Friday, April 8, 2011

National Poetry Month - Day 8: Allen Ginsberg

Early this morning my wife was carrying my 11 month old son around and brought him within arm's length of the poetry bookshelf. I decided that whichever book he grabbed would be the collection from which I'd choose today's poem. To my dismay, he pulled out Allen Ginsberg's posthumous collection Death & Fame. I declared it a practice round and had my son try again. The next item he pulled out was the huge Oxford Book of American Poetry - the recent one edited by David Lehman - really another bookshelf in itself. My wife, always keeping me honest admonished me: "He did pick out the Ginsberg book first." OK, OK. Here is "Dream" from Death & Fame: Last Poems, 1993-1997 (HarperCollins, 1999).


     There was a huge bulge in my right side, this dream recently - just now I realized I had a baby, full grown that came out of my right abdomen while I in hospital with dangerous hepatitis C.
     I lay there awhile, wondering what to do, half grateful, half apprehensive. It'll need milk, it'll need exercise, taken out into fresh air with baby carriage.
     Peter there sympathetic, he'll help me, bent over my bed, kissed me, happy a child to care for. What compassion he has. Reassured I felt the miracle was in Peter's reliable hands - but gee what if he began drinking again?: No this'll keep him straight. How care for a baby, what can I do?
     Worried & pleased since it was true I slowly woke, still thinking it'd happened, consciousness returned slowly 2:29 AM I was awake and there's no little mystic baby - naturally appeared, just disappeared --
     A glow of happiness next morn, warm glow of pleasure half the day.
March 27, 1997, 4 A. M.

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