“Truman Capote was a chronic and
habitual liar and mythomane, and
also a writer of outré but certifiable
genius, although oddly enough 
never considered true camp.”
—James McCourt, Queer Street:
Rise and Fall of an American Culture

Perhaps there’s no such “thing” as—
a “non-fiction” novel as Capote opined

But rather after exhausting his Fiction—
he turned to Non-Fiction to Fictionalize?

Having mined his own bildungsroman—
for the gold, diamonds & rubies of life

He had no where else to go to be a liar—
than the rest of the world out there

It could be New York, jet-setting around—
the world like the bored rich seem to do

It could be High Society gossip striptease—
fabulating, imagining, even telling lies

So much so that he had to get outta town—
go somewhere far away, dumb & backward

Where he could get away with his inveterate—
ingratiating, flamboyant magic realism?

Just real enough to make you think it’s true—
even worming his way into a convict’s mind

Doing it better than even an ex-con does—
becoming a con-artist & learning the trade

Most ex-cons don’t consider telling the truth—
to be much good for surviving life in prison

Dick Hickcock was pretty smooth at it—
cashing bad checks, taking advantage of chicks

He was able to con Perry Smith into robbing—
the Clutters out there in the middle of nowhere

Perry was pretty vulnerable to lying & stealing—
but the real con-artist was Truman Capote

Truman weaseled his way into Perry’s confidence—
just like he did with the tipsy High Society dames

Getting them to tell all the juicy gossip & secrets—
then spilling the beans & spreading the dirt

The same with low-life gimpy gay Perry Smith—
milking the Clutter Murder Case outta him but good

Swishing thru the halls of the Lansing Prison—
Zeroing in on Perry with an unerring snobbisme

Ingratiating himself there in that prison cell—
like the Côte Basque on East Fifty-fifth Street

As if it were some NYC chic restaurant—
Lafayette, The Colony, La Grenouille, La Caravelle

Capote wanted the dirt before Perry cooled—
stuff even the Topeka shrinks didn’t know

Dick Hickcock smirked at Miss Capote—
replaced this time with a REAL con-artist

All the way from New York High Society—
to Death Row there in Lansing Prison

The way to get ANSWERED PRAYERS, honey—
is to lie, cheat and steal the TRUTH

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