Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

Oh, what a tangled web we weave
When first we practice to deceive!
~Walter Scott

A conversation with a young writer a while back on honesty combines with an apparent lack of integrity in business and government coming across in the world news and personal experience with some who have a very casual relationship with truth and leads me to today’s post.

I make up stories. Of course I do; I’m a writer. I write about ghosts of pirates and old ladies who can fly and all sorts of other completely fictional scenarios. The fact that many of the tales I jot down never happened does not, however, make them lies. In fact, vital to each is its honesty.

My young pal is writing sci-fi, intricate stories of the seemingly impossible convoluted by circumstance outside the limits of anything but his imagination, yet my advice to him is: Keep it real; keep it honest.

How does that work? Well, the same way it does in life.

There are rules. There are always rules. Rules of action and reaction, of fairness, of balance, and through the process of creating a world, even an outrageous world of your own making, rules must be engraved in stone and followed.

For example, I just finished writing a scene in the book I’m working on now where a character is standing high on a rock contemplating the view before her. In reality, there is no woman, no rock and no view until I write it. It’s at that point it becomes substance, even if the substance is nothing but a string of words. I could easily endow her with superpowers that would allow her to leap, then fly, or I could make her as big as a cloud or as small as a gnat, but the one thing I cannot do is write what can’t be according to the rules of her world.

She feels the breeze upon her skin, so that breeze must be what a breeze is and her interpretation of it must be within the realm of what is possible for her. I can choose not to include the breeze in the tale, but it’s there and there’s no room for cheating, for glancing over what must be, what is. Her world isn’t airless, nor is she the type not to notice a warm, enveloping breath, so it must be written as it happens.

I wrote recently about my way of thinking of life as a series of books within a book, how I have a mental library I access as a meditation technique and where I store stuff in some sort of order I don’t always have access to.

Thinking in those terms, when reading news accounts of real people, I often wonder how their books play out. Not the truly evil, as there are plenty of horror tales that run according to plot, but those who bend and twist truth as if it is something bendable and twistable. It’s not, you know. It’s not. And the spiders weaving those tangled webs are very frequently left to dangle on a thread going nowhere.

It’s the same with people in the non-newsworthy world … whatever that may be at any given moment … who seem to think they’re getting along just fine by tweaking reality when it seems convenient, doing one thing, then saying they’re doing another … or nothing at all … living one lie after another as if life is nothing but a series of lily pads offering options to hop without consequence rather than a path that will be taken no matter how many times a plop in the muck happens.

The life books of those folks must be full of missing chapters and run-on sentences leading nowhere. All that doubling back must get tiresome, and since none of us gets a chance for a full rewrite, the story must grow terribly labyrinthine and cluttered with many dead ends.

The fact is many of our stories interconnect, fact and fiction, and once we’re part of another book or another’s book becomes part of ours plots mingle. Everyone is on their way to their own ending, but one influences the other and plot twists often happen in tandem. When all is based in real, in truth and honesty and integrity, scenes open, run and close in an order that makes sense, that scans, that works no matter how deep the tale, how serious the diegesis, how diabolical the outcome.

It’s cheap and easy to write bad fiction … there’s certainly a lot of that about … just as it is to live it. When the frog eats the spider and the lily pad sinks we lose interest until they’re scrambling to find something with substance to pull themselves up by. That would be truth.

There are, of course, various interpretations of truth, degrees of certitude, some flexibility in defining where accuracy and honesty go in different directions. In writing, such partings must be … well … spelled out, clearly or obliquely, or readers may feel tricked into a web that’s lost its form. Bored and frustrated, they’ll turn away, stop caring, toss the book at the wall and vow never to go THERE again, and the dishonest writer has just slit their own throat.

In life, however, a lie is a lie, and although some may appear to gain ground with the telling thinking they’re paving the way toward what they may think is a right direction, in the long run gossamer lily pads go nowhere.

Gossamer Lily Pads and Where They’ll Get You

If a frog eats a spider
and the spider’s had a fly
where’s the nutrition if
it’s all been a lie?

The spider says, “I’ve done it,
and there’s a way to go”
So a hop to a lily pad
makes sense to the toad.

