Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Years of Tumultuous Truths and Silences Kept

your currency of the moment:
your currency of the moment:

This has been a year of terrible, tumultuous truths - the kind that don't stop at lowering your jaw but relentlessly continue, right past the point of breaking, hands clutching and greedy mauls chomping your air and the air of your dreams while demanding more than just a mere once-over, more than the ol’ in and out and be off with ya, almost requiring the subjected one to fall to his or her knees and proceed to lose all semblance of sanity.

You know this truth, this bedeviled kindness - Big muscled half-truths that cruise the back alleys of your psyche waiting for that moment when they can pounce, like cats nimbly-pimbly unsuspectingly, relentlessly mugging, slamming into bone and flesh the same, fish dinners and T-bone steaks, extracting all previous truths that pass as your currency of the moment, stopping only when all hope and all beliefs are stomped, trampled and hopeless.  Left to yer’ own devices, all breath gone, all eyes on the calling in the night for your mommy even though you haven't thought (really) of the fuck that took her in years, finally having her memory all to your recollecting alone in the middle of terrible, terrible times...but somehow you come to the conclusion that you're all the better for knowing you’re together in the everywhere through the thick and the thinner.

Then you're yelling that you're sorry but you don't even know what you're fucking sorry for, just that you all want this here and now bullshit to stop, this avalanche of despicable lies and deadly faces half-laughing you to tears but you can't fucking take it, you won’t, not any more so you find yourself at the end of a long, dank shaft and those beliefs are pocketed by thugs with nimble fingers skull doddering your soul from the inside to the zipper sounds and button snaps of those who are about to use you up, those who dwell where no one else can get at  (yes, the ones in your head, mother fucker), the ones who be never obtained again, even if the most skilled surgeon could be called to the scene, lights flashing, sirens blaring, a regular Rescue 911 situation.  Sitting there, half shitting here, imagining a proper send off, the unspeakable speaker crackles to laugh, crackles to death, “..roger, this fuck is fucked,” says the man child with last nights depravity on his breath, “..fucking bloody hell this one, don’t think it’s worth trying to put humpty dumpty back together again..” And then the voice is gone like it weren’t ever there to begin with, gone like memory in blue bottle dime store liquor but that inner self that you relied all these years says otherwise, she don’t say much but it’s otherwise for certain.

You know like you’ve known it yer’ whole life, you’ll never be like them because you can’t stand anythin’, the fucking same again – ever again.

These are the truths I wrestle with each time I sit down to dinner with ghosts, meals of seconds at a time of crazy, bat shit scary - sometimes emerging triumphant and eager to face the next one, some so devastating that further inspection and reflection simultaneously fucks you as you’re fucking the thought of it, ordered as required and feared as loved.

I am not the me I thought I was- nor are you, the sometimes benign paused in the shadow of passerbys, the sometimes first billed star in my perception of reality, the you I once was so solidly sure you were someone I could trust implicitly.  Then the dirt filled in the fine lines betwin’ us, o’er the sound of night slapped the bitch out of the light and these black and blue bruise lines have been crossed and checker-boarded most, fateful the judgments that have been broken and remade in the same cloth but with a different understanding, blood runs rivulets of words in my stead.  

“I can honestly say,” says the voice inside, “..I can say without a doubt, certain as I am without, I will never look at things the same way again, because after exceeding round three and moving onto the heavyweight carpet of division with big arms and wrestling, I am slowly learning to let it go, slowly learning to see my opponents side, slowly learning to ignore my instinct of pure rage and back the fuck up.”  There are places that seem to say what I’m looking for, the look of things that make no more over than, the hissing of wind to dismiss those snap judgments and - to reiterate - LET IT GO.

I have become adept at spotting the problems of those around me, as well as my own. I just can’t seem to solve them, for all the worry they’ve brought me, not knowing what’s worse, the seeing or the not being able to choose them.  I am learning to pinpoint my faults and apply amateur psychology with accurate precision, to carve away the indecision and laughing faces in the dark, to chop and hammer and cleave them the better as to think this is it, this is all of it.  But I ain’t no closer to learning what I have yet to learn is me, this game of shadows that the me I've always known to be me is somehow a dealer of good intentions with piss poor consequences, call em' a cheater's hand in a room full of cheaters with or without scruples to do anything right ever again.  

Despite my pride (albeit, short lived and totally misplaced) at being able to do so, i must finally admit that I am only n’ the first stages of becoming - and this "milestone" i thought i had come to is really just a dip in the fucking road. So in order to fully understand myself, I will attempt to recreate for you this past year of mine, but keep in the back of your chagrin, way way back in the hall closet of your imagining, a little bird of misremembering in a cage made out of forgivery – that thing we allow and manufacture, that forgiving as to forgery-ing, the mind that shapes the ultimate truth – we’re all floating in the either of boiling water, way down to nothing but anecdotal fodder...

...don’t do this but this is cool, the ISMS of the preacher in the school of the school of your earliest education, the preached is to preach as cauterized is to socialized – you know the know that is the pretend kindness, the fake of faking where you're three sheets to the wind and out of your skin but you show-enough look good doing it because you don't give a rats fucking ass if your audience is heard -- you’ve got a better story before the last word and goddammit you're gonna just go ahead and watch them point your finger and show you how you’ve been wrong all your life and laugh.  Because when you can't cry you gotta show some damn awful emotion from the inside or they win, don't they?  They ask then demand with pretty please and sugar on top and you listen yet again to these stupid stories that even you don't believe anymore.  That’s the boil, the rapidly - that's all that will be matter-factly, down to nothing more, nothing less. For the one thing I am certain of is - nothing in this world actually means anything.

And then that little voice pipes up, all quiet and not, almost squeaks if it weren't so damn weak:

"…of course I remember you, they’re my stories too, not all but some, at least a few, OK mostly however distantly, always cared about catastrophe, even colored fire..."

To which I can only say you never said whether you think He ever gave me more than I could handle...and liked the results.

[For S]

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Sometimes all you want to do is run.

Until you run.  

It doesn't matter if your legs weigh a ton and your feet have sores on top of sores, toes bent and irregular, misshapen discolorations people say is nothing no matter how much time they spend staring at them.  The thought appears like dawn light in the slightest cracks in your sky.  From a dark room you can’t help but search for it, scan and retest the distance between the doors and windows since the last time you opened them.  

Calculations escalate to near random numerical values that both make sense and leave you utterly breathless.  

Finally after years of seconds have elapsed, collected in a pool of infinite reason, swirled like a cocktail of colorless sins, it all resumes in heaping quantities of purposefulness that erodes the senses and leaves you questioning the universe.  

