Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Ginsberg?! (1997)

I just saw old Ginsberg
walking on suburban footpath,
humdrummed in trucker's cap & red
check shirt, the profuse beard flying
like grey ringlets of spliff smoke,
& he was walking in slow

motion, walking & puffing &
puffing & walking, stooped like a
snail carrying his house of karmic
poetry on his back—

Oh downtrodden Ginsberg,
can you no longer stop

to meditate, old old age leaving you
so few energies

to splice wild jumpcuts
of Blakean visionary breath?—

You are dead and gone Ginsberg,
all your prophecies fulfilled, that
rotting nothing Ginsberg in the
mescaline mirror—

You the Father Death for all
of us, with endless reserves of
metta, dreaming cosmic dreams
of compassion in your death-state,

& this apparition of you dealt like an
ace of hearts, walking sodden
suburban footpath through rainrivers
midday Saturday east of the city—

Or maybe this old old Ginsberg,
beard-dangler & smokechoker,
sense-charmer & semen-spreader,
maybe this man is my own

wistful projection?—

Although you yourself proved

it possible— via most thoughtful
thought— to reel in the spirit of
Walt Whitman in that fruity

supermarket downtown
somewhere in California—

And so I bring you here.

An earlier version of this poem was published in Verandah #20, 2005

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