* BRADBURY, RAY An apparently unpublished poem ("The nay-sayers") from Bradbury in typescript, framed alongside a typed letter signed (undated) by Bradbury to Mikhail Francis Itkin, on Bradbury's Los Angeles letterhead, granting Itkin the right to publish the poem under Bradbury's 1974 copyright. An envelope affixed to the verso of the frame is addressed to The Most REV. Mikhail Francis Itkin.
The poem reads: "They speak beneth their breath, | They linger long on tombs and graveyards, | Earth and politics by night and moles which dig the dark; | Their park is marbled with old names, | Old times, old dooms, | They have no rooms to let to life, | Nor any blood nor heat, | The street they shamble on is empty, long and lone, | They moan when they exhale | And with each inhalation cry. | When I say 'live' they look astonished and repeat: | Never to have been born is best, | Put down and die. | I will not hear them, cannot hear them, will not try | To even understand | How living up above | They would prefer to sleep beneath the land. | So these cold ones that fail at being warm | Would harm the world with swords of ice and doubt, | While I in Eden stand and wonder, shake my head | And wait for God to throw them out!
Mikhail Itkin (1936-1989), also known as Bishop Michael Francis Augustine Itkin or, after his canonization by the Moorish Orthodox Church in America, as Saint Mikhael of California, was a seminal figure in the "gay church" movement of the mid-twentieth century.
Estimate $ 2,000-3,000
Property from the Collection of Ronald Kuntz, Sugar Grove, Illinois