Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Shakespeare poemS of the day 04.23.14

american high school tour group
at anne hathaway’s cottage

was only
when he
this twenty-six year old
and then
left here
for london
or something
banged all kinds
of chicks
in london
for all
of these
and then
the most
of all time.

i told you
fucking cool
or something



works the tours
at hall’s croft
stratford upon avon
he dresses proper
in a suit
with a constant smile
and he’s happy
to see a couple
of americans
have come
in out of the cold

tells us about
john hall
shakespeare’s son-in-law.
hall was a doctor
the first to document
cases of patients
or something like that
i don’t know
because i cannot stop
staring at adam’s yellow
and natty teeth.
it’s an american defect
that i’ve developed
toward the british
in my half-week here.

and i’ve developed an addiction
to british cheddar cheese.

wants to know where
we are from
and he squeals when he finds out
that we’re from new york.
he wants to know what
theater we’ve seen back in london
back in the u.s.a.
i tell him we’re more like
ghost chasers
going after shakespeare
and the beatles and the like

says we must
make time for the theater
and then he talks our ear off
about his trip
to new york city
back in the 1980s
and how different new york
must be now.
yes, yes, new york city
is different now
times square is like disneyland
my wife says
although new york is the farthest
thing on either of our minds.

i want to tell adam
that i’m over four thousand miles
from home
that new york could sink
into the ocean for all i care
but i just stand there and smile
as i do with most people
while he talks about
seeing a chorus line
and strolling the east village,
wondering when i can get
a pint of aspall cyder
or an abbot ale
in the garrick inn
a pub that is over six-hundred
years old
one where they say a plague
had started in 1564
wiping out enough people
that stratford upon avon
was kind of like a ghost town.

i wonder if adam thinks
about that sometimes
when he’s alone
and finally runs out of things
to say.                                                  10.13.09

slightly shakespearian

some bored young thing
at a production of hamlet
gave it to my wife first
this nasty bug that makes you
hack and ache
and sneeze the most horrid yellow mucus
and mostly makes you wish
that you were dead
so my wife
in turn
gave it to me
and i guess that’s shakespeare for you
but because i’m stubborn
and maybe a tad bit vindictive
i took this plague to work
trying to inflict them all
but i only lasted two days
home and couch-bound
i did nothing but mainline o.j.
and read comics and richard dawkins
and try not to drink
all of the whisky in the apartment
when i returned to work
they all asked me how i felt
and when i said, slightly better
they all laughed at me
as if no one had ever said the phrase before
it was bizarre
not shakespearian at all
and they walked around for a good hour
saying to each other, did you hear him?
he’s slightly better
then laughing at me as if i were
the funniest man on this side of the east river
while i hit the bathroom to hack up
a lung
spew bile
and think about how while maybe
this is slightly shakespearian
i still should’ve said fuck them
stayed home another day
drank all of that whisky in the apartment
for sure.                                                                        10.19.12

my bedroom wall doth mock me

sitting here in a silly hat
as the commuters make their way to work

in the middle of one of the worst
writing weeks of my life

writing poems about why i can’t write

and i realize that i’m doing it again
with this one

i look up and shakespeare
is looking down at me from a postcard
that i bought in stratford-upon-avon

i’ll bet you never had trouble
with the word, you son-of-a-bitch
i tell him

but will says nothing as usual
he just looks as smug and self-assured
as he always looks

and you, proust,
with your cork-lined room and madelines
with your legendary memory

i think of tearing both of their postcards down

same with fante and hamsun
fitzgerald and henry miller

but then hemingway would have to go too

pounding away another classic
on his typewriter

who needs him?

kerouac doing the same

even the beatles
and roberto clemente
are starting to piss me off
on a week like this

shit, roberto’s last hit was immortal
and the most immortal thing
that i’ve done this week
is take a shit

van gogh
with his olive trees
and starry nights

van gogh
with his whore ear
and lonely legendary death

don’t even get me started on picasso

picasso wrote poems
when he was too bored to paint

i tell anne sexton
take your top off, baby

because this is a party for the damned
this week is a banquet on the titantic

bukowski looks at me
and shakes his head
glances to his left to whitman
and harvey pekar
as if saying that kid never had it to begin with

and i’d have to agree

sitting here in a silly hat
waiting to join the commuters
on their way to work

writing another poem
about why i can’t write

wishing that i’d taken up something easier
like nuclear physics

instead.                                     06.15.11

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