Nobody Left to Read



O there's nobody left to read, to read!
There's nobody left to read!

"Homer"
May be as misnomer
For several otherwise out-of-work guys
Half his size.

And can I take heart from a work by committee,
The daily battle before the invested city?
The smug gods dilute me till I'm gone,
The pale eternal coffee break on the office lawn—
I want more!
It was all spacemen anyway.

O there's nobody left to read, to read,
There's nobody left to read!

I keep the bible in the bathroom,
Chapel grotto of my steadiest meditations
Where,
Bloody lamb of my intestine's perturbations
I am likeliest reduced to prayer.
Not that I'm getting anywhere.
At least the gods were my moral inferiors,
Not having to die.
Here I am outdone even in this.

O there's nobody left to read, and I'm tee-ed,
There's nobody left to read!

But if my ego is on a par with the Savior's
By what rule of thumb shall I plot my behaviors?
How shall my thoughts and my feelings agree?
O how shall I structure my ee-ssential me?

(I guess Arnold was right there, but that's all he gave me.
There isn't a line in his poems that can save me.)

Let's move up to Shakespeare,
Reconsider that sneer
At erotic esteem,
A Midsummer Night’s Dream,
Not the romp it might seem,
And the blind bastards we're.
No anomalous fear.
It's a bitch going steady.

Or let us to the height
Of the language, King Lear,
And again get the shove,
Feel the pain all we might
Over betraying love,
About which I felt awful already.


"To be or not to be, that is the question,"
Just isn't poetry. It's indigestion.

Sidney
Wrote sonnet sequences, didn'he?
Or was Astrophel and Stella
By some other fella?

Donne
Had a wicked sense of fun
Till he assumed a manner he'd formerly disdained
And got ordained.

Herbert
Was sweet as orange sherbert.
Whenever he felt caustic
He wrote an acrostic

Marvell
Refused to garvell
Before Cromwell
But wrote an ode of such strained ambiguity that it did just as well.

Dryden
Went ridin
With someone as slow as he
So they could discuss poesy.

Pope
Was no dope
At razor-slash disfigurement but himself was misshapen and short
And looked better in his wig when he wore't.

Gibbon
Wasn’t exactly fibbin,
But he spent his life ransacking Europe’s libraries only to cram it all
Into the myth of the fall.

Hume,
One has to assume,
Broke Kant’s dogmatic slumber
And made him even dum-ber.

Humanity is in a toilet stall
Reading graffiti on the wall.


A scrawl on the wall before anything critical.
The Trib gives me more than I need that's political.
I've affected to hate art
But it's dull when it ain't art—
As long as from boredom it saves us!

Religion and drugs I have put quite behind me.
The Eastern techniques, God, don't even remind me.
I'm hiding out here where my mother can't find me—
What do I want with Robert Graves's?

Just don't make it difficult, give me a break.
Please, the E-Z Read version of Finnegan’s Wake.
I've read one Beckett novel, that's all I can take—
We don't need a chore that enslaves us!

You can keep your new finds and your also-ran wit.
A fie on the crowd but this much I'll admit,
What floats to the top is the interesting lit—
I guess that's what the power of raves is.

The shelves at the bookstore are crowded, I know.
My own name's not there, I've flipped through the whole row.
Perhaps that's the reason I'm feeling so low.
It's awful when nobody craves us.

I slow down when I reach the pornography tier.
If I'm extra discreet I can read it all here,
But I linger and finger and slip into gear—
I can dig anything that depraves us.

Catullus
Did it with fellas.
His erotic passages are strong enough
But not long enough.

Anais's
Stories have predictable literary biases
But I can take a few modica
Of her erotica.

Papa was in less danger from the beast
Than Uncle Henry was of getting venereally deceased.
They're our two best bravados, though lots of people can't abide 'em
And Hem was more in touch with the woman inside him.

O there's nobody left to read, don't you see?
There's just nobody left to read!

Durrell
I'm quite sure'll
Be reborn in Tibet
Before I'm halfway through the Avignon Quintet.

