Robert Krantz


            for Carl Sandburg

Lorca saw
            red-headed gargoyle
perpetual death and laughter
                                    in her teeth
at twenty-one I went to become a sign painter
            living close to a hard earth
                                                it happened
At sixty-five I began my first skyscraper
I was a poet
                                            forty years ago
You have loved forty downward, old and gnarled
                        on little cat feet
The two skyscrapers in the smoke
            wrote history
            with verbs quivering
if God had let me join hands with Pocahontas' body
brothers of sheet-steel
orange and

Seeing Li-Po in the lobby
                        puzzled and neutral
                                    studying verbs
            eyes of gravel,
                        sings to me
“Where to? What next?”
            Salt of the troubadour,
the people—faces of dead men
in Ohio, Indiana,

Two mosquitoes, the relation of the poets to society,
the panderers first are alive
            brutal rhythm and mysterious arithmetic
                        aware of their accomplishments—new songs
quiet corner, by one man I shall live
The creator violated Shakespeare, Whitman
killed a white man in the tumultuous
            style of his own
                        and the ink blood of men
Poems, poems, poems of steel
great clocks
three red words
color and echoes
At twenty-three I edited a college paper
            scrawled letters
                        on boxes and walls
                                    elegant sunset
“What do you think of it?”
            All my life I have been trying

Author Portrait

Robert Krantz was born and raised in Western New York. He studied Creative Writing and English Literature at both Niagara County Community College, New York, and the University of Akron, Ohio. Robert published a chapbook of poetry and prose entitled Leg Brace Legato (2013). His poetry and prose has appeared in Akros Literary Review, Bare Fiction, Bitterzoet, the East Coast Literary Review, and Poetry Quarterly. He currently lives in Detroit, Michigan, and works as an industrial sales engineer in the Midwest.