Thursday, June 30, 2011

Deja Vu All Over Again

Wiki says:Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra (born May 12, 1925) is a former American Major League Baseball catcher, outfielder, and manager. He played almost his entire 19-year baseball career (1946–1965) for the New York Yankees. Berra was one of only four players to be named the Most Valuable Player of the American League three times and one of only six managers to lead both American and National League teams to the World Series. He was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972.

Berra is widely regarded as one of the greatest catchers in baseball history. According to the win shares formula developed by sabermetrician Bill James, Berra is the greatest catcher of all time and the 52nd greatest non-pitching player in major-league history.

Berra, who quit school after the eighth grade, has a tendency toward malapropism and fracturing the English language. "It ain't over till it's over" is arguably his most famous example, often quoted.

Deja Vu All Over Again. Berra explained that this quote originated when he witnessed Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris repeatedly hit back-to-back home runs in the Yankees' seasons in the early 1960s.

Too many things going on, but here's a poem I wrote today:

Deja Vu All Over Again

You tell me to stop.
My head tries sooner than my
body to follow
orders. We measure is just so, two minds
as if my spirit
and my soul converse
and do not always agree.
This raises questions
all over again,
deja vu for us, tricky
like and silver furred.

Written June 30, 2011 12:48 PM

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Walking On Clouds - Reprise

"Leaving on a Jet Plane" is a song written by John Denver in 1966 and most famously recorded by Peter, Paul and Mary. The original title of the song was "Oh Babe I Hate to Go" but Denver's then producer, Milt Okun, convinced him to change the title.

The song was initially recorded in 1967 by the Chad Mitchell Trio, and later that same year by Spanky and Our Gang. Peter, Paul and Mary's version first appeared on their 1967 Album 1700; however, it did not become a hit until they released it as a single in 1969. It turned out to be their biggest (and final) hit, becoming their only #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in the United States. It was the second to last #1 single of the 1960s. The song also spent three weeks atop the easy listening chart. The song was also sung by the crew of the space shuttle in the movie Armageddon.

I thought of two old songs, this one and Gordon Lightfoot singing "Early Morning Rain", but I think this song is closer to the sense of my poem.

I must apologize but I have no sound at all at the moment on either of my computers. My older laptop has decided to freeze in the start up after it decided all on its own to shut down last night. That was the computer that had the sound. This computer has decided to force me to massage it and manually open the wi-fi driver in order to have internet. At the same time the windows sound driver has disappeared beyond my skill to find it. In an unrelated issue my Blue Parrot blue tooth device has refused to start up too. That device is a hundred bucks to be a head set instead of an ear piece only, and the input is voice activated. It's made for trucker's cabins. I might be pissing off the technical gods somehow.

Not having any way to verify the quality of any sound media, I would never just post anything.

"Walking On Clouds" was the second poem posted with "The Ring Of Light" reprised yesterday.

Walking On Clouds

I look from above
To the clouds that cover you,
Keep you from my sight.

The clouds seem to say
I could float, even walk there
In mid-sky out past
The place you still live,
Home that I left, leaving you.

The sun's rays reach me
In horizontal
Lines that slice me right to left
Like you asking me.

January 17, 2009 2:06 PM
First Posted June 18, 2009

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Ring Of Light - Reprise

Ring of light over Moscow

A Ring of Endless Light is a 1980 novel by Madeleine L'Engle. The book tells of a girl named Vicky and her struggle to understand life and significance in the universe as she deals with her dying grandfather, while at the same time finding love.

Madeline in 1946

Madeline in her later years

Wiki says: Madeleine L'Engle (November 29, 1918 – September 6, 2007) was an American writer best known for her Young Adult fiction, particularly the Newbery Medal-winning A Wrinkle in Time and its sequels A Wind in the Door, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, Many Waters, and An Acceptable Time. Her works reflect both her Christian faith and her strong interest in modern science.

The Ring Of Light

There's a ring of light
I found, placed on my finger
As a charm that calls
You from your labor
In the fields of confusion.

You seek a house free
Of darkness, descent,
Burial beneath the sand.

But more sand arrives
As you look, begins
To bury you as you age
And your burden too.

There's a ring of light.
I will place it in your hand.
Light will circle you.

Written January 17, 2009 9:57 AM
First Posted June 18, 2009

Monday, June 27, 2011

Inversion - Reprise

I say I am here as a Witness. I don't mean this as if I am some special creature given a unique task. I am sure Witnesses are a dime a dozen and in some real sense there is no one who is not a Witness. And yet in the story I tell myself, I am in a lifelong argument with God about some aspect of this life, a focus, as if I have come here sure I will win this argument if I give it due diligence. What amuses me, I am more sure of the plot than I am of the substance.

I am not that sure what exactly I am looking for. When I am at my least mature then I claim I want to declare a world without suffering, that it is suffering that is the sticking point and that it is suffering that should be removed from this life. But that is purely adolescent and ever since I have learned the heavy forgiveness lessons I know that is not really it. But I remain toe to toe and eye to eye with the Creator. Yes, indeed.

Here is a Witness story.