When the spider can’t be trusted
and there never was a fly
and the frog knows the lily pad
is nothing but a lie,

just loosely woven spider spit,
a floating maze of fraud,
it serves them all quite rightly
to be left to swim in mud.

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Apologies for this convoluted mess of a post. I’m processing, and that’s not a tidy endeavor, so this thing is all over the place …

Being a reader and a writer, I suppose it makes sense that I often think of life in terms of books.

One of my favorite images, developed when I was a kid and honed over the years, is of internal libraries we each carry with us; volume after volume of stories lining endless shelves and constantly being added to. The history section grows as we age, as does general knowledge and reference works, and although some are better than others at retrieving info we know is there, just about everyone is aware of the fact that dusty corners hold stuff we haven’t bothered to look at in a very long time.

I use my library as an aid to meditation and often find illumination for troubling issues while wandering the stacks. There’s an entire section with nothing but numbers on the spines … all in Roman numerals. (I don’t know why, but that’s what it is.) The first is marked “I” and I can trail my finger along … V, X, XXV, XXXIII, XL, L … and stop where it feels right. Each book is a rough accounting of one year of my life, yet none are finished but have blank pages interspersed throughout since many of the yarns have yet to complete their weaving.

The library itself is inside a book inside my head, but much like reading on my iPad, I have no idea how thick this book might be. I know I’m a good way through, but just how far from The End, I can’t see. It could very well be that the next turn of the page is the last … or perhaps there are still quite a few chapters.

I might sketch notes in the corners if I could get to those pages by somehow jumping ahead — they are fairly blank, after all — but thumbing forward is futile and ends up heading back through chapters on history. That’s not a bad thing. Not at all. In fact, filling in gaps can be quite helpful even without knowing how it all ends.

One rule of fiction writing dictates everything included in a story must either reveal character or advance plot. Interestingly, reads back through my book seem to indicate that rule was followed even though at the time it seemed either nothing was happening or what happened was scripted by the William S. Burroughs school of writing. Oh, those not-so-lovely Deus ex Machina moments that make no sense at all … the shit asteroids falling from a clear, blue sky … the people popping up seemingly out of left field and tagging up … the bright, shiny objects floating into the path and compelling me to follow.

Yep, those WTF moments, the where-the-hell-did-that-come-from issues … when looking back in the Big Book of Sandra I do get the idea that all these shredded threads actually unspool from a source and following the fragments is possible. Some of it even makes sense when looking at it backwards, or if not sense at least symmetry. After all, I’m where I am now and getting here is what the story’s been about … so far.

As a new year begins, the image of blank pages ready for filling presents, but I’m not writing my life, just living it. It’s not me setting the scene but the sea and the clouds and the blue sky above, the bird chirps, the sound of the dog’s leg tapping along in time to her scratching happening with no need to be described … it all just is.

I can’t write others’ actions or reactions. I can’t build a character who loves me enough, never lets me down or saves the day. It’s not for me to calculate another’s trajectory and where it intersects mine. I can want to, but I can’t DO it. No. What is, is.

What also “is” is the part I can’t know — the part composing on its own. Are we coming toward an unexpected plot twist? A lottery win? The death of a loved one? Someone wonderful about to enter stage right? Cancer? A job offer? A heart attack?

Any or all of that could be part of the plot … well, not the lottery thing, since apparently you have to actually buy tickets and I don’t … and if I die tonight, my book is done and I’ll be filed away in the libraries of those who know me, but will continue to fill pages in others’ books … cross-references are a huge part of the life of Life books and parts of my story will continue to be included in the story of others for a while.

My volume varies in size from library to library … much thicker in my grown daughter’s than in Cj’s, for example … and there will be many different versions of my story. The version I have access to now will never be read by anyone, so no one will ever know the me of me that I know, just as I can’t know the them of any of them. Our stories are not only unique, they are forever beyond the comprehension of anyone, even ourselves; unfathomable biographies covering millions of seconds, each leading to the next until they stop doing that.

And there will be rewrites, some kind, some less so, but all tailored to fit the edition to the library hosting.

