Defender of Jack


“Tis too starved an argument for my sword”i

Politics not for me
Peacemaker methinks
But take a stand
To defend Ti Jean
Read such things
anti this anti that
True, Jack said
Ugly drunken Tokay’d words
to big bearded Patriarch of Constantinople
But Desolate Angel saith
Irwin takes no bull
from anyone
(courage boy Newark born
raised in Pater son
survived harrows of Naomi
emerged life canonized bard and saint)
When Jack acted out
Allen gave it right back
And he loved him
Until Lowell end
So if Allen loved him,
why can’t I?
“Best poet in the United States”ii quoth he
Agree me
“…stupidly underrated by almost everybody except for a few people who are aware how beautiful his composition is…”iii
He was an ist and an ite
Wouldn’t want to be one of his women
(Mr Love-em-and-Leave-em)
… or his Mémère
Different time and place
Different America
Different attitude
No excuses
It was what it was
People are what they are
Flawed fallen inebriated angels
Was he true ite?
Don’t think so, if so, why befriend Irwin?
He with great Yiddish kopfeiv
Love bro from Butler beginning
Tru said
That’s not writing, typing
The boy sure could type
But he could write
So take it back, not Tru
World would be grayer place
Without soft golden colored red yellow pink mad words of
As the man said
“Eat your eggs
Shut up”v
i Shakespeare, William Troilus and Cressida
ii Kazin, Alfred, Writers at Work: The Paris Review Interview, 3rd series, 1967 [Ginsberg]
iii Kazin, Alfred, Writers at Work: The Paris Review Interview 3rd series, 1967 [Ginsberg]
iv Morgan, Bill, and Stanford, David, Eds., Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg : The Letters
v Kerouac, Jack, Desolation Angels, 1965

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GK Stritch


GK Stritch is a contributor to Beatdom and the author of CBGB Was My High School. The book is available at the St. Mark's Bookshop, New York City, and and

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