Pops and Blues


Jack Kerouac called them “pops,” Western haikus.  He didn’t always stick to the correct 17 syllable count but many of his images did “pop” from his pen.

Missing a kick

              at the icebox door

     It closed anyway

this one is famous, and one of my favorites:

Early morning yellow flowers,

thinking about

the drunkards of Mexico.

Jack spent a lot of time in Mexico.  Stayed with Burroughs there for a while.  Did junk, drank liquor and wrote his Mexico City Blues.

The Blues was written as one long poem with different “choruses.”  As Jack said:

I want to be considered a jazz poet

blowing a long blues in an afternoon jam

session on Sunday. I take 242 choruses;

my ideas vary and sometimess roll from

chorus to chorus or from halfway through

a chorus to halfway into the next.

Gotta laugh at the thought of a musician taking 242 choruses at a jam session, though after some of the jam sessions I’ve been at, I wouldn’t be suprised if that had actually happened.

202nd Chorus

A white poem, a white pure

      spotless poem

      A bright poem

      A nothing poem

      A no-poem non poem

          nondream clean

          silverdawn clear

          silent of birds



            the lark of trees

            the needle pines

              the rock the pool

                 the sandy shore

      the cleanness of dogs




        pure white



        Honey Land


And here’s 3 of mine, done right now, on the spot.

winter cold 27th street

neighbor’s black cat

sneaks down brownstone stairs.

snow comes too soon!

once again,

old boots.

electric lit city trees

on 52nd Street.

the pharmacy

is crowded.

Try some pops, they’re fun.


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  1. ze Orange.

  2. i had a place

          on the east side

    tiny and haunted

  3. gay pride parade

    Halloween and cops

    and Irish bars


  4. Mary Oliver’s rules of the dance

    Propped in the passenger seat for slow intersections

    No partner, just interstate and dead phone batteries

    A spliff behind me and before me just

    That Fraser river valley x-files glowing grey shit

    News on the radio a full tank and

    Tonight I’m free.

  5. morning blogging

    pausing to refill the coffee

    the keyboard sticks

    • RiaD on December 6, 2007 at 19:44

    infectious giggle

     a past reflection

         of future echo’s

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