Sunday, October 27, 2013

September Trials and the Misdemeanors of Family

When I get around to finding you
among the empty automobiles and vacant buildings,
the groves that will surely shrivel and die-
I might have a bottle of beer with me
to chase the memories of yesterday
that refuse to join the sky.

I used to look forward to seeing you,
the way you held my hand
and spoke to me about making
something of myself.
Now I sit down in my usual place
and I watch words become pictures inside my head,
 the last image of the ceiling before the lights go out,
a glimpse of the neighbor next door in skimpy panties
calling her dog from the back porch.

Once in awhile things turn into something
gentle reminders that the moments matter,
the beginning and the ending of what we think and how we struggle

to change the unchangeable, 
how we put together little pictures from broken memories 
hope of doing more 
or doing less 
than yesterday.  

September 30th, 2000
..and you were gone.

Monday, October 21, 2013

journal entry full of silences

This started out as something else, another journal entry full of silences, words to capture the unrelenting, this unimaginable falling down quiet.  Then I realized putting this here is sorta fruitless, like fig trees and pomelos sliding thin branches full of Autumn, destined for mud and wintry skies, lost in pie plates and conversations so very nearly soon to be forgotten. 

If I write about the exquisite depravity you might think it insufferable, if I write about the debauchery of pain to ruin your face from ever smiling again, you're certain to call it the exaggerations of far away malingerers, too busy with your prejudice to right your wrongs, too busy with your sense of superiority to be willing to acknowledge there is no excuse for a defense comprised of lies and abuse.  

You cannot escape punishment yourself with something less permanent, however awkward, however necessary the slaughter of the innocent.    

Sunday, September 01, 2013

The change of arrival, the beginning of fall

Soon comes the Autumnal Equinox, the change of arrival, the beginning of Fall leading to the dark of Winter.  It is the mysterious qualities of Fall that offer us lessons to live by and practices to support dreams.  Open to change, willing to give in to all, we can embrace the great wide open knowing that it suggest the coming of Autumn is where we'll find newness in every direction.  

Autumn reminds me of the impermanence of everything. I have experienced the greatest joys of life and love as much as incredible tragedy.  I know only what was and what might be, this endearing Spring and the flowerings of Summers held wide and freely populated with friends and neighbors.  Now leaves fall and bare branches scratch Bay breeze skies, fluttering shapes in sprained browns and savage reds remind me of the fleeting nature of all things.  

Fall also brings every day to the fullest, possibility near and hope in practice to facilitate movement, to set bridges upside down before they hold us there forever.  And then, when I woke this morning, I turned again with the happiness of knowing, 'I'm still here!'

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Central San Joaquin Valley Remembering Those Roadside Confessionals of Doubt

I should just plan on writing every time I get to thinking: I miss the nothing that comes from roadside confessionals, having been once or twice in my life consumed by knowing, fingering the change between my pocket and thigh, knowing it comes at all hours of the day and night, sometimes not at all except for the escape ship clause and last minute prayers - sometimes you're the victim of circumstances and other times you're the cause.

I'm the owner of a dead Chevy Nova I've been hauling around since Florida left a lasting mark on over, strained attempts don't win they just get in the way of tangled sins, after the fall it was all down hill, no matter where you end up you've got someplace to call home.  All they say when they say it at all is the first place grin is so close to losing you might as well love it instead, doomed before ever getting to begin.

There are hours inside that might try if not for my guts, swollen rivers rock hard shores that give my mouth the perfect air to cut deep grooves in desert air lips, fine lines and cracked bleeding is the despair of powder-red-ruche stings from those central San Joaquin valley remembering, my desperate roadside confessionals of doubt.

Through air and every thought there is, time consumes the sanctity of dreaming, no moon or midnight believing there's healing in believing anything you can prove. Maybe the like is like that old man Friday, that dead man with bulging cheeks of dirty ditch water thirst, maybe his fear made me afraid not the one last time he got to steal from familiar strangers.  

I should think, splayed prying eyes to pick apart like black mouth cauls at the ready, scavengers perched in hard black plastic wood veneer, "looky that, where'd it go?" the voice squawks, light reflecting stares no room for friends or family time.  It's in the dust of remembering that my mind gets to settling, those famous plastic ferns and fake flower bouquets that need someone to fill up the cemetery holes, the cover up for the being empty cup where dreams go down to sleep and memories take us back just like that.

I should just plan on writing every time I get to thinking I miss the nothing that comes from roadside confessing.  I'd be better off every once or twice a life, to let go, get consumed in knowing change ain't nothing at all, no hours of the day or night can make them, shaken; sometimes you escape and sometimes you are a victim the circumstances of alone.

Sunday, August 11, 2013

Nicotine and Coffee Stains the Fingers

Nicotine and coffee stains the finger..

teeth discolor the view of Sunday morning 
excuses, the subtle urges to have or pretend to feel
urges to know edges begin and end, 
urges to alter sin
otherwise we're lost
capable the view of the supercilious sound 
this macabre sense of nature with no real understanding of tomorrow 
boundaries resound inside and outside the room,
ovaries for my discontent, 
Luteoma my illness, analogous to sin.

I have no real desire to quit or to salvage my shattered shell, 
brief and sooner, now or later 
sounds and imagery tell me 
everyone and nothing means success and failure
the greatest feat is to believe in the hereafter, 
however fleeting the salvation of knowing 
what happens after this, doing for the self, 
masturbating the mind before someone else can.

I’m just like you in that regard, 
a player of players, a mask that serves a single purpose 
doing to get the day going, night moves toward order.  
words ahead of the lost way people forget why 
they are here, 
children are less critical and that is good 
older people are more critical and that too is good.

Afraid of fitting in and not fitting in 
none of this could possibly matter 
the end is near and dreams aren’t 
predictions, specifically simple slices of things 
how seldom distract but always adhere 
these moments of years.

Nicotine and coffee stains the fingers as teeth discolor
Sunday morning excuses
buttered subtle urges to have
urges to believe 
urges to understand the consequences, 
the greatest hereafter, however fleeting the salvation of knowing what happens after this, 
these boundaries 
inside and outside 
analogous to fingertips.

