Poetry Reading by Thomas Raine Crowe

Look out!
I don't mean the window,
I mean the helicopters overhead,
the buzz on the phone,
and the police at the door.
The sky is falling
from the atoms they have taken
from the air.
The trees cut to build temples
to oil.
The brown water no longer
fit for fish.
Look out!
When freedom is just another word
for what we have lost.
When peace is another brand
of bomb.
When the national animal is no longer an eagle,
but a sheep.

I attended a poetry reading this evening by Thomas Rain Crowe , with whom I had the honor of sharing my lunch today earlier today. He’s a real bona-fide beatnik, drinking buddy to the stars: Ginsberg and company themselves. That alone was impressive, I suppose. He shared with us some selections of his fiction and his poetry. He told us about his rock band . and his first volume of translations of the poems of the 14th century Persian poet Hafiz , ( Hafiz )According to his bio: “Following six years as Editor-at-Large for the Asheville Poetry Review, he is currently writing a memoir in the style of Thoreau’s Walden based on four years of self-sufficient living in the wilderness environment in the woods of western North Carolina from 1979 to 1982. He currently resides in the Smoky Mountains of North Carolina. His literary archives have been purchased by and are collected at the Duke University Special Collections Library in Durham, North Carolina.”

Lines I caught: “I will not live in a world without whales or dolphins” and “we are what we aren’t.. Or how else could we intend one thing and do another. We are what we aren’t” “Autchung!” was an inflammatory rant, quoted in the selection above, against the current political status quo, not however, against the complacency on the part of most people which what seems to have incensed more than a few audience members. One woman busted out: “and why aren’t the creative people of the world stepping up and doing what the media isn’t doing?” my question is, rather, why aren’t you, lady? You don’t get off saying “oh, I’m not creative,” I’m sorry but you don’t. If you want a world unlike the one you have, and you want it brought to you without being willing to do anything to create what you all - I shouldn’t assume that about her. She interrupted him. “Are you scared!” she meant him. he shook his head and grabbed the microphone “no I’m not scared, or else I would not have read that poem!” she was looking for someone to blame for something. She was a stranger. He spoke about four years living in the mountains, back-to-the-land style.