Poems by David Alpaugh

Have You Seen....   Statement   The Young   Unrefined

Have You Seen The New Poetry Stamp?

    "She is very very very good, the fine agile turn
    like an arabesque that blasts, lightning-like, into
    a ghastly abyss."                --E. Annie Proulx

    "She has arrived in our world like a comet."  
                                             --Galway Kinnell

As I stood in line with poets, good, and not
so good, waiting to buy stamps for our SASE's
the PO door blew open and in came Alice
Quinn, like a breath of hot air, like a breeze.

She yelled, "Out of my way!" We all drew back
for she was pushing a nice old lady in a chair.
"Do you know who this is? I'm the New Yorker

Like a comet they streaked to the head of the line
and Alice grabbed a trembling clerk by the hair:
"One poetry stamp, NOW!--and keep your Robert

The clerk gasped, "We've got Emily Dickinson...
T.S. Eliot, Marianne Moore. Can she compare?"
"You're a company man," sneered Quinn, "full
of spite--because you didn't discover ADAIR."

Then facing us like Shelley's OZYMANDIAS
she cried, "Look on my chutzpah and despair!
After poisoning you with batches of New Yorker
poems for years, I've got the antidote--ADAIR."

"She's 83 years old; lives in a nursing home;
and she's blind! What a feature for Jim Lehrer!
I'm changing literary history. We are, that is,

Waiting in the parking lot, Bob Mezey in a limo;
they scratch out and down the road they tear--
with Sharon, Eamon, Maxine, Josephine hurling

Inside, we're all waiting for Exquisite Corpse
to body bag us. Still, nobody shouts, "Unfair!"
Alice may return and help one of us jump

Copyright © by David Alpaugh


Today I am throwing old checks away
That lay in a shoebox five years, fearing audit.
They're free--free, at last, to burn or decay.

Money still talks, but her ghouls simply say,
"Something was sold at a price and you bought it."
Today I am throwing old checks away.

Each bears its signature; year, month & day;
And pays to the order of Mammon: due profit.
They're free--free, at last, to burn or decay.

Here's one for Sears; here's one for ballet;
Airfare to Rome; a homeless benefit.
Today I am throwing old checks away,

Saying "Ciao!" to old wolves they kept at bay
While they tended our credit and fed it bit by bit.
They're free--free, at last, to burn or decay.

I crumple the papered past. I murmur, "Hurray."
It's my shredder now must reconcile chit, chit, chit.
Today I am throwing old checks away.
They're free--free, at last, to burn or decay.

Copyright © by David Alpaugh

The Young

are begging theory
to spare them from experience
politics from history
poetics from the line.

Some sprint, some hobble
to the table--all in time
break bread here
gulp the dead black wine.

Copyright © by David Alpaugh


I'm vulgar.
If I were wheat I'd be bulgar.

If I were a bird I'd be Crow.
If I were absurd I'd be Pozzo.

If I were a Norse God I'd be Loki.
If I were a dance, the hokey-pokey.

Slip me the keys to the kingdom
and I'll let the riffraff come--
the leper, the beggar, the poet and the bum.

If I were on the surface I'd be scum.

If I could put on strings, I'd be a ukulele
and if Segovia came, I'd say, "Sorry--
only Arthur Godfrey can strum me."

Things gross in nature become me.

I am the chaff which the wind driveth away.
I am the human laugh of the feral child at play.

I'm the only man at the brothel
who still goes upstairs with Olga!

Even my rhyme is half-assed.
I'm vulgar.

Copyright © by David Alpaugh

Poems by Frederick Glaysher

Dag Hammarskjöld   from The Bower Of Nil....

Dag Hammarskjöld  [HEAR THIS POEM READ ON SHOW 8!]

No more of these sad tones
of fear and the scourge of war,
of chaos and anarchy,
of the passions of humankind.

Though the first movements wander
among the dark and threatening
conflicts of Beethoven's Ninth,
the "Ode to Joy" shall come.

All the millions will unite
as brothers, surrendered
to the way of peace,
to a higher synthesis of joy.

Copyright © by Frederick Glaysher

from The Bower of Nil: A Narrative Poem  [HEAR THIS POEM READ ON SHOW 8!]

Democracy, in some form or another,
which the people shall freely choose,
will outlive or crush communism.
Somehow the challenge will be met and won.
Spengler's Prussian Socialism ended
in catastrophe for all Europe,
exposing the barbaric ethic of Darwin.
Sooner or later the time will come,
regalvanizing the United Nations,
formed to crush the onslaught of fascism,
empowering the will to implement,
fully and unreservedly, the UN Charter—
a return to the Wilsonian ideal—
to preserve what civilization holds sacred.
Toynbee was right . . . ever since Sumer. . . .
Caesar's legions will finally serve all nations.
Then swords shall be beaten into plowshares,
democracy yield its choicest fruit.
Slowly, gradually, a marvelous
world civilization will develop,
with a world Executive, supported by
an international Force, guided by
the adjudications of a Supreme Tribunal,
serving the interests of all nations,

implementing the decisions
of a global Legislature, freely
elected by all the inhabitants
of the diverse but unified planet,
mirroring, however faintly, His Kingdom.

Copyright © by Frederick Glaysher


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