- Title Pages
- 1 Kindred Spirits
- 2 Intimacy in Language
- 3 Laughter for Dessert
- 4 The Poetry of Ping-Pong
- 5 Days of Chess and Backgammon
- 6 Inventing a Language for Love
- 7 Poetry on the Porch
- 8 All My Trials
- 9 The AIDS Poets
- 10 Oh Did You See the Ashes Come Thickly Falling Down?
- 11 The POEMobile Dreams of Peace
- 12 Free Market Flavor
- 13 The Poetry in Science
- 14 Navigating Transitions
- 15 The Human Unit of Time
- 16 Your Body as Symbol
- 17 Intimations of Immortality
- 18 God Is in the Details
- 19 Breath on the Mirror
- 20 The Best Stories versus My Story
- 21 The Grease Lamp’s Flicker and Flare
- 22 Lion’s Gate
- 23 Rock and Word
- For Further Reading
Sea of Souls
- (p.13) 1 Kindred Spirits
- The Poetry of Everyday Life
- Cornell University Press
In this chapter, the author shares the wisdom and wit of some extraordinary people, the “kindred spirits,” as well as the lessons he has learned from each of them, such as Tony Butler, who made his home in the tunnels of the New York City subway; the photographer Margaret Morton, who took pictures of the structures where many homeless people live in the tunnels and under the bridges of Manhattan; Ethel Mohamed, a seamstress who began to embroider her memories after the death of her Lebanese husband; Moishe Sacks, a retired baker and the unofficial rabbi of the Intervale Jewish Center in the South Bronx; Kewulay Kamara, from whom he learned about how an ancient mythology can shape a way of life far from its indigenous roots; former medicine show doc Fred Bloodgood; the young subway graffiti writer Skeme; and Mae Noell, from whom he learned about publishing, finding your voice, and sticking to your guns. The author concludes by recounting some wonderful expressions he has picked up from his travels.
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