Ken Patchen is my favorite poet. He died in 1972. I discovered him in the 70s and felt like I’d finally found my brother.
For some reason, he’s been on my mind a lot lately.
Here’s an excerpt from Sleepers Awake.
You want form, do you? I’ll give you form. I’ll make you wish for something nice and cozy — Something all chewed and digested for you — Look the thing’s worn out — It don’t work no more. If it ain’t in a pretty package, you don’t want it — Because it ain’t art. Because the book critic of the New Porker might now want to see a bit more respect for tradition hrrum, hum. I got my money on nobody. Tolstoy was right about all these people.
A tree near a lake.
Greatness and Truth can never be in danger from these murdering wretches.
To perform one’s duty, be it now, be it clean, be it done with humility . . .
A man is a sacred thing.
Any action or thought which injures the human imagination is evil.
The artist — they hate the artist. Mediocrity and servility are what they want. To get to the point — hell with all these bastards. I tell you it’s got to open up . . . hit the flow . . . Humble, I’m humble before the sacred mystery of life and the
–Let me say
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