses
mirror the mind
of every traveller
who, exhausted and fascinated,
finds everything
magical and slightly surreal.


About Chris Galvin

Chris Galvin is a Canadian writer, editor and photographer dividing her time between Canada and Viet Nam. Her essay Flood Season was a finalist for the 2012 Best of the Net prize, and Discovering Hến Rice in Central Việt Nam won third place (shared) and a Readers’ Choice Award in the 2015 I Must Be Off! Travel Essay Contest. Her work has appeared in various anthologies and literary journals, including Descant, Asian Cha, PRISM International, Room, and others. She has written in Vietnamese and English for Vietnam Tourism Review/Kham Pha Du Lich Vietnam Magazine, Travellive, and Du Lich Giai Tri. Chris is currently looking for a home for her recently completed manuscript, Breakfast Under the Bodhi Tree, a book about living, eating, and tour-guiding in Viet Nam.
This entry was posted in National Poetry Month, Poetry. Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to The Traveller: a Poem for Claudia

  1. claudia says:

    you should see me smile…this is lovely chris..magical and slightly surreal captures it perfectly i think…thank you…

  2. Pat Hatt says:

    You surely captured the travellers perspective perfectly. Plays really well off of Claudia’s too. Inspirations surely came due.

  3. ayala says:

    Lovely. Claudia captured us with her magical journey and you capture it in your poem. 🙂

  4. Chris,
    Great poem, it captures the feeling well. I particularly liked this line
    “your disjointed / parenthesed / em-dashed / verses”

    You know I have to go take a look at Claudia’s blog now 😀



    • chris says:

      Stephen, thanks so much for your careful reading of my poem, and for your kind comment. If you haven’t visited Claudia’s blog before, you’ll find it’s very much a poetry place worth visiting.

  5. Every time I visit your blog, I go back with new ideas. Thanks for these wonderful gems of wisdom. i tried spine book poetry, thanks to you.

  6. mark says:

    You captured what I couldn’t on our trip to NYC four years ago. I think it would be different now…

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