Thursday, November 1, 2012

At the Poetry Party

photo: ralph murre

At the Poetry Party
                                    (Day of the Dead, 2001)
by Charles Rossiter

allen ginsberg was pumping his harmonium
and trying to sing the blues
kenneth patchen was issuing proclamations
and flying paper planes around the room
with wings made from cartoons

emily was there in a new white dress
raymond carver chain smoked
in the corner with tess
who had a dispensation same as me
to party with the living dead

sylvia wrapped her long dark hair
around her little finger
muttering about her dad and ted
anne sexton talked to maxine on her horse farm
with the phone held tight against her head

bob kaufman didn’t say a thing
rexroth and the frisco crew
bantered about the beat invasion
james laughlin sipped his wine
and chatted with a group of women
jack k. took notes in pencil
with his bottle in a bag

and the cats from the new york school sat back
and played it cool, they only drank a little
more than william carlos williams
and walt whitman who knew
they had a certain something to maintain
as father figures for us all which brings us to
gertrude stein who sat and sipped her wine
complacent as a rose without a name
without a name
without a name
without a name
   without a name

~ previously published in Whetstone