Dropping down from here,
From this single star,
I have come to see your life
The way it really
Is, not the way they
Say you are in the stories.
It's a steep descent,
A quantum shifting
Down for up, charmed for strange, you
For me in this ploy.

I am upside down,
Not ready - such timeless light.

Written January 18, 2009 9:51 AM
First Posted June 22, 2009

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Merlin's Lament

Here's a song by Dave Carter...I hoped to find a version on YouTube but there seems to be only one, not by Dave and Tracy but by someone else. It is poorly recorded and poorly done in my estimation but Guy-Michael Grande's heart was in the right place. Dave is gone now and those who know all weep for that. In 2009 there was a memorial concert and that's where the YouTube I found was taken. Ick. I hate it when they die early.


In a castle keep, in a vault of stone
In a house at the end of the lane
An old man weeps in his door alone
And he sings out this mournful refrain.

She will not come back
She will not come back
Though the mountains fall down to the sea
And the sky burns to cinders and the river runs black
She will not come back to me.

No lightnin reed from his books of lore
And the staff in the corner, no fire
And the crystal ball always bright before
Is grey as the dust of desire.

She will not come back
She will not come back
Though we call on the powers that be
They will cipher this message in his cold zodiac
She will not come back
She will not come back
She will not come back to me.

And joy my love was a dancin spring
And life was the touch of her lips
And a brook ran mad to my cave down stream
From the miracle hills of her hips.

She will not come back
She will not come back
Though the stars hang their tears in the trees
And tireless Orion lies spent in his tracks
She will not come back
She will not come back
She will not come back to me
She will not come back to me.

Wiki says: Dave Carter (August 13, 1952 – July 19, 2002) was an American folk singer-songwriter who described his style as "post-modern mythic American folk music." He was one half of the duo Dave Carter and Tracy Grammer, who were heralded as the new "voice of modern folk music" in the months before Carter's unexpected death in July 2002. They were ranked as number one on the year-end list for "Top Artists" on the Folk Music Radio Airplay Chart for 2001 and 2002, and their popularity has endured in the years following Carter's death. Joan Baez who went on tour with the duo in 2002 spoke of Carter's songs in the same terms that she once used to promote a young Bob Dylan:
"There is a special gift for writing songs that are available to other people, and Dave's songs are very available to me. It's a kind of genius, you know, and Dylan has the biggest case of it. But I hear it in Dave's songs, too."
Carter's songs were often noted for their poetic imagery, spirituality and storytelling while retaining connection to the country music of his southern American upbringing. Carter's memory has been kept alive by his many admirers, most notably his former partner. Tracy Grammer has continued to introduce previously unrecorded songs and recordings that the duo were working on prior to Carter's death.

Carter died of a massive heart attack Friday July 19, 2002 in a hotel room in Hadley, Massachusetts after returning from an early morning run. He and Grammer were slated to play that weekend at the Green River Festival in Greenfield and were booked that summer to play many of the nation's top folk festivals and folk clubs. He was 49. Carter's death came as a great shock to the folk music community. Tracy Grammer gave her account of Carter's final moments in a letter to fans:
"Yesterday, shortly after he went unconscious, he came back for a lucid minute or two to tell me, 'I just died... Baby, I just died...' There was a look of wonder in his eyes, and though I cried and tried to deny it to him, I knew he was right and he was on his way. He stayed with me a minute more but despite my attempts to keep him with me, I could see he was already riding that thin chiffon wave between here and gone. He loved beauty, he was hopelessly drawn to the magic and the light in all things. I figure he saw something he could not resist out of the corner of his eye and flew into it. Despite the fact that every rescue attempt was made by paramedics and hospital staff and the death pronouncement officially came at 12:08 pm Eastern Time, I believe he died in my arms in our favorite hotel, leaving me with those final words. That's the true story I am going to tell."


I said it this way

How You Are Leaving Me

I stumble along
trying to get it, get it.
Man, what can I do
to convince you that
you've risen higher than this
yard we've known so long?
You've returned to nest
in the old haystack we called
good enough once more.
But I know you'll go,
again you will step away
and one time soon, soon
you will not come back.

December 3, 2009 8:05 PM

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Design by anxiety and sweat

No post tonight on accounta my brain is fried. Too much design by anxiety and sweat this week...


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

I Once Saw - Reprise

Freya Coming To Handle Me

I think this poem is one of my favorites. When I remember old loves it is most often with kindness and gratitude for the privilege of loving like that. I am a fortunate man. The women who chose to love me were all decent and careful with the hearts of others. One was too ill to really be with me. That was long long ago now. The woman who married me was in the end too ill to stay with me and we divorced hoping to save both our lives. I was saved. She unfortunately was not, and she passed in 2001. Her sister told me earlier that same year that she believed my ex-wife still loved me. I still love her today. Illness, death and divorce did not stop my heart from beating with her rhythm. Neither did that keep me from loving others since. I believe that having the chance to give and receive love in all its richness and diverse forms is the highest privilege of this problematic planet. I know it is not actually a right. Perhaps in God's World you could say such a thing: "I have a right to love and be loved!" This is the World That God Permits. In this world lives without much love are not only possible, they are common when you cast your net worldwide in the industrialized countries. Elsewhere, despite privation and injustice, there may be more love than you think. We do pay a price for our greed.