Greene
Writes a prose that's nice and lean
And controls the point of view
Which precious few of the women do.

Virginia is full of the self-caressing female promise
You get undiluted by fuzzy stream of consciousness
sidetracks in D.M. Thomas.
His price is historical distortion and pedantically wilful guilt,
Which is a form of liberal-arts restraint that keeps our academic positions from being otherwise filt.

But Greene was wrong about God and women and Browning and
America and hot countries and everything that you would think might matta,
And he never could do what down where the fever shakes he knew and it was true, he hadda,
Which was get out of Hemingway's shadda.

Chandler
'S a smooth handler
Of plot decoys
And proof that American heroes are ten-year-old boys.




Some time ago, way back before we'uns,
Three Americans challenged the Europeans
And made aristocracy a Stateside preserve.
Wodehouse was getting on everybody's nerves.

The Odyssean house in the woods was the base
For Faulkner's chosen but nigger-vulnerable race
And he walled in with outrage as well as he could
Randy uncooperative southern womanhood.

F. Scott threw Dick Diver at whatever Yerp could hit him with
And it was home grown money and a movie star he finally undid him with
And if you could prefer an English gentleman after that book
It had to be your Gatsbyesque parvenu outlook.

Papa went to Paris and fished the Seine,
Take that,
And his colonel waded into Venice in the wake of less imposing men
And he brought it all down to having balls at bottom,
Even or perhaps especially when like Jake you ain't got'em.

But I'm not persuaded it's worth all the fuss
To prove other folks is inferior to us,
Not when it's so blamed obvy-uss.

you remember Hemingway
when Fitzgerald said the rich are different from us
answered yes they have more money
and told him he could increase his reach
by putting a pillow under Zelda
but did you hear
when Fitzgerald said they're different from us
the Europeans
how he said yes
in America they live happily ever after
and in Europe they live happily ever now?
in the garlic belt anyway
I knew a guy who knew a guy
who knew Hemingway
and he said he said that
doesn't really sound like him
I'm fairly sure about the other stuff

Norman Mailer and Robert Cohn
Went walking out at sunset by the sea.
Norman said to Robert, "I know you're only here on loan
But the same guy who made you made me.
He made John O'Hara and he made James Jones
And Richard Braudigan and Antonionee.
He made more writers than Brando made actors
But the last and best he made was me,
See?
The last and best he made was me."
They walked on in silence and the waves washed in
And Norman kicked along absently,
Put his hands in his pockets and thought about things
And looked about as glum as he could be.
He said, "Brando won't speak to me,
Marilyn wouldn't sleep with me, I'm short and ugly and my thing's too small to see,
And what I want to know, what I called you here to ask you  is,
Do you think he might have liked me?"
Cohn looked at him sharply and Mailer brought his guard up,
 said
"Well you punched him out, you should know!"
"Norman," whispered Robert, "you're confusing fact and fiction.
It was Barnes with whom I came to blows."
"Yah but Papa let you beat him, he could feel you in your fists!
Do you really mean to stand there and say
That you didn't feel the victory engorge you like grace?
You fought the bull, boy! And you lived another day!"
But Cohn just whispered, "Papa don't care,
                          Papa don't care,
                          Papa don't care,
                          Papa don't care,"
And faded in the gloom and then was gone,
And Norman hung his head and trudged back to his room
And sat there staring at the gun.

Emerson
Said I shouldn't rely on anyone,
And there are worse things than sitting around on a hot afternoon reading sermons about the eternal Me,
Especially at the Hellenic-American Union library where it’s free.

Poe’s caprice
With Berenice
I hope began
With a dental plan.

Rimbaud
Is okay as kids go
But derangement of the senses
Is beyond my expenses.

Thomas the Stern
Had a lot to learn
And more to teach
But his grasp exceeded his reach.

Ezra
Said, "How sezya,
Elyet,
Kin ya spell yet?"

