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A poet’s travel journal

As part of NolaVie’s new Yeah you write! campaign, we are inviting readers to submit New Orleans-related content for a chance to have their work featured on our site. Whether it’s a personal essay about moving from New Orleans, a photo of French Quarter Fest, or a video of a second line, we want to know: what’s your New Orleans story?

Today’s featured submission comes from Aprill Atkins Cameron, a Toronto resident who, as some many New Orleans visitors do, fell in love with the city during her multi-month vacation. Based on her longing for the city after returning to Toronto, Cameron created a poetic journal of her short pilgrimage. “We shall return soon,” she vows. Check back later this week for images from Cameron’s travels.


It’s a blur, my New Orleans pilgrimage.

Every memory in motion: walking people margarita grits

walking people margarita grits blues

Big Chief of the Nation wild wild creation walking people margarita grits blues

Big man with black cape envelops me

I love you baby, he croons.

walking people margarita grits blues magnolias



White cathedral Black spires pierce

cobalt sky Wrought iron Crumbling

stone Chipped paint Jazz hounds


Sun has set Light slanting No shadows

Circus barker dances Solitary girl raggedy 21

Voice a hollow tin can rings out over inky Quarter


There is a house in New Orleans they call the Rising Sun


Feet walk in other direction LOUIS ARMSTRONG AIRPORT

Slight chop Bridge over Ponchartrain ends

Ice welcomes Colourful outfits fade Tinny voice

wakes me at 4 a.m. these days I’m goin’ back to New Orleans

To wear that ball and chain



Cool Russian ladies dance the night away.

I want to dance with them, too shy, so I

watch transfixed. My grandmother’s Russia

did not look like this.


Lightening Lee & Little Freddie King headline

tonight. Lee is effusive. He gives me a faux red rose,

bordello scented. I cannot take it home. I may be

arrested at the border.


Little Freddie wears red. He is 4 foot 7 and sits

close to the Russian ladies on a bench. He is cool,

incarnate. Plays the guitar like the devil knows

his name.


Never go to New Orleans, gentle reader, I implore you.

For, though The Saints may pray for your sorry-soul,

In your chest, there will reside a heart-shaped hole.


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