Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter

Thursday, March 31, 2005

What Faith Can Do

He extends to me
a book of constellations
and I say,
Now I can learn
something more of value
of what has been
endless in this life.

The stars have always
known what it is to
want, have always felt
what it means to have faith
and now, watching from their
distant perch, they know
another element and follow
my realization of contentment.

Bukowski Poem by Bob Flanagan

Bukowski Poem by Bob Flanagan

I started writing this poem
where Pamela and I
are sitting in a bar in Santa Monica
and she shows me some of her new poems.

I tell her they're not very good

and she starts yelling and throwing
glasses and all of a sudden I realize
it sounds a lot like
a Bukowski poem.
Shit, I say, it sounds a lot like
a Bukowski poem.
What am I doing writing like

I rip it up and toss it on the floor
beside the ants and the empty bottles
and Pamela's candy wrappers.

What's wrong with you? she asks.

Oh, nothing, I say, it's just that
I'm starting to write like Bukowski.

Well, what's wrong with that, she says.
He's a nice guy. I talked to him on
the phone one time. I asked him if he'd
like to do a reading. He said no but
to keep buying his books.

There's nothing wrong with Bukowski,
I say. I just don't want to write
like him. I have a hard enough time
writing my own stuff, let alone
Bukowski's too. And besides, he's
doing an ok job of it on his own.

I go to the refrigerator for a beer
but there's just a lot of milk and
Pepsi-Cola. How come we don't have any
beer? I ask.
Don't be an ass, she says. You know
we never buy beer. Since when
do you want a beer? I think you're going out of your mind, she says.

You may be right, I say.

And I go into the bathroom and feel
like vomiting but can't.
I fill the tub with hot water.
CHRIST! I yell.
I don't take baths; Bukowski takes
baths; I take showers!
I shut the water off and sit down
on the crapper. I'm constipated and
I have hemorrhoids and Pamela is
pounding on the door.
Hurry-up in there, she says;

Ok, I say. It figures -- somebody has to
piss in this poem; it wouldn't be right
without pissing.

~~ Bob Flanagan (1952-1996) was a poet and performance artist. He was the author of five books of poetry: The Kid is the Man, Fuck Journals, The Wedding of Everything, Slave Sonnets and Taste of Honey with David Trinidad. He was the subject of the RE/Search book Bob Flanagan: Supermasochist and the film documentary Sick: The Life and Death of Bob Flanagan, Supermasochist.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

I've started a new venue for poets here in Cherry Hill, NJ, a way to actually meet with other writers and discuss poetry, maybe some new projects, current books, etc. It would be a great way to meet and get to know other writers in the area. I was in a similar group in Kansas City, but all the locations were so far away, they were always difficult to get to. So now that I'm here, I thought why not start one myself? So, if anyone is interested, here is the link. Or you can email me for more info. Cherry Hill Poetry Meetup

Easter weekend... oh Easter weekend. We had a bit of a crises. Taz (our cat) went missing last Saturday afternoon. We started out by doing a search around the bulding outside, thinking he might have left by the balcony. But if that was the case, he could have easily fallen and gotten hurt. So since we didn't find him there, the only other option was that he was hopefully still in the building somewhere. So we start knocking on door asking if anyone had seen him. Finally somebody told us the maitenance guy had seen him up on the third floor, and was asking if they knew anything about this cat. Well, we should have immediately went up there and started knocking on doors. Instead we put in a call to the maintenance guy and left a message... he didn't call back so by the next morning, we put in another call. This time the weekend maintenance guy called us back saying he didn't know anything about Taz, and that we would most likely have to wait until Monday when the other guy shows up, since he was off duty at the time. I put up notices everywhere I could think of. Then yesterday morning, there's a knock on the door. Someone on the third floor found him right outside her apt. leaning up against the door. Who knows where he'd been the rest of the time. Only she'd seen a guy down the hall leave with his hand all bandaged up.. so maybe that's where Taz was all this time. Anyway... Taz is back home now. He seemed really spooked at first, really tired and just wanted to hide under the couch. He's doing a lot better today, though. More back to being his old self.. And with that, both me and Robert can breath a sigh of relief. So glad to have the old butterball back. Poor guy, he must have been scared out of his mind.

Monday, March 28, 2005

Baby, I can't wait...