Auden
Discovered God in
The Age of Anxiety
And spent the rest of his life worrying about the
legitimacy of Anglican bishopry and notions of sexuo-spiritual propriety.

Stephen Spender said "Phew, Wystan Hugh!
You'd better go and hose yourself down in the loo!"

Joyce
Made a dubious choice
When he had a headmaster cultivated enough to know Shakespeare, albeit without a graduate degree from the University of Chicago,
Quote Iago.

(Which is less baloneyous
Than quoting Polonius.)
Eliot was a poet who preferred
Winter to spring,
England to America,
Death to life,
And religion to anything.
It's an approach.
But what have I to do with these iron men?




O, for a book, for a book, for a book,
For a book that's as frivolous as I'm,
That won't frustrate my quest,
Viz, to understand less,
And will just help me while out the time.

O, for a book to which I can come home
When the company gets too oppressive—
Nothing too heated
So in case I do read it
I won't get all tense and obsessive.

O, for a book that will give me the look
Of a scholar in truth-seeking to'ment,
A prop in my lap
While I'm taking my nap
With society's respect for the moment.

O, for a book I can hold in my hand
At the end of my day when I'm weari-ed.
Some animal feed
I can sit up and read
When my honey-babe's getting her period.

De Sade
Might have been perfectly glad
To have had as his hassock
Masoch.

The Marquis was certainly an extreme of his species.
I just hope he flossed after gobbling those feces.

Scott
To my mind was not.
His endings are sufficiently maudlin
But he wrote a whole historical romance about the Highland
 Uprising and he didn't even put Cullodin in!

Blake
Is jake
But I have to cross my eyes
When he prophesies.

(To Wm. Blake, Engraver, a haiku re “Did he who made the lamb make thee?”:

Yeah, same guy.  When I
Look into my own heart there
Are lambs and tygers.)

Wordsworth
Felt among flocks and herds mirth,
But his pastoral song went on and on so long he didn't even
 get the beginning finished, which is okay with me,
And I could wish he were a tree.

Browning
I always picture frowning,
Possibly because he married Elizabeth Barrett,
Or possibly because he was squeezing Shelley into a style
 of modernist difficulty and the shoe fit but he
 couldn't quite wear it.

O I much prefer Shelley to Keats!
Keats is so damnably neat!
He left his fond heart
For us pickled in Art
But his atmosphere's sick-room effete.

O I much prefer Shelley to Keats!
When he can't find the word, Shelley cheats!
I mean, scarcely mature,
Mais mon Dieu! Quelle hauteur!
Keats only measured five feet!

O don't give me Keats, give me Shelley!
I like him so well I can't tell'ee!
His fuck-you effulgence
Wins old men's indulgence—
Who cares? He indulged himself silly!

O I much prefer Shelley to Keats!
Put your scarf on, John! Isn't he sweet?
But Shelley is careless
Where Keats is so airless;
Shelley is attitude,
Keats tends to platitude;
Keats did write prettily,
I'm glad he saw Italy—
O if either had lived
Think what he might have gived!
No but let us leave Keats
At the Goddess's teats
For I much prefer, much prefer, much prefer, much prefer,
Much prefer Shelley to Keats!

And I much prefer Pinter to Beckett!
Beckett's a positive Hecate!
Just reading the dude
Puts a damp on my mood
And when I feel the impulse I check it.

I've been told Beckett's better than Pinter.
It's the grope in the dark Beckett's inter.
He can draw you a map
Specifying the trap
But he won't get your soul through the winter.

Yes I much prefer Pinter to Beckett.
Pinter's just that much more neckett.
He love/hates women
Where Sam love/hates Him and
So sparely you'd scarcely expeck it.

O I much prefer Pinter to Beckett!
And although you may say what the heck it
Just doesn't much matter,
The former, the latter,
Still one is a scheme
And the other is dream;
Beckett's reduceable,
Pinter's seduceable,
Sure, both are depressive
But Beckett's excessive—
Took Joyce's maximal,
Found it all axeable—
No I much prefer, much prefer, much prefer, much prefer,
Much prefer Pinter to Beckett.

