Hillman City Haibun (Tobacco & Other Vegetables)

(Not for smoking)

Maybe it’s my Virgo nature that allows me to enjoy vicariously the lives of people whose work I admire but whose lifestyles have aspects I would not care to replicate. I would not say the phrase “Health Nut” is accurate, given my penchant for chorizo and saké, but I can throw down a handful of bee pollen like nobody’s business and, yes, I do grow kale.

So Frank Zappa would be one hero, although his womanizing got the best of him via prostate cancer. Google Tobacco is My Favorite and the word “vegetable” appears without having to type it. The phrase came from a famous interview Zappa gave near the end of his life:

So when I look back at my American Sentences over the last three weeks and choose one to write about with a little more background, I am brought back to a memory of another smoker whose work I admire, and whose last name shall not be disclosed, but is the source of the inspiration here.

4.2.15 – “Kale’s not food” says Sam, whose breakfast was pastry, coffee and a smoke.

About Splabman

Paul Nelson is founder of SPLAB in Seattle and the Cascadia Poetry Festival. He wrote a collection of essays, Organic Poetry & a serial poem re-enacting the history of Auburn, WA, A Time Before Slaughter (shortlisted for a 2010 Genius Award by The Stranger.) He’s interviewed Allen Ginsberg, Michael McClure, Wanda Coleman, Anne Waldman, Sam Hamill, Robin Blaser, Nate Mackey, Eileen Myles, George Bowering, Diane di Prima, Brenda Hillman, George Stanley, Joanne Kyger & many Cascadia poets, has presented his poetry and poetics in London, Brussels, Qinghai and Beijing, China, Lake Forest, Illinois and other places & writes an American Sentence every day. www.PaulENelson.com

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