Category Archives: Kansas City

day 23: snow day: a poem, inspired by shit they say on the local news

Just a few degrees warmer,
it would have been a downpour,
a gift to the parched earth.

But that snow just keeps coming down.

snow day hood fuck

Plow drivers work around the clock
to keep streets clear.

But that snow just keeps coming down.

snow day car fuck

A shirtless teenage boy makes a snow angel —
youth is wasted on the young.
A dog runs outside, loving it, loving it —
then decides “this isn’t for me,”
and scurries back inside to warmth.

snow day tree fuck

The mayor has declared a state of emergency.
Traffic on 435 is at a standstill.
A truck stops to pull a car
out of the ditch.
They both get stuck.

But that snow just keeps coming down.

snow day bubba snuggle

I’ve never seen anything like it.
It was a summertime thunderstorm
just pouring down snow.

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day 6: bridget took me up to strawberry hill

The Strawberry Hill Mansionย Museum is not a haunted house.

Case in point: Their website contains a designated “No Ghosts” section. To summarize: “We are boring old fuddy-duddies. Kindly usee your EMF readers to measure the paranormal activity up your ass.”

The Strawberry Hill Mansion Museum sits on a hill overlooking I-70.

The Strawberry Hill Mansion Museum sits on a hill overlooking I-70.

This is too bad, because the possibility of glimpsing the “lady in red,” a bloodied, spectral figure who sometimes pops in to greet visitors, is what first drew me to the 125-year-old mansion on a Halloween ghost hunting expedition two years ago. Unfortunately the museum was closed; now that I know their official position on ghosts, I understand why.

One thing the museum does right, though, is Christmas. My friend Bridget is a Strawberry Hill native who grew up attending the adjoining church and school. When we visited the museum last weekend, we parted ways with our tour and showed ourselves around.

The view of Kansas City, Missouri, from the mansion's porch.

The view of Kansas City, Missouri, from the mansion’s porch.

It was better that way — it really was. I loved seeing the place through Bridget’s eyes and watching as she pointed out family members and classmates in the photos hanging on the walls. Upstairs, rooms that used to house orphans and nuns are now dedicated to the holiday traditions of each ethnic group represented in the original Strawberry Hill neighborhood, which was primarily Croatian, including Bridget’s family.

Bridget and Iย are also both suckers for a top-notch holiday display. If we decorated a house together, the style would be “shabby chic meets Clark Griswold and Adrian Monk.”

The Strawberry Hill chapel.

The Strawberry Hill chapel.

Photos weren’t allowed, but I did manage to snap a few shots before an old man asked me to stop. Afterward, Bridget and I ate at a hole-in-the-wall barbecue joint down the street, and I was reminded that, although it is only a few minutes from my home, Kansas City, Kansas, feels like not just another city or state, but an alternate universe about which I know nothing. And for thatย I love it.

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