poem index

New York Notes

Harvey Shapiro

1. Caught on a side street in heavy traffic, I said to the cabbie, I should have walked. He replied, I should have been a doctor. 2. When can I get on the 11:33 I ask the guy in the information booth at the Atlantic Avenue Station. When they open the doors, he says. I am home among my people.

From How Charlie Shavers Died and Other Poems by Harvey Shapiro, published by Wesleyan University Press. Copyright © 2001 by Harvey Shapiro. Used with permission. All rights reserved.

Harvey Shapiro

Harvey Shapiro

by this poet

poem

Drunk and weeping. It’s another night
at the live-in opera, and I figure
it’s going to turn out badly for me.
The dead next door accept their salutations,
their salted notes, the drawn-out wailing.
It’s we the living who must run for cover,
meaning me. Mortality’s the ABC of it,