Henry Grimes 4.19.20

we lost another
sweet soul
this week

for the
second time

given up for dead
in the late 60s
henry was discovered
in 2002

for the 
second time

his second career
was longer
than his first

i feel blessed
to have seen him
many times

once i saw him
play a duet 
with himself

round bass notes
by airy harmonics

i hope you
come around 

Practical-Critical Poetry

I write poems in the style of David Lerner. I came up with David, also a red diaper baby. Our parents were political friends. We were political too, but more counter culture types. That is, we experimented with what are now known as recreational drugs. We enjoyed the word “experimented.” Life as a grand experiment.

David turned me on to Bob Dylan. Need I say more. 

His poetry was Dylanesque. Like Bob, he was influenced by Beat literature. Also Hubert Selby and other angular pulp fiction. 

Dylan’s poetry, both his lyrics and the epics on the back covers of his 60s albums, had an in-your-face, forever-in-the-present feel. His observations were comments and vice versa. David picked that up from Bob. I picked it up from both of them. 

David’s poetry is more strident than mine. Hey he was more strident when we were kids. I’m a college dropout. He was a high school dropout. 

His work is also more provocative than mine. He’s the son of Jewish Communists and his most famous poem is titled “Mein Kampf.” Need I say more. 

There’s a Memoir piece on this site about David and me. It’s called “David Lerner: One for the Holidaze.” It’s the first piece I ever had published. 
If you’d like to read some of David’s work, google “David Lerner poet.” 

Life During Wartime 3.30.20

This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco
This ain’t no fooling around
This ain’t no Mudd Club or CBGB
I ain’t got time for that now

                                    David Byrne, 1979

so this is war
(xmas is over)

the germs
didn’t sign on
to the geneva

john lennon’s
imagined world
turned unsafe
for hippies
and just about
everyone else

kim and i are
living in a studio
she calls it our
student apartment

in honor of that
she’s playing some 
joni mitchell

joni didn’t much like hippies
but hippies adored joni
as did just about
everyone else

hospitals are overrun
restaurants are closing
the economy is in shambles

as the freak brothers 
used to say
dope will get you through 
times of no money 
better than 
money will get you through 
times of no dope.

i’m just lookin’ to 
separate the high 
from the anxiety

with some measure
of success

trump just announced

he was extending
the federal 
social distancing
guidelines till 
the end of april

and moving
easter to
mid may

the shape of
the space time
keeps shifting

keep pulling up
to my building

my niece ami
in new haven
gave birth to a boy
at 2 am last monday 

life goes on