Artwork © Ira Joel Haber
On the road in his pink girlie slippers
and Japanese Kimono,
Canadian Club in hand;
snapping his fingers to Jazz
he saunters to Washington Square Park
On a converging road, wearing fringed moccasins
I trod along MacDougal Street,
browse headshops along Bleecker;
humming a popular tune, I then
come to rest on a boulder just beyond
the men playing chess
in Washington Square—
I strum my folk guitar with resolve
Mushroom to enhance creativity? He offers.
I sing the blues; all the while intrigued by him
in his black shades, black Japanese Kimono,
black beret and roll of nickels bulging from pocket;
I am charmed by his toe- tapping in feathery pink slippers;
bopping head and finger popping—
he exclaims—Good beat, man, real beat
His shy eyes
study my psychedelic
hippie threads and seed beads—
groovy man, I reply;
plucking a twelve-bar beat.
He raises paper cup to my lips
I swig the sweet whiskey
he flashes his blue eyes—
beatific, man! You wail,
nickel for your thoughts—
Heavy, man, I reply— far out!
Hand in hand we stroll,
beat the gravel;
to burn like a yellow Roman candle.
Rita B. Rose is a Brooklyn born, Long Island raised international poet and playwright. Her newest collection is Flower Poems: Personalities in Bloom. Her work (2020-21), can be read in Poetry Bay Magazine, New York, Time of the Poet Republic, Africa, Poet Magazine, UK, and The Long Island Quarterly, L.I. She is also a mixed-media artist. Her paintings have been featured in the avant-garde magazine, The Exhibitioner. A copy is housed at the MOMA NYC. Rita “Rusty” Rose is also the mother of the modern-day LGBTQ movement, having fought For civil freedoms at the 1969 Stonewall Riots in New York City.
Ira Joel Haber was born and lives in Brooklyn. He is a sculptor, painter, writer, book dealer, photographer and teacher. His work has been seen in numerous group shows both in the USA and Europe and he has had 9 one man shows including several retrospectives of his sculpture. His work is in the collections of The Whitney Museum Of American Art, New York University, The Guggenheim Museum, The Hirshhorn Museum,The Albright-Knox Art Gallery & The Allen Memorial Art Museum. Since 2006 His paintings, drawings, photographs and collages have been published in over 230 on line and print magazines. He has received three National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships, two Creative Artists Public Service Grant (CAPS), two Pollock-Krasner grants, two Adolph Gottlieb Foundation grants and, in 2010, he received a grant from Artists’ Fellowship Inc. in 2017 & 2018 he received the Brooklyn Arts Council SU-CASA artist-in-residence grant.