Life Arts

first steps

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i need to credit my cousin
for the original clash
& hearing dylan
talkin' world war 3 blues
creeping up on the age
of fourteen
and seeing that there was
a whole lot of the world
i was opening my mind
to thinking
& all of that was before
really learning how to read
     camus or catcher in the rye
     or an arthur miller play

and then another time
in the coldest of a nyc freeze
going up to a no-heat
walkup on the lower east side
and hearing lots of buzz
'bout the state of every     thing
from the bitterest of the streets
to the most dreamlike
caribbean sunset

and of course once
you start down that path
there are no limits
to the thinking
feeling there are some marks
you need to make
since the possibilities
are all there
and there's no need to sort
any of it out before
just shouting it out

and if your search leaves you restless
or lost
near the dead zone
of a pinsetter's pit
you could always draw
a few words
onto every figurative
blank sheet of paper
just to keep the thoughts
toward the ultimate
who knows what

and yet you are afire
in every image
with or without words
that can only be described
as a kind of blend of colors & sounds
     unmapped portals
from the darkness
     a canvas in ambiguity
& whatever has hitherto
been explained
you must reject
as neither true
nor real

--- e b bortz    

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Poems, essays, and stories by e b bortz have been published widely.

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