Assuming -  sometime in March 1999

Thursday, August 08, 2013

Only those who suffer the most appreciate the bitter truths and consequences of lies

Only those who suffer the most appreciate the bitter truths and consequences of lies, the flavored thoughts of inaction mingling with tear-stained shoulder blades, jacket pocket lint beards waiting to hang up in really red lipstick smears…

Only those who believe we must like one another and can't truly understand our unmistakable differences, the unimaginable of knowing the totality of ruin, these questions that suggest to be free is to let go completely, to make it last a little less is to take the chains off and freefall, almost always destined to disappear, the magic of fear…

The burden of immeasurable pain and lasting beauty; to fall is to see that standing is what it is, neither good or bad but for proximity to sun, warmth on the face, lightness on the soul, words that color our every waking moment in the ether of dreams, the ephemeral joys of personal happiness that can neither be conveyed or felt completely, breathing freely, setting out into the oceans of regret and satisfaction.  What is here and now, in this seconds at a time of all that our life is or ever will be, it is here that we must realize we cannot change the unchangeable but grow, be that person we have always dreamed of being, stronger, wiser, less intent on over stylizing our misery for those that 'get it' have it nearest and those that don't or can't or won't ever understand don't need to anyway.  Because death is coming anyway we have all the power of the universe to face it, no smile at tears to justify hot wind between us, anything but open arms willing and ready and ok with the next great step in this life and the next, even if only in the memories of those we leave behind.

Only those who suffer the most appreciate the bitter truths and consequences of thought and action, to believe is to begin to understand the unimaginable, to question is to let go, a little, of the chains that bind, the burden of immeasurable pain and lasting beauty; to fall is to see that standing is what it is, neither good or bad but for the proximity to the sun, warmth on the face, lightness on the soul, words that color our every waking moment in the ether of dreams, the ephemeral joys of personal happiness that can neither be conveyed or felt completely, breathing freely, setting out into the oceans of regret and satisfaction. 

What is here and now, in this seconds at a time of all that our life is or ever will be, it is here that we must realize we cannot change the unchangeable but grow, be that person we have always dreamed of being, stronger, wiser, less intent on over stylizing our misery for those that 'get it' have it nearest and those that don't or can't or won't ever understand don't need to anyway.  Because death is coming anyway we have all the power of the universe to face it, no smile or tears to justify anything but to open your arms willing and ready and ok with the next great step in this life and the next, even if only in the memories of those we leave behind.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

This is for you in your forgettable blue

There just never ever seems like the right time to catch up after you've blown through..

Maybe it's because of all the unsettling and dusty trap doors slamming, me getting back up from flat on my butt, remembering how and why and what, not when so I can pretend, but so I deliver the good news that old friends seem so ready to consume, condemn, confusingly slim...and then I get lost rambling on my way to fumbling for words to say, I mean write, how you feel about my feelinglessness when all I can do is sigh, one, two..

Ever notice how far away dreams feel the morning right after, that their lip-smackin' thrill goes cold, gone in a flash, red skin faded like your last happy pill ated, the soda cracker diet in the quiet, shoosh, it's OK, nobody is waiting for safety tape's in and kind of quick, this no man's land fantasy strip..

The spiderweb effects of the dead and dying phone book debts, impossible missions never meant to be a condition of my condition, who needs schooling when living on wind, the happily ever after believing you're right when you're wrong, so wrong..

You can't go on, telling people what you want them to feel or you can and did, hardly a substitute kid, knowing what you paid for and when, prostitutes and old men selling sin, no wind, wares on you their wearing through, two-dollar whiskey breath kisses stuck to the glasses, you hold on and I'll own the cloud, no reason we can't get our every ridiculous wish, unless lost we're back to that, caution tape outlines and chalk white mustaches..your the bruised and butter-rum-glue, gotta go now to believe you'll leave your nightstick know-how..

There just never ever seems like the right time to catch up, still.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

reprieve rescinded

I've been here before postponed. reprieve rescinded.

Tried almost anything cause I can't stand a sure thing,
wedding silver circle edges make frayed friendship braces,
five will get you ten remembering
dime store Peechee folders and discount sticker prices
metal spirals bite dawn-colored smiles on bargain hunters knees
rustle-busted pages of my notebook disease.

Tried almost anything cause I can't stand pretending
razor blade lines make my forearm alarms
half-page tries and finger black stains
prick cursive edges to make great letter crashes
this country slide for another cop car chase
poor boy white knuckle opera and ditch bank fights
burning red and blue cop car lights
I've got time for believing
in the sweet hereafter but not before disaster
grape vine lines and razor blade arms
stippled apple orchards make believe
sending beguiled believers heaved almond breeze
the dead and dying of bottleneck flies
torn on summer morning sunrise.

I know you've been here before, poised and ready
drink in hand and thoughts a-many
around or about the good old days
people forget what made them pray
dreams pushed ahead of other dream plays
sketchy blankets in the backseat chapel
smelling of old Chevy super sport nova.

But I'm forgetting again.
you've only just begun
the descent
positioned bent
family strangers in awkward silences
Nowhere near spoken promises-
Been here before
reprieve rescinded.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Almost Always Is Sometimes True


I should write on sunset air
instead of grieving India ink tears
half-fingered shapes make nightshade grins
caught on the silver of my razor blade sins.  

They say, the many ways
you can't leave until you go
bruised colored masks don't cover lies indigo
tattered kite tails make paper tigers
worn smooth promises that last forever.

I can't go back is tomorrow's news
certainty won't cast this spell over you
half-hearted promises are sure to die
blue tides sell your sand colored eyes.

Make-believe memories heal today's wounds
Almost always is what's sometimes true

Chevy Nova back seats

made of you.

Friday, April 19, 2013

toasting like we had long lives ahead of us

I remember this one time, it was Friday sliding into night after a week of Mondays, San Joaquin Valley beginnings with the perfect moon light for one those endless teenage weekends. We had gotten into a fight days before, some triviality of brothers 11 months apart, set out in opposite directions so we could let time and distance make wrong right again. I can't picture the driving and walking it, which of us had wheels or worn even shoes, his 67 Pony or my 63 Nova – the burgundy one before I rolled it a bakers dozen – but one of us was there and the other showed up, crazy how we found the same walnut orchard bonfire party a million miles from sobriety. Clean getaway-views in all directions, country-wide night inviting, beers in cans that don’t break or chatter to pieces at hundred mile-an-hour cop car clashes. And there we were, backed into a corner, just him and me, sleeves rolled to elbow throws and these Clovis rodeo boys pushing in after T gave one of their girlfriends what she was looking for. Smiles bent to breaking, fists, busted knuckles and black-eye scarecrow rows in our caterwauling – we road the red and blue lights all the way out of sight, laughing at our pummeled disguises, three-quarters of a case of half-cold beer snatched up for later between us, toasting like we had long lives ahead of us.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Your Personal Lottery

