Bob Kaufman

B
Bob Kaufman
Blues for Hal Waters
My head, my secret cranial guitar, strung with myths plucked from
Yesterday's straits, it's buried in robes of echoes, my eyes breezeless bags, lacquered to present a glint . . .
My marble lips, entrance to that cave, where visions renounce renunciation,
Eternity has wet sidewalks, angels are busted for drunk flying.
I only want privacy to create an illusion of me blotted out.
His high hopes were placed in his coffin. Long paddles of esteem for his symbol canoe.
If I move to the stars, forward my mail c/o God, Heaven, Lower East Side.
Too late for skindiving and other modern philosophies, put my ego in storage.
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Jail Poems
1
I am sitting in a cell with a view of evil parallels,
Waiting thunder to splinter me into a thousand me's.
It is not enough to be in one cage with one self;
I want to sit opposite every prisoner in every hole.
Doors roll and bang, every slam a finality, bang!
The junkie disappeared into a red noise, stoning out his hell.
The odored wino congratulates himself on not smoking,
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THE NIGHT THAT LORCA COMES
THE NIGHT THAT LORCA COMES
SHALL BE A STRANGE NIGHT IN THE
SOUTH, IT SHALL BE THE TIME WHEN NEGROES LEAVE THE
SOUTH
FOREVER,
GREEN TRAINS SHALL ARRIVE
FROM RED PLANET MARS
CRACKLING BLUENESS SHALL SEND TOOTH-COVERED CARS FOR
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Walking Parker Home
Sweet beats of jazz impaled on slivers of wind
Kansas Black Morning/ First Horn Eyes/
Historical sound pictures on New Bird wings
People shouts/ boy alto dreams/ Tomorrow’s
Gold belled pipe of stops and future Blues Times
Lurking Hawkins/ shadows of Lester/ realization
Bronze fingers—brain extensions seeking trapped sounds
Ghetto thoughts/ bandstand courage/ solo flight
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O-Jazz-O War Memoir: Jazz, Don’t Listen To It At Your Own Risk
In the beginning, in the wet
Warm dark place,
Straining to break out, clawing at strange cables
Hearing her screams, laughing
“Later we forgave ourselves, we didn’t know”
Some secret jazz
Shouted, wait, don’t go.
Impatient, we came running, innocent
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Believe, Believe
Believe in this. Young apple seeds,
In blue skies, radiating young breast,
Not in blue-suited insects,
Infesting society’s garments.

Believe in the swinging sounds of jazz,
Tearing the night into intricate shreds,
Putting it back together again,
In cool logical patterns,
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A Terror is More Certain . . .
A terror is more certain than all the rare desirable popular songs I
know, than even now when all of my myths have become . . . , & walk
around in black shiny galoshes & carry dirty laundry to & fro, & read
great books & don’t know criminals intimately, & publish fat books of
the month & have wifeys that are lousy in bed & never realize how
bad my writing is because i am poor & symbolize myself.

A certain desirable is more terror to me than all that’s rare. How
come they don’t give an academic award to all the movie stars that
die? they’re still acting, ain’t they? even if they are dead, it should
not be held against them, after all they still have the public on their
side, how would you like to be a dead movie star & have people sit-
ting on your grave?

A rare me is more certain than desirable, that’s all the terror, there
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