Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer

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YDN · On more night on Broadway


I wish I were Broadway

with rainwashed streets and

bitter winters that 

never faze buildings standing so tall,

a repertoire of 

motorcycles and 

quiet nights that startle,

cheek to cheek, skin against skin

always managing to draw life back to

this place in the city where there’s 

never a shortage of 


or feelings 

or people.

I love people

I hope people love me too

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer


When I sit hungover in GHeav

sharing avocado chips with my girlfriends

and earbuds with my boyfriend

Old pop songs airing from older speakers

I tell myself: 

I wish I were Broadway

because these moments the color of pastels 

that I love so much

I want to keep them, like 

I still keep the farmer’s market carnations

he bought for me, now dry and brown

on my nightstand

I look at them as I try to sleep.

And I can’t sleep. I’m scared of closing these eyes

because I know that I’ll find myself alone

when I open them.

People I used to hold around my chest

leaving me for 

new cities that never sleep, surrounded by new 

names I’ll never know

Forgetting me.

Wait, hold on,

What about me? 

What about me?

I wish I were Broadway

My head craves aspirins, pangs with jealousy of these streets 

That get to keep their memories forever

Deep in graveled soil,

Protected by asphalt

Layered and relayered underneath New Haven snow,

I’m jealous of this place 

with buildings always standing so tall 

And never a shortage of visitors

or people or life or feelings

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer
Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer


When I’m rushing to class, and a hungry man stops me,

Asks me to buy him a bacon, egg and cheese

I tell myself: 

I wish I were Broadway

Because Broadway would never turn someone down,

Broadway is home,

Broadway would never say no

And yet I do, I say no when I know I should be saying yes

I say no because I think 

People are watching — why do I care about who is looking?

People are staring — are they really staring, though?

I say no because my two feet are always on the move

and I’m not used to stopping and helping,

I only know how to walk, walk, and walk away

And so I do,

Wishing I were Broadway as I lie that 

I have a class to return to, no change in my pockets

I wish I were Broadway

Buildings always standing tall

Never a shortage of visitors, 

Always home, always here, never leaving

I love people

How do I love people? 

Do I love people? 

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer


When it’s senior year of college, and I’m wondering

Where all this time went, slipped past my fingers

like water, pricked them like pins, nursed them like blankets

I’m trying to remember the happys, the sads, the dids and didn’ts,

The bright lights and the birthdays — 18, 19, 20, 21, 22

That kind girl in the dining hall who always waved hi

That boy from Russian class who I never said hi to again

It’s so hard to remember, because this place is home

and I never needed to remember home

All I know is how to live in one,

But when I wake up tomorrow and see that the world will have moved on

Just a bit

Friends parted for different lives, leaving our past blowing away with

the autumn leaves, pumpkin-spice weather

When I wake up in the morning and see graduation balloons,

tied on fences — mostly blue and white but all the other colors, too

I ask myself if home is still here

Am I proud of myself? 

Did I give more than I took

Is this it? So this is it?

What now that I’m finally free?

It doesn’t feel free.  

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer


And finally, when I revisit this place on my tenth year reunion,

seeing how much everyone has changed,

fathers, mothers, toddlers holding burgers,

editors at The New Yorker

I can’t help but put my hands in my pockets

awkwardly, nervously, like the first day of freshman year

I can’t help but look at these rainwashed streets,

listening to deafening motorcycles,

Catching the snow on my tongue,

Running past the Willoughby’s down the street,

where I see two boys drinking peppermint tea

behind the glass windows.

They look familiar, and I wonder if 

He’s still there. If I’m still there.

If we’re still there, together.

Will he recognize me?

He doesn’t. I keep walking, and I keep

wishing I were Broadway

buildings always standing tall

Never a shortage of visitors

or people or life or feelings. 

I want to stay here

Please let me stay, I need to 

Stay. Will you let me

Stay? Will you

with me one more night?

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer



I wish I were Broadway so much

that I repeat it to myself.

“I wish I were Broadway”

over and over again

In and out of Urban Outfitters

From one frat party to another, friends on my shoulders

and mine on theirs

Up and down the streets so bright and cold

And warm and dark and silent and loud

Until I become, until I am 

I repeat it to myself until

I am Broadway. I’m exhausted, but

these words roll off my tongue,

molding cement around my feet and grounding me

in a permanence made of human soul

I belong right here,

History belongs to me

I am history,

and I’m not going anywhere. 

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer


I don’t need to know you

to remember everything about us.

Luca Girodon, Contributing Photographer

Brian Zhang is Arts editor of the Yale Daily News and the third-year class president at Yale. Previously, he covered student life for the University desk. His writing can also be found in Insider Magazine, The Sacramento Bee, BrainPOP, New York Family and uInterview. Follow @briansnotebook on Instagram for more!