(A park in Paris. April. Sunshine, birds, levity of nature. Enter SAMUEL BECKETT and X, crossing left. BECKETT’S hands are in his overcoat pockets. X bends back his head and extends his arms laterally, palms up.)

X: Ah, it's good to be alive!

BECKETT: I wouldn't go that far.

(Exeunt.)



He lived for our sins
And didn't disdain
To list them.
Of course he always wins
But the holy Irish smell of a rigged game
Helps me resist him.
He knows where the world stops and he begins
(Not a bad definition of pain),
In exquisite trivia and a closed system.

Samuel Beckett,
     The writer as skimp.
Ernest Hemingway.
     The writer as simp.
Scott Fitzgerald
     The writer as primp.
W.H. Auden,
     The writer as wimp.
Gertrude Stein,
     The writer as blimp.
Henry Miller,
     The writer as imp.
Arthur Miller,
     The writer as pimp.
D.M. Thomas,
     The writer as nymph.
Susan Sontag,
     The writer as lymph.
Truman Capote,
     The writer as limp.
The Sixth Lord Byron,
     The writer as gimp.
Ezra Pound,
     The writer as chimp.
Normal Mailer,
     The writer as shrimp.

O there's nobody left to read, M'ma,
There's nobody left to read.

But they all give me something,
Stand me in new winds,
Rearrange my hair.
Restless spirit trying to incarnate,
Feeling my way,
Winning through to silence,
Betrayed by boredom.
The whole thing here is forgetting.

The thing with Vladimir Nabokov was
A dyspepsia almost as noisome as Waugh's.
Life offered neither
A very long breather
From constant unbearable irks.

Now I've wrung my enjoyment from both of these men
I need not be exposed to them ever again
But I suffer the scourge
Of a lingering urge
To pour Eno all over their works!



Nabokov was annoyed
By Freud,
Considered Eliot
Beneath yelling at
And Dali
Too benighted to rally;
Waugh regarded Eliot
As brelliot
But thought Picasso
Was an asso.



Had Nabokov proceeded to his Ph.D.
Would he have to shake his polymathic rattles at me?
Had Woody Allen only finished his B.A.
Where'd his undergradjut exercises be today?

The best novellas
Are written by fellas
With a yen
For men.

Billy Budd
In his captain’s blood
Is the bluest emotion
On Melville’s ocean

Malarial Daisy,
So nobly lazy,
Was better
Than the guy who’d forget her.

Marlow
Carries a lady’s emotional cargo
But it’s for Kurtz
That he hurts.

Aschenbach
Gave his conscience the sach
To keep Tadzio
On his radzio.

Flaubert
Shaved his short hair
And reclined in the raw.
“Madame Bovary, c’est mwaw!”

Camus
Liked it cru.
He got his workingman's heart out of hock
Rolling his rock.

Sartre
Let an enormous fartre
And sighed, "Descartes be damned.
I stink, therefore I am."

Robbe-Grillet
Sat all day
In thrall
To the elusive wall.

Zola
Has the flaw
That the earthy passages that should make me drool
Make me want to fish my jeans out of his pool.



I used to be a semiologist
But now I’m not Saussure.

O help me, o help me
Swim on as I used!
As hard as I strike out
I can't get through Proust!

O save me, o save me
My friends, don't disown me!
I can't fight the feeling
That Yeats is a phony!

O keep me, o keep me
From being too frank!
I see in Bill Burroughs
The neighborhood crank!



And Waugh begat Greene, and Greene begat Burgess,
Sequential ejaculations of Catholic urges,
But Tony felt Irish so there had to be Joyce,
And the result is a cloyingly pedantic voice,
Diction so puffed up it parodies Pride
And baldness of purpose no sidesweep can hide.



Whenever I don't forget
I like to say "serviette."
It has the agreeable effectum
Of placing my index finger in Nancy Mitford's rectum.



O there's nobody left to read, tra-la,
There's nobody left to read.



