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One for Shepp ( 1980 )

           Shepp screams sweetly into the nite
    summer '65 
some new thing @ Newport  in the rain
some new pain jolting the brain
                           bones moan
    hungry angry shivers wobble the minds of the weak                  
it's recorded testament now 
                as rain & shadows chase the cat that 
                         eyes the sparrows
       hanging like leaves from the leafless tree
               cold ghost eyes staring thru these little birds
                       @ some spot beyond even the sky 
         meditative eyes that watch the scene 
                so blankly
                                   thru cobwebs on the window
                        & thistles on the fence

Shepp screams calmly for the dying ones
  who sped junk sick and beaten  black/blue
        to their private corners   rotting 
              on rooftops   engraved into hallways
                       bottoms always bottoms
        moaning "call me by my rightful name"
            to the shining white symbols of light
                     who spit silver onto their corpses
   corpses that dream the frozen golden dream
            while passing borrowed & unnoticed into forever
                           fingers snapping snapped necks coughing chocolate

       into the wind

                                   go out on this nite  
                    wrap yourself in fire 
          make your cry heard
                                               you a gypsy
                       only wanting space  in this overcrowded barren Room
                              where even life marks time
                 unnoticed like cats        & birds   in trees.

  steve dlchinsky__

The BARD (A Perfect Day #2)
(for Allen Ginsberg)

the Bard
is  Dead
yet 76 yr. old Marvin Shapiro
still walks around  shouting
"...Cyanide metal poisoning. Cyanide metal 
poisoning. The Surgeon General blew it in my

it's a cold-for-this-time-of-year 
& tonight i'll make another 
attempt at looking for the be-bop

We all arrive as free "MEN"

slaves to breath
       to food
       to money

slaves to mothers
       to children

cat slaves
dog slaves

slaves to windows
        & sex

bicycle riding our broken hearts
from egypt to africa to rome

jesus was a slave  &
moses a slave to his god
Leadbelly  the Son of Slaves
& me too   probably me

we are slaves to Evolution
to the System
to Natural & unNatural History
to Industry & advertising & our

it's a cold spring day
& the Bard is Dead
& our  bodies are for rent
& Marvin Shapiro
the lonely plague-infested jew
wanders around day & night
with his pockets stuffed
& his umbrella close &
swinging -
            just in case 

the chinese gave the japanese 
including their respect
yet ended up their Slaves

epictetus taught aurelius 
all he knew
yet he was his  Slave

cowboys & indians   Slaves
slaves to religion & music &

many sold their kith & kin
as slaves

gypsies  poets scholars & fools
were slaves
concentrated & killed 


we all arrive 
slaves to sorrow
sickness &

slaves to Weather
flower  &

to Life

the Bard is Dead
but his poems are not
& his spirit set free
now resides with the ghosts
who charge aimlessly about this Patterson sky
this impossibly perfect Patterson sky...

  steve dalachinsky__

2 dead crows

i wanted to leave but felt trapped within the Q & A
fine full blades of grass  crept up thru the clefts
of the ruins
& a field of roses surrounded the colonnades
trapped within its chassis

we need not create a world    i mutter something to jim 
used to be so's one could walk within the garden 
w/o seeking solutions

h.w.'s pretty wife left him for a rich young free mason
anti-all-the-rest  where will all the poems & rhetoric
go now bad enough in any season but this one so interchangeable
with the last
he's closing up shop for dollar & health   ( c.z. not a bad looker )
will not see that statue where emma lay
rise up before her    again

         we sat in the truck     it wreaked of sullen & free
          crammed with colonades  & no license to  bear them

i muttered something to jim
                                                         what is free mason & does he still exist
     slave revolt he says disguised as       wild orgy
                 something tells me                                      then tells someone else  same

what's meant by all the pony  i asks    is all that philosophy ya speaks of  is it useful
say's useful as a poem     there's the rubout     climbing toward the tops of it

i insist on leaving  but only to myself. i am seated in a corner   trapped within the Q & A.
i'm not easy to read  though i always think i am so i say here this is what i am read me hey 
don't read me i'll do it for you   h.w. says she left him & his funds & health are failing.      
oh, stinking fucking rotten world where an uncontrolled grope comes so natural. 
     cider in the corner    coffee's not so good here anyhow    none's the music either

it's all the same anyway. 2 dead crows in the little basket with a 
lid...they've been showing us          them for decades    i mutter something 
to jim   i could have left hours ago 
         but instead munch another carrot     the  Q & A is over       i ask WHY...

  steve dalachinsky__
on the bar
- for Jack Micheline
you were drunk and
you read the Post and
you were lost but not yet gone
and strung out on the corner
  you sighed
                    and signed my copy of
                    Last House in America

"For Steve, 
            Keep Smiling
            Jack  Micheline"

from harlem to frisco
from mexico to soho
you said
" sure....that's a nice one."
you said  half hung
belly hanging large from popped buttons
grey hair
tough mouth
such softness in the lines
around the eyes
inside the book
that something in your face

you paint sometimes you said
but never write 
right now that's right
what use for goddamn words
or picture books
for that matter
or any.............(unfaithful goddamn words)

you know many people
die on trains
in cars
in planes
in bars
and some sit stoned 
cold on the corners
hanging in hung 
and out of........words
poor words
pouring from the corner of a truly
unsung voice

you asked if i knew Will
i said yes
you said he's a great guy
a dreamer and player of horses
for 20 years
dreams and plays the horses
dreams and never wins
and that was why you loved him you said
a dreamer
yes i said i met him on this very corner
he dreams you said 20 years dreaming and losing
oh i said
i don't know if i've ever dreamt
but i do know i've never played the horses

you coughed hard  got up slow
folded and tucked the paper 
under your arm
then walking away you half-turned and said
"my horse came in 2nd today"
looking absently through me
"GOOD" - i said naively - good
and with your back toward me
and your body tipping on a slight angle
your grinning words replied
"but i bet him to win."

i said

you were drunk
and sad
but maybe not unhappy

  steve dalachinsky
written 6-29- 81 slightly revised 3-9-97