the silent treatment

The Silent Treatment

 

Sitting around
Ferlinghetti’s
apartment
over his
print shop
on upper Green
more than
40 years ago
after Bukowski’s
first
City Lights
reading,
with Ferlinghetti
Bukowski
Rip Torn &
a host of
minions,
someone said
Bukowski
you’re the
only one
who’s
done it &
I said
no one’s
done it
or we
wouldn’t
still be
trying to
do it &
Ferlinghetti said
the Beats
did it.

 

The Beats?
I said.
Kerouac?
Ginsberg?
Ferlinghetti?
Ah, but then
you’re Ferlinghetti.

 

The room
got very
quiet &
Bukowski
smiled
down into
his beer
cradled on
his gut.
“Now you’ve
done it
Bennett,”
he said,
& Ferlinghetti
stared at
me with
ice blue
eyes
that said
we’re
going to
silence you.

 

Which they
never did.

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