Tuesday, February 14, 2006

"All That Gas"- Frank O'Hara

All That Gas

Tradewinds where are you blowing
Allen and Peter why haven't you come back
I am walking along the sidewalk
and I see a puddle and it's god, greedy god
always adding to yourself with raindrops and spit
we don't like that, god
and the rainbow is slooping over the Chrysler Building
like a spineless trout, ugly and ephemeral
it is no sign of hope when things get ugly

I am leaping towards the charnel-basket
of a 6th avenue conscience as the wave
remurmurs an abdication of Moriarty's chops
and the slender Ziegfeld-Egyptian tobacco
smiles and (roll your own) rolls on
where it makes the puddle even browner
not as skin is brown but as souls go bad
a limburger prescience under the clear (no rainbow)

now it is dark on 2nd street near the abattoir
and a smell as of hair comes up the dovecotes
as the gentleman poles a pounce of pigeons
in the lower East Sideness rippling river
where have you gone, Ashes, and up and out
where the Sorbonne commissions frigidaires
from Butor and Buffet and Alechinsky storages
Beauty! said Vera Prentiss-Simpson to Pal Joe
and the hideaway was made secure against the hares

you see me but you don't care
like in an illuminated manuscript
it is nothing
except a small religious flashlight to light fires
and under the crimson welt of Number 16 East 11th
little cross-hatches were imposed by workmen
to espalier the sighs of the parrot Chum
as he dug his toes into the TV set
and commenced his airy Cara nome
dropping as much as he could on the floor
as the air-puddles drop us to our knees in storms.

-- Frank O'Hara


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