Bad news comes in ways, turning, lightning strikes and after hour showers of your thoughts falling down hard, plenty too, black and blue inside doorway places better left to miles and memories instead of dinner table faces too many, angry hands in the shape of angry men forcing you to believe again in dreaming away your worries when stone cold places made of mud and yarn fashion travel better than you ever could. Destined for crawling, broken toes and death throws with all the things unsaid and undone, this here and now nowhere near down and out - or used to. Here listening, listlessly pretending, stop signs ending in trees bleeding red and blue professionals, cops and robbers confessionals from the back seat betwixt metal and hard plastic, mesh made for protection only it does a better job of hurting, common sense unbecoming promises spent, looking back over years between "I don't know what" and " I'm lucky to have someplace to get caught" any more than "I've been living in the shadows of your personal lottery" and the misery settles in like pebbles and stones, cold, calm, forever. News comes in ways made good and other by the receiver, sometimes by the leaver, in increments of forever, tomorrow always a bite size breath just as good as now because it's twenty four hours away from having to believe in someone pushing you to falling down. Knowing is what tells you that no one is stopping them from sending me off into the never-never land of no return.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Red Bills and Car Registration Blues

Mailbox rattle, metal flip lid crackles the addict who clicks his ears, pricks the drum louder as the fat fingered sad sack makes his way, elbow room doorway courtesy, knee to hip pirouette à la seconde and off, off and away goes the letter carrier government soldier making yesterdays out of circles of today. The addict finds the same pattern to be confusing so he forgets sooner or later, lost in the shuffle of neighborhood clatter beyond the din of his crooked reading glasses. Maybe the sad sack would be happier company but he won't come in because the addict won't ask him, content on musing about the delivery driver of smiles instead so he could steal one to wear for a while, a funny lip shape with a Charlie Chaplan bristle brush mustache disguise, a smile and a long whipper snapper stash, curly edges poking holes in donuts and coffee, a guise to make him company instead of surly, welcome when he brings us sunshine and candy bar colored good times rather than red bills and car registration blues. The addict knows only that it is better to be up, however slight the step than down, mired, sticky tennis shoes and bubblegum semi-circle greetings, humdrum collecting meaning lock-step in day time being, burdened by lowered sensibilities; deadpan, bloodshot and clotted veins fat with lethargy, blame and remorse. It is better to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortunes than convince yourself you’ve got other ways, other kinds of words with which to bloviate, busted lips almost mustering the courage to go on when empty rooms call out your name, same filled with cold, stale air, same alone with a different face. It’s almost not quite ready made smooshed up silly, lacking all possible expressions but one – the slack-jawed, cheery cheeks of rosy contentment that comes on hard, sometimes simplified, the ownership of jacked up, the cracked up in two, three, four - nowhere near ordinary any more. The Adderall baby knows how to breathe amphetamine dreams, dextroamphetamine psycho-social beehive believing in the higher power of altered states, play dates with strangers across the many magnitudes of saviors who’ve been there or worse, never known flat on your face homes, preaching to the choir of crumpled desires where we have all gone off on our own, lost combs and lawnmower moans, people who used to ask but don’t any more, knowing it is better to have remembered the good times instead of replacing them with all this penny arcade daytime soap opera charade.

Monday, February 04, 2013

Old Woman's Legs and Dangerous Grins

Each morning we play tug-o-war, backyard long throws and shorter ones at the Border Collie speedway. She finds her place at my side, at the ready, her big brown eyes locked on mine, the ancient lore of wolf theology, the wild ever present, always leading and trailing edges in flight and landings. She holds on to the worn squirrel toy, bares down with her big incisors, settles her weight in proportion to the force she will need to best me at our everyday ritual. She's gentle and determined like her life depends on winning and I don't let on that I know or let her win too easily, her needing to prove her place in our family as mother center, as the hub from which we all turn on this life's journey. I give her the time to take all my time, to root me there, to fend off Sky who comes and goes on rocket-ship toes, his Border Collie pursuits of circles unending but specific - only the pink one will do, he prepared to run forever plus one more, frothy maul wet in waiting and there we are the three of us lost in the eternity of seconds. She always wins but not right off not letting on that I know she has to win, we need her to win as much as she does, to keep on winning, and eventually on the last tug of the last war, once more and she pulls away the winner, eyes beaming, words praising, "you are strong, you are tippy" I say, soft and resolute. She smiles, gulping crisp morning air, savoring it, our wolf mother center standing tall on old woman's legs with dangerous grins for tomorrow.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Toll Booth Holidays

It’s Christmas time but not Christmas, the Thursday before the Friday when my whole world turns blue, black-bruised, faces cracked through, my eyes lose to swells and skinned knees leave lips busted where sidewalk scuffs show carpet struggles against every excuse to leave and never believe. Ten year old boys know how to lie, smile to make people think they don't cry sometimes, easier gone the other way than said out loud, felled instead, down when you can’t stand walking out one more time. It's no good, the good of temporary salvation when dawn brings the senses back and sobriety makes car keys find locks driving at all hours in the dark of trying...sighing. Roads know that in order to go to and fro you have to know hospital emergency room glows, the taste of jail cell metal bars ringing closed and sneakers sliding across linoleum shiny floors. Lonely knows only that grocery store orange makes shelves all the same color except the stock you already forgot, children during the unbearable reason you're glad you didn't keep yours when you stopped bleeding. Filled to choking, chimney black smoke knowing this way that don't have anything to do with having, normal knowing you don't own nothing, no prepubescent identity crisis when someone don't come around after your adolescence got robed to pay rent so you can watch your nighttime soaps so adults don’t make wallboards crack, leave lasting impressions, body shots and permanent blues that don’t survive no matter how much we block them out inside. It's them lines not the lines connecting times that make kids the kids in other peoples living room pics, kids doing the work of picking up after storms have chased men under the spell of cop-light-red and might not be-blue scattered in wet wood fruit orchards black with rain and misremembering. It's the cord wood in my memory of stacked wood like staircases to the hereafter of family battles taking lives much later, the victims of circumstances in the muddy soon after when talking tries to make the happening black not right another time talking about the same hiding. The more you make it less the harder it is to be Christmas, the less lights make warm rooms inviting and, stuck on remembering the harder it is for take-offs, replaced with crash landings. The less you count the clock the more time there is to move in a little closer, let go a little farther, enjoy five feet and rising, not ten will get you twenty for reminiscing, held up at toll booth holidays that don't make change this time of year.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Some elated..others still worried about the future.

