Poems and Texts

“SILENCE OF THE YAMS” by Lewis Warsh


I toed the line from Boca
Raton to Secaucus. My memory

bank was robbed at gunpoint
by a woman in a sari and

a man in a dress. “I confess,”
he said, “to everything,” when

the police tied him to a chair.

Need some air freshener?

You can dip your
finger into the honey pot

one last time before it gets too
late, but don’t be disappointed

if you come up empty. So much
for the forbidden games

that used to occupy my imagination.
Too young to know better, too old to cry.

My bonnie lies over the ocean etc.

Photo: Dan Wonderly

Lewis Warsh

Lewis Warsh is the author of four novels—Agnes & Sally (1984); A Free Man (1991, 2019); Ted’s Favorite Skirt (2002); and A Place in the Sun (2010)—and a book of collected stories, One Foot Out the Door (2014). His numerous collections of poetry include, among others, The Origin of The World (2001), Inseparable (2008), Alien Abduction (2015) and Out of the Question: Selected Poems 1963-2003 (2017). He is co-founder, with Bernadette Mayer, of United Artists Magazine and Books, and co-editor, with Anne Waldman, of The Angel Hair Anthology (2001). Mimeo Mimeo #7 (2012) was devoted to his poetry, fiction and collages, and to a bibliography of his work as a publisher and editor. He is recipient of grants from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Fund for Poetry, The New York State Council of the Arts, The American Poetry Review, and The Poet’s Foundation. He has taught at Naropa University, The Poetry Project, Bowery Poetry, and SUNY Albany and currently teaches at Long Island University (Brooklyn), where he was founding director of the MFA Program in Creative Writing (2007-13).

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