By Kenneth Fearing 1902–1961 Kenneth Fearing
I sing of simple people and the hardier virtues, by Associated Stuffed Shirts & Company, Incorporated, 358 West 42d Street, New York, brochure enclosed
   of Christ on the Cross, by a visitor to Calvary, first class
   art deals with eternal, not current verities, revised from last week's Sunday supplement
   guess what we mean, in The Literary System, and a thousand noble answers to a thousand empty questions, by a patriot who needs the dough.

And so it goes.
   Books are the key to magic portals. Knowledge is power. Give the people light.
   Writing must be such a nice profession.
   Fill in the coupon. How do you know? Maybe you can be a writer, too.

Kenneth Fearing, "Literary" from Kenneth Fearing: Selected Poems. Published by The Library of America, 2004. Reprinted by the permission of Russell & Volkening, Inc., as agents for the author. Copyright © 1994 by Jubal Fearing and Phoebe Fearing.

Source: Kenneth Fearing: Selected Poems (The Library of America, 2004)

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Poet Kenneth Fearing 1902–1961


Subjects Arts & Sciences, Reading & Books, Poetry & Poets, Humor & Satire


Kenneth Fearing, a well-known proletarian poet of the 1930s, a pulp-magazine writer with several pseudonyms, and a Chicago and New York publicity and editorial writer, turned to writing “psycho-thrillers” in the 1940s and 1950s. His fourth novel The Big Clock (1946) achieved much popularity and was released as a film by Paramount in 1947. Although some scholars now consider Fearing’s main contribution to be in the genre of . . .

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SUBJECT Arts & Sciences, Reading & Books, Poetry & Poets, Humor & Satire


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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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