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David Lehman

(June 11, 1948 / New York City)

July 10


The sky was a midnight blue
velvet cloth draping
a birdcage and no moon
but the breeze was whistling
and the sound of a car
on Valentine Place was
the rush of a waterfall
on the phone in New York City
and that's when the muse
turned up with curly brown locks
she was a poet, too, and wanted
me to give her an assignment
she was willing to trade
fifteen minutes of inspiration
in return for a phone call
from Frank O'Hara in heaven
sipping espresso and Irish whiskey
and then a morning swim
we had so much energy those days
we needed to burn some up
before we could paint

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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