Fortunately you came with the power, red hot heat where I never thought I'd be warm again, words wet-wrinkled forehead colored answers for the Jeopardy of unmanned disasters. I imagine the same people gathered in kind tired kitchens, living room dark hiding carpets but not the smell from leaky toy poodle incontinence; shoulder-bent strangers make lounge hours together where radio dial glow makes hard shadows lighter than thousand pound questions like why don't they make blankets for thin skin shiverers or pretty jackets pull-able over warmer inside kind of durable instead of hugging greasy fat faces and stubby finger places reminding me that moving is sometimes like standing still, sometimes waiting, sometimes ending before the inevitable misrememberin'.. Sitting here in the orange of morning coming, blue-black cold colliding where I was only a little while ago in dreams dreaming I could do anything when I was younger and better at upright, fighting alright, needing to believe I can somehow get back to being just OK no matter how far I've come or gone or hope to belong, it's getting harder at pretending to be living when I've always been so much better a lover seeing, until now, this is all so very much wrong, coming and going in the same lines leading to never being here with the tears - when did I get so good at almost not quite never again? Here in the waning years, October gone, November falling all around, December looms and voices collect on the news, me needing to warm up to wake up to get up so I can claw my way through to the middle of knowing I can do this again tomorrow only better, I can live again instead of all this dead kind of being, long gone from who I used to be when I thought I'd never be, this aging, this bent to breaking, the boy from all those years long gone who used to stand on ditch banks looking far away, lost in alfalfa fields and corn stalk scattered squares for rectangles, setting suns and blossoming orange mornings, I don't know where I've been or how I'm going to get away from knowing this is broken and it has to be different even knowing, deep down in my wounded all, I know what it has to be going on even if not long, now or maybe ever, dreaming and going to be.

Friday, November 09, 2012


No other outlet looks like this, no place to lay down, no way to make the air less uncomfortable, sand. In the having of no way of seeing, in the dark like kites and kittens and trees, like stray shards of clarity calling bottles and cans clattering, make-shift containers emptying, you are the lost, erect, the bludgeoned and bruised, the talk out loud noise desperate to be heard instead of knowing the truth: there in tall grass shadows in making believing you could have been catching instead of traffic signal heading for red, green, yellow, red gone instead of dead. Wanting more doesn't make you more than anyone else running to catch up to running but, limbs don't work that way, you can't stay, I've been watching you leave since you got here even when I wanted you to stay. More than you is less than ever having had this escape clause space ship audible buzz, the rumble one more time when it was never all that inescapable, cemetery stones aren't for marking they're for saving, names in stone feel like we have a place to go when no one else will show, hallowed uprights spell nighttime culprits, you stole more than I had to offer, deep down, deeper still where these broken limbs make poor shadows pretending to be porch light, one more like last time, the old man's voice coming to chase you away but I can't even do remembering that right. Not any more. Not here without you. When I want to go back there, gone to the really gone, I turn my dreams off, shut down the quiet that seems so silly, smudges in dark carpet of heel to toe might not show it but always seems to say it, tipping past crumpled beer bottles past potato bag chip might, lost when we're caught up in the illumination, same sort of reasoning, making forever last until there ain't no one left, except, nine months line lights up, what's a bastard anyway you ain't been waiting for, no place to lay down, no way to make the air less in my remembering.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

It only hurts until you say goodbye

It only hurts until you say goodbye

That sort of nearby kind of I love you
breathing a little air like daylight or some shit like that.
It feels like forever-dreams you make when you’re twenty
words that don’t add up the way your body changes shape
words that don’t make barter with gravity
with standing, face bright light-like photograph-white
you can’t take back even if you wanted crippled legs
no more standing
no more doing a good job of pretending
wet, the ruinous nature of years
the ones that haven’t sucked you dry.

In the morning, you whisper
in the early unsettling
it only hurts until you say goodbye
or I love you.

Friday, January 28, 2011

long enough

The stuff, it's out there, everywhere you look and smell, the sounds pushing against the windows or rattling beneath the floorboards of the old house. If I stop myself I can almost feel the wind moving through the trees, through the warped and stained slat fence where the neighbor kids have pushed the knot holes through and they're scattered like acorns in my lawn. I hit them from time to time with the lawnmower and they pulverize into dust that reminds me of sawing wood when I was a boy to build barns and sheds on the ranch where I grew up. It was damn hard work then. The kids use kitchen knives and spoons. I hear them like woodpeckers pop-pop-popping.

The stuff, it's out there, the information, the words and ideas. It's out there and I just got to let go of my body long enough to realize it again.

Friday, December 03, 2010


Rain and wind greet me at the door, catch me off balance, give me pause. I see the yard, it hasn't changed, green and black figs like bloated pygmy heads dangle from stubby limbs, dog shit withers, the sun is no where in sight. I fight the urge to move, it's better that way, a chance to encounter upright, a way to breath again. I could be a thousand miles from here or less, maybe in the desert looking at all the stars, huddle too close to that camp fire that singed my pant bottoms, melted my shoes just a little. There are years between us now. That is where memory goes, behind and inside, elusive, unnecessary, a black and jagged shape dissecting the sky, a handful of stones and sticks, an album no one has seen but me since.

Clearing the clutter I prepare myself with things, with things I dislike mostly, with things that I fear will remain a part of my slow and steady decline, things that dig in, bite, wound, things that no one should have to carry around with them. These load stones are gathered for me, around me, they root me to the ground and threaten to carry me away. I have no way of knowing what is just up ahead but it is there, a specter maybe, a faceless face with slits for eyes and the burden of tomorrow held up to the sky.

I write this down in empty space and leave it like a tiny boat made from sticks and bubble gum wrappers. I leave it go in tall and crimson water, in all this absent place that falls like invisible wings of the dead and dying would refuse one more time to solidify.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

It Doesn't Matter -- It Hasn't Mattered in a very long time

You called and left a message on my phone. I knew it was you but I didn't answer. It was ten. I should have been asleep for an hour but then again, I should be a lot of things at that hour that I rarely am. And then I listened to your message.

Who you hate?
In the swamps, trying to make a life...3 bottles of wine. Where are you - I miss you. There is a farm here. A farm and a guest house in Uruguay and I'm finishing this film. It's called In Repose. No hope in California. I don't care if you're disappointed in me.

Don't forget me.

And then the message ended and I've never heard from you since.

Monday, October 25, 2010

something positive

I like to think of things in relationships like the line where earth and sky meet, the place along the shore where wet water meets dry sand and they push against one another to be the strongest to survive. I like to think about positive things but negative things are always nearby; the last five years have proven rocks to be the weight of forever on my shoulders and simple breath-like-smiles the stuff of dreams. But I’m prefacing again, side stepping again, looking for a way to make sense of my everyday dilemmas because no one else can. Maybe in the halving of my life between good and bad I should be better at letting go. Maybe conformity isn’t giving up like others give up to drudgery and lethargy. But for now I write about something positive, here like a school assignment I was never very good at.