Baby, I can't wait...

... Cause I've been truly anticipating the start of this year's games for some reason... Maybe its just now I'm finally getting the chance to really enjoy some of the things I used to. And I know who to thank for that.

Major League Soccer's 10th season Kicks-Off on Saturday 2 April 2005 with a match between new club Chivas USA and defending MLS Champions D.C.United.
MLS Schedule April 2005
All Times ET
Note: Dates and Times can be subject to change.
Saturday 2 April 2005
Chivas USA vs D.C. United 3:00 p.m. ABC
MetroStars vs Real Salt Lake 7:00 p.m.
Columbus Crew vs Los Angeles Galaxy 7:30 p.m. HDNet
Kansas City Wizards vs Colorado Rapids 8:00 p.m.
FC Dallas vs Chicago Fire 8:30 p.m.
San Jose Earthquakes vs New England Revolution 10:00 p.m.

Sunday, March 27, 2005

Saturday, March 26, 2005


It's from still frost on every windshield,
haze over the moon hanging to the right
of a squared pine untapped through
a false Spring, we are waiting
like the thoughts of wild geese
interrupting sleep and lingering
till awakening.

I know it could have been the light
infused through its age, so that
the contrast against this morning's
grayest skies could be as noticable
to me as an old life to the new...

To my right, a white tiger dreams
of pouncing practice on makeshift
trampolines, then runs off to wait
for his daily ritual brushing
before my coffee.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Every so often I put a reminder up here about shelter animals... and you've read my site for any length of time, you probably know by now I'm such a softie for dogs and cats... So, here's another reminder...This site provides .6 bowls of food to those in shelters everytime you click the purple button "Feed an animal in need." There's nothing more to it...

Over ten million animals are abused, neglected or abandoned yearly. You can help each day with a free click!

Visit The Animal Rescue Site at http://www.theanimalrescuesite.com daily and click the purple button. That simple action gives food to an abandoned or abused animal.

There is no cost to you! Funding for nutritious food is paid by site sponsors and goes to nonprofit animal welfare organizations who use it to feed animals living in their shelters and sanctuaries.

The Animal Rescue Site was launched in July of 2002 and generated 22.9 million bowls of food for animals in its first year, and more than 28 million bowls in 2003! With your help, many more animals will benefit in 2005. It all depends on the number of people who visit the site.

Please click at The Animal Rescue Site once a day and forward this email on so more people can help give animals the happy, healthy lives they deserve!


Sunday, March 20, 2005


The pull of the moon
was never a rival
to the pull of you
on nights with no sleep
your pull was a lifeline
to hold close through
distance, days and nights,
the reflection of a candle
ricocheted from an east coast
somewhere toward the center
and back again, the place
where I was and held nothing
but random hours to meet
with a rhythm or the cadence
of a phrase and the perfect
So like the reluctant
phantom that you were,
only now fill the aching
empty soul that was mine.
Every word, thought,
spoken or dreamed holds
no candle to this touch
felt when you love me;
you are my center of
a universe, richer even
now than sixty seconds past.
Currently Playing
My Favorite Headache
By Geddy Lee

Ok, so maybe I'm not listening to this since I don't have it. Consider it wishful thinking... I've been running searches for several things, website info and book reviews, etc. This was one of them... got a little sample of a listen at some Rush download type thing-a-ma-jig, and what I heard was impressive. Isn't technology grand? (Except that Xanga images won't transfer so well to Blogspot, lol.)

It's the first day of spring and they were calling for rain and wet snow here today. We got the rain anyhow, it's stopped for the time being. And to think I was hoping for sunny skies... I want to go someplace and throw a Frisbee around a while... stretch my legs, get out in the open air... something active. I suppose if I was totally ambitious, I'd do something inside, like yoga and that's all fine and everything, but not really the same as going outside, having fun. Hey, kick a soccer ball around or something. Silliness! Maybe go on a "larch" expedition or something.

Not working still has its downside. I've decided I'm going back up there in person to find out what's going on. When there's an open position in a place like that, it would make sense for the company to want to find someone to fill it ASAP, right? I'm perfect for the job... though I'm starting to wonder now if my resume somehow got misplaced and the right person never got the damn thing. Not to worry though, I'll get to the bottom of this... by calling and then going back in person.

