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Callaloo 25.1 (2002) 214-215

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Walking Kaufman Home

Everett Hoagland

off and on
after your merchant marine
naïve quest for union
justice on land
at sea
after the full net of sun
glinting golden sardines
flying fish
american alchemy changed
to new coins with winged liberty
and dead anglo-american men on them (who
had freely charged their black label
bourbon and branch
sipped in the shade
of mythic history's
indian treaty tree
to slavery lynching
sweat shops' women workers
in mill town methodist factories) there
was the search for the sacred in saki
for divination in drug den
after the twelve-bar blue
black solitary
bulb lit night with white
washed shadows of naked power
where the jail walls dripped mixed bloods
where bail was rarely made like fishes
and loaves [End Page 214]
where time was kept
with a nightstick by cops
on the beatniks after bop's break-
light heavy brass-tinted bravura
response to korea
after the long high
noon of stilled all-american moon
shine and vodka sipped in the shade
of a mountain-sized magic mushroom there
is still in silence
this inviting legacy:
wailed triumphs
fires Love
like bird's bebop aubades
that fuse us that never refuse
our darkly lit humaness retelling the u.s.
in us all day after day after lady after-
life man you are still "ON"


Everett Hoagland teaches poetry writing at the University of Massachusetts-North Darmouth. His poetry has been anthologized in Clarence Major's The New Black Poetry (1968) and more recently in The Body Electric, The Garden Thrives, The Jazz Poetry Anthology, and has appeared in numerous literary journals. He has received The Gwendolyn Brooks Award and has twice been given Massachusetts Artist Foundation Fellowships. His selected poems, . . . Here . . . , will be published in April 2002 by Leapfrog Press.



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pp. 214-215
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