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Twenty Eighty-One

Happy New Year to our Nepalese

and Bengali communities!

Nava Barsha 2081

and Happy Pohela Boishakh!


—City of London post on X

(formerly Twitter), April 15, 2024


As it turns out,

I’m not shackled

to 2024. I can move through time

and put the past

behind me—

by becoming Nepalese.


I like the thought of


far removed

from the plague

of the early 2020s,


the culture wars,

the mass of humanity

at one another’s

throats, in every

battlefield, comment

section in sight.


It’s a leap of almost

sixty years, perhaps that

long-awaited step on

Martian soil, the moon base

we were promised

back in 1976,

and 9/11 but an octagon

of decades

in the dust.


I won’t say there’s flying cars,

every futurist and their robot

getting it wrong , since the days

of Elroy Jetson,

of Blade Runner



no jump in our evolution,

elongated arms,

heads about to burst

from the enormity

of our brains;


our skins

haven’t blended

into grey, the apes

have yet

to revolt,

and religion

is still around


but that’s to be expected—

in Judaism, after all,

it’s 5784,

and it still

believes in God,

in some promised, Holy

Land, that manna

can fall from the clouds

(if we only pray

fervent enough),


that the sting of



wasn’t so long ago,


in fact still

in their century,

when every Jew

was put in boxcars

towards a “shower,”

a pair of striped



and even the Führer’s


had yet to reach the sky.


Andreas Gripp

April 15, 2024

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