Saturday, June 6, 2009

Poem: Traffic

from Portrait and Dream: New and Selected, published by Coffee House Press. Cross posted from the Academy of American Poets, "Poem-A-Day" feature. Read more about this book.

by Bill Berkson

Choice is painful,
Occasion but a drag.

Poems are made by poets,
That's no lie.

"What's wrong with this town,"
A New York driver says,

"There's too much art—and
Too many art lovers!"
"You an artist?"
"Nah, I just drive cab."

New York as topos for a Mountainair poetry blog post? What could I be thinking? There's the obvious: "it's my plog & I can publish what I want," the less obvious: dss chapters on urban poets & cityscapes in poetry, and even the relevant - a connection to the August 22 Poets & Writers Picnic (plog raison d'être)

Gary Glazner, NM poet with Willard roots, featured reader & workshop guest instructor (but presuably not the one running Melbourne pubs) calls New Yorker home these days as Managing Director of the Bowery Poetry Club.

As for NYC and poetry (that is why we are here, isn't it?), there's Whitman, Crane, Moore, Mayakovsky, Ashberry et altria. The Brooklyn Bridge as poetry landmark For Spanish (& Spanglish) speakers, there are the Nuyorican poets writing in Spanish, English and the full macaronic spectrum in between.

More New York City in poetry

New York Notes by Harvey Shapiro
Mannahatta by Walt Whitman
The Lower East Side of Manhattan by Victor Hernández Cruz
September 1, 1939 by HW Auden
• "Calles y sueños" (from Poeta en Nueva York) by Lorca

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