Charles Levenstein


In memory of Allen Ginsberg
Poets are lean and black-eyed,
have Irish shocks of hair
streaked with gray;
they are bony with sharp faces,
their tweeds are old,
their shoes are sturdy for walking
on moors or leas, or some damned thing.
They drink whiskey -- Scotch or Irish --
not the bourbon of novelists.
Some are drug addicts, have pale skin, speak French;
others are ruddy and carry walking sticks,
and some hole up in attics in Amherst
or hang out in front of Lowell Tech,
dreaming unspeakable dreams.
I cannot be a poet because I look wrong,
sound wrong, am wrong and know it.
I am not of the people nor above them,
I am some crazy Jew who knows:
This is no way to make a living.

Charles Levenstein is author of "Lost Baggage," a collection of poems published by Loom Press in Lowell, Massachusetts.


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