If I could write the rest of my life, I would end the book for MMX with ” … and she lived happily ever after to the end of her days”, then start on a new one with an outline for just how that would unfold making sure there were many, many pages left for all the great stories about to commence. For all I know, however, it’s already written, and perhaps that is how it goes. Maybe I do live happily ever after. Maybe all the carefully composed outlines have forged themselves in some sort of unassailable form that MUST be followed. Maybe. For now, though, all I can do is look forward to the read … and the ride.

For all who’d like to take a look,
my life is but an open book.

But please, I beg you, all my friends,
some word if you know how it ends.

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And ye, who have met with Adversity’s blast,
And been bow’d to the earth by its fury;
To whom the Twelve Months, that have recently pass’d
Were as harsh as a prejudiced jury –
Still, fill to the Future! and join in our chime,
The regrets of remembrance to cozen,
And having obtained a New Trial of Time,
Shout in hopes of a kindlier dozen.
~Thomas Hood

Although an arbitrary demarcation of something quantum physics says doesn’t exist, there’s no denying the impact of the turn of the year on the fragile psyche of frail humans … okay, on the fragile psyche of this frail human — new years freak me out!

New Year’s eve is like every other night; there is no pause in the march of the universe, no breathless moment of silence among created things that the passage of another twelve months may be noted; and yet no man has quite the same thoughts this evening that come with the coming of darkness on other nights. ~Hamilton Wright Mabie

There’s something more than unnerving in the idea that one year has just gone by in an eye-blink, that a whole bunch of stuff happened in those twelve months, much of which deserves rumination, and this morning I teeter on the cliff edge of yet another that will pass as fast and present as much … or more … I’ll have incorporated into my history this time next year.


I have great hopes for 2011, even some plans, and this morning a determination to make this one great year. Of course, those are precisely the thoughts I had on New Year’s Day 2010.

For the third year running, life is in tumult with so much out of my control that simply hanging on is about the best I can manage. Sure, I’ll plod along day-by-day doing the things that need doing, avoiding pitfalls I can see or sense and spend no little energy visualizing the desired path, but after the last couple of years know only too well that at any moment I could hear that brief scream that signals incoming.

I’d like to think I’ve learned enough to trust only the trustworthy, love only those who deserve my love, chose only the best options available … as Tennyson said:

Ring out the old, ring in the new,
Ring, happy bells, across the snow:
The year is going, let him go;
Ring out the false, ring in the true.

Amen, Alfred. And I’ll be greeting true with open arms if I recognize the fucking thing.

If all goes well, 2011 should be a year of change … big, positive change seeing me having wrestled back some control, moved house, simplified things considerably and set up comfortable circumstances for me and the kids that will provide enough security to allow stepping back from the dance on the rim of the precipice and a chance to gather strength rather than squander it in anxiety and the depleting efforts of fighting for every fucking step.

Of course, the reality is that we only have so many of these new beginnings, and there’s always the chance the last one was the last one. That would be quite disappointing. I very much hope there’s time to reap rewards for hard work, that my last love was not my LAST love, that seeds sown come to fruition. Conversely, however, another year like the last few … well … I’m not so hot on that.

Today, there’s no way to know if it’s “a kindlier dozen” ahead, more of the same or something even more diabolical. Experience tells me thoughts of “it can’t get any worse” are utter nonsense and there is no guaranteed swing of the pendulum shifting from crap to contentment, but there is hope.

For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
~T.S. Eliot

So, the old year is over, the new has begun … it will bring what it brings and be dealt with as it unfolds. I will do what I always do — plod and write — and January will turn to February and Cj will be six in April and Sam will be nine in November and another year will be added to the outbox. I will seek out joy, love my kids, treasure my friends, embrace adventures and hope and hope and hope.

We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year’s Day. ~Edith Lovejoy Pierce

My sincere wish to all that 2011 fills your book with joy, love, kindness and peace …

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Wrapping my head around the holidays … looking happy about it … dwelling is not an option … cleaning out corners is …

