(Here, preserved for you as though in amber, a bit of psychedelic nostalgia if no more, a street broadside from 1967 San Francisco.)
How to be a Poet
Still your mind a moment -- let the sludge run off.
Unplug the robot wires that feed the ego cash pump whine.
Banish the mass media sounds and sights, those hustler demons lower than us at our worst.
Open your senses one after another; then take a breath and just before exhaling see how they all dance together.
Think of the modern building you most despise and what it's like: your old uncle frightening with face-creases red and moist at bottom, or a mad monkey, or a vain immortal slug, the breeze from hospital antiseptic.
Or the building you most love and what it's like: fingers on soft flesh, clouds of
good memory, ants relating secret lore, a spicy wind in winter --
Think of when you've been highest and lowest and what the colors of the planets smelled like then.
Tell about a street corner familiar as an office-mate, a tree distinct from all the
rest, a squirrel about whom you imply in twenty words a century's career.
Know that your soul is holy and perfect and base and mortal and easily hurt and there the plot gets thick.
Know that your sisters and brothers beat with the same heart pounding to catch up
with itself and you may look to their eyes for the proof.
MAKE LOVE TO THE LOVELY WELCOMING YOU!