When I was in the third grade I remember sitting at the tall table in the kitchen of our ranch house and tracing the shapes of dinosaurs on paper too big for tiny hands. If I close my eyes I can almost feel the blue crayon between my stubby fingers filling an outline of long dead reptiles replicated by my mother’s hand. Mom encouraged me and my brother between puffs on a Raleigh cigarette that scored the room with blue and white tendrils caught by shafts of daylight. I think we had just returned from Florida two weeks prior and were still in the awkward phase of moving back in with my fathers parents; two families in one rundown house. That was thirty three years ago.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

none of this would matter ever again

I found the old house
wiped the dreams from my eyes,
tears still, hope tingling because I still couldn’t believe
What I was being told was the immeasurable weight of breath, life.
The trees were wet with morning, the grass
bent over here and there with the impressions of footprints
the footprints of strangers to and from the falling house.
I searched the uniforms for names, searched the faces for someone familiar,
someone who could tell me about the night – but no one came forward,
no one explained to me that this was no temporary visit, they came
for to ask questions and figure out what I already knew to be true – none
of this would matter ever again.

Blog Cabins: Movie Reviews and Commentary Made Fun: Fletch's Film Review: Toy Story 3

Blog Cabins: Movie Reviews and Commentary Made Fun: Fletch's Film Review: Toy Story 3

Found this, again, totally by the randomness of blog-hopping, I think I started at

anyway, great review. don't forget mine at

Thursday, October 14, 2010

So I copied your personal essay today

So I copied your personal essay today, had to, needed to make it bigger cause my eyes are blurry from too much sleep or not enough. So I’m looking at the words now, after the fact, font size large, screen size larger, and I’m thinking your first sentence tells it all – being alone and realizing you’re alone are two completely different, but connected things. The baptism of voyage, the rain and all make miles I’m guessing, not knowing if you’re talking about driving from Oakland to Nashville or some other beginning and ending. I like the water metaphor. It rains a lot in my personal stories too only I can’t seem to get the windshield wipers to work right or keep the road in focus. Is that what those white lines are for?

I keep tripping over myself. I check my shoes even though I bought them precisely because they didn’t have laces. I think my uncertainty makes me twice left footed because I don’t know whether to keep on through this inspired ramble-on or just tell you how much I’ve enjoyed reading about your happenings.

So I continue like I didn’t just write that. I tell myself writing is part of breathing and even if this gets lost somewhere between this, what, place, this make-believe place, I don’t think so but I keep going back to it like an Oakland sidewalk I haven’t seen up close before, just passing by to somewhere else. But I read on and write on because right now it’s eleven twenty-two and I can’t get back to the finding the job thing right now.

So I’m following you, alone in a car full of people. I like that thought. I often say it similarly but with different people, in a room not a car, in a situation I know I can walk away from but choose not to until it’s too late and I have to answer to someone, anyone. The idea of being closed in seems right, the kind of place I mean where you meet people, find relationship people, even end up attached people but I think it better to avoid that old cliché because there are some parts of your life where being alone is the best it is ever going to get because you don’t know any more than you hope for.

I haven’t made the effort to know your age but I remember nights like that, Arsenio’s big ass smile, not Oprah though, couldn’t get that, eluded me though I can see where she was then as a direct comment on where she was heading, is. “If I can’t see you, you’ve gone too far,” words to live by for sure no matter what kind of upbringing you have to keep your memories in – like a worn out old box, dog ears, torn and tapped too many times but not enough to keep your things from spilling out.

I cannot go to Carnton, I have no business there and realize in my realizing, I must return with dusty steps to what the Spanish call the “apple orchard” for some kind of some kind, here in California’s Owens Valley at the foot of the Sierra Nevadas. Manzanar, sixty some odd seventy years ago where ‘we’ put the Japanese, where ‘we’ employed the term ‘forced relocation’ like it didn’t mean what it meant and someone wasn’t going to remember enough about it to write it down for later, for shame.

Damn right words there, “no sense of home, no sense of where I belong.” I find your words again and then let them go. I have to continue this journey you started, this journey you shared and keep on with my own now because I have to share, because twenty-one years is a long time but my ten years seems longer, no Florida relatives here though I spent a handful of years in Belle Glade some decades ago.

Best in your quest just beginning after this one. I’m mid-road and stepping, I’m listening and wondering when the rain is going to leave me the way it left you.

Inspired by

Saturday, October 02, 2010

There's a lot you don't know about

There are a lot of things we don’t know about each other.

I don’t know what it was like for my great, great paternal grandfather 'Manual' to gather up his two wee-daughters and wife in tow and travel by boat from the Azore Islands to America and stake his claim in the rich, fertile grounds of the central San Joaquin Valley at the turn of the century. I can't know what the crops of those first years must have yielded, though I can imagine poorly as most, before taking hold, before roots find much needed footing and nutrients deep below the surface, wither at the first sign of sun and a moment without water; stalks the size of grass, seeds brittle and infertile. There are no pictures of the feeble canal sending mud choked water into the channels that carried them one by one from one end of the ranch to the other and finally, very near exhaustion, the old man must have fallen right there in the pastry-flour like earth to watch in the fleeting hours of the night at the first signs that something, anything was going to keep them from starving much longer.

I have no pictures of the grand two story home he built with his own hands, with the other laborers putting in twelve hours a day until it were built for a cup of thin soup and crusty bread three times a day for a month and finally, together, they sat around with wine and whiskey and strong drink that first evening after and full of spirit lay down their head on the hardwood floor and called themselves kings of crown and country with songs from the old country long forgotten, songs with worn smooth words to prick the ears of lovers and warm the hearts of children to young yet to know such ways. I have no pictures, only stories told with wet eyes because one evening, short on money and patience, the old man took two pennies instead of fuses and rigged up the electrical fuse box to get the lights back on so his wife could finish the wash and the children could do their arithmetic - only in the early, cold hours after all had hurried off, to school and other places, the house caught to fire because of those pennies and by the time anyone was there to stop the blaze the entire place had gone up, one long plume of smoke and ash and fire, a bonfire piercing the sky over and over again until even the men folk had tears in their eyes and the children shivered and the women hadn't even a blanket to chase away the cold.

And I don’t know the name of the pub my great, great maternal grandfather spent his evenings all those years ago. I don't know if it were a regular place or a makeshift room with a sturdy table and a keg of the finest Irish stout to be had from pillar to post and everyone who was in the know knew about the old place. I can't say if a sign hung from the roof, a tin thing held with wire and rivulets of rusty steel. I don't know if the old man propped himself up on a stool or crate after scratching a living out of the earth from sun up to sun down, whether he preferred stout or lager; though if he were anything like me, or I like him, he fancied himself a lager a time or two for a wee parched throat and to soothe his dry and cracked hands from the unforgiving hardwood of an ax handle or the worn smooth handle of a shovel with a head polished like a mirror from the baked and rocky earth of old Ireland. I'd have no way of seeing him, covered in dust, smelling of lager, bent over and crooning over his youngest, one little man with his papa's eyes and disposition, perched for a kiss with a glint only fathers and sons know about. He'd make a go of finding his bed beside the best woman who would ever have him, the woman with the softest hands he had ever known and who he would spend extra on a bar of the smoothest lotion for her after working all day to clean the house and tend the garden and make the clothing look proper, intermittent seconds to peek from one giant laundry pot full of lye to the soup pot on the stove making tough meat edible and making tap water and spices the best stew for crusty bread you have ever known in all your life.

