Horace Coleman

Missing in Action

(for Bob Kaufman)

He was poeting before half the others had paper.
He was talking that talk of music and soul and self
and the disease called America while
walking that walk past the mugger critics
and the indifferent crowds who
only read words cut in stone.

He was soap scrubbing minds clean and
the abombunist poet of these and those
abobminable times that wore him away
till he was left in solitude
crowded with loneliness
and the smell of a golden sardine.

Every one wants to know where?
is Bob Kaufman at?
since they did that TV program on him.
He’s supposed to be lost in San Francisco
or LA
but he’s missing elsewhere.

He knows where he is and ain’t got no truck
with them who sent for him tomorrow
when here he come yesterday.
Let them freight themselves — the frinks!

He’s famous cause he was one of them beatnik poets
but really, he was a nik beat-beat back!
cause he got there too fast
(you know we ain’t culpable of no literature).