Poems

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Maine to Georgia

you know this game

you are in a new place
there’s a lull and you look around, a little up the street line
could I live here? the answer must always be yes

yes in a rented room in bangor, pa
where dad and uncle irving went to live during the depression
and a kite was ruined before little brother could fly it
no work for grandfather in nyc, grandma wrote her mother every day
to testify that life went on
even there

yes in downtown seattle
where you sashayed first, a loaf of bread under each arm
and a pack of cigarettes in your sexy jeans
the girl ben franklin as a young anarchist no date to keep
no one else’s time either

yes along the AT a drowsy summer day by pen mar park
where the pavillion (a pavillion!) is already set up for a wedding
and where will follow the very finest in big band era dance music
every sunday from 2 pm to 5 pm rain
or shine


Lullaby

my brave painting changes
with ribbons cuts and writings
and magnets
and small gently pillared dwellings
and the bough breaks


Morning Radio

I must be getting old
This morning I listened with deep feeling
To a story of research chimps held by the NIH
Now recommended for retirement to sanctuaries
Where they would be let to forage for food
Build nests and go outside when they want

I want that these chimpanzees
Should retire in a state of grace
Like my grandmother
After she stepped down from Met Life

I would visit them and I would tell them
We are sorry for your loss


3 about Children

1.
When Alice learns to work the mushroom, is that
Power? Or just leveling up?

2.
The boy with a gun is a soldier
The girl on a bicycle is a girl on a bicycle
Children, we want you!
Here is your full potential and
This is a gun
Learn these lessons and help us
Help you

3.
While Ann Frank schools us from the attic lectern
Who is not a prisoner of this war?


Guy Walks Into a Bar

Guy walks into a bar —

My friend, this is changing:
Suspense, you know, breath
Without rhythm
You know what I’m talking about
A bout of fluid dreaming
I want, I want

Mucky memory lime-
Light crossing blades of grass . . .
Take it from the top! Take it
Away. Not for poison
But fish need cool slip, the
Potter’s bone is spiral knowledge
Queasy, greasy, in it
We trust

Midnight toast
To you,
Consenting to come into the new
Far out from bar room singing
Far into —

I want this Lingua frankly
But see no teacher but need
But limitless energy
But what I can’t see here
Where losing and forming are
The same word


Incidentally

Today Rose of Sharon muscles through the neighbors’ hedge
While in the front garden blooms dinner plate hibiscus.

What is the glory of calling a gigantic flower a dinner plate?
Either you know it or you don’t.

 

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