The Fitzroy Tavern, The U.N. Delegates Lounge, & The White Horse Tavern.
Authors: Tambimuttu, Elizabeth (Betty) Smart, Dylan Thomas, Robert Colquhoun & Robert MacBryde,
George Barker, Caitlin & Dylan Thomas, Elizabeth Smart Barker & Robert MacBryde


Peter Dale Scott
a selection from his new book of poems Walking on Darkness
Tavern Underworld
                                      

In the UN Diplomatic Bar
 	that looked down on a seamy waterfront		
      I was introduced to the elegant

Mrs. Norman Holmes Pearson
   	known for turning up with young male poets
      in this case Tambimuttu famous

for having published in Poetry London	
   	poets like Durrell Gascoyne
      and my parentsí friend Betty Smart

	whose book-length lament 
     	 on her scandalous betrayal 
      by the married poet George Barker

and their subsequent arrest in Arizona	        
  	 was bought up by her social-minded mother 
      back in Ottawa and then burned

I shared reminiscences with Tambi 
   	of fabled London pubs like the Fitzroy                
      where someone pointed out that Sylvia Bitch 

and a ponce assured me that a Mousehole weekend    
   	had once been proffered him by Eliot            
        or my night with the Roberts -- MacBryde and Colquhoun --
    
who went on when really drunk to trash the flat
   	of my harmless writer friend Chris Wanklyn
       remembered today because he made it into

The Letters of William S. Burroughs 	    
   	And precisely because I was so well suited 
      for life now in the Diplomatic Lounge

I whoíd earlier turned down the chance
   	to sit at Poundís feet with S at St. Elizabeths   			
      was caught up once again	       

like Danteís Ulysses in that ancient urge
   	to seek experience where we donít belong		  Inf 26:116
      and entreated Tambi to be my guide		              cf. Inf 1.130

back into that tavern underworld 
   	peopled with dropouts from the Unreal City
      with its tall skyscrapers of tinted glass

the White Horse in those days
   	so crowded with those remembering
      Dylanís death just three years before

we preferred a small bar across the street
   	perhaps the one to which Caitlin fled		    Caitlin Thomas
      when pissed off at Dylan once again 

after the two of them -- in their furor		
   	poeticus Ė broke objets díart and		             cf. Plato Ion 533d
      overturned tables at a party in their honor          Brinnin Dylan 146

as if to cry out to a stricken world
	 as once our prophets did Not this	 
      Assuredly not this	
Tambi and I were just witnesses in this narrow bar where anything could happen when one night we watched four thugs burst in as a team to beat up their target a bespectacled slightly sweaty man kicking him mercilessly on the floor until they drove off Tambi and I picked him up I carefully restored to his bruised face his gold-rimmed glasses then suddenly the toughs were back to beat and kick him again still harder this time his glasses into his face till there was Ė as I recall -- much blood what happened next now completely forgotten above all the overwhelming question was he, as we first thought, now blind? a fact far too important to be remembered swept up in this wind of useless memories Kasper burning Sís books by Freud Marsh John Kasper 7 so infected by Poundís rant about the Jews he would soon get himself arrested as he became a major suspect in a string of Southern synagogue bombings -- what is this this paradox that compels me to disgorge these conflicted memories and yet withhold Sís published name? and what is this deficit in our daily life that has driven us since Homer to seek truth from the darkness of the underworld? Odyssey 10:539, 11:96 the Quebec tavern menís room wall where I had scribbled Daryl is a poet! inspiring beneath it Is she? Well fuck a snake! or those first all-night bouts on the waterfront in Montreal with veterans from the war who drank as if there was nothing now to learn or all the useless foreign ships locked in the winter ice of the Lachine Canal seen by a boy at the top of Westmount Mountain all now gone




BIBLIOGRAPHY

Brinnin, John. Dylan Thomas in America (London: J.M. Dent, 1956).

Marsh, Alec. John Kasper and Ezra Pound: Saving the Republic. London: Bloomsbury
Academic, 2015.

Smart, Elizabeth. By Grand Central Station I Sat Down and Wept. New York: Vintage, 1992.


from Peter Dale Scott's forthcoming book Walking on Darkness:
Peter Dale Scott
Walking on Darkness

Sheep Meadow Press
Publication date: September 6, 2016
$16.95 Paperback
ISBN: 9781937679644