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Lawrence Ferlinghetti

Sometime During Eternity…

Sometime during eternity
                                                        some guys show up   
 and one of them
                       who shows up real late
                                                        is a kind of carpenter   
       from some square-type place
                                               like Galilee
           and he starts wailing
                                           and claiming he is hip
             to who made heaven
                                        and earth
                                                       and that the cat
                    who really laid it on us
                                                  is his Dad
           And moreover
              he adds
                          It’s all writ down
                                               on some scroll-type parchments   
           which some henchmen
                   leave lying around the Dead Sea somewheres   
                 a long time ago
                                        and which you won’t even find   
          for a coupla thousand years or so
                                                  or at least for
       nineteen hundred and fortyseven
                                                       of them
                             to be exact
                                              and even then
          nobody really believes them
                                                    or me
                                                             for that matter
           You’re hot
                          they tell him
           And they cool him
           They stretch him on the Tree to cool
                          And everybody after that
                                                                is always making models   
                                           of this Tree
                                                           with Him hung up   
           and always crooning His name
                                      and calling Him to come down   
                                  and sit in
                                                  on their combo
                            as if he is the king cat
                                                             who’s got to blow   
                       or they can’t quite make it
                       Only he don’t come down
                                                          from His Tree
           Him just hang there
                                        on His Tree
           looking real Petered out
                                           and real cool
                                                              and also
                    according to a roundup
                                                     of late world news   
              from the usual unreliable sources
                                                                real dead


Lawrence Ferlinghetti, “Sometime During Eternity...” from Coney Island of the Mind. Copyright © 1958 by Lawrence Ferlinghetti.

Lawrence Ferlinghetti was an artist, critic, beat poet, social activist, film narrator, and founder of the City Lights Booksellers and Publishers in San Francisco.  He was once described as the "rock star of poetry." His book A Coney Island of the Mind (1958) sold over a million copies and was translated into nine languages. He died in 2021 at the age of 101.

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