PF detail from Pierre-Auguste Renoir - Beach Scene, Guernsey (Children by the Sea in Guernsey) - 1883;


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Timothy Gray teaches at City University of New York. He is the author of Gary Snyder and the Pacific Rim (2006) and Urban Pastoral (2010), both published by University of Iowa Press. His poetry has appeared most recently in Willows Wept Review. He lives in New Jersey with his wife and two children.

Caballero | Frank O’Hara at Fire Island, July 1966



An unsatisfied mind knows
Nightspots as separate, sparring words.

Action comes home, dizzy and moist.

Out in the heat cops blow their tops.
Lowered brows look good at the boy.

In Memphis they do the do in Texas.
Tinkling pianos tell him so.

It’s just a carnival tune winding
Down, ride done, bench seats sticky,

Night’s candy sour in the morning’s mouth.

His better half didn’t ring, not once.
The amphibian self slithers back,

No feet to stand on.
He bites down hard on his last, best hope,

A rose puncturing the gums.


from New York School Calendar
Frank O’Hara at Fire Island, July 1966