The very outset
Of the Raj Quartet,
“Imagine, then,”
Did me in.

Gore Vidal and Tom Wolfe Two
Were out together dancing cheek to cheek one night
When Gore pulled back to get the younger man's attention
And to watch his pupils tighten in the light.
He said, "I hope you realize that you and I are yoked in tandem
To a grave responsibility:
We direct the lower-middle American mind and hand 'em
All those facile reconstructions of their history.
You've got painting and repulsive architecture and the moon
And I redecorate the politics in my own way--
In fact it's not too much to say, and this is more than just conjecture,
We've become the rear-view mirrors of the country today!
Of course you dress like a clown and you know zip about the rich
But there are more considerations than vulgarity;
At least your instincts are sound, and you can maunder like a bitch
And there aren't many pop historians as shallow as me!"
Then he gave Tom a push and whirled him underneath his arm
And snapped him back to his embrace and they danced nose to nose
Until Tom began to fidget and to worry about the harm
That all this clutching might be doing to his clothes.
So he worked himself away and sort of leaned back with the beat
And said, "Well, Gore, you know, the trouble is, you worry me.
Sometimes I gaze into your eyes until I get the creepy feeling
That there's no one really in there looking back at me!"
But Gore just smiled the well-bred smile
Of one whose mind is so refined it has become, well, air,
And said, "I'm Gore Vidal, and I was Kennedy's pal,
And what you take for mere vapidity is savoir-faire.
But if you want the real me, if you want to probe me deeply,
I suggest that you address the service I perform.
You know we're both kind of picky, we both find the country hicky,
We're both doing what we can to elevate the norm:
Now, my historical researches have gone quite a way to purchase us
A destiny and something like a tone of class,
And where could we have anchored any real sense of our past
Without my speculations on the size of Washington's ass?"
Tom just nodded and tried to keep in step
And stared off at the distance as Gore steered along.
He had the strange but grown-up feeling he was finally getting hep—
He had a sense now who he was and where he belonged.



O the whole thing's gone to seed, to seed,
There's nobody left now to read!

Joyce said yes,
Beckett said no,
It's a draw.

Swann obsessed,
Flits to and fro
What he saw.

James’s quest,
Savor and know,
Love the flaw.

Hamlet stressed:
Might father’s bro
Be p’pa?

Mother's breast,
Oedipus so
Had it raw.

Hero's test,
Take any blow—
Pick a straw.

Banquet guest,
Go with the flow,
Shout hurrah!

You can never quite land on Henry James except with the feet of a bird,
And the vast contextualization of sentences qualifies even a word.
Ironic detachment is so complete it is understood rather than heard,
And when he does come to earth it's so touching its slightness seems somehow absurd.



James
Aims
At the pretty disguises of need
But he takes forever to read.



Henry James,
Henry James,
American good just ain’t the same’s
Europe’s beauty,
So at odds with doing one’s duty.
In the end, as it were,
You do prefer
Goodness,
Not indeed for its vulgar shouldness,
Dreary onus of the dutiful.
But because it’s beautiful.


Hart Crane
Had beautiful pain
For his verse to refine,
But I only get every fifth line.

Vonnegut
Ought to get
A white suit and cane
If he wants to be Twain.

Deacon John
Writes great Bech but his novels are a yawn,
Infected as they are by the Dickensian dream of a clean
 kitchen floor
And a respectable golf score.

He should move back to Boston
And marry Jane Austen.

Austen
I get deliciously lost in,
But is not the pinched and priggish old foil, for whom her disdain is more unrelieved than it could otherwise possibly be,
She?

Byron
I have to confess to admirin.
He makes me ache
To be a rake.

Whereas Styron
Is twice again as tirin
As the first Tom Wolfe
Who he seems to regard as some earlier version of himsolfe.

O there's nobody left to read, to read,
There's nobody much left to read.
an old poet called e.e. cumming
s met a centerfold out one night slumming **
when he got her unstapled
he found himself aprilled…
and afterwards walked her home humming

The trouble with reading Dorian Gray
Is you stare at yourself in the mirror all day.