My dog and stuff

My dog is called Mitzy
she’s ditzy
My cat is Diego,
hasta luego
The tortoise is Helmut
… the shell, mate …
I do with my critters,
their litter,
and fritter
away many minutes
with little else in it
My kids
are Sam, Cj and Jenn
and Jaren, of course,
although he’s now a “been”
I’ve a mother,
three brothers,
Larry, Tom and …
oh … Jim …
and, very thankfully,
a whole raft of friends.
There’s Andy and Gay
who both make every day
a tolerable passing of
whatever may
come hell or high water
show up when my daughter
the grown one (I miss her)
is beyond where I aughter
while I’m with her sister.
It’s life on this rock
that keeps me in hock
always missing someone
even as I keep stock
of those coming and going
I love them all, knowing
time passes so fast
What’s it mean? I could ask
my dog who’s called Mitzy

Cambodia in Seventeen Syllables
Always conflicted,
smiling through horror
Poison on the top shelf waits


It’s ghosts I hang
on the Christmas tree
shades of all that
couldn’t be
Another year has
come and gone,
another season
thrust upon
all tinsel, balls and
shiny fluff
and meant to be
diverting stuff
but serving only to remind
of all that has been left behind


How does one finish with
stuff that’s not done
like a bird in the oven
still bleeding?

Can’t very well eat things
still moving now
can we? Not while it still keeps
its beating

It has stewed, it has baked
but no matter,
stlll kicking this thing’s not

the process of dying
takes time and may
nevertheless bear

Hunger can’t rush it,
wishing won’t work,
but no worries.
We’re feeding

on scraps of leftovers
savouring each
it seems we are
still needing.

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Yesterday I wrote about infamous dates, an appropriate topic on Pearl Harbor Day.

Today is another one of those. Although not on the same scale of lives lost or immediate consequence, December 8, 1980 saw a moment that defines a generation, and world, thirty years after the fact of an act of murder.

The death of John Lennon put paid to an era born in the sixties and dying with John.

It could be the timing was coincidental … another decade had closed and the 80’s loomed large and voracious. Flower-power was giving way to the darker, disenchanted tones of Goth, Ronald Reagan was White House-bound and the 80s stretched before us like a ladder to be climbed one pricey rung after the other.

Could it be, however, it was the event that instigated at least some of the changes?

The violent death of a gentle musician and poet at the hand of a publicity-seeking nutjob seems a demarcation point.

Perhaps my rearview mirror has fogged over the past 30 years, but I recall the decades before Dec. 8, 1980 as hopeful … angst-ridden, yes, but that angst flowed from frustration that the world wasn’t moving quite quickly enough toward the peaceful garden we could still imagine at the time.

We’d seen our share of horrors, but felt we’d learned stuff … important stuff that could and would matter. We felt it was possible to actually give peace a chance.

Greed started driving the bus in the 80s and angst turned to the stone of cynicism. As communism fell by the wayside, that perceived specter morphed into the solid form of expanding markets, multiple debt crises, famine and a whole bunch of wars.

Hippies turned into Yuppies, Porsche became the new VW van and conspicuous consumption took over where conscientious objection left off.

Even the drugs got meaner as coke and crack took the place of acid and weed and ad copy became a viable outlet for poets since the pay was so much better.

I’m guessing those who missed the world John Lennon lived and influenced will consider this a geezer ramble … revisionist history not appreciative of the wonders of the past three decades, or not appreciative enough.

Could be. Could be.

But I can’t help but wonder how different the last thirty years might have been if that fuckwad Mark Chapman had not decided to stake his claim to fame by blowing holes through one of the world’s most important proponents of thoughtful consideration and hope.

The music, alone, we’ve been robbed of has left us poorer.

So … on this day, as every 8th of December, I celebrate the life and rue the death of John Lennon, wonder and imagine …

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Sounds almost pleasant, doesn’t it? It’s not. Oxymoronic in its essence, free-floating anxiety sees the anxious bit hijacking anything that might be considered free and the sucker floats like a anvil.

Anxiety that lacks a definite focus or content.

And that, folks, comes before the first cup of tea.

I have always lived with demons … depression being the biggest bugger with the fiercest bite … but anxiety is rather new to me. Sure, I’m a worrier. What woman isn’t, especially living alone and having kids to raise? But it’s not often my worries cause me to lose sleep.

In fact, I usually sleep fairly well; I drop off without effort, and if disturbed have little to no trouble drifting back into slumber. Yes, my sleep is dream-plagued/blessed and often not as restful as I’d like, but I do sleep and for the allotted hours.

