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Monday, April 13, 2020


by Harold Oberman

“Radical Approaches to Social Distancing” by Carolita Johnson, The New Yorker, March 22, 2020

X.  April 10, 2020 16,690

Ars Poetica

I feel guilty for writing something beautiful.
I try to tone it down,
Replace the lilt with hard t’s,
Crash consonants like cars,
Try to remember what landscape is, or was
In this still life.
There are few active verbs
On this couch.  No
Sensible line breaks as I go insane
In isolation.
I swear if I ever get to a bar again
I won’t have a pen and I’m going
To touch my face, shake your hand
And share a shot.
Is there deep meaning in that?
Death to metaphors.
“Live your life as if you’re already dead”
Said Charles Wright, quoting Che Guevara
Or a Japanese coin.
As I was, I wish I could.

Harold Oberman is a poet and lawyer writing in Charleston, S.C.  The above is excerpted from a longer work which may, or may not, ever see the light of day.  He has appeared in TheNewVerse.News and The Free State Review.