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January 27, 2010

FIRST PLACE: Letter From Wilfred (1943-Died of AIDS in 1998)

By E. Gail Chandler

A rural Job Corps Center

April 1967

 

Dear Female Marine Wilson, you Beautiful Doll,

I love you forever and I want your alienated body.

 

As you can surmise, it’s a spastic day —

we’re having a regular gale — a cosmic tour-de-force —

I feel like I’m in Greenland, but I’m surrounded by middle-class,

intellectual virgins. You know — like their minds have never been

pierced or wrecked or fraught with existential woes —

they have the strongest hymens —

apathy and mediocrity.

 

I’m screwed up, of course, and I’m in a retaliation bag

brought on by living with a mob

but not having anyone to talk to.

I’m talked about, that’s for sure.

But I figure it’s punishment for

reading Kafka at three years old.

 

Shit. My assistant is an ass

— no doubt about it —

and the few people I love

are psychedelic experiences.

I should dump this project and fly out to see you

but I’m getting out of debt. When I’ve regained

my respectability, I’ll roam again.

I’m taking courses — dull of course but I must contribute

to The Great Society.

 

Gotta run. I have to listen to a shrink from the OEO.

So — write soon —

swim, love and carry on, Lieutenant.

My love and spastic affection,

Wilfred.