No, it’s not the sleeping that’s my issue, my demon … whatever … but the waking.

Before my eyes open I now realize I’ve shifted from sleep to awake by the sudden onset of that free-floating anxiety thing. It takes a bit of time to recognize and even more to run it through the filters: I’m late; I’m early; I’m breathing; kids are okay; nothing horrible happened in the night; scan the list of what’s on for the day; yes, I’m here alone. Check. Check. Check.

So, why am I shaking and where is this panic over a new day coming from? Am I sixth-sensing portents of doom? Has a shit asteroid been plummeting toward me in the night? Why is every drop of sadness in my body rushing in to welcome another twenty-four hours of the same old crap? Is the day now tainted? Have I contaminated the glass of opportunity by dropping in a dollop of shite with my quaking hands? Will these backed-up tears cloud my vision? Or drown me?

Tea. I need tea.

And thus begins my day.

It’s not every day that starts this way. Thankfully, I do go through periods where I wake up like a normal person, slowy and with a lovely touch of fog misting my corners. On those mornings my eyes open, the view presents itself in all its glory and potential rolls out in front of me. Those occasions take a second cup of tea to bring recognition of and appreciation for the ease of sliding into what had been tomorrow.

More often than not, however, it’s choking sad and shaking panic that form my salute to the sun.

I can trace the roots of this relatively new … what? … affliction? … waking nightmare? … free-floating anxiety … yeah, that’s it.

Close to eighteen months ago my waking moments changed drastically with the 6-am-ish phone call that told me my son was dead. And although this will not only sound trite, but obvious, I’ve not been the same since.

It’s a fact of life that the older we get, the longer our loss list grows. Over the past few years I’ve lost a lot … a son, a husband, a great love, all semblance of security, the last vestiges of youth, a load of nerve, hopes, dreams, wishes … even, from time to time, the will to live. (Yes, I have a list of gains, too, but I’ve just passed a week being thankful and that’s not what this is about this morning.)

I can deal with each and every loss … one-by-one, please … but first thing in the morning and before I’m fully awake? Not so well. Not at all, actually, since dealing isn’t what happens when I’m trembling and feeling the sting of tears before my eyes even open.

The result, of course, of this free-floating shit is an effort to flail a lasso about and pull it close enough to examine just what the fuck it might be. That sure pulls out the list, and as my mind leaps like a frog across sinking lily pads I am forced to recollect most every crappy thing that has happened, may happen or will happen. And I haven’t even peed yet …

At least I get words out of it, heh? Here are a few from this morning:

Good Morning, Sword

Within my realm I awaken each day
to a view of the sea and bird song
It is in my power to make what I may
But the first works I utter are:
What’s wrong?

I don’t see the sword hanging over my head
but I know that it’s there and suspended
by something no stronger than one single hair
if should break means the world is
upended …

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Perched on an emotional ledge as I have been for the past while, I find myself using my fingers to hang on to the cliff face with the hope the persistent ache resulting reminds me to keep the grip and not slide … plummet? … leap? … cavort? … into the abyss, or whateverthefuck it is, below.

The crag I cling to is QWERTY-shaped, and like velcro needs multiple connections doing a little dance to keep the stickiness happening.

Some shards pulled away by the friction between the rock and the hard place the other day got a comment that’s kept me busy lately while I hang around:

Have you ever considered writing poetry about anger? I read these yesterday, couldn’t sleep last night, don’t know why poetry about anger kept swirling around my thoughts.

So, thanks to Amy, it’s anger raising its fiery, swollen head and keeping me clenching …

Pissed off. What’s a Girl to Do?

To spew my anger ‘cross a page
would mean acknowledging my rage
It seems I was raised way too girly-ous
to allow such blatant show of furious

An emphasis on contemplation …
consider each and every view …
and be no reason for vexation:
The mandate for a girl’s milieu

Not that some don’t infuriate
when what they should do is placate,
but I have faced consequences dire
when releasing my indignant ire

It’s not that I don’t have a temper
I do, but somethings can be learned:
There’s no need to just sit and whimper’
but formulate through each slow burn …

It’s helpful oft’ times to rattle a cage
and channel off more than a bit of outrage
through get-backs oh-so-very terse
in fits of pique disguised as verse.

