Poison Pen

No Apologies

This is a book of poetry written while I was in prison in 1982—’83. Although my writing style has changed much and I felt a compulsive need to alter many of these poems as I typed them in for this collection, I resisted. The reason for this is simple. Poison Pen is a reflection of where I was during the years this was written. To be true to myself, to what I was, whether pretty or ugly in the mirror of these times, deep in the passion of my addiction to heroin, I present myself as I was. In the world of poetry there may be many who find fault with my style back then. To these poets, I say that Poison Pen is my truth. It is my testament to the inferno from which I emerged scathed.

There are those who might say some of these poems are politically incorrect. If you are one of those people, I suggest you get into a time machine, travel back to 1982 and ask to be let into Maximum Security at the prison and confront me there.

We’ll talk it over.

I have no apologies for what I was. It was my path at the time.

I have no apologies for what I am today.

Written in Salem, Massachusetts in what they call a sober house. 18 September 1999.

Free Love
You can love me
the way I am
You can leave me
the way I am
I’m not changing for you
I’m just changing.

Written in West Boylston, MA in what they call a house of correction from 1982—’83 by Marc D. Goldfinger


Visiting Hour

Almost visiting hour.
I wait.
Hoping —
As they call
No names here.


I had a name
A long time ago.
I was free
A long time ago.
I knew laughter
A long time ago.
I saw you
A long time ago.

They call numbers,
But not mine.
No number.
No name.
No visit.
I can’t laugh in the mist.

by Marc. D. Goldfinger from his e-book Poison Pen.

Marc. D. Goldfinger. Poison Pen. 101 pages, e-book.

Relationships | A Book of Poems by Marc D. Goldfinger

Copyright 2003 by Marc D. Goldfinger.

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher or author.

First Printing 2003. Printed in the United States of America


Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following publications in which these poems have previously appeared.

What I Do — Pegasus, Spring, 2002; Junkie Love — Poison Pen, Writings From Prison ; The Way She Shakes — City Of Poets ; This Love — The Buffalo News, 3/5/98, Ibbetson Street Press, # 9 & The Rites of Wolves ; The Butterfly In The Box — City Of Poets & The Rites of Wolves ; Significant Other — City Of Poets ; Free Love — Poison Pen, Writings From Prison ; An Ode To My Batterer — Ibbetson Street Press, # 11 . Many of these poems have also appeared previously in the Spare Change News which is put out by the Homeless Empowerment Project in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

For Mary Esther Rohman, who knows me better than any human who walks the Earth

What we wait for sleeps in our substance. Doctrine, being what it is, put on paper, hardens, becomes inflexible. The love of the heart, the Voice of the Spirit always changes, forms itself around us and within us, never hardens. Even those whose hearts have appeared to harden, within, underneath that brittle crabshell beats the Core of the Living Spirit. We become what changes us. The true church has no head, only a Heart.——-October 19, 1999

The Ibbetson Street Press prides itself on publishing poets who bring their unique perspective to their work. Marc Goldfinger, an ubiquitous Cambridge area street poet certainly fits this criteria. Marc has been many things in his fifty-seven years including a heroin addict, the editor of Spare Change News, a homeless person, a political activist, but most consistently a poet. Marc’s work touches on his hardscrabble life and his often nefarious milieu. Even though Marc Goldfinger often hawks his poetry chaps right near the august gates of Harvard Yard, his poetry is far removed from the academics and academia. His is a voice that needs to be heard and Ibbetson Street is glad to be a conduit for this unique artist. — Doug Holder/Ibbetson Street Press

The pdf version of this book. I will send you the pdf to your email adress after receiving your payment.