Poem: Here, Then Gone

IslBGHe wrote more plays than most people read

In a lifetime.

Some of them were quite good said the accrediting minyans

Worthy of prizes and pull-quotes, if not actual

Attendance, or protracted reflection.

(Never mind that most audiences found the dramas over-long and tendentious,

Allusive and dreamy and

Largely about colored folks they didn’t know or care to meet).

He was Important in a way that most Vice-Presidents of Marketing and District Managers

Are not.

He reached for some kind of immortality, a persistent tomato vine, Icarus, mountain climber, long distance runner, graphomaniac.

They put a photo of him on the front page when he passed.

Now he’s gone.

The torrents of words — angry elegiac lovely words — stilled

Yet eternal.

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