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“Going Back in Time” by A.D Winans


James Dean as Call Trask in the bean fields, East of Eden 1955


When I was young
I drove to Salinas
And ran through the bean fields
Pretending I was James Dean in East of Eden
Stopped off in Monterey walking Cannery Row
Imagining myself packing sardines in between
Midnight conversations with Doc and the boys

Driving to Carmel I scribbled a poem on a cocktail napkin
That later became the Title for my first book of poems
But the rents were high and the job pay too low
So in 1964 I took my first full time job in Modesto
Driving on weekends to Stockton’s public square park
To drink with the wino’s
In Crow’s Landing I drank with unemployed Mexicans
At run-down cantinas
In North Beach and the Mission District
I hung out with deadbeats and losers
Street people fighting junkie tremors and cirrhosis of the liver
In the Fillmore I cut my teeth on jazz

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About Ian Ayres


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