I don't think you earn love, but I know you can earn the loss of love. Genuine love is a privilege and contains a note of Grace in the largest sense.

Oh my, I do go me no mind...

I Once Saw

God sees the long shape of me
All at once, and me,
I once saw this too.

But that was between my lives.

All I have is small
Plodding steps, flat feet.

I recall your eyes
Lighting my heart, God close by.
I recall your touch.

Written November 1, 2008 10:27 AM
First posted, January 23, 2009

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

I Am Not Sad - Reprise

My Summer Cottage

Many people have come to believe very much as I have in this time. I see this is true by checking in with a variety of sources. Lately I am finding some valuable training that is freely available on the internet. One place, the University of California at Berkeley has hundreds of past lectures, entire college courses, freely offered if only you find the site. This is incredible value. An entire college education for free if you want it. The Shift Network is offering contemporary discussions, interviews with fairly well known people concerning awakening. What these people and I have seen is some kind of agreement with life or with God that is personal and dynamic. This agreement is a power source and leads toward a destiny. I see this very much like the idea of a "calling" or the expression of a unique "talent" as Christians use these words.

That I dare to call myself "God's chosen fool" is an expression of this faith. That I post here is also an expression of this faith. I have been patient with myself in the matter of my destiny. I have thought I was on the way several times, through music, once through a movement, a couple times through love, once in partnership with a mentor I thought would lead us both, and now through the medium of blogging. Blogging may come to nothing. Everything else has. It does not matter. If I am certain of anything, I am certain of that. It does not matter. Within that, paradoxically, something matters very much. What matters is the feeling of being rightly placed my efforts give me. What matters are the friends I have made world wide, Spain, France, England, Persia, India, Australia, Canada.

You see, it is not really the poetry. The poetry is the coin of the realm, neither the source nor the goal. You have to pay to play. That is why I don't overtly display copyright stuff, and freely write on other's sites. These are my offerings. I don't own my money. Neither do I own my poetry. In this way, I am rich and I am an open hearted man.

I Am Not Sad

I shed like a snake
But have no fangs, no poison.
Many lives, long gone.

I slither to the table
And dine in costume as if
I too were real.

I am fantasy, shadow,
God's chosen old fool.

First Posted November 24, 2008
written sometime between Aug and Nov, 2008

Monday, June 20, 2011

The Good Fight

This is the view from the patio outside the bedroom where the poem below is set.

Where do I feel it? High in the chest. Up and down my breathing. Allergies. Sore throat and uncontrolled coughing, sometimes all the way to unconsciousness. That's how I had a bad accident with a telephone pole eighteen months back. When I am stressed, sometimes I find that I breathe so shallow that I am starved for air. This all is the state I was in before my heart trouble. This heart trouble affects my breathing. Oddly, since my heart trouble surfaced in breathing difficulties, the allergies have receded. That intrigues me.

I have seen that before in others, that a chronic issue goes away when some new thing starts. (It is very difficult to notice this when it is happening to me. I suspect it might be difficult for you to notice this too.) I take that to mean there are emotional components in disease and that these can withdraw from one system of disease when they are invested in another. This is actually good news because under rigorous emotional honesty there is a chance for me to untangle an old knot.

"Grace means more than gifts. In grace something is transcended, once and for all overcome. Grace happens in spite of something; it happens in spite of separateness and alienation. Grace means that life is once again united with life, self is reconciled with self. Grace means accepting the abandoned one. Grace transforms fate into a meaningful vocation. It transforms guilt to trust and courage. The word grace has something triumphant in it." - Yrjo Kallinen

George Henry Kallinen (Yrjo Henrik Kallinen, June 15, 1886 Oulu - 1 january 1976 in Helsinki ) was a Finnish Social Democratic politician and a Counsellor of Education. He was known first and foremost as an advocate of the idea of a neutral and peaceful Finland. He built his career mainly by maintaining close alliances with other compatible politicians.

The Good Fight

I used to fight it
as if I could win the fight
but I knew better.

So she tickled me
and whispered in my ear, make friends,
she said. What?? You mean
take that old foe in?
Fuck that! No, really, she said
touching me like that.
So I tried. Bravest
thing I ever did.

December 3, 2009 8:21 PM

Sunday, June 19, 2011


I am disgruntled. I wrote two poems today. Both were eaten by the computer and my poor habits of protection. No post tonight.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Core Of Things

I wrote this yesterday in honor of a sweet and very short post offered by my long time blogging friend Erin in her blog called In Search Of White Space. Yesterday there was something wrong with the connection and I struggled to save the poem, let alone fail to post it on her blog as is my pattern. "A clean getaway" was in a song I was listening to, as was the idea of being strong enough now implied by another when I got to there. Those are the sorts of leads I follow when I write.

It felt like I should post it now, so I did.

The Core Of Things

A clean getaway
lies ahead, I hope, after
all the tangled stuff
of my foolishness,
the mire of our strange choices,
the sand of your loves.
I still remember
how bright we were together.
Oh, that stands out, shines
in my memory
as I go my way.
I hope you're strong enough now
to keep a firm hold.

