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Thursday, 25 March 2010

Billboard Mirage


.

File:Gallup NM - street scenery and  clouds.jpg




Throaty aggressive garble
of spoken Navajo
only thing truck radio
picks up
as we pass down
the main drag
of Gallup, New Mexico

Haven't been through
in thirty years
still the same big yellow
sandstone buttes
to the north of town

A werewolf traversing
the highway
in the dark
on the way down to
Nogales
wraps his fur tight and
looks both ways
before dashing across
the precariously wavering
neon lit
billboard mirage




File:Neon light.jpg





Street scenery and clouds, Gallup, New Mexico: photo by Wolfgang Staudt, 2006
Neon sign: photo by Rolf Süssbrich, 2005

18 comments:

u.v.ray. said...

I am sometimes startled at the timing of these coincidences. Just yesterday I posted my own New Mexico poem.

I prefer yours.

I expected something of this definite beat style from you - seeing as it was Lawrence Ferlinghetti's birthday yesterday! I believe he's 91 now.

u.v.ray. said...

How strange! - Mike Connealy, another blog I visit also just posted photographs of Albuquerque, NM.

http://connealy.blogspot.com/

TC said...

Thanks Ray.

That Larry, he's still a growing boy.

You are too modest as always, Ray. Your New Mexico highway is paved with fine moments.

Uncanny coincidences growing on trees today -- and all free, yet.

Though with chili 5 cents extra.

I like your gas pumps standing like soldiers in formation.

They remind me a bit of the downstairs image here. Though I see now that half my gas pump army has been cropped out. (And indeed strictly speaking it is not mine anyhow, it is Tom Raworth's.)

B.Held said...

i like this combination :)

leigh tuplin said...

Great photo and love the flow of words here.

I will be in NM in september, can't wait :)

TC said...

Thank you Leigh and B.

I love readers with eyes.

Anonymous said...

I wish I was in NM with a werewolf. I see good rates abound, and steam heat besides. Lovely.

TC said...

I'm with you and that werewolf, Anon. Twenty-six ninety-nine for a double, plus senior discount, weekly rates and free HBO. What more could one ask.

And if things get tight, we could just lope across the highway and pawn the truck radio.

(Which anyway only picks up stations from 1980.)

STEPHEN RATCLIFFE said...

Another street scene here (not NM but NY, Greenpoint to be precise), clouds not as dark grey as those there in Gallup, but nonetheless moving. . . .

3.26

grey whiteness of sky moving to the left
above shadowed wall, gull gliding across
left foreground, sound of cars in street

material particle in space,
relative to the other

possible theory, view point
in a sense, in action

grey-white sky above shadowed green wall,
bird gliding to the right across from it

TC said...

Stephen,

Good to keep up our time and motion studies,

gliding
relative to the other

view point
in action,

gliding --

cool morning here, 39.7 degrees, sound of traffic whooshing by already constant on the freeway feeder @ 5.58 a.m., everybody (else')s getting and spending cycles already underway... while I, "unemployed", do this.

aditya said...

Another beautiful street imagery produced so very effortlessly.

And i am more than glad that you do "this". Unemployed .. am not very sure about it.

I stumbled on to your letters from Cambridge. Will be reading them .. The anecdotes sound splendid. Especially the rides with Allen Ginsberg ... hehe

Anonymous said...

Also, let's howl at the moon in honor of Ferlinghetti's birthday, too! Thank you for that connection, u.v. ray. I love that:

"[Howl]was seized in 1956 by the San Francisco police. Ferlinghetti and Shig Murao, the bookstore manager who had sold the book to the police, were arrested on obscenity charges. After charges aganst Murao were dropped, Ferlinghetti, defended by Jake Ehrlich and the ACLU, stood trial in SF Municipal court. The publicity generated by the trial drew national attention to San Francisco Renaissance and Beat movement writers. Ferlinghetti had the support of prestigious literary and academic figures, and, at the end of a long trial, Judge Clayton Horn found Howl not obscene and acquitted him in October 1957. The landmark First Amendment case established a key legal precedent for the publication of other controversial literary work with redeeming social importance."

Senior discount be damned. I'll make my way down to Nogales with these werewolves any night.

Before we pawn the radio, though, I think I'm catching some electromagnetic radition (thank you for the particle, Stephen Ratcliff)...some evidence of dark matter... vibrating on down the antenna,

coming to you from the Blue Spruce, TC, a werewolf song, where
"warg (or later werg and wero) is cognate with Old Norse vargr, (and means) "rogue," "outlaw," or, euphemistically, "wolf":

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sVGbbsmlPEs&feature=related

Big smile.

TC said...

Thanks Aditya and Anon.

Seems we're not missing a Beat here tonight.

And while we're on the creatures of the night... here's a clickable (but maybe not on the truck radio) link to Anon's moon-howl.

STEPHEN RATCLIFFE said...

Tom,

"main drag" here (below window) is Manhattan Ave. (probably Route 66 in Gallup?) -- no neon in sight ("doing this" is all to the good) . . . .

3.27

first silver of sun rising over shadowed
building, bird disappearing behind wall
in foreground, sound of cars in street

in the way of seeing things,
“nothing else matters”

means not annulled by habit,
detached, its context

grey plane of clouds above shadowed wall
sunlit silver of building across from it

TC said...

Steve,

Definitely therapeutic this, on this particular morning (if only you knew!):

in the way of seeing things,
“nothing else matters”

means not annulled by habit,
detached, its context

STEPHEN RATCLIFFE said...

Tom,

"therapeutic" here too, about to get light, about to get on plane heading back west. . . .

3.28

pale orange cloud above shadowed black
building, vertical plane of brick wall
in foreground, cars sounding in street

view of the picture, marked
point that is thought

i.e., everything normal, is
itself only out of it

bright blue sky above brick building,
sunlit silver of wall across from it

TC said...

Steve,

Swell of you to keep up our morning light from the other end of the continent,

It will be great to have you "home",

i.e., everything normal

and for the thought-glued-to-the-forehead for this morning -- thanks to your distances -- I'm picking up on how "I"

, is
itself only out of it

(See new posts above, I'm moving west with you... though of course it's only stationary motion... as well as back, back...)

Elmo St. Rose said...

all night

Shalako blue/

Zuni/

mud clowns

demons out

purification

cold dawn

"over the city that's so so pretty/
Amarillo and Gallup New Mexico..."
the Stones on the radio

family is a good a thing
beyond anthropology

neon in the cold dawn a
beacon of tickytacky warmth
to those returning
from a night of ancient
sensibilities