Celebration for Willis

Don Willis, were you born or translated?
Your mother was a language,
a mama. You cried in English.
You cried for what you did not yet know,
a nipple and warm milk.
Your mother nursing you did not think
she brought you and 150 books into the world.
The Angel of Death cried ‘murder, murder,’
I’m talking from left to right.
The opposite of a crime is a good deed.
How many bodies and souls have you
and your children tried to save?
I swear by Apollo,
on Parnassus there is a Barnstone Hotel.
I’ve been a bellboy, a hall porter,
a detective at that hotel.