Written for: Imaginary Gardens With Real Toads: Micro Poetry~Streetlight Rain
The object of this challenge is to write a poem in no more than 10 lines (but you may write in fewer than 10 lines all the way down to a single American sentence). Choose your own form or write in free verse, if preferred. (Imagined by Kerry O’Connor)
American Sentences as a poetic form was Ginsberg’s effort to make American the haiku. If haiku is seventeen syllables going down in Japanese text, he would make American Sentences seventeen syllables going across, linear, like just about everything else in America. In Cosmopolitan Greetings, his 1994 book, he published two and a half pages of these nuggets, some of which had scene-setting preambles.
Tompkins Square Lower East Side N.Y.
Four skinheads stand in the streetlight rain chatting under an umbrella. (1987)
Rainy night on Union square, full moon. Want more poems? Wait till I’m dead. (August 8, 1990, 3:30 a.m.)
Here is my attempt:
Face lit in streetlight, he rasps, tries to light a cigarette in the rain.