Edgard Varèse Unawares In New York

He certainly wasn't thinking "the emancipation of dissonance,"
as Schöenberg put it, slouched as he was, rumpled tie and all
from someone across mimicking Evans if it was Walker Evans
in those grainy black & white nights with the El rattling home
while signals dotting the darkness dawning
the same shrouded light the snowdrifts the awnings
and dumbwaiters all those under-the-table jobs he'd taken
without so much as a flinch, like selling
blood or a rare autographed copy or the many lost drafts
in pre-war Berlin when the art of taking a walk
stretched into shadows obliquely leading you nowhere
yes nowhere the damp slipping in quickly.
Never mind so far and so near.
Never mind the air so heavy with the scent of camel

by Gerard Malanga

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