Norman Mailer's Poem to JFK

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November 23, 1961, Vol. VII, No. 5

Open Poem to John Fitzgerald Kennedy

By Norman Mailer

fallout is the hormone of the small town mind

a fallout shelter is sex

think how warm at the thought are all of Mr U and little Mrs. USA bonging the gong below while bigcity flesh all that blond hair and black hair straight and long short and highly curled floating in through the trees a dew of homogenized bone and blood mist

atom bombs are not so bad says small-time in the town mind they disinfect the big city and jazz us to the toes out here in God's country

fingering is lovely on the edge of the grave.

Mr. President you realize of course that your shelter program for every home owner is sexing up the countryside and killing us in the bigcity bar. If this is good for the vitality of the nation (I mean that countryside could stand some sex) then Mr. President you are a genius and corporation executives living in the suburbs with the five thousand dollar shelters ought to salute you. I do.

[Each weekday morning, we post an excerpt from another issue of the Voice, going in order from our oldest archives. Visit our Clip Job archive page to see excerpts back to 1956.]

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