Certain Words Must Be Said. Photo by Duane Michals, 1987
AFTER ALL, WHAT ELSE IS THERE TO SAY?
When I sit before a paper
writing my mind turns
in a kind of feminine
madness of chatter;
but to think to see, outside,
in a tenement the walls
of the universe itself
I wait: wait till the sky
appears as it is,
wait for a moment when
the poem itself
is my way of speaking out, not
declaiming of celebrating, yet,
but telling the truth
Photo by Duane Michals
Two boys went into a dream diner
and ate so much the bill was five dollars,
but they had no idea
what they were getting themselves into,
so they shoveled
garbage into a truck in the alley
to make up for the food.
After about five minutes, wondering
how long they would have
to work off what it cost, they asked
the diner owner when
their penance or pay would be over.
Little did they realize–they were
that a grown worker works half a day
for money like that.
Warren Beatty photographed by Duane Michals, 1961
Who is the shroudy stranger of the night,
Whose brow is mouldering green, whose reddened eye
Hides near the window trellis in dim light,
And gapes at old men, and makes children cry?
Who is the laughing walker of the street,
The alley mummy, stinking of the bone,
To dance unfixed, thought bound in shadow feet,
Behind the child that creeps on legs of stone?
Who is the hungry mocker of the maze,
And haggard gate-ghost, hanging by the door,
The double mummer in whose hooded gaze
World has beckoned unto world once more?
William S. Burroughs and Jack Kerouac
Peter Orlovsky, William S. Burroughs and Paul Lund
Ken Kesey and The Merry Pranksters
Neal Cassady driving The Merry Pranksters’ bus
Neil Cassady and Natalie Jackson
Warren Beatty and Madonna
William S. Burroughs
Burroughs and David Hockney
Patti Smith and Burroughs