the low life was getting to me
boss all the roaches on the
west side ever do
is watch television and you
could not possibly know how
depressing it is
to strike up
a conversation with a
lady cockroach and she starts telling you
what is happening on the young
and the restless

it was springtime and i
hitched a ride downtown
in the pant cuff of an african
american gentleman who
needed to consult a lawyer
he took me to a sandstone
florentine palazzo
on superior avenue
this was called
the leader building so named
i later learned after a newspaper
that has vanished

now my plan had been to wait
until nightfall and then ride
the cleaning lady s chariot to find
something tasty
in this building but as luck
would have it the lawyer s
office suited me to a t
mr klein is retired but he likes
to come into the office early
to get away from mrs klein
and to read the classics
between the books and the
occasional doughnut crumb i am
more than delighted with the place
peace and quiet marble floors great minds and
a view over the avenue
this solitary life suits me
i have been redigesting some
of my old favourites and this
gave rise to some thoughts i would like
to share with you

coleridge we know
is good for you
though oft overboiled
and unsavory

milton s a treat
though mixed with the meat
comes periphrasis
and christian knavery

metaphysicall rhyme
cooked for just a short time
makes a marvellous
sunday dinner

on christopher smart
folded up like a tart
no literate roach
would grow thinner

if you wan t a stuffin
with plenty that s tough in
just use sage of
camden n j

and a good spanish fino
con mucho carino
that s lope de

but the book that pleased best
mr klein s famished guest
is a dainty
that s seldom seen

the fully nutritious
and somehow delicious
ed spenser s
faerie queene

maybe i had better
stop before this gets entirely
out of hand klein has a wonderful
liquor cabinet and an unsteady hand betimes
when pouring the contemplative life
too has its dangers