Andrei Codrescu

The Twelve-line Sonnet Needs You

I like my verse clean and the sonnet a little dirty
like the beloved to whom it is usually dedicated.
After that I can take up social issues and spring
emotions into them like a faucet in the park one
time I spent a whole night in. I had nowhere to go,
Gloria's mom said that I couldn't sleep with Gloria
and nobody else was home except the drunks in
the park, and the junkies, and other underclasses.
We didn't have minorities then and justice was not
available to the bereft. Now it's another story
I can retweet until the world straightens out
though in my stream of liqueured-up tarts and ex-fumeurs
we’ll never be sharp enough again to see it as fine as it once felt

rise of the north (again)

people get crazier and shabbier the farther south you go
it used to be a draw
not-so-much-now     drinking helped & some sense of abandon
perhaps     replaced by a sense of self-worth     perhaps
the sober gods in charge again jupiter and hera le beau monde
pan off in his cave bat-cranky
scratchy hoof eyes rheumy

Andrei is an homme-de-lettres whose poetry, novels, and essays have been infiltrating the American psyche since he emigrated from his native Romania to Detroit in 1966. He is the author of forty books of poetry, fiction, and essays, and the founder of Exquisite Corpse: A Journal of Life & Letters. He has received a Peabody award for his film Road Scholar, and has been a commentator on NPR’s "All Things Considered" since 1983. He lives in New Orleans, the Ozarks, and New York.