June 17, 2011 12:42 PM

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Why Do I Do This - Reprise

Martin Heidegger

"Why are there beings at all instead of nothing? That is the question. Presumably it is not an arbitrary question, "Why are there beings at all instead of nothing?" - this is obviously the first of all questions. Of course it is not the first question in the chronological sense. And yet, we are each touched once, maybe even every now and then, by the concealed power of this question, without properly grasping what is happening to us. In great despair, for example, when all weight tends to dwindle away from things and the sense of things grows dark, the question looms." - Martin Heidegger, from Being and Time

Wiki says:

Martin Heidegger (September 26, 1889 – May 26, 1976) was an influential German philosopher known for his existential and phenomenological explorations of the "question of Being." His best-known book, Being and Time, is considered to be one of the most important philosophical works of the 20th century and he has been influential beyond philosophy, in literature, psychology, and artificial intelligence. Heidegger remains controversial due to his involvement with Nazism and statements in support of Adolf Hitler.

Heidegger claimed that Western philosophy since Plato has misunderstood what it means for something "to be", tending to approach this question in terms of a being, rather than asking about Being itself. In other words, Heidegger believed all investigations of being have historically focused on particular entities and their properties, or have treated Being itself as an entity, or substance, with properties. A more authentic analysis of being would, for Heidegger, investigate "that on the basis of which beings are already understood", or that which underlies all particular entities and allows them to show up as entities in the first place (see world disclosure). But since philosophers and scientists have overlooked the more basic, pre-theoretical ways of being from which their theories derive, and since they have incorrectly applied those theories universally, they have confused our understanding of being and human existence. To avoid these deep-rooted misconceptions, Heidegger believed philosophical inquiry must be conducted in a new way, through a process of retracing the steps of the history of philosophy.

Heidegger argued that this misunderstanding, beginning with Plato, has left its traces in every stage of Western thought. All that we understand, from the way we speak to our notions of "common sense", is susceptible to error, to fundamental mistakes about the nature of being. These mistakes filter into the terms through which being is articulated in the history of philosophy—such as reality, logic, God, consciousness, and presence. In his later philosophy, Heidegger argues that this profoundly affects the way in which human beings relate to modern technology.

Heidegger's work has strongly influenced philosophy, theology and the humanities. Within philosophy it played a crucial role in the development of existentialism, hermeneutics, deconstructionism, postmodernism, and continental philosophy in general. Well-known philosophers such as Karl Jaspers, Leo Strauss, Ahmad Fardid, Hans-Georg Gadamer, Jean-Paul Sartre, Emmanuel Lévinas, Hannah Arendt, Maurice Merleau-Ponty, Michel Foucault, Richard Rorty, William E. Connolly, and Jacques Derrida have all analyzed Heidegger's work.

Heidegger supported National Socialism and was a member of the Nazi Party from May 1933 until May 1945. His defenders, notably Hannah Arendt, see this support as arguably a personal " 'error' " (a word which Arendt placed in quotation marks when referring to Heidegger's Nazi-era politics). Defenders think this error was largely irrelevant to Heidegger's philosophy. Critics, such as his former students Emmanuel Levinas and Karl Löwith, claim that Heidegger's support for National Socialism revealed flaws inherent in his thought.


There are the big things in my life. Even at this point, I really don't know what to make of them. I know the illusions I followed. I know what I wanted but that was never possible. Three times I tried. Instead I have the life of the possible. That is all right with me. I am all right.

Why Do I Do This

You tell me to check
so I look in all the back
rooms, in the boxes
I stashed there, looking
for motives, hidden behind
the obvious ones.

Out of the corner
of my eye something scurries
along the wall, dives
into that small hole
and refuses to come out,
not even for you.

That is, you say, the main motive.

February 2, 2009 2:42 PM
First Posted August 2, 2009

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

On Being The Right Size - Reprise

"That ideas should spread freely from one to another over the globe, for the moral and mutual instruction of man, and improvement of his condition, seems to have been peculiarly and benevolently designed by nature, when she made them, like fire, expansible over all space, without lessening their density at any point, and like the air in which we breathe, move, and have our physical being, incapable of confinement or exclusive appropriation. Inventions then cannot, in nature, be a subject of property." - Thomas Paine

Thomas "Tom" Paine (February 9, 1737 [O.S. January 29, 1736] – June 8, 1809) was an author, pamphleteer, radical, inventor, intellectual, revolutionary, and one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. He has been called "a corsetmaker by trade, a journalist by profession, and a propagandist by inclination."

Tom's smile is distinctive. On Google's Images, there are several portraits of Tom and two things stand out, drawn similar in most of his portraits. One is his smile, shown in different poses, always recognizable. The other is his rather prominent nose. I am convinced that we rather do know what Tom Paine looked like.

I feel very much as Tom does, that in nature "inventions" (that is, creative acts) are by nature interdependent on a whole constellation of beings, moments, and events. Creative acts are so entangled with sources of inspiration that it really means very little that, for example, some poem comes into the world through me. Intellectual property only makes sense in society as a move to generate income. There is no other sense in which I can or you can be said to "own" a creative act. That we were first with it means so little, especially when most "original" notions have already been expressed many times before in some other form.

