Poem [“The eager note on my door said, ‘Call me,’”]

By Frank O'Hara 1926–1966 Frank O'Hara
The eager note on my door said “Call me,   
call when you get in!” so I quickly threw   
a few tangerines into my overnight bag,   
straightened my eyelids and shoulders, and

headed straight for the door. It was autumn   
by the time I got around the corner, oh all
unwilling to be either pertinent or bemused, but   
the leaves were brighter than grass on the sidewalk!

Funny, I thought, that the lights are on this late   
and the hall door open; still up at this hour, a   
champion jai-alai player like himself? Oh fie!   
for shame! What a host, so zealous! And he was

there in the hall, flat on a sheet of blood that
ran down the stairs. I did appreciate it. There are few   
hosts who so thoroughly prepare to greet a guest   
only casually invited, and that several months ago.

Frank O’Hara, Poem [“The eager note on my door said, ‘Call me,’”] from Meditations in an Emergency. Copyright © 1957 by Frank O’Hara. Reprinted with the permission of Grove/Atlantic, Inc., www.groveatlantic.com.

Source: The Collected Poems of Frank O'Hara (1995)

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Poet Frank O'Hara 1926–1966

SCHOOL / PERIOD New York School

Subjects Fall, Nature

 Frank  O'Hara

Biography

Frank O'Hara was a dynamic leader of the "New York School" of poets, a group that included John Ashbery, Barbara Guest, Kenneth Koch, and James Schuyler. The Abstract Expressionist painters in New York City during the 1950s and 1960s used the title, but the poets borrowed it. From the beginning O'Hara's poetry was engaged with the worlds of music, dance, and painting. In that complex of associations he devised an idea of poetic . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Fall, Nature

SCHOOL / PERIOD New York School

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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