I am born of nobility, of noble parents, of the streets of Highbridge
aged in the tract homes of Levittown. I am their son, they could have
done better. I am of the nobility of kitchens and car washes, of factories
and mills, of railroads. My hands have felt the heat of furnaces, dirt
packed under nails, scars on hands and knees, small burn mark on the
face. I have known great courage and great fear, great success and great
failure. I am born of noble parents, I am a writer of poems and stories.
I am born of nobility. I have worked in hot water, hot weather, and cold
weather that chilled bones. I have worked with scrub brushes, bricks
shovels and jack hammers, with badges and cuffs and at times with muscle.
I have been loved and have loved, hated and have hated, rose to the top of
the mountain and fell into the valleys. I have rejoiced and grieved, know the
great beauty and ugliness of humankind. I am born of noble parents.
I am born of nobility, of good and gracious parents, not the nobility of
aristocracy but of true noblemen and women of the working and middle
class who have felt the dirt of the earth in their hands, built homes and cities
worked the long hours. Of the noble people of the Reutters, Halpins,
Smiths and Loudens. Of truck drivers, transit workers, paper cutters,
house cleaners, cops, railway workers, soldiers, sailors, politicians
lovers of literature, lovers of life. I am born of the nobility of the working
and middle class.
I am born of nobility, I am their son; I have done the best I can. Imprint of
the past upon me, I leave the past behind me, jettison the baggage and hold
the love and good near. I honor those in my lineage, know from where I have
come. I am born of noble parents, I am a writer of poems and stories.