Frost
Got lost
On the road taken
And was attacked and brutally buggered by a painting by
 Francis Bacon.

Lorca
Is an absolute corka.
He wrote a most amazingly sensuous poem about water
But more plays than he hadda oughter.

Yeats
Grates.
The way he went is
So portentous.

Lawrence
Got more attention than he warrants.
He transcended his class, which the English could not but
 think was peachy,
But if I want blood rites and domination I'll read Nietszchey.

Nash
Is not without dash
And where would this slapdash composition be
Sans lui?

Kafka
Is good when he provokes lafta
But he wouldn't be terribly buoyed
To know that the foremost expressionist writer was Freud.

My sister gave me the three-volume cardboard bookcase set  of Lord of the Rings.
God, how I hate to look at that thing.

Criticism is death said Nijinsky
But who can resist death
Especially one this easeful?
Let us factor Faulkner thus:
Joyce plus Scott
Times streamof-Jim-Beam-consciousnuss.
Scott caused the Civil War
Said Twain
Much less civil
Waged by Bill.
Bigot
Snob
Sentimentalist
Portentalist
Winner of the Nobel Prize
Vocational dandy
Oscar Wilde in planter drag
Scarecrow posed
In the Emperor's new clothes
Duddy of all fuddies
And how his own equation?
One dream-wandering old lady
Is worth any number of backwater family trees
However urned.
Let him kill his own darlings
Is my wish.
I like my phonies Irish.



Yeats
Skates
On sewer grates,
Creates
States
He often hates
And waits
For dates
With other fates.

Rupert Brooke
Mistook
A south-seas vacation
For romantic elation.

Robert Lowell
Despairs of his soul.
His shifting glimmers of consciousness just
End in disgust.

John Barth
Is a pain in the arth.
You write like that when you're
Courting tenure.

Walker Percy,
Grant us mercy:
Emotion just wilts on the bough and rots
While you arrange your thoughts.



Tennessee Williams and Malcolm Lowry
Each in his own way's a trifle flowery:
Preoccupied with being aesthetic;
Like modern Greek poets, too poetic.
Each's sine qua non is self-pity—
Tennessee because he wasn't pretty,
Malcolm because his cock was pathetic.
But Tennessee does break through into health;
Lowry's labyrinth recoils on itself.




Lenny Bruce
Had juice
But his sanctimonious tone of rebuke
Made both of us puke.

Paul Theroux
Squeezed through
But knocking around in the world too long
Made the boy sullen, bad-tempered and wrong.

O the garden is all full of weeds, just weeds,
There's nobody left now to read!
Bellow
Apparently thinks he's quite a handsome fellow,
And it is profoundly to be hoped that his looks
Are more symmetrical than his books.

Brett Easton Ellis
Seems to want to tell us
That face-lifts and sodomy
Are more popular than they ought to be.

Margaret Atwood
Hoped her hat would
Stretch her frown
Upsidedown.

Robertson Davies is hard not to hate,
He seems so determined to be second-rate.

Tom Sharpe
Had the wit to harp
On a worthy cause.
That's all it was.

Muriel Spark
Is whistling in the dark.
She thinks everyone in a lurch
Is an allegory of the Church.

Pantagruel
Passed a minimalist comb through his seven-league ponytail
And out hopped—don't tell me!
Donald Barthelme!

Philip Roth
Is all in a froth,
In fact a positive fever,
To be Cheever.

Salmon Rushdie
Hasn't been treated all that unjustie.
His confinement couldn't be more boring
Than his outpouring.

Sontag's
Opinions in the learned rags
Are final
But her fiction smells like vinyl.

Here is my plaster statue
Of Leonard Conen,
Best thing groanin.
His spirit is off
Being true to itself
Or possibly trying to renew itself
While here in the silence
I bow my head in homage
To what I have briefly become
To see if I could use,
And muse.