Under certain conditions I feel closest to God when I create. I feel then like I am the most deserving of His attention, and I feel I am the most likely to be doing His will for me. It is said in some circles that Man is made in the Image/Likeness of God. Though this phrase is Christian the vision extends far beyond Christian sentiment. What else can be the heart of the Image and Likeness of God but those moments when we come closest to making something from nothing? And by bitter experience I know intimately that I cannot create, not really unless I also love, forgive, hold mercy and compassion close. This is just true.

On Being The Right Size

I took out my tools,
started building the world new,
just as you said to.
You said I make worlds
by fabricating something
and changing the old
and if I did not
then that one chance would be lost
forever. Oh my.
What a large burden.
When seen the way you say it
I feel really small.

January 30, 2009 2:56 PM
First Posted, July 22, 2009

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

What We Were Like - Reprise

I don't know about others. I can't speak for you. I can be sure that I rarely actually fit in with people specifically. There seems to be always some difference difficult to swallow. I am required, I believe to overlook, rise above, find a path of coexistence. I am certain it is required. I suspect it is necessary to the exact extent it seems to be.

This, I think is why the most mature spiritual walks on the planet emphasize forgiveness and mercy, compassion and love. These are the indispensible states of being precisely because we are so fractious. The Judaeo-Christian traditions viewed from the Christian perspective is in one way precisely this message, that the Jewish heritage was a working out of the Law, a clarity with God's perfect justice, and within that structure the revelation of love and mercy abides, embedded, obvious in its way, but still subservient. This is Old Testament as the Christians say. Christ comes to fulfill the Law, to transcend it, to show how natural and in place justice is when Love ascends to its rightful position. Love is the new Law.

That vision of Judaism makes sense to Christians but not to sophisticated Jews who will maintain that the ongoing Jewish experience also reveals Love and reveals it in all its importance.

Muslims will agree from their own perspective that Christians do not monopolize the Law of Love. My mentor Hafiz, a Sufi mystic, a Dervish, just beams with the light of Love, Compassion, Mercy, Forgiveness. In fact he claims these are highly intoxicating and God's House is a Tavern where the Holy Drunkenness is dispensed. Herein is the Dervish Joyful Dance.

And Mahayana leads to the Buddhist Ideal of Bodhisattva. Infinite compassion embodied in Buddha to the benefit of all sentient beings deliberately and deeply present immediately and permanently, not to disappear from the planet until all sentient beings are free. Turn and look. Then become. Hindu Tantra is the practical application of Love as manifest energy (sex is quite a small part of this).

I could go on. But the reality we experience is different for most of us most of the time.

What We Were Like

My family was chancy,
all technicolor critters
hanging together
despite different
destinies in inner space.
"I hate them all, all!"
I've said that before.

Like a few other
places on this old planet,
here we stay even
though otherwise we
would never willingly mix,
no, would not ever.

January 30, 2009 9:56 AM
First Posted July 22, 2009

Monday, June 13, 2011

How You Are Leaving Me

When my lover left me in 2001 it was a process of an ever widening gyre, not unlike watching a child rebel on the way out the door, leaving home. I was not ready but how would I ever be ready? She had to go. I knew it then, know it now.

I do not tell you how that all fit into the loss of my wife. Suffice it to say that what my first lover did for me was to bring me back into the world. She let me know that I was really here, really a man, and no slouch at that or at the love a man gives.

What was remarkable, when she left there was someone there for me. Leaving the old relationship behind, I was walking into a new relationship. It was not a rebound thing, not at all. These women were so different. In leaving my first lover I was leaving for that time poetry behind but not for nothing. What came was the return of my music, not only an intensification of the singing and keyboards that I was already doing, but my guitar practice was given back to me. She gave me back my guitar quite literally. It needed repair and that several hundred dollar restoration became a surprise birthday gift to me. My second lover was a strong woman and a musician herself. She actually became a choirmaster during our time together, running two choirs at once for a time. We established a territory of love that did not overlap with my earlier love at all.

Now that I am on my own, I have returned to the poetry, but the poetry that has come is not the poetry as it was. I have a voice now. My poetry is no longer words uttered through a role play, a character of some fantastic realm, more than half real through the alchemy of love. My poetry is now many voices from many eras of my own life and that of my imagination as well. I write from the Oort Cloud and beyond, from the civilized neighborhoods and the wild, close to the four footed people and the winged ones too. I write as a lover and a clown and just yesterday as a smack head. I write of the gremlins I have known, the lovers, and other mythological beasts, of God and angels and demons within and elsewhere. I do not write only to her expecting any reader to follow such a self indulgent path. Instead I write the truth, or at least true stories, and sometimes a spoof or two. I would not recommend taking me all that serious. I often am not serious. I would recommend not believing I always tell what has actually happened to me. I am a story teller.

Both of these women left me. This is okay with me now though I resisted both separations. I would prefer to have a lover though I am no longer really young enough to be the lover I was. I would prefer a companion but I know I am not really companion material. I am too singular. I sit in the evening here quite content to be solitary and undisturbed to do this work. Later this evening I would like to join my lover, but I know she would like more of me right now than I want to give. But I am all right. I have nothing to prove. I was a damn fine lover. They both said so, no question. They did not leave me because of me, at least not mainly. They both said that too.

