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A Quarterly Journal
Jeffrey Woodward, Founder & General Editor
Volume 7, Number 3, September 2013

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Marge Piercy
Cape Cod, Massachusetts


Why Did the Palace of Excess Have Cockroaches?

Why did I get drunk so often in college? Because I was a writer and I had read many biographies of writers and they drank. If writers drank to excess, then I must drink till I passed out, even though that scared me. Why did I try mescalin, drop acid, eat as much hash as I could get in the late 60s and early 70s? Because all my heroes said that enlightenment came in pill form, through dope. I wanted to be wise. Blake said that the road to wisdom leads through the palace of excess, but all I got was in bed with a couple of louts and nightmares that hung on like red fog after I woke. I did not find much to guide me in my vivid hallucinations although I did speak with the dead. They had little to say except to resent their dying. I told them how I missed them but they didn’t listen.

cold water
dripping on granite
a deep enough hole.

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