Monkish whorer
I loved your contradictions.
So purely you burn
For fifteen-old girls
(How can I live in the world with your exploits?),
So neatly fold yourself
Into your disciplines.
Everything is a discipline,
It's tiresome
And I don't care for purity.

Doubting psalmist,
Failed saint,
Rabbinical Jesuit
Hearing your own confession
(There can little interfere
Between your mouth and your ear),
Behind each a clinical depression.
Fearer and trembler,
Comforter of puberty,
The bride still unravished,
The song less new.

Hitler groupy
(Who else believed you?),
Israeli warrior,
Meditator,
Partisan hater,
Priest of pop liturgy
Praying for power and
The Arab veil,
The preferred fate for your sister.
Chemistry-set tradition-monger,
Star without capped teeth.
Interesting, if fetal.

Aspirant slave
Who would bribe exaltation,
The soul's, the body's,
With prostration—
It falls off me.

I prefer not to grovel
Unless at gunpoint
Or its equivalent.
No doubt I'll learn.

Retreat meanwhile
To an uncandled niche
In the cathedral,
Bleed in the dark
Like my mother,
Quietly reproach my arrogance
When some whim
Brings me in
From the glaring street
For cool incensed air
And a friendly ceiling,
A ten-minute tourist of your pain.

Say wo-ya.
Say wo-ya.
Well I got Barthelme's brother,
     Forget his name now.
Well I got Martin Amis and I
     Find him pretty lame now.
I got Charles Bukowski, don't like to
     Think about his teeth
And I got Evelyn Waugh dead sittin
     ON HIS TOILET SEAT, now!

Say wo-ya.
Say wo-ya.
Well I got post-war German novels I
     Wouldn't wipe your butt with,
I got long-winded Latinos
     Too dull to cut with,
I got forty years of
     Pusillanimous verse
And I got Philip Larkin, he's like
Drivin in reverse, now baby.

Say WO-ya!
Say WO-ya!
I tell ya,
I got books say "Humor,"
     Don't make me laugh,
I got E.M. Forster, you could
     Cut him down by half.
I got Marguerite Du-ras, sometimes I
     Read her in the bath
And if I want
     heavy
     P.M.S.
     I got:
     SYL-VIA PLATH, all right now.

I said I got the blues,
I got the nothing-left-to-read-now blues,
You know I do.

Well I got Kenneth Patchen, he's too
     Hard t'unnerstan,
I got Sommerset Maugham now,
     He's exotic but he's bland,
I got V.S. Naipal but
     What he says ain't always true
And I got new African writin comin
     OUT THE FUCKIN WAZOO, now.
Wo yes, you got it too.

Well I'm packin my bags up, baby,
Movin outa this zoo.
Be talkin to you.


Also by Robert MacLean, the "Toby" books,
Will You Please Fuck Off? at Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon FRAmazon DEAmazonITAmazonES and Smashwords;
Foreign Matter at Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon FRAmazon DEAmazonITAmazonES and Smashwords; 
Total Moisture at Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon FRAmazon DEAmazonITAmazonES and Smashwords; 
and these, too,
Mortal Coil: A Comedy of Corpses at Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon FRAmazon DE, AmazonIT and AmazonES;
The President's Palm Reader: A Washington Comedy at Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon FRAmazon DEAmazonIT and AmazonES; and
Greek Island Murder at Amazon USAmazon UKAmazon FRAmazon DEAmazon IT and Amazon ES.

5 comments:

  1. There's nobody left to read. We're all too busy writing.

    Steven O'Connor

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You mean you've gone through everybody, or you just don't have time?

      Delete
  2. Your knowledge is extensive.
    Your study so intensive.
    I feel quite apprehensive.

    I am a part of all that I have met,
    and come to the end of reading material too,
    am vain enough to think that I can write.
    That I might
    have something to say.

    Horse rider, painter, writer,
    I've always been
    behind the times.

    louise3anne twitter

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, fellow-poet. It's great not to have anything to say. Liberating. I remember Guido in Fellini's 8 1/2: "I have nothing to say, but I insist on saying it."

      Delete