For the Chinese New Year & for Bill Berkson

Frank O’Hara’s constant poetic exploration of New York City is one of the inspirations behind Maps for Teeth. This poem especially.

Frank O'Hara

One or another
Is lot, since we fall apart
Endlessly, in one motion depart
From each other
— DH Lawrence

Behind New York there’s a face
and it’s not Sibelius’s with a cigar
it was red it was strange and hateful
and then I became a child again
like a nadir or a zenith or a nudnik

what do you think this is my youth
and the aged future that is sweeping me away
carless and gasless under the Sutton
and Beekman Places
towards a hellish rage
it is there that face I fear under ramps                                                                    10

it is perhaps the period that ends
the problem as a proposition of days of days
just an attack on…

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