b.z. niditch | new york city lights


Walt Whitman
is declared alive,
Lorca hides out
in Harlem’s jazz heaven
Nathaniel West
without guile
coughs up
on a Manhattan
slyly and anonymously
by Babylon’s daughters
and New York City lights
and waters
we kept Virgil
to ourselves,
while Hockney came
to visit
and Ned Rorem
scored the notes
for “Our Town”
we overhear Tiresias’
singing a dirge
over the banks
of the Hudson,
art hangs itself
in the Metropolitan
looking past
at the German
who arrived at Ellis Island
and like everyone else
were vaccinated
and investigated,
Hart Crane is incognito
over the Brooklyn Bridge
who wanted
so much to be welcomed
by O’Hara, Rivers
and the gang
at the Cedar Bar
but was too late
having drowned,
as a lip sync soloist
tried to imitate
Ella Fitzgerald
and night
tries to rob Man Ray
of “Tears.”

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