Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Ambrose Mohler featured Monday, 3/24/14 at Poetry Express Berkeley

3/24 Ambrose Mohler 

Ambrose Mohler lived in the Sunset district of San Francisco for seven years during which time he wandered the streets and various neighborhoods of the city. He spent a great deal of that time in the Tenderloin, the Mission and the Richmond districts drinking, fighting and whoring. For most of these seven years he was jobless, with the exception of a brief stint as a ticket seller and another as a bookseller at The Booksmith on Haight Street.  He tried to pursue a career as a street heckler but found he wasn't cut out for the work. He did, however,  make a career of getting thrown out of virtually every bar in the city.  Since moving to the East Bay in 2010, he has spent his time painting, writing poetry and teaching himself various aspects of world cuisine.

Morning still blue
and dark and damp and cool-
not yet begun.
food warms the belly first,
pork bun
from the bakery, brought home
and enjoyed,
just one,
a diollar feast...
and water for the thirst

and now the sun
peers over rooftops
in the window
facing east
glinting off the bottle,
as another one.


Drinking through to the other side
and sober after eight.
six was trouble
but by nine and ten
I was doing double duty,
drinking one here
and one across the street
at the same time.
I drank ten first
and I still don't understand
how I could have been
tipsy by five
and sober enough by thirteen
that when she yelled
'we're closing!'
directly into my face,
without a second's passing
I smiled, and responded well,
the well no longer responding.
I must have closed three bars
that night-
it's strange
how they set their clocks
like time goes backward.

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