How You Are Leaving Me

I hop, hop along
trying to get it, get it.
Man, what can I do
to convince you that
you've risen higher than this
yard we've known so long?
You've returned to nest
in the old haystack we called
good enough once more.
But I know you'll go,
again you will fly away
and one time soon, soon
you will not come back.

December 3, 2009 8:05 PM

Sunday, June 12, 2011

How I Woke Up

No, I didn't wake up today like this. I actually wrote this poem in a response to another poem I read yesterday, in response to remembering what I was like decades ago. But no, this exact thing did not happen to me. It could have been me. There are at least two people way back then who might have deserved this from me.

Or as someone said, perhaps this is actually not about dope, even though it says it is. It is dark, though. It is deeply trapped and basically awful. If I woke up like this today, I probably would have been waking like this for some time. I would very likely be stuck in the nightmare. I would probably continue to wake up like this until a miracle or some darker disaster would then shape things differently, like going to jail might change things. If I have awakened like this, then going to jail might be a dark blessing rather than a disaster.

I have some personal experience with bad shit turning out to be a blessing. I wrote recently on the idea of sloppy good luck. There is a whole spectrum. Sometimes luck turns really sloppy, even stinky, reeking of the sewer. This kind of luck takes awhile to reveal itself as the good luck it is. The point embedded in this musing: sometimes you fall so deeply into the pit that you have no way back up without help of some kind, from serendipitous fate, from God, angels, demons, from the thrust of destiny, from the kindness of others.

It may be in that hard school you learn the most about love, humility, forgiveness.

It occurred to me that I might be appearing too saintly lately. I thought it might be appropriate to point out that I went through some really dark shit in my youth.

How I Woke Up

I need to smack him
down, take his dope, end his life
if I can, oh Lord,
if I can like he
took mine that last thrust before
the next nasty rise
erupted on me
like vomit, like black light groans
in the back room mess
I must now live in
as I choke down my cold rage
and am torn apart.

June 12, 2011 11:17 AM

Friday, June 10, 2011

The Promise - Reprise

The Promise

Dazzled by the light
Found in the pack God carried
And left at my door.

I asked Him in but He left
Me again, again with gifts,
And look, a promise.
This hand written note says "Peace."

Oh, I am thirsty!

Written sometime before November 18, 2008
First Posted November 18, 2008

Thursday, June 9, 2011

What I Have To Say - Reprise

This is a poem written in 2000. In those days I was immersed in the first of two love relations I entered after the ending of my twenty year marriage. This time was a complex weave of fantasy and reality and Maire (as I called her) was my muse. I write about this often in this blog, the blog being to a great extent an homage to that relationship and what happened to me because it occurred. It was both the most amazing and rewarding two years of my life and arguably the most painful severance as well. I let go and moved beyond this genuinely clandestine affair with my muse when it was time to move.

She left me as I knew she would in the beginning. I have that prediction in black print. Most of the foundational skill I have as a poet was tempered in the fire of this love. This poem was written first to this woman in a moment of anticipation of what was to happen next in our affair. I was not wrong in my expectation, not in the coming next few days.

I was gifted in my life with a much better, more viable and vibrant love relationship following my loss of this clandestine woman and our fantasy. I received the renaissance of my music which returned to me full force with my connection to this new woman, and we were connected fully in public view. This relationship was not clandestine in any way. I gained her family too, an amazing family. I am quite likely deeply connected with this woman for the rest of my life, while my muse has been out of my life for years now.

What this poem is is a psalm, of course, and is said entirely to Divinity. If you do not have Divinity in back of your love for one another, what do you have?

What I Have To Say

Father Sun, Grandmother Sky,
Mother Earth, hear my call.
I am here within You.

This is what I have to say.

I will stand here at the stillness.
I will witness what I see.
I am open to Your Ways.
Give me the tools, give me leave
That I can bend and trim the Tree
Of Life and keep the Deep of Days.

Then I will turn with a gift of love
For the Goddess of the moon and stars
And I will truly touch Her heart.

This is all I have to say.

First Posted, part of my fourth post, November 10, 2008

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

It's Always Something - Reprise

So, long before I ever dreamed up this blog the wee folk were part of my poetry. I have Celtic roots and instincts. I prefer a whole ecology of the divine and semi-divine, complete with angels, demons, devas, faerie, dwarves and elves, gods and goddesses, familiars, witches and mages and as I write of them here, gremlins.

The original impulse to house gremlins comes from a science fiction story of the fifties. I believe it was by Robert Sheckley, but only because Sheckley wrote wonderful off beat often humorous stories. This story was about a guy who got gremlins in a cloaked birdcage, gremlins who lived in a lovely house and garden and gave him lovely luck when he took the birdcage into his house. He could not resist peeking in on them even as he was warned that they wanted complete privacy. Finally there was a "for rent" sign put up and then the vacancy. His luck departed too. After awhile he noticed there were tenants again in the birdhouse but everything was run down and sloppy, a slum as it were. Also though his luck was still mostly good, it was also sort of sloppy and never a pure blessing again. So much for looking at your luck.

