nyc – if you can picture that 1950’s scene
with larry rivers painting,
david anram on sax,
kerouac writing, allen ginsberg prancing.
the gray buildings, the gray new york,
the creaking dawn, the late-night diner conversations,
burroughs, corso, huncke, gangsters bars
on the west side, jack and bill strolling on 8th avenue only
when they walked on the wild west side
in mad, strange talk.
you wonder about that, sitting here,
the myth of the rainy night of kerouac’s lowell,
that mythic scene and
what it lets you imagine in your head, feel
in your body; the culture of the revolutionary art world
tenor men blowing in abandoned buildings,
shooting junk, mingus, ahmad jamal,
grady tate, monk, wes, winton kelly and that tinkling piano.
of course, of course it was a crest of culture unparalleled in
many respects anywhere.
it lives today, underground, overground, in my ears this
morning, in my eyes
i can tell you
they were building colossal buildings back there,
pyramids equal to the egyptians, monuments, tombs –
trees that would last forever.