Spoonful: A Gathering of Stone Soup Poets

An extension of Cambridge's Stone Soup Poetry Venue.

Carolyn Gregory


The Poet and Priest

Tall and magisterial,
he might have been a priest
in wine-colored robes
if he had not been a poet
gathering his flock
of runaways and renegades.
Even when hungover,
he always let them speak
in a rhythm of nouveau Beat
or confession,
everyone equal in the light
shining on formica and graffiti

In a church full of cigarettes
and broken green bottles,
fish net stockings and smeared green poems,
he was the mentor of one hundred,
some faltering, some musical,
their heads full of Jimi Hendrix and poppies

In smelly bars,
the interludes warmed Monday night
with congas and punkers,
cowboys and the merely drunk,
checking out the girls --
Straight up, no chaser

When I stumbled into a smoky café
dodging screeching trains on Boylston
near the Combat Zone
of burned out hookers and shady deals,
Taller than God,
he handed me a mike
and shushed the room
and I shared my poems of lost lovers
and autumn leaves,
the applause came like ancient horses
gathering speed we are riding still