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Collaboration with a Poet 4

"The Papers" meet "Picture of a Gone World"

It is so very interesting to see your own artwork as others see it. In this case I’m referring to a photograph I made (which I call The Papers) in my teens while in Haarlem, Holland. My poet collaborator P.B. Warrington wanted to work with this image and so offered his mood-inflected text and beautiful reading with his own title. Again, at his request, I added my own music. The result is alchemy to me - at least a product more potent than the sum of its parts which are able to stand on their own. Enjoy this two-and-a-half minute Dolce Far Niente.

A Picture of a Gone World: Haarlem 1979 

Now: Late February, almost 102, Ferlinghetti the Man is gone.

The non-Beat, a Bohemian in bowler speaking with jazz from Amram, made City Lights for all the gone people. 

Before: The hotel lobby is clear pinnacle, "Man, it's a gone image." 

The radio in the background bringing local gossip or the latest Koninklijke Haarlemsche FC match. Gone, now that satellites bring seeing not listening. 

Acrid smell of burning tobacco that made its way through the Balkans. Gone like the Egyptian rice paper holding the tobacco. 

Sounds of conversations, information. The words are gone like currencies. The ideas last. 

"Die Heilige Maschine”, the Astoria, schussing like Olympians as it fills the hotel lobby with espresso desires. An Astoria never goes, always crosses generations. 

A quick radio news update to the superpower sending tanks into the Hindu Kush. A long way off, but something's in the wind moving into the softening table talk. All time is "before the war." The lowered voices always there. 

The sounds drift and fade. The thoughts laid bare forever.
You Must Have Something on Your Mind
You Must Have Something on Your Mind
James M. Steeber