Poems

The Donald Has Never Learned How to Deal with No

Poems

As a longtime CEO and TV reality star boss with the infamous tagline “you’re fired,”       the Donald has not had much experience being told no. Trump hates losing in court and is already determined to flip the

First Response to Trump’s First Post-Election Tweet

Poems

In his first post-election online tweet, Donald Trump criticized the tens of thousands of      protesters filling streets across America by saying these were professional protesters whose public actions so soon after his election      were “very unfair.” Can’t any

Deceptive Donald and the Early Signs

Poems

On a personal level, I’m not quite sure, but think I feel a bit badly for poor, Deceptive Donald. In some ways, he reminds me of my mother—in her early stages of Alzheimer’s disease: a droopy blank look popping up

Dinosaur Love

Poems

On the Museum of Natural History’s 4th floor I greeted my old friend: “Hey, T. Rex! Long time, no see!” My buddy flashed his killer teeth: “Over two years, E. Katz, I missed you.” Surprised, I asked, “You missed me?

1986

To The Vegetable Aisle

Poems

Under refrigerated water spray all looks healthy, romaine, red & green, boston bib, watercress—         how choose a lettuce? How to know which of you has natural soil’s nutrients intact? Hey arrugula! Why haven’t I seen you

1992

When The Skyline Crumbles

Poems

Was sitting Astoria kitchen chair about to vote mayoral primary, then would’ve hopped subway to work Soho’s Spring Street — turned TV on for quick election check when CNN switched         to picture of World Trade Center

September 2001

Elegy for Allen

Poems

Ah, Allen, you gave America a new shape & now you’ve lost yours what a long accomplished road it was from the bridge o’er Paterson Falls through San Francisco’s Six Gallery, Prague’s May King, Pentagon exorcisms,     mid-America’s Iron

1997

After Seeing Bernie Sanders Win the New Hampshire Democratic Presidential Primary

Poems

After nine difficult health years dealing with Lyme disease and neck surgery, I lived long enough to see the first democratic-socialist in my lifetime win       a major political party’s presidential primary. What a night it is to

February 2016

Letter to Allen on the State of the State, May 2013

Poems

What We Don’t See

Poems

Look at those trees! There are millions of ’em Where the cat treads lightly Whatever we don’t see is there A helicopter whirls overhead; we are not alone Strong winds coerce the leaves into speaking politely In forests like these,

2002

To The Northern Winds

Poems

Sitting in cabin kitchen with Vivian meditating with eyes open following breath out nostrils the day clear and beautiful but cold, and windy as hell it’s heaven up here in Canada’s north country no inkling of industrial air pollution not

2002

The Weather Seems Different

Poems

It is snowing in Athens tonight & Apollo with ice in his beard         is having a difficult time singing About six twin engine miniplanes have crashed coast to coast         in empty fields

January 2002

The Logic of War

Poems

1 A group of Bush Sr’s US-armed fundamentalist freedom fighters compared to our own founding fathers have become Bush Jr’s evildoers who need to be smoked from their caves– and the National Review philosophers say postmodern theory has wrecked  

October 2001 - December 2001

2001 Skies

Poems

July 1st, Canada Day, once again sit morning meditation facing out         Vivian’s forest cabin window today lower back muscles ache, I squirm in chair seeking comfort, watch a thin trail of smoke rise from sage incense

July 2001

Portraits / M.

Poems

He was wired, on crack or might as well– his 3-month welfare motel stay up next week and he was coming to our office for options. He settled on one after 10 minutes: was going to get his gun, blow

October 2000

McNamara’s Ghosts

Poems

The Best & Brightest were neither It wasn’t only a Battleship they steered wrong They looked up at Dawn’s Slippery Sky and cried “Ours” Thought a nation’s most sacred trees could be tortured into spying Feared the Creaky Springs of

1995

These Beautiful Territories

Poems

The cloud outside the window is shaped like an angel The gods have forgotten to say goodbye to these beautiful territories It’s impossible to keep shoes unmuddy along these trails Danny was right, I should have brought a pair of

2000

One Year Later

Poems

A year after 9/11, we still inhale the dust of our dead–     still read NY Times portraits of a Springsteen fan,         a lasagna home cooking specialist, a woman who would do anything for family

In Praise of the Seattle Coalition

Poems

They came from around the globe to change the shape of the globe They formed a human chain and sidewalks declared their support They led labor down unpaved roads and mountain ranges from all sides     tipped their peaks

December 1999

At the End of the Century

Poems

—written for Allen Ginsberg at his 70th birthday Ah century that has embraced me these past 39 years, that has set before my eyes so much tumult and catastrophe, that has taken too many of my friends and ravaged the

1996

What No God Knows

Poems

Even as I declare there is no god a subconscious one-eyed monster digs its bloody teeth       into my lower back to protest. Most times I know that notions of who knows god best       have

1988

Even a Poet Laureate Doesn’t Deserve to Get Beaten by the Police

Poems

As someone who doesn’t care much about government awards or titles given to artists, I still say a 70-year-old former Poet Laureate of the United States should have some extra layer of protection from getting beaten with billy clubs by

2011

Gregory’s Last Lines

Poems

He was a poet of silk and the shredding of silk. No earthling nor deity remained immune from his probing questions. When the academy turned its head for a pulitzer second he slipped an enlightened humor worm into the gut

January 2002

Can We Have Some Peace and Quiet Please?

Poems

The belligerent voices are yelling in the streets & on the radios calling for the big bombs of peace to fall, the smart bombs, the bombs that have passed their college entrance exams. It’s Orwellian the way everyone claims Orwell

2002

For Mark Bradley, Songwriter & Chef

Poems

Walt Whitman is crying. One of his greatest and most grateful children        has been taken        far too early. Beyond nihilistic smokescreens and MTV’s glare        of celebrated self-destructiveness, a few visionary potentials

1994

Ode to the Car Keys

Poems

In the late sixties we were so fed up we wanted to destroy it all. That’s when we changed the name of America and stuck in the “k”. The mood today is different, and the language that will respond to

1991-1992

Oklahoma City

Poems

I wonder where a Gulf War vet might get the ridiculous idea that you can solve all yr problems         w/ bombs

1996

7 Types of Bliss

Poems

–for Vivian No fires on the forest horizon but beautiful blue smoke emanating from inside. Vibrations at perfect complementary pitch from subatomic strings behind eyelids to moans and screams echoing across the pine tops. 7 hands, 49 positions, 2401 ecstasies,

July 2000

Rocking the Globe From DC

Poems

The cops have boarded up the demonstration’s     central planning space         & roped off     entire downtown Sunday DC yet, after Seattle, they and we believe         there is magic enough

May 2000

45th Birthday in 2002

Poems

Turned 45 while low back spasmed first time in few months– body getting old, but at least concepts of life        becoming clearer: everyone on planet has 3 basic needs: material (food, water, shelter, medical, solid spot of

January 2002

Who Does What To Whom

Poems

These questions of who does what are of little import now— the facts are we continued to have a great public life but our private one began suffering & you had the courage to leave. Why the top floor of

1994

What I Think Historians Will Say in 20 Years about the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election

Poems

I. September 2016 How crazy it was that America’s elders nominated the two most unpopular major-party candidates in U.S. history. On the Democratic side, a corporate-lensed centrist wife of a former president in a country founded on revolt against idea