One Dollar Donation
Cross My Heart and Hope to Write
INCLUDING ORIGINAL POETRY, SHORT STORIES, ESSAYS, AND NOVELLAS, ALONGSIDE ARTWORK AND PHOTOGRAPHY
LIKE THE FACEBOOK PAGE (www.facebook.com/TheSvenBo), DOWNLOAD FREE MP3s (www.reverbnation.com/TheSvenBo), SUBSCRIBE TO THE YOUTUBE CHANNEL (www.youtube.com/TheSvenB0), FOLLOW THE TUMBLR (thesvenbo.tumblr.com), AND FOLLOW The Sven-Bo! ON TWITTER (www.twitter.com/TheSvenBo).
Thursday, January 12, 2012
One Dollar Donation and the Walt Whitman Birthplace
On Saturday, January 8th, I had the incredible opportunity to perform with over twenty fellow Long Island poets at the Walt Whitman Birthplace State Historical Site and Interpretive Center. The event was entitled "Recession, Depression, and Economic Reflection" and dealt with poems that confronted the current economic state of the nation. It was a massive gathering organized to help promote the Bards Annual 2011 publication, an anthology of LI poets put together by the Bards Initiative, a local and active poetry organization. The event included a raffle, a membership booth, and even cameras that were filming for an upcoming DVD of the event (I hope to include my performance here soon). At any rate, it was an absolutely brilliant event and I really appreciated performing my three poems
Me performing at the Walt Whitman Birthplace
One Dollar Donation
“I heard about you on the radio,”
he said, precociously,
in a somewhat matter-of-factly way,
“And I wanted to donate a dollar to your cause,”
producing from the pocket of his jeans,
with a smooth motion, as if unsheathing a sword,
a creased, wrinkled, tattered old dollar,
perhaps his last one,
which he unhurriedly held out to me.
The sea foam green backside,
pinched between the eagle’s lips
and the piercing Eye of Providence,
enthralled my compassion.
As the bill folded under the lumber of its own weight,
segregating the feet of the N,
I too was drawn out,
out of my comfortable cage wherein I pondered nothing,
dispensed into a serendipitous gambit of encumbrance.
His black face was gentle,
His smile: big and intimidating.
He stood there presenting that old dollar patiently,
politely awaiting my reply.
I suppose he never saw my perplexity,
never recognized my already juxtaposing intellect
frantically contriving some compassionate rejoinder.
“I’m from the hospital across the street,” he then admitted,
And my compassion then became more resilient.
My hesitation to confiscate the currency dawdled even more.
I evaluated, considering that proposition,
his admitted mentality,
my intended rebuttal.
I retracted my hand insolently.
With a calm,
somewhat uncouth apology,
I turned my pinching hand away from his offer,
and instead pointed him in the direction of the administration building across the way,
using the window at his back as a guide.
He ducked down and gyrated,
still holding that dollar out firmly,
and replied, “Oh…”
“And what’s your name?” he asked, returning.
I withdrew my sharpened digit,
and retorted cooperatively to his request.
He introduced himself then,
out of place,
but nonetheless benignly confident,
as he shoved the crimped cash back into his taut pocket,
and offered me,
an empty palm.
I filled it with mine.
His was warm.
And as he pleaded, “Thank you, sir!”
with muddled nodding,
closing the door behind him as he left,
I stood there,
beguiled at the thought that the burden had been bequeathed,
or perhaps the blessing had been abandoned.