December 11, 2011

The Poetry of Kurt Vonnegut

A few years back, when he was still alive (obviously), Kurt Vonnegut published the following poem in the New Yorker, a tribute to his lifelong friend Joseph Heller. Here it is:


True story, Word of Honor:
Joseph Heller, an important and funny writer
now dead,
and I were at a party given by a billionaire
on Shelter Island.
I said, "Joe, how does it make you feel
to know that our host only yesterday
may have made more money
than your novel 'Catch-22'
has earned in its entire history?"
And Joe said, "I've got something he can never have."
And I said, "What on earth could that be, Joe?"
And Joe said, "The knowledge that I've got enough."
Not bad! Rest in peace!