This is the first in what will be a series of walks dedicated to Manhattan’s backyard. It’s an ambitious project, but I’m excited to see how it grows and changes over the coming months. Happy to have you along for the journey!

I adore the dark cold months. Give me chimney smoke and hot toddies over sun and beaches any day. My lifestyle is pumpkin pancakes. My sexual orientation is hygge.

The only time the fall and winter seasons have been anything close to resembling a problem for me has been while trying to get out of the house early…


Hello! I know it looks like I haven’t written anything in a while, but there’s a reason for that!

  • My last history essay, A History of Dogs in NYC, was written for my followers on Patreon, and is therefore not visible on my main page.
  • The essay I put out after that was commissioned by an initiative called Sound Off: Music for Bail, and is over on their website: Four Ways to be an Arts Worker in 2021

The first essay of next project, Making Tracks- Central Park, comes out soon, hopefully by the end of the month.

That’s all for now- thanks for reading!

-ks-


I am an Autumn child.

My resume would suggest otherwise- summer birthday, born and raised in the south, love margaritas- but alas, my mind and body simply operate better and more efficiently in colder, darker months.

I almost shed a tear the day I set out on this walk and realized it was cool enough to go out wearing leggings- my poor, chafed inner thighs could rest easy once again. In these babies, I could walk to Staten Island if I wanted to!!

(NB: I do not want to.)

Direction: Across the High Bridge

Covid Summer in Inwood and Washington Heights isn’t too different from…


Fort Tryon Park, at the top of the Heights
Is verdant, and filled with impeccable sights
And evidence of geological might
Dominique Alexander was hanged here.

Lenape lands, then Dutch came through
Then British, then soon large estates there grew
Then Rockefeller had a plan to brew
Dominique Alexander was hanged here.

New Yorkers know this as the place
Where Cloisters create intentional space
For history and art to blend with deft grace
Dominique Alexander was hanged here.

I walked there once, into the park
As dear lady Moon bestowed her dark
“It could have been me,” I now remark-
Dominique Alexander was hanged here.

Enjoy the gardens, enjoy the Met
Enjoy the time you still have yet
Enjoy it all, but never forget:
Dominique Alexander was hanged here.

Click here to support Dominique’s family.


A special edition of Making Tracks that does not take place uptown!

I had resigned myself to the sidelines.

Living so far uptown from the center of the protests, with an aversion towards the subway due to Covid, and posessing extremely questionable cycling abilities, I didn’t think I would get to experience in person any of the marches going on for my freedom. I allocated my energy towards reading the news, donating, informing. This is the responsible thing to do, I told myself. This is fine.

But then I got an e-mail from musician Jon Batiste’s manager asking me to…


When I was 21 years old I had the good fortune to be able to study abroad. I like to think that I didn’t take the experience for granted- I remember being filled with excitement every moment leading up to it, and treasure the memories of those six months to this very day.

One thing I don’t think I fully appreciated until now, though, was how fortunate I was to have come out the other side of that semester virtually unscathed. I traveled alone, a lot, in countries where I wasn’t fluent in the language. Stuff went wrong- I got…


A week ago I wrote a letter to my friend Katharine.

Letter writing was the first branch of nostalgic comfort I reached for when my quarantine began one month ago- several days before sourdough was even a twinkle in my eye. I remember standing on the corner of 12th Street and 6th Avenue, having just left my final in-person musical commitment, mulling dark thoughts in the warm sunlight. The sharp left turn I took down the block and into a stationery store felt like a desperate lunge towards survival.

I enjoy the ritual of sitting down with my thoughts, putting…


A special essay for Patreon followers. ❤

I swear to God I didn’t know I’d be writing about this walk.

I didn’t record the weather. I didn’t have a destination. I don’t even know how I ended up at 181st and Riverside, watching the sunset six feet apart from the few strangers nearby. I wasn’t even listening to music- I was catching up on a goofy improvised fantasy podcast, Hello from the Magic Tavern. But that view.

That view.

The little landing lower right is where I ended up.

It reminded me of the song “Lush Life”. Specifically the recording done by Johnny Hartman and John Coltrane in 1963. It’s…


Everyone has been baking so much lately! Even I, a confirmed cook all my life, have taken to routinely putting hands to flour. Feels as though in our isolation we are finding solace in older human traditions. Perhaps hunting and gathering will be next. Roving bands spearing pigeons, at a 6-foot distance, of course.

As I plan my route for the day (Saturday 3/21), I chat with my Dutch lover. He’s out of work until June, but the government in Holland is sending his boss enough relief that all of their staff will still have income until then. “Holland is…


Walk #3

Direction: North up Broadway

Album: The Healer by John Lee Hooker

Some people who regularly work from home say that it’s important to put on “real clothes” when you’re ready to start your day. I’ve always understood the psychology behind it, but never thought it would ever apply to me- after all, I’ve created some of my best work while drinking whiskey in one of the three onesies that I own.

But when the days begin to blur together like one long roll of thick, suffocating fabric, taking a shower and putting on a pair of jeans and…

Kyra Sims

Musician. Writer. Actress. Cat.

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