Kathleen Ossip is the author of The Do-Over, a New York Times Editors' Choice. She was a 2016-2017 fellow at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University, and she teaches at The New School in New York.
Out walking, it comes to me: I have known
at least two men who liked to watch me
sleep. I would bet cash money God
never looked at me once, alive
or dead, or before I was alive. But two
men I loved, a year apart, would go
up on one elbow—
the elbow one of sexual love’s
best friends—and look down, and I wonder what
What was it about these places that drew people to them? That drew me to them? Armchair travel, sure. But, also, something more. These places swallowed people up. I wanted to visit them all. Instead, I did the next best thing: I added and added to the list.