I didn’t realize it was Poem In Your Pocket Day (Don’t laugh; I understand there is a week for recovering Republicans) until my friend Dick Henthorn reminded me this morning. Earlier in the day I had posted three lines that an exceedingly charitable friends might consider a “poem” on my Facebook status report — first “poem” I’ve written this year. During PIYPD, we poets and friends of poets are MANDATED to put a poem into a pocket and share it with friends and associates.
I walked next door to my friends at Parkway Printers, 3755 N. Dirksen Parkway, Springfield, Illinois on the edge of the world, and recited a poem written by internationally renowned Springfield poet Vachel Lindsay because I wanted to share a poem I KNOW is good instead of one of mine, some of which I SUSPECT are good. I carry a lot of poems by Lindsay and me in my brain, which too often seems to be in my pocket, so it was no trouble to explain to Chuck and Joel why I was there, that I would generate MAXIMUM PUBLICITY FOR THEIR EXCELLENT PRINT SHOP in Honey & Quinine, and they would become rich men from my initiative. This is a poem I sense that Vachel wrote about me, though he likely did not know it at the time. I forgot the title of the poem, but you could look it up. It does not go “like this” because it’s not a freaking simile like “a moon is like a star, only with fewer consonants.” The poem’s words are as follows . . . .
by Vachel Lindsay
The moon is a monk, un-mated,
Who walks his cell, the sky.
His strengths are those of heaven-vowed men
Whom all life’s flames defy.
The turn to stars or shadows.
The go like snow or dew,
Leaving behind no sorrow;
Only the arching blue.
Happy Poem In Your Pocket Day, readers!
Live long . . . . . . . . . and proper.