To the Ghost of Ginsberg

by Briggs Helton

Don’t warn me about the blizzard, all winter I walked through Akron, five months of snow, wind chill, and seeping blisters. I swallowed the misery.

Don’t tell me to get the lump checked out, it shrunk, doesn’t hurt anymore, or I’ve learned to ignore it. Let’s find a name for it in a book of astrological signs.

And definitely don’t ask me about my blond-haired girl, with your twinkling crotch-ward look. I love you and all your poetic excesses, but I am no cocksman.

Tell me again about the time we drove to Berkeley. The two of us sleeping in my car, my ear resting against your worn pages. It was there I asked if Jewish angels play harps.

Good god where have you been? My Jonathan, my how our souls were once knit. Go ahead, laugh at my poetic waxing. Was I weft or warp? What color was the yarn?

What a romp we’ll have. Are those clouds really Whitman’s beard? Heaven cannot make us so self-conscious tonight. There is no moon to haunt us.