Unfortunately, the season doesn’t help much …

The First Noel

The first Noel I hear
as we come toward the end of the year
will convey no festive tingling
but could earn a testes jingling
and a very hearty round of “Fuck you, Dear”.

And … of course, the usual angst that confounds and confuses …

Man: Optional?

I’m perpetually disappointed by
the sex that feels anointed by
the fact they sport a penis,
or it they

Although seemingly unfettered
and somehow strangely flattered
by a mass secreting phlegm
along the way,

they find their bits impressive
even when the thing is restive
and can’t ever keep their hands
too far away

There’s no doubt that cock’s amusing
and I’m very fond of using
the appendage on ’bout any
given day,

but if suddenly to find it
hanging ’round there, I would bind it,
not assuming special powers
in its sway

Since I wasn’t born with boy bling,
that male Lincoln Log-like toy thing,
it’s not possible to ‘get’ that
need to play

with it inside things or outdoors,
(little pickiness between whores)
just ’bout any hole will do it
So they pray:

Fall down to your knees in full praise …
or upon your back with legs raised …
just give some place for to aim and
shout “Hooray”

for the penis now he rises …
no, no need to think in sizes …
just appreciate the sight of
that beauTAY!

If the thing could only speak it
would hardly need the geek it
uses to transport it ’round
each day

Truly, women are from Venus
and we’ll never have a penis
other than the ones we borrow.
That’s okay

There’re no shortages of offers
from those pleased to fill our coffers
and occasionally the man attached
will stay

round long enough to carry
a few burdens, even marry,
giving more than just their penis
and a lay

But …

I’m perpetually disappointed by
the sex that feels anointed by
the fact they sport a penis …
or it they

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You know how it is …

Some people see life as a roller coaster; they thrill with anticipation on the way up, love the gut-lurch at the top, then piss themselves out of fear on the way down and spend the rest of the time embarrassed about the wet mark.

Some see life as a banquet; gorging themselves on the richness of the spread, they pass on nothing tasty, but often end up vomiting all as a consequence of their indulgence.

I see life as a convoluted tale … or tail, perhaps, as if it’s the ass-end appendage of a lumbering beast, which is a good explanation for why shit happens … so I don’t wet myself or puke, but follow and pay attention, and what erupts or leaks or spews from me as a result is verse.

Unlike the professional work I am paid to produce … unless for a very good cause or a lover who gives me a good deal in trade … poems aren’t written for anyone, not even me. They are just written, as a convoluted tale must be. If any sense can be made of twists and turns and whorls, crafting them into letters/words/phrases is the way I deal with confusing complexities.

Although it often seems poems pop out of me, the actual process is more like a slow ooze. Yes, a first line or a phrase can surprise me, but a suppuration process must happen before any actual popping happens.

I never know where I’ll end up when starting on a verse-strewn path and don’t set out with any destination in mind, but as a metaphor for life it simply follows the convolutions and ends where it ends.

In answer to some who’ve asked, I usually work a poem for quite a while, tweaking and fiddling until the wrong words are gone and the right words are where they belong. I have no way of explaining the process. Yes, studying the intricacies of meter, rhyme and stanzaic structure is as important a foundation as learning correct punctuation is to writing in general, and any cavalier rejection of the need for rules results in way too much crap writing in the world. But composing anything must be more about what happens in the soul than what can be taught if it’s to reflect more than someone else’s idea of correct.

Because the tail I ride has been whipping around way too much lately, I’ve been splattered with shit that’s prompted efforts to transform random excrement into something a bit less messy. What follows are a few of the sculptures I have managed to fashion as armour …

Mr. Moon

The full face of the moon
looks upon me tonight
and I can’t hide away from his gaze
He says: ’twill be soon
you will turn off the light
but you’ll never escape from the maze
you have woven so tightly
you must face it nightly
whether I’m dark or I’m bright
In fear or so hopeful
with a love or alone, full
my presence can make it all right.
Goodnight …

Input Reaction

I need to stop reading the news
and not just cuz it gives me the blues
So much is just stumpin’
it sets my head thumpin’
I should just settle down for a snooze …
or some booze …

I’m wondering what I’ve got to lose
if I really gave up on the news
I’d for sure miss the fodder
but in some ways I’d oughter
be grateful to say, ‘please excuse’ …
pass the booze …

Say What?

