Archives for posts with tag: City Lights

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I AM WAITING (Excerpt)
by Lawrence Ferlinghetti

I am waiting 
to get some intimations 
of immortality 
by recollecting my early childhood 
and I am waiting 
for the green mornings to come again 
youth’s dumb green fields come back again 
and I am waiting 
for some strains of unpremeditated art 
to shake my typewriter 
and I am waiting to write
the great indelible poem
and I am waiting
for the last long careless rapture 
and I am perpetually waiting 
for the fleeing lovers on the Grecian Urn 
to catch each other up at last 
and embrace
and I am waiting 
perpetually and forever 
a renaissance of wonder 

“I Am Waiting” appears in Lawrence Ferlinghetti’s 1958 collection A CONEY ISLAND OF THE MIND. According to Wikipedia, “There are approximately a million copies in print of A Coney Island of the Mind, and the book has been translated into over a dozen languages. It remains one of the best-selling and most popular books of poetry ever published.”

Find A CONEY ISLAND OF THE MIND at Amazon.com.

For a real treat, watch The Lawrence (Kansas) University Jazz Poetry Quartet (TImothy X. Troy,  Mark Urness, Brian Pertl, and Dane Richeson) perform “I Am Waiting” by Lawrence Ferlinghetti atyoutube.com.

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GOOD WIVES DON’T DRIVE
by Joan Jobe Smith

My father refused to teach my mother
how to drive his car, he said it
wasn’t ladylike in 1949, a woman driver

was no better than a streetwalker she was
to take the bus and be a good wife like
his mother was so my mother took secret

driving lessons, the instructor man
coming every day in his grey sedan
to show her how to let out the clutch

just right so the car wouldn’t jerk, how
to work the choke and the radio, make
turn signals, arm bent up for right

straight out for left, down for slow
me in the backseat watching as we drove
the L.A. streets: Firestone. Rosemead

Sunset Boulevard, Pico, La Brea and
Santa Fe and the day she got her drivers
license she bought her self a green 1939

Ford coupe and waited in the front seat
in the driveway for my father to come home
honked the horn at him when he arrived

and said Hey handsome, need a ride?

Photo: 1939 Ford coupe (a green one!)

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On May 7th, poetry by Joan Jobe Smith — author of the Silver Birch Press release CHARLES BUKOWSKI EPIC GLOTTIS: His Art, His Women (& me) — was featured on the City Lights Blog. Congratulations to Joan!

Since Joan’s poem tells the story of a unique mother/daughter adventure, it’s great that we can feature it on Mother’s Day.

GOOD WIVES DON’T DRIVE

by Joan Jobe Smith

My father refused to teach my mother
how to drive his car, he said it
wasn’t ladylike in 1949, a woman driver

was no better than a streetwalker she was
to take the bus and be a good wife like
his mother was so my mother took secret

driving lessons, the instructor man
coming every day in his grey sedan
to show her how to let out the clutch

just right so the car wouldn’t jerk, how
to work the choke and the radio, make
turn signals, arm bent up for right

straight out for left, down for slow
me in the backseat watching as we drove
the L.A. streets: Firestone. Rosemead

Sunset Boulevard, Pico, La Brea and
Santa Fe and the day she got her drivers
license she bought her self a green 1939

Ford coupe and waited in the front seat
in the driveway for my father to come home
honked the horn at him when he arrived

and said Hey handsome, need a ride?

Photo: 1939 Ford coupe (a green one!)