My mother and I agreed we must have slum gremlins for we had what we called sloppy good luck. Things turned out for the better most often, but there was also this rather ugly price, sometimes before the luck, or with it, even after. That's the story of my life pretty much, sloppy good luck. Slum gremlins.

Oh by the way, the crack in the windshield was a real outcome of a journey on a day when I did find my keys after a brief moment when I thought I wouldn't.

It's Always Something**

The small folk are in charge of where things are
In my house. I don't understand the rules.
Where my keys rest, on what surface they should be
Goes according to them, not according to me.

I really try to get along. I really mean this. No, really.

Today I rejoice with wide eyes. Today I found my keys
Right where my best thinking said they would be.

(Now I hope the small folk haven't moved away
In protest of some willful violation of mine-
Perhaps instead I find my keys seemingly unmoved
Where they are through some act of mine they approve.)

The simple blessing of found keys, you would think
Enough, but I was still late for work. Road gremlins.

My windshield is newly cracked in the lower right corner.

**Earliest save September 24, 2006
Probably written around that time.
First posted on this blog, part of my second post ever, November 8, 2008

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Ave Maria

Found by my long time blog friend, Ghost Dansing:

Monday, June 6, 2011

No Post Tonight

No post tonight. Sorry. Don't feel up to it. This is not a bad thing.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Eating Prayers - Reprise

"The books or the music in which we thought the beauty was located will betray us if we trust in them; it was not in them, it only came through them, and what came through them was longing."

"If I discover within myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world."

What utterly true statements. Throughout my high school years, and really before that, the best science fiction and fantasy did precisely this, and so strongly I could not deny my longing. I would look for signs in my life and on my body that I really belonged somewhere else. The conviction I am not from here remains with me today, originally fired by the longing that came from books and my imagination, which "proved" to me that there was an elsewhere to be from, a place where much that plagued me in my life dropped away. I was never so naive as to believe in utopia but at least the challenges elsewhere would be more colorful and meaningful.

Wiki says:
"Clive Staples Lewis (29 November 1898 – 22 November 1963), commonly referred to as C. S. Lewis and known to his friends and family as "Jack", was an Irish-born British novelist, academic, medievalist, literary critic, essayist, lay theologian and Christian apologist. He is well known for his fictional work, especially The Screwtape Letters, The Chronicles of Narnia and The Space Trilogy.

"Lewis was a close friend of J. R. R. Tolkien, and both authors were leading figures in the English faculty at Oxford University and in the informal Oxford literary group known as the "Inklings". According to his memoir Surprised by Joy, Lewis had been baptised in the Church of Ireland at birth, but fell away from his faith during his adolescence. Owing to the influence of Tolkien and other friends, at the age of 32 Lewis returned to Christianity, becoming "a very ordinary layman of the Church of England". His conversion had a profound effect on his work, and his wartime radio broadcasts on the subject of Christianity brought him wide acclaim.

"In 1956 he married the American writer Joy Gresham, 17 years his junior, who died four years later of cancer at the age of 45.

"Lewis died three years after his wife, as the result of renal failure. His death came one week before his 65th birthday. Media coverage of his death was minimal, as he died on 22 November 1963 – the same day that U.S. President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, and the same day another famous author, Aldous Huxley, died."
While I cannot speak for "Jack's" return to Christianity, I can say that one of his visions is arresting for me and I carry it still as one serious description of the human condition. He claimed in his fictional work that planet Earth is under quarantine and placed so by the rest of the cosmos as a planet that is spiritually sick. He said that elsewhere, even as close as Mars, the rebellion fundamental to the human spirit did not take place and so the rest of the cosmos was at peace and reconciled to the real in ways incomprehensible here. We are under quarantine because we would behave as a virulent plague in the larger universe, much as we are doing on the planet. The keepers of the quarantine are containing our self destruction and waiting to see if we survive and then recover sanity enough to be let free.

Doesn't that feel right to you? It does to me. Please understand I don't claim this is "real", just that it really fits well with my experience of the planet.

Eating Prayers

Embodied knowledge-
Never less than two wide views,
Colored vistas, skew.

I swim very well
Among the rocks, wade the bars
Seeking shells of life.

Then I return home,
Brush away the gritty sand
And eat my prayers.

Written October 14, 2008 1:39 PM
First Posted December 29, 2008

Friday, June 3, 2011

My Cold Dark Dream - Reprise

"In life, many thoughts are born in the course of a moment, an hour, a day. Some are dreams, some visions. Often, we are unable to distinguish between them. To some, they are the same; however, not all dreams are visions. Much energy is lost in fanciful dreams that never bear fruit. But visions are messages from the Great Spirit, each for a different purpose in life.

"Consequently, one person's vision may not be that of another. To have a vision, one must be prepared to receive it, and when it comes, to accept it. Thus when these inner urges become reality, only then can visions be fulfilled. The spiritual side of life knows everyone's heart and who to trust. How could a vision ever be given to someone to harbor if that person could not be trusted to carry it out. The message is simple: commitment precedes vision."
- High Eagle

My Cold Dark Dream

The sparrow flew in
Through the window, landed here
On the strewn papers,
On the table beside
My heavy heart on this rain
Filled night without you.

