Patti Smith and Persuasion at 225 Madison Avenue, 36th Street, just a short walk from Grand Central and Penn Station by James Walton

Patti Smith and Persuasion at 225 Madison Avenue, 36th Street, just a short walk from Grand Central and Penn Station

Inside the Morgan Library
reading old accounts
by colonist settlers of New England,
as Salem haunts mirrors
an annoying loud apostate
an entourage of three.

By the weight of glass cabinets
handwritten sheet music drafts
the scribes of nibbed feathers,
an askance pluck of musicians
the group excitedly talking
a daughter exclaiming.

Free of a Plymouth bonnet
redoubtable as the missal’s shanty
an original Austen manuscript,
the sometimes use of a man’s name
disguises out of inky teeth
for candle light a polished breath.

As loud as salvation the artist
in apology a hand to shake
the ante room your private salon,
humility’s a brace of song
hanging earnest from a smile
never to wash this palm again.


James Walton
is an Australian poet published in newspapers, and many journals, and anthologies. Short listed twice for the ACU National Literature Prize, a double prize winner in the MPU International Poetry Prize, Specially Commended in The Welsh Poetry Competition – his collection ‘The Leviathan’s Apprentice’ was published in 2015.James Walton was a lot of things. A librarian, a farm labourer, a cattle breeder, and mostly a public sector union organizer. He is published in many anthologies, journals, and newspapers. He is now invisible in his seventh decade.

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