2 Poems Scott Keeney




Art Requires At Least Three Quarters of a Person



In 1973, I couldn’t leave

for France. I simply

wasn’t born yet. The clouds

complicate my plans

to clean the gutters today.

Do I exaggerate my person?

I studied Augustine and arrived

back home with attention

deficit disorder. The Aztec sun

beats the meteorological odds.

I clap. Echoes in caves.

My daughter, when she stands

in 1973, knows me

as poetry—compost of history.




Dear Jack Kerouac, C’est Rien



I’m sick, Jack, with an infection centered

between my French-Canadian red ears

and spreading like word troubles through

the dank avenues of my brain. Why,

in these green sky hours, do I always

turn to you? You were not the best poet,

not even my favorite. Sometimes I hunt

through your books looking for just

one good page to recommend my one

good honey friend. But when I’m gone

off the path—when dust be my eyes—

I pick up you and find perfection simple

where other times I found no reason

to read, no skill, no art, no nothing.