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February 03, 2020


Well, as Robert Lowell somewhat stuffily remarked, beginning his reading after his fellow poet on the program, Frank O'Hara had campily introduced his final poem as composed just that evening, coming over for the event on the Brooklyn ferry (O'Hara very much then a savage "Redman" to Lowell's official "Paleface"): "You will forgive me, but I am afraid I don't have any poems I've composed in the last couple hours, on a ferry ride." (I'm doing my best to remember the facts, but that's fairly close, I think.)

Thank you, Kent. It was the Staten Island Ferry; the reading took place on the smallest of NYC's five boroughs. It may have been at Wagner College. Lowell was, for whatever reason, put out by O'Hara's poem beginning "Lana Turner has collapsed." It would be fun to a good library and see if they have the NY Post for that day. -- DL

A friend writes to say `"Children of Light," the whole poem, is the epigraph for Robert Stone's first novel, "Hall of Mirrors," and Stone's fourth novel, about Hollywood, is titled "Children of Light".' -- DL
Kent, check out this piece on "Lana Turner Has Collapsed."

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That Ship Has Sailed
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"Lively and affectionate" Publishers Weekly


I left it
on when I
left the house
for the pleasure
of coming back
ten hours later
to the greatness
of Teddy Wilson
"After You've Gone"
on the piano
in the corner
of the bedroom
as I enter
in the dark

from New and Selected Poems by David Lehman


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