But I would know about her, what a decade just past, the years like stickers in the soles of my feet, what we called goat-heads or puncture vines; little seedy buggers that like barbs would break off in the soft places of your feet to fester and infect. I don't have to close my eyes to see her, not ever I wager, a picture as easily as a memory, moving, hair golden and soft in the wind, angel hair and will-o-wisp to spare, a photograph every second between open sky and the patchy shadows of Eucalyptus or Dutch Elm trees; she had a way of floating about, devil may care even though I knew better, I knew her smile hid such imperfections as children and their mother's don't speak of. I knew how the dark could fall like bricks in heavy, wet burlap and cover one up, snuff out the breath and the light like night but the sun was still up. I knew how words could wound at the very sound of them and how if you held your ears too long your wrists would go numb and you'd have no recourse for the insults, for the jagged and violent words, for the tattering and the bleeding. I know about those things but I’d surely have no idea about those last days, the final hours when the last days of my mother’s life had been just a decade ago crashing and I have hardly the strength to put these words into proper meaning. I know of the ensuing deaths within a year of all but myself; now a vagabond of sorts and wayward traveler of the mind, frequently lost in self aggrandizing.

How I might marvel at my own obituary-worthy accomplishments as though I could in such circumstances, gather a dozen people with hardly an interest in one another to sit around and sip wine on my occasion, to drink in the heady air of summer fair, perched to combat the feeling of another simple passing, another wayward traveler who will not return from this trip. What might a poorly written clip contains; Here lived a man, born at this time, dead today, not much to speak of really. He was an educated man who traveled a bit and wrote a little more, he made a few works of art such as they were and spread them about in limited circles. He was a giving fellow and a curious chap. He fancied a pint or two and conversations so; he died where others have died before and surely there will be those come hither to meet their maker. He was born, he lived, and he died. And that is that.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Do you ever look up?

Do you ever look up?

I mean really look up, cock your head back and gawk at all the shit over you that might all at once come crashing down in one immeasurable ka-boom before you know it. I imagine that it is what a bomb going off or a high pressure gas line exploding might be like.

First the sensation of the earth moving, of the beams holding the roof of your house flexing and a rumble like no rumble you’ve ever felt before rising up like waves through your feet first then your ankles, rising instantaneously, so fast you haven’t time to even register the wave as it shoots through your pelvis, belly and lungs before you become light headed for an instant and balance is all but a memory, hands grasping for the wall, for the refrigerator handle as your knees hinge and knees guide you to the floor with a ringing like a child’s strand of bells dinging in your ears. Then the sound erupts like breath against the hair on your arms and shoulders, against your neck, the slap of a thousand fingers all at once, equal parts discernable sounds and something else, something you can’t quite put words to. Then the walls come apart. Right before your eyes pictures evaporate and curtains puff orange and red and yellow then black out of sight. Furniture, the table that had been a gift from your long dead grandmother who brought it here on some shit hole ocean liner wrapped in jackets and thick quilts, it lifts as of its own volition and winks out of the room about as quickly as you open your mouth, trying to clear your ears, trying to believe your eyes. All this blurs from one room to the next as plaster and paint peel away, as the bare bone wooden frame of your house is splayed open, dusty nail heads ripped away, spider webs wadded up and inhaled by the maul of a force that has no face to speak of, no real voice or eyes locked on yours, but a hole that is at once warm then burning, caressing then tearing, and right there in the midst of an enormous span of birth and renewal, of death and never having been alive at all, is the ceiling of your kitchen and a spec of something dark, a tiny thing held there by a web of sorts very nearly invisible except for the way morning sunshine is pushing in all around it to form a shadow that might spell the initials of your name if you name was someone else’s.

Looking up; do you ever look up?

Thursday, June 24, 2010

spring cleaning in summer time

I spray water on the clipped grass tracing the almond tree shadow, preparing a place for my chair, positioning into the evening.  The sun is setting, the sky giving up the consistent blue.  Traffic has settled.  In four hours it might be cool.

The day is everywhere around me.  From my backyard I can hear train horns and automobile engines, birds perched on overhead telephone wires, wind filling trees one branch at a time – the whole neighborhood is moving.

To the South the trees create a thirty foot tall grouping, not quite a wall, more like an incomplete hedge, spotty and disproportionate.  The orange tree in my neighbor’s yard is limp, dying – soon it might match his dead lawn, grass the color of wheat, an alley still beyond my chain link fence.

I am paused here, the wind chimes for company, the tin-tin jingle of my dogs’ collars in the breezeway, the sound of dry tree limbs rubbing against one another.  The garbage men continue to find the can’s missed throughout the day, met by the occasional neighbor dragging the heavy plastic totes up their driveway, over rocks and gardens, behind fences or left out in error.

For the time being I am moved towards a chance to write about personal impasse, the struggle to belong to something bigger than this circle.  The phone rarely rings here.  I sometimes question my link with the rest of the world at all – especially now that I have become a cripple.

I’m not sure.  Where can one go from here?

something positive

I like to think of things in relationships like the line where earth and sky meet, the place along the shore where wet water meets dry sand and they push against one another to be the strongest to survive.  I like to think about positive things but negative things are always nearby; the last five years have proven rocks to be the weight of forever on my shoulders and simple breath-like-smiles the stuff of dreams.  But I'm prefacing again, side stepping again, looking for a way to make sense of my everyday dilemmas because no one else can.  Maybe in the halving of my life between good and bad I should be better at letting go.  Maybe conformity isn't giving up like others give up to drudgery and lethargy.  But for now I write about something positive, here like a school assignment I was never very good at.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

