Tuesday, September 16, 2014, 6:30 pm
535 West 22nd Street, 5th Floor
New York City
Larry Fagin is a poet, editor, publisher, and teacher. He publishes Adventures in Poetry books, and previously edited the poetry magazine Sal Mimeo. He is the founder of Danspace, the dance program at St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery. His most recent book is Complete Fragments (2012).
Remembrance of Things Lapsed
While in Hong Kong I accepted gifts of a Patek Philippe watch and custom suits at Sam’s Tailor and Modestos. I came to meetings with Poland Spring water bottles filled with vodka. I wore clerical garb to the opera. I’m sorry for the pain I caused. I’m not sure how much time is left but I don’t feel anxious. There are many distractions—art and literature, music, cards, Anna, you, Gayfryd, the cats, collections and recollections. Thinking back to Fall 1967, when I took over Reliance Insurance and gave my first reading at the Poetry Project—all gone now. And just what was wrong with “all its dizzy raptures”? Eh? Tell me that. But keep trying. Look at Ashbery over there. He gives it all he’s got.
Mitch Highfill is the author of Moth Light (2008), Rebis (2007), and Koenig’s Sphere (2003). His work has appeared in Cuz, Snare, Gallery Works, The Poker and The World, among other magazines, and in the anthology Heights of the Marvelous (2000).
Where is my inheritance, about which
a tribe, a name, a rose? Where was I born
leaning against a tree outside the court
of last resort like a metaphysical novel
leaves no flower unplucked, trying to
remember my last time at the plate
when all the trash talk was revelation;
all your marbles were in the same bag
like irony with hostages, complete
negation. An opaque body strung between
trees but the wind blew past the dictates
of others, the marketplace and its
mutations – not an easy grace, not grace
at all. The letter never sent when love
produces a state of balance, a shining
alphabet whose trade is blood and water.
Inescapable viscosity. Eager to ring bells
and light bonfires. Not asking for statistics
but becoming the numbers since your death
under the offshore. To push the difference
between theory and proof, my subconscious
fatalism jealous of need, neither eating
nor drinking but disastrous and angry
like mountains through the windshield.
One’s right of reprisal so that we have unknown
collaborators and we remember it all the time.