Monday, January 25, 2010

poem of the day 01.25.10

still suffering from the inability to write anything of merit, so here's an old one

at poe’s grave

standing at poe’s grave,
fayette street, baltimore,
and i am trying to think
of something monumental
to say,
which is a fatal mistake
for any writer
trapped in the moment.

besides i’ve never read poe.
not the raven
not the tell-tale heart.
so he doesn’t mean shit
to me anyway.

yet i put a penny
on his headstone to spite
realizing that you have
to appreciate a city,
like baltimore,
as beaten and lowdown
as it is,
for recognizing the merits
of a poet,
even one who died
drunken, diseased,
and piss-filled
in the streets.

not many cities do that anymore,
dedicate anything
to a writer.

in camden, new jersey,
they’ve dedicated a bridge
to walt whitman,
and once people forgot all about that,
they gave his name
to an interstate plaza.

it’s there, man,
i tell you,
written in red neon
above the burger king sign
and the one for sunoco.

it looks good there, too,
but not as good as the sign
reading $2.91 for a gallon of gas,
which is worth more to me
in this economy
than ten copies of “song of myself,”
as i sail southward
in this hapless nation,
thinking of two old gods today,
far enough away from myself
that i might never come back.


1 comment:

Unknown said...

A great tribute to one of the orginal masters...