The Eight Candle: I Wanted To Be Him

Sunday, December 13, 2015 - 5:03 am

The Eight Candle: I Wanted To Be Him

Meryl Meisler, another excellent photographer, was making a new book called SASSY 70’s about the 70’s, Jews, disco, Brooklyn, and a few other things like sex. She asked me for an Allen Ginsberg poem. She knew I loved him.

Allen Ginsberg
or I Wanted to be Him
Part One
When I moved to New York City
in the 70’s from Ansonia small
factory town in Connecticut
Allen G was who I wanted to meet.
My friend Jean Boudin she was a Good Beat Poet
she said Allen will see anyone
if they’ll buy him breakfast. She
found his number from Kenneth Koch
and I, an office temp at Rochester Button
had plenty of breakfast money.
In the diner he was Allen Ginsberg.
Ask me anything he said, in exchange
for two eggs. How can I be a poet
like you? Not having read even one word
I wrote he said You Are a Poet,
Esther Cohen. Can I quote you?
I asked. You have my lifetime permission
He said and all these years later, I am.
Part Two
A few weeks ago at a poet’s retreat
in San Miguel de Allende the British
Poet laureate, a Sir, he did not like
my poems. You he said infusing the You
with Ultimate British Disdain You
He repeated are in the same category
as that American poet Allen Ginsberg.
At long last, I replied.


About the Series. Postcards for Hanukkah is a sequence of eight photo-poems by Matthew Septimus and Esther Cohen. Each day, for the eight days of Hanukkah, we will release a new postcard, which we hope give some light to you.

Share Post

Contributor

is a novelist and poet living in New York City. She’s the author of several books, including Book Doctor. Read more of her writing on her blog I Am and I Am Not.

4
is a professional photographer who lives in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn with his wife, two children, dog, cat, and the various birds he feeds in his backyard. See more of his work at matthewseptimus.com.

Share Your Reflection

Reflections

apples