What? Now?
They’re sneaking up again
those damned emotions
make me spin
Oft times I think I’m doing fine
then … BAM! … it all goes
outta line.
Through each and every thin
and thickness
I find myself the only witness
A mess it is this puddling
and bloody fucking muddling
Tis simpler to see things done
And, sure as shit,
this isn’t fun
They come with every chat on Skype
a plea for words,
a bit more hype,
late night IMs into my phone.
No wonder I am still alone.
Oh, yes
they’re sneaking up again
those damned emotions
make me spin
What now?

Cheep Bitch

I feel a finger on my switch
but, dammit all
ain’t life a bitch
It’s not the button
makes me cheep
but just the one
puts me to sleep …

Never Quite Done

I can’t turn love on and love off like a tap
In my world, it just doesn’t happen like that
It may come on quickly
but no matter how sickly
it ends up
I’m stuck with the sap

The depths of my heart are at least what’s at stake
when I stand on that cliff deciding to take
that leap into faithful
no matter the fate, full
of glass shards
I’m left with the break

I’m never quite done with a love I have known
and through all the pain I’m aware that I’ve grown
accustomed to heartache
but, though it’s an art, take
the bit that I own.

I treasure the leavings of love that is past
all some of my future that’s coming too fast
there’s tenderness in it
I hope I can spin it
to something that lasts.

Ack! x 2 = WTF?

There’s nothing quite so maudlin
as a man who do come daudlin
with his ego on a string around his neck.
A sack of “I am great, me”
and a plaque that reads “Come mate me”
is nothing but a warning, read:
Train wreck.


That light of the end of the tunnel is not
the end of an era, some happiness bought.
A new narcissist git
with a slim chance to hit
on a woman too heavily fraught.

Moon Shine Supine

supine on the Equator
Cool argent light
dims the Leonids
Silver breath whispers
my skin deciphers:
You are one with all,

supine on the Equator
No shadow falls between
cool argent light
nor interrupts silver whispers
my heart deciphers:
You are one,

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I very much doubt that, back in 1956, anyone congratulating Herbert Kubly — journalist-turned-university professor — on winning that year’s National Book Award could have imagined the life that would play out for a girl of ten at the time. If somehow a mid-1950s mind was able to wrap around what was later known as Punk, the idea of the woman eventually dubbed “Godmother of Punk” winning a National Book Award of her own might have brought on apoplexy.

It has happend. Yes, Patti Smith IS this year’s non-fiction winner for her book Just Kids.

It was the summer Coltrane died, the summer of love and riots, and the summer when a chance encounter in Brooklyn led two young people on a path of art, devotion, and initiation.

Patti Smith would evolve as a poet and performer, and Robert Mapplethorpe would direct his highly provocative style toward photography. Bound in innocence and enthusiasm, they traversed the city from Coney Island to Forty-second Street, and eventually to the celebrated round table of Max’s Kansas City, where the Andy Warhol contingent held court. In 1969, the pair set up camp at the Hotel Chelsea and soon entered a community of the famous and infamous—the influential artists of the day and the colorful fringe. It was a time of heightened awareness, when the worlds of poetry, rock and roll, art, and sexual politics were colliding and exploding. In this milieu, two kids made a pact to take care of each other. Scrappy, romantic, committed to create, and fueled by their mutual dreams and drives, they would prod and provide for one another during the hungry years.

Just Kids begins as a love story and ends as an elegy. It serves as a salute to New York City during the late sixties and seventies and to its rich and poor, its hustlers and hellions. A true fable, it is a portrait of two young artists’ ascent, a prelude to fame.

Patti came to music through poetry, a logical step that resonates on just about every level I have and made me a fan many years ago. Her lyrics have spoken , and with a generation I listened, absorbed and was absolved.

