Bob Hart

Bob Hart is the author of two books of poems Acrobat and Lightly in the Good of Day (Bench Press). He grew up in Harlem, on 145th Street, 142nd Street and 158th Street. Her served in the army from 1952 to 1954, and was stationed in Germany during the Korean war. Now he works for a mail sorting company in Midtown West, and lives in Brooklyn.


In A Guitar

I like the anger in a guitar—

it doesn’t need a reason;

no need to gain back face, having lost none.

Its strings smell no insults;

it is mouth, not ears.


I like the sorrow spilled from its hole

whose hollow has lost nothing;

rejoices in its own hollow being

(devoid of void, though massless),

empty bowl of tongues.


I crave the tremored fear of its strings

which riverrun, but nowhere.

Five nerves take turn to shiver their speaking:

our doomless deathless dying

by the blood guitar.


Although it drums an air of its own

it can drum one into battle!

It has no politics but it pushes—

or pulls like blind horse running

as its path shines black!




Man, Can They!


Man those girls can laugh!

I mean they really splatter cheer into the air.

They let go. Oh boy they let go.

Can their chairs hold them, tables contain them?

They should ride horses

jump cloudhigh fences; they should, they should

run beside the running deer; do

Phoenician somersault on bulls, then

leap amid spectators in the stands.

Make way for those laughing girls—

wave banners for them; fly the flags.

Spare no colors. Spare no winds. Let the light

burst its sides with brightness.

Let the heavy turtles of the galaxies

declare a rabbit holiday.

It’s catching. Help me hold my sides.

This is too lively for

the likes of any gravity-coherent solid thing.