THE EDITOR, Sir:
In two of her recent columns, Carolyn Cooper, in commenting on a poem I read at Calabash, has used my name as a springboard for some of her general opinions about sexuality. This has been done in good fun, I am sure, but has inadvertently served to trivialise an otherwise serious poem.
In the interest of civility and protection of my reputation, I would be grateful if you would publish the poem in its entirety so that readers can judge for themselves the theological and poetic integrity of the work.
It's a deal
"Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be."
At 84, I have outlived my penis
and now by His grace there is a peace of sorts.
But how to cope with memory, its walls scrawled
with graffiti of recall, where itch
still lingers dreaming ecstasies of scratch.
But I have learned from Job to bargain with the Lord -
a deal that He, post mortem, will contra
the excruciations of my journey
against the penances assigned to sin,
the divine books balanced.
Before Alzheimer's dirty sleeve erases all,
quick, write a poem.