Her verse and voice still inspire:

Dancing Barefoot

she is benediction
she is addicted to thee
she is the root connection
she is connecting with he

here I go and I don’t know why
I spin so ceaselessly
could it be he’s taking over me…

I’m dancing barefoot
heading for a spin
some strange music draws me in
makes me come on like some heroin/e

she is sublimation
she is the essence of thee
she is concentrating on
he, who is chosen by she

here I go and I don’t know why
I spin so ceaselessly,
could it be he’s taking over me…

she is re-creation
she, intoxicated by thee
she has the slow sensation that
he is levitating with she …

here I go and I don’t know why,
I spin so ceaselessly,
’til I lose my sense of gravity…

And now, what has been called a “beautifully crafted love letter to Robert Mapplethorpe” has been oh-so-appropriately honored.

My congratulations and gratitude to the National Book Foundation for their supreme good sense.

You can read an excerpt from the book here, but here’s a bit from that:

We used to laugh at our small selves, saying that I was a bad girl trying to be good and that he was a good boy trying to be bad. Through the years these roles would reverse, then reverse again, until we came to accept our dual natures. We contained opposing principles, light and dark.

I was a dreamy somnambulant child. I vexed my teachers with my precocious reading ability paired with an inability to apply it to anything they deemed practical. One by one they noted in my reports that I daydreamed far too much, was always somewhere else. Where that somewhere was I cannot say, but it often landed me in the corner sitting on a high stool in full view of all in a conical paper hat.

I would later make large detailed drawings of these humorously humiliating moments for Robert. He delighted in them, seeming to appreciate all the qualities that repelled or alienated me from others. Through this visual dialogue my youthful memories became his.

Although it was far from fairy tale fodder and did not end up in happily-ever-after, the Smith/Mapplethorpe relationship … two dedicated artists sharing the path … stirs in my heart and mixes the sediment lodged there into the fluid of what it takes to create.

Ladies and gentlemen, Patti Smith … Dancing Barefoot …

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Dust Bunnies

No time today for working myself into a lather. Nope. This morning I’m cleaning out corners and posting bust bunnies. I collect them, you see …

Although the following almost reads like verse, it’s actually the search engine parameters that led people to this blog over the last two days … see graphic for proof of just how weird some folks are:


baby octopus
girl panties
sex girl panties boxers
“sam parnia”
sandra hanks
anne dickinson wine
tearsscraps for mans
expat seychelles
i am not trying to resuscitate my youth i just happen to be crazy about big tits
opinions against adoption
poems about ejaculation
tiny girl panties
crying is ok for men poems
sam parnia aware results
plastic bbobs
johnny g spinning vocabulary
large schlong
a man is good in ruins
a man is a god in ruins
putting on my big girl panties
tits pointing up
meaning of scrabbel
teenage pedofiles

And now for some of my words by the meter ….

This one just popped out this morning … thanks to Robbie …

The Sacraments

Water drip
Salt to lip
Hand that baby over

Tiny room
doom and gloom
all that’s just to cover

tongue to host
holy ghost
Quite the cool maneuver

Pick a name
now you’re tame
Don’t contain your fervor

Troth to plight
wedding night
doesn’t bind a lover

Finished toil
unction oil
No, you won’t recover

In a grave
no one saved
Now, finally, it’s over

Here’s something that’s been hanging around for quite a while:

Cleo, Queen of Denial

It’s dark, they say
but, no,
it’s light
that’s how before me sits the sight
of gems and riches passed compare
and look!
that wall has seen repair

he’s false, they say
but, no,
he’s true
that’s how before me grand he grew
solid, strong and faithful through
and see!
his life begins anew

he’s drunk, they say
but, no
he’s sleeping
that’s how I sit here without weeping
works so hard, he needs his rest
and so
it looks I pass the test

And, just for fun …

Legends in Their Own Mind

There’s no such thing as a man who fishes
insisting I eat filling dishes

There’s no such thing as a flapping git
freaking out ’bout getting bit

There’s no such thing as a guitar man
any star living so far, and

there’s no such thing as someone’s lover
who hopes I never blow his cover

There’s no such thing as an Italian
who thinks he could be called “The Stallion”

There’s no such thing as an army man
whose life lay in another land

There’s no such thing as a drummer boy
who finds in Jesus all his joy

There was the one who took my breath
but, fuck, he ended up with Death

No … all were no more than a dream
that in my waking moments scream
“Please keep it all a mystery!”
No problem, Loves,
you’re history.

Desk now tidy. Time to get some work done …

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