Your Daily World Tour

By: William Doreski

The view from your room in London

includes Venice, Istanbul, Brussels,

Shanghai, Tokyo, and New York.

You lean from your iron balcony

to absorb competing languages

that flex and throb in the breeze.

You can taste the salt of seven seas

and sample cooking in Marrakesh.

Indoors, you withdraw like a snapper

into your shell. A litter of books

would betray you if you allowed

visitors to browse your lifestyle.

Although you send photos

of Paris, Moscow, Ulan Bator

and the tearoom where friends meet,

you would never admit me

to the view that includes a world

shrunken like those novelty heads

carnivals sold in my childhood.

No one knows how you roam

so far without leaving home.

I try to trace you on Google Earth

but their cameras go blank

wherever you’re now wandering.

The postcards you send complete

with vivid stamps from nations

I’ve barely heard of impress me

with their naked authenticity.

I stick them into a scrapbook

labeled with the various names

you wield when someone’s looking.

At dusk your world tour closes

and you sip tea you’ve collected [stanza break]

directly from a tea-tree

that unlimbered to acknowledge

your death-grip on the planet.

William Doreski lives in Peterborough, New Hampshire. He has taught at several colleges and universities. His most recent book of poetry is Venus, Jupiter (2023). His essays, poetry, fiction, and reviews have appeared in many journals.

Reflective Engagement

This poem delves into the contrast between a person's expansive virtual explorations and their private, introspective world, prompting a journey into understanding the balance between our global interconnectedness and individual solitude:

  1. The Duality of Connection and Isolation: In an era where digital platforms promise global connectivity, how do you reconcile the simultaneous feeling of being connected to the entire world yet isolated from tangible experiences? Reflect on moments where you've felt most connected or most isolated. What do these moments reveal about the nature of genuine connection in your life?
  2. Identity Across Virtual and Physical Realms: The poem hints at the fluidity of identity through the lens of travel and exploration, both real and imagined. How does your identity shift or remain static across different contexts—online vs. offline, at home vs. abroad, in solitude vs. in community? What does this fluidity or stability say about the core of who you are?
  3. The Value of Imagination in Personal Exploration: Imagination plays a pivotal role in transcending physical boundaries, allowing for exploration that surpasses geographical limits. Reflect on how your imagination has been a tool for exploration and growth. How has it shaped your understanding of the world and your place within it? Can imagination fulfill the human need for exploration and discovery to the same extent as physical travel?

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