This could be a song
But it is my life that plays
In this cold dark dream.

Sparrow dying now
On the floor and the cold grows
Colder in my shell
Of an empty life.
My dream shatters. I break down,
Then wake to gray dawn.

Written January 26, 2009 9:23 PM
First posted July 9, 2009

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Calling Forth My Light - Reprise


"Try for a moment to accept the idea that you are not what you believe yourself to be, that you overestimate yourself, in fact that you lie to yourself. That you always lie to yourself every moment, all day, all your life. That this lying rules you to such an extent that you cannot control it any more. You are the prey of lying. You lie, everywhere. Your relations with others - lies. The upbringing you give, the conventions - lies. Your teaching - lies. Your theories, your art lies. Your social life, your family life - lies. And what you think of yourself - lies also. But you never stop yourself in what you are doing or in what you are saying because you believe in yourself. You must stop inwardly and observe. Observe without preconceptions, accepting for a time this idea of lying. And if you observe in this way, paying with yourself, without self-pity, giving up all your supposed riches for a moment of reality, perhaps you will suddenly see something you have never before seen in yourself until this day. You will see that you are different from what you think you are. You will see that you are two. One who is not, but takes the place and plays the role of the other. And one who is, yet so weak, so insubstantial, that he no sooner appears than he immediately disappears. He cannot endure lies. The least lie makes him faint away. He does not struggle, he does not resist, he is defeated in advance. Learn to look until you have seen the difference between your two natures, until you have seen the lies, the deception in yourself. When you have seen your two natures, that day, in yourself, the truth will be born." - Jeanne de Salzmann, First Initiation

Jeanne Matignon de Salzmann born Jeanne Allemand often addressed as Madame de Salzmann (1889 – 25 May 1990) was a close pupil of G. I. Gurdjieff, recognized as his deputy by many of Gurdjieff's other pupils. She was responsible for transmitting the movements and teachings of Gurdjieff through the Gurdjieff Foundation of New York, the Gurdjieff Institute of Paris and other formal and informal groups throughout the world.

Madame de Salzmann began her career at the Conservatory of Geneva, studying piano, orchestral conduction and musical composition. Later a student of Emile Jaques-Dalcroze in Germany from 1912, she taught dance and rhythmic movements. She met her husband Alexandre de Salzmann in Hellerau at Dalcroze's school. With him she had a daughter, Boussique. The Russian revolution triggered a move for Jeanne and her husband Alexandre to Tiflis, Georgia where she continued to teach.

In 1919, Thomas de Hartmann introduced the de Salzmanns to George Gurdjieff, a relationship that would last until Gurdjieff's death in 1949. She worked with Gurdjieff for nearly 30 years.

In December 1949, together with Henriette H. Lannes, Jane Heap and J. G. Bennett she initiated the startup of an organization, which would eventually become the Gurdjieff Foundation, to continue the Gurdjieff Work. On 6 October 1955 The Society for Research into the Development of Man Ltd. was founded. This organization later changed to The Gurdjieff Society Ltd., on the 17 June 1957. She led the organization and continued Gurdjieffs teachings, emphasizing work with the movements, until she died, 101 years old in 1990.

Her son by Gurdjieff, Michel de Salzmann born 1923, took over the leadership of the organization.

What a great day this was! Was I lying to myself?

Calling Forth My Light

Fairies ring flowers
Like churchmen ring steeple bells
And dew sprays like sound.

Calling me to devotion,
Fairies lead me to my knees.

They dust me with love
And touch my cheeks, kissing me,
Calling forth my light.

Written September 5, 2008 11:57 AM
First Posted November 22, 2008

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Black Pepper - Reprise

...and coming into the clearing I spied a vision I had never seen before...and there was the aroma of some exotic and unknown spice. It stung my tongue and my saliva squirted as if it was prey I spied but my heart melted at once and I knew I was lost...
"In reality there has never been a day in our lives (and maybe not one hour or even one minute) when something happened that did not eventually lead to significant results. However, in the onward rush of events it is usually hard to see these patterns." - Manjusvara
When I am in love odd things happen. The world changes in a myriad of ways. I find gratitude in odd places. Sometimes when it is going very well, is very fresh, there is a kind of quality to the light and sound of things, to the feel of things. Only LSD ever came close to this experience of being high and that only twice. I know what it means to be able to say I would die for love. I haven't felt like that since 1999. Before that time I had not felt like that since 1970. What is really cool, the echoes of love are still in my soul. I am so deeply grateful I have never been embittered no matter what happened.

By the way, I loved my wife with a life love and we partnered for nearly 24 years but she never took me, transported me, changed me like this. I am not sure it is wise to marry someone who has this power in your soul. At least for me, the women who changed me like this would not have been good marriage material.

Black Pepper

I hear her. She stirs
Behind the words she wrote down,
Below the sweet rhymes
She made while setting
Her gratefulness in this place,
Declares black pepper
The fruit of her choice,
Asks me to hang a crescent.

This moon's lit by grace.

She defines the space
Near my heart and all this while

She caresses my face.

January 23, 2009 10:47 PM
First Posted July 5, 2009

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