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Harvest Moon Mooning

April 18, 2011

Harvest Moon Mooning

Joe mooned the audience at the Open Mic reading
the other night at the Millburn, NJ Library.
I knew he had it in him,
I was just hoping that I would never see it.

Joe always complained
about the “Intelligentsia” in the poetry world.
We would go to workshops,
they would give him some mundane topic
and expect that he would write in esoteric terms
that not even a swami could interpret.

“These people would expect lyrical phases
even if the topic was to write about a fart,”
he told me once.
“Some things are just what they are,
and they aren’t lyrical.”

So when he read his poem at the library
about the outhouse
that was on the Western Pennsylvania farm where he grew up
he started to hear some snickers
saw those condescending smiles in the audience
like “here goes Joe again,”
and all of his William Paterson College A.A. bred inhibitions
broke down, he just lost it.
There at the podium he mooned them,
and that just about said it all,
but it didn’t really.

For you see, if certain writers who were acceptable to
the Intelligentsia had done that, it would have been innovative,
avant-garde. They would have put his picture
on the wall at Poets House in New York
written about it in Poets and Writers Magazine.
But Joe had the wrong initials behind his name –
A.A. instead of M.F.A.

So now as we have a beer at Mechlin’s Corner Tavern
Joe asked me about the old poetry haunts
and Mrs. Snooty who black listed him.

Afterwards he jumps into his chauffeured driven limousine,
he now having become quite the cult idol,
much sought after reader,
with his own booking agent, traveling first class
from college to college throughout the United States.

That’s what one minute of fame, on You Tube,
“Mooning the Intelligentsia”, can do for you.

Ray Brown

Consider purchasing my book of poems, “I Have His Letters Still” – Poetry of Everyday Life ($11.95).  Available on Amazon at or purchase an autographed copy at

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