because it will be May today

The dream opens in a well-kept neighborhood. I find myself at the sidewalk of a large home with a sprawling lot full of trees, bushes that have been neatly taken care of – personal. There is an odd sense of familiarity to the scene like I’ve been here before or in the least I am reminded of the old ranch – a direct contrast to this place. There are nice cars in the driveway and the garden is full of small, sturdy flowers. In the next moment I am walking up the driveway toward the front door. Once I get there I hesitate for a moment and then in the next instant I’m inside the house, alone. I hear people moving around inside, the voices of children and adults. I continue to have this feeling of familiarity, an overwhelming warmth that starts in my belly and unravels there, full, thick with emotion. I am in the kitchen now, moving, waiting while this mother and father figure come into view. They are OK with me being there. There are a lot of fragments at this point. I think I say something. I think I hear something, someone moving, a series of questions and answers that don’t add up. Then I’m crying. I’m crying and I’m reaching out for mom. She embraces me and holds me as though I am a baby, her baby, pushing a silent, comforting sound out of her lips, lulling me there in her arms, saying things will be OK some day without uttering the words. The embrace is warm and fills me. For a few seconds I feel OK and the sadness leaves me like blood from an open wound. I close my eyes and stand there sobbing, hoping that the moment will not end, praying as best I can that this is not a dream and that this is my real life. I hold my breath and am afraid to let it out. I want my lungs to keep it all in, to prevent this moment from changing into something else, something closer to the truth. But inevitably it must end. There are more fragments here. I lose track of myself in the illusory details of the dream, the sounds of people nearby, the questions posed by a girl child, “are you my brother?” “No,” I respond. “No I’m not.” The words are deafening. Suddenly this place is full of sound as though a thousand trees are falling at the same time and the impending crash is a noise all itself, a drowning gasp for air, for circulation. Even as I am speaking I realize that I am forcing the dream into a place where it cannot survive. The dream waivers for a moment, a dull sheen as though something heavy, looming and threatening is moving up around it on all sides. There are the impressions of hands around me, huge fingers lost in shadows, the details blurred by inexact sketch work of lines. I watch it move again and then it is still, as though it has become a photograph. The reflection is still and then it is over. I am suffocating in blackness. I cannot breathe. My mind is spiraling and it is all that I can do to remain upright, to retain my balance. In a second there is more silence, the noise of uncertainty like water in the air. I open my eyes and I am wet as the dream ends. I feel my chest throbbing and I am breathing hard, my face slick, my hands numb from being clenched across my chest. After a moment I return, here, in this place with you, all of you out there listening, thoughts lingering, words held in the light – their own universe perched in time and space like shiny balls pushing against a windowsill that refuses to open. Do you feel the darkness? Can you hear how quiet it is between words, between my voice and this recollection? Close your eyes with me. Close your eyes. I am tired, looking for words that aren’t there.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

after only moments - an after moment

It matters most when the lights begin to gather in on themselves to form an unresponsive shadow - an apparition that doesn't need to be rescued as much as it needs to be cauterized before spreading into the size and shape of smoke colored memories. We don't belong here anymore, books of folded pages and table leg marks, books from people who lost the ability to communicate years ago so now they spend their waking moments hiding from the sun. It matters most when the lights begin to flutter, when the wings that carry breath away from the earth reaches just above our heads and for a second there is something hopeful about tomorrow. Little slices of lives like bits of sand, fractured ideas moving against the spiraling of thoughts moving in and out of thinking about the fractured rain coming down the sloped windows of my car.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

i could use the air

I know what you're thinking. I've been here before. I've seen this simple book, the shiny metal spirals glistening in the new dawn, the reduced pages of black finger marks and broken lettering that any child of conscious thought could mutter out between visits to grandmas house and the old creek bed now filled with the dead and dying bottleneck flies of summer.
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I know I've been here before, poised, readied drink in hand, thoughts remiss of the good old days of some forgotten dream I thought I'd push ahead of me like some protective projectile. But I'm getting ahead of myself again. You've only just begun to make the descent, to position yourself for the lengthy and sometimes untidy journey of an other's mindfulness. So, we've been here, not this now but the nows before this that were just as full of quiet questions and still life moving, things held by a sense of soft impermanence. Yet I am also moving in similar patterns, direct lines and those indirect ones caught gazing as the sun slides through morning bay haze, the color and shape of trees dissected by power lines and advertisements colored by graffiti and this feeling deep below the surface of my dreams that whispers every now and again to breathe.

Monday, June 11, 2007

do not duplicate

I found them in an old cardboard box with torn edges. They hadn't changed even though I had so very much so. I remember them clearly now in my hand, the tarnished gold and silver on the bent wire circles - the plastic one that made the doors beep - one to enter, one to leave. I can't recall which doors they open now, which they did. I'm sure the locks have all been changed these days. There are small ones for cabinets and boxes, other security containers that are a little less secure now.

How long has it been?
Made in the U.S.A.
Lyon Aurora, Ill.
ESP Corp.
Do not duplicate.
Schlage. 5x75.
Chicago lock co.

I am blank. The box affords no less mystery now than it did the years before this, the sliced hours, the seconds pushing themselves against an inevitable collision of dust and shadows. Now I listen to doorbells and strangers walking through the day outside, the trees and grass drying in the heat, the gentle wind falling down like the voices of children kept too long in dark rooms and antechambers. It's not like that of course. People haven't any idea of it except to say the windows do not lie about the here and now of things, the stress of silence, the distance of searching for things that aren't there.

Here again looking back over the years and wondering what it has to do with anything to be here.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

in this new beginning place...

...I carry with me these dissimilar seconds, the quiet that appears and slides like memory, one always competing with the one before, busily musing my lives all at once. The miles roll by beneath me, steel wheels, the tired blue berber carpet, these listless and frozen faces. I'll be there in eight stops, no nine, small exchanges flanked by larger ones, words my necessary company, ideas struggling to outlive my attention, my memory. Some of this will sound familiar. How many times I've been here, done this, changing pens for ink, for the feel of a fountain pen on my pysche. Cars form, connecting the rectangles along the freeways, the red white and blue motifs, reocurring feeling we're using up our resources too quickly. It can't last. When things fall apart it is becuase the center cannot hold, the duldrum of circles, of hand shapes batting shadows still, massaging currents from inexact air to change slowly from the now to the end of being upright.

In this new beginning place I carry with me opportunity to breathe, to exist in all the moments that have yet to live, to draw breath in and let loose the daggers of mind, our troubled past, the uneasy and the unimportant words the build like bricks, like palm fronds, those spiny limbs that refuse to let go of this world no matter how great the next.

These lights remind me some things can last, they have to, the world of moving and slowing, of pushing ideas to replace quarantees that must fail if we are to ever dream again or feel free from the end.

When words travel outward there is pause in sunlight and shadow, breath from the creation that is and isn't the way in from the tangle of not knowing. Sometimes the dead and dying follow us too closely, they want in, to nurture is to be close, to breathe in the good air and let go of the bad.

This is the beginning place where birth and death live sometimes stumbling, always in for the long score - words, just simple ink that tells us where we've been and where we've yet to go.