None of us will ever be famous


“I met Fagin in an experimental-poetry class he taught at The New School, in 2003. He was sixty-six, with wavy white hair, a thin beard, and a paunch that entered the room about a half second before he did. He had written or co-written fifteen books of poetry, including his selected early poems, “I’ll Be Seeing You: Poems 1962–1976.” His first lesson to the group was, “None of us will ever be famous.” I believed him. I was not a poet. I was an M.F.A. candidate at the time, with a collection of mediocre fiction. Most of the two hundred students I’d met in the program wanted nothing more than to be famous. Fagin had avoided the spotlight for most of his life, and few of us had heard of him. To the class, he was a teacher—funny, ornery, energetic, brilliant, cutting, and exceptionally generous, with an encyclopedic knowledge of the arts.”

Porter Fox – “None of Us Will Ever Be Famous”: Remembering the Poet Larry FaginThe New Yorker – July 8, 2017


Larry Fagin

Rain with a sour smell. Not to worry, though you might wind up with it— primarily a race against your own skin. The skull is showing. The jerking horses in the old footage, bound to end badly. Psychic hardening, I suppose. Poetry is arranged by sound. I can say no more. A beloved relative from out of town was arriving the next day with a

Read rest of poem + 3 more by Fagin

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