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Poems to and About Jim Carroll

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TOUGH BROWN COAT

Tough brown coat
Tie with red roses
Green cord vest

Brown stripes
on soft white
shirt

white T-shirt

White man,
    Tomorrow you die!

"You kidding me?"


HEROIN

 (2) photographs of Anne
                80 years old
                        lovely, as always
                                        a child
                        under an old fasion
                                        duress

A Bibliography of Works
        by Jack Kerouac

                A white suit 
                        and a black dress
                                w/ high-necked
                                                mini-skirt

        strolling
two by two

across   a    brown     paper    bag
       above               The Relation  Ship

warm white thighs        & floating bend   gia pronto
           
           my heart is filled with light
                               al curry
               this
Life
that is
one, tho
the lamps 
be many
                & proud      & there's a breeze sort of
                                lightly moving the top
                of your head

   &            I'm going
                way over
                the white
                                skyline
                & I'll do
            what I want to
 & you can't keep me here
                        no-how

        & the streets are theirs now
                        & the tempo's
                                & the space.


SOMETHING AMAZING JUST HAPPENED

A lovely body gracefully is nodding
Out of a blue Buffalo 
                        Monday morning
                                        curls
softly rising color the air
                        it's yellow
above the black plane
                beneath a red tensor

I've been dreaming. The telephone kept rining & ringing
clear & direct, purposeful yet pleasant, still taking pleasure 
in bringing the good news, a young man in horn-rims' voice
                                                is speaking
while I listen. Mr. Berrigan, he says, & without waiting 
for an answer goes on, I'm happy to be able to inform you that your request for a Guggenheim Foundation Grant Has been favorably received by the committee, & approved. When would you like to leave? Uh, not just yet, I said, uh, what exactly did I say with regards to leaving, in my application...I'm a little hazy at the moment. Yes. Your project, as outlined in your application for a grant for
the purpose of giving Jim Carroll the best possible birthday present
you could get him, through our Foundation, actually left the
project, that is, how the monies would be spent, up to us. You indicated, wisely, I think, that we know more about what kind of project we would approve than you did, so we should make one up for you, since all you wanted was money, to buy Jim
a birthday gift. Aha!I said. So, what's up? We have arranged for you and Jim to spend a year in London, in a flat off of King's Row. You will receive 250 pounds each a month expenses, all travel expenses paid, & a clothing allowance of 25 pounds each per month. During the year, At your leisure, you might send us from time to time copies of your London works. By year's end I'm sure you will each have enough new poems for two new books, which we would then publish in a deluxe boxed hardcover edition, for the rights to which we shall be prepared to pay a considerable sum, as is your due. We feel that this inspired project will most surely result in the first major boxed set of works since Tom Sawyer & Huckleberry Finn! Innocents Abroad in reverse, so to speak! We know your poems, yours & Jim's, will tell it like it is, & that is what we are desperate to know! So, when would you like to leave? Immediately, I shouted! & Jim! I called, Jim! Happy Birthday! Wake up!


IN ANNE'S PLACE

It's just another April morning, St. Mark's Place
Harris & Alice are sleeping in beds; it's far too early
For a scientific Message, on St. Mark's Place, though it's
the right place if you feel so inclined. Later
Jim Carroll's double bums a camel from a ghost Aram Saroyan
Now, there goes Clark, friend from out of a no longer existant past
Into the just barely existent future, wide-awake, purposeful
As Aram Saroyan's dad: a little bit more lovely writing & then
Maybe a small bet on New York's chances this morning. It's not
Exactly love, nor is it faith, certainly it isn't hope; no
it's simply that one has a feeling, yes
You always do have a feeling & over the years it's become habit
Being moved by that; to be moved having a feeling,
So it's perfectly natural to get up & go to the telephone
to lay a little something down on your heart's choice
calling right from where you are, in Anne's place,
As to your heart's delight, here comes sunlight.


POEM FOR JIM CARROLL

journeying out to prepare the day
for a new look
stop looking
hear my identity
gibbering "mountains!"

every moment
come to life
no twilight struggle
truant or volatile
grouwing to light
bristlecones older
than mommy & daddy

touch memory
dream of me
older, slimmer
imposter, exuberant
jejune & jaunty

friend to you
vital brother

   

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