On the home front... haven't talked about this much. Let's just say I feel like the luckiest person alive. Everything bad I've gone through in the past year and a half has all been worth it, even some of the relatively recent stuff. I'm where I want to be, where I belong and beside the one I want to be with. It took a long time to get here, and a lot of risk. Now there's peace instead of chaos, and I don't think I've ever been this happy. Life is good :D

Friday, March 18, 2005

What Of Bukowski

Bizarre parked itself at the
complex next door,
laid in wait among the letters
on the side of a workman's
pick-up, proclaiming
"Bukowski Plumbing."

What would this mean, exactly
to think that some forgetfulness
holding mirrored temperament;
to claim that for some odd
unknowable reason, the integrity
of an original barfly could
run rampant through and above
the slipshod rat-race of humanity
once again.

Oh, surely the consequence
that would bring, sailing
a direct hit, this flying
in the face of breaking
the mold; with the longest
of poems, shortest of stories
each with a point to make,
a story to tell.

(Actually saw a van in the parking lot the other day, with "Bukowski Plumbing" painted on the side. I knew I should have run down there and got a picture, otherwise... nah, nobody's gonna ever believe this! But it is true.)
Well here's hoping everyone had a great St. Patrick's Day... That is, I hope everyone survived and is not too hung over.

Spring is two days away, and still hard to believe that Easter is just around the corner now in a few weeks. I'm all for that, the warm weather, being able to go outside and not need a jacket, spend time in the sun, and go for a walk just for the sake of going for a walk. I'm way more than ready for some decent weather, lol. And I have a feeling its gonna be a great Spring and Summer... A lot to look forward to, like my own book released in a few months as well ("I Am Ready"). I'm still waiting from PA on word about the cover art. Maybe sometime today, hopefully. But I really can't complain, I feel lucky that I didn't have to wait another year before they went ahead with it. After the move they seemed ok with picking up where they left off, so I didn't have to start the process over from the very beginning.

I seem to have two major prospects in the works regarding a JOB. One is (of course) the EVS slot at the hospital here, and the other is a supervisory position at the local mall. This one hinges on whether or not they decide to keep the current lead. I've never hoped for anyone to lose their job... but if they don't want to do it right... I'm right there to take it and not even think twice about it. Ruthless, huh?

Thursday, March 17, 2005

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

... And I do hope olla ye dinnae furget to be wurrin' th' green!

Just a bit of news today. Some very good friends of mine have recently had their work published. Check it out...

Among the new book releases in the past few months are Sherrie Parnell's new collection of poems, "A Sip Of Sherrie." You can find it through Publish America, or email her for a copy. This is her first ever published work, so congratulations, Sherrie!

The second collection from Bob Browning, "Mosaicist, is just as much a treasure as his first, "Sometime Poet", which was released last year. Both of his books are also available online through http://www.publishamerica.com. (By the way, Sherrie did a wonderful job with the original designs on both Bob's newest book cover as well as her own.)

Also a new release,Stephen Brooke's "Pieces Of The Moon," is available at his site, http://lulu.com/stephenbrooke.

So congratulations to these talented folks. Be sure to check out their latest work and give them your support!

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

I am so ready for warmer weather. Just yesterday, the sun was out and it was nice to stand outside on the balcony a few times in the afternoon... but always after a certain time approaching early evening, the slight chill comes back in tandem with the setting sun. I can't wait for the Spring, when you won't need a jacket just to sit outside. A rough winter, from all the ice storms and floods where I started out to a little milder here in the east. There was a major snow storm that followed me all the way out here though in early January, starting in St. Louis. That one dumped a couple of feet in some places.
Did some fine tuning on the new (though still amateur-like) website for the group, Bailey's Java Cafe. Its something of a newsletter for group members, to highlight what new projects they have coming up, any kind of news they want posted. So check it out, won't you?
Bailey's Newsletter
Always on the look-out for new poets in the group, or even those who just enjoy reading poetry.

Monday, March 14, 2005


There is
something always so perfect
in the sway, watching
that shift in balance,
the act and energy
of demonstration, the

Display confidence,
display peace,
quality of breath in measured
form; intake, outgoing.

Standing close now
I'm wondering if this is
actually what he means
by "zen"
as I fall so much deeper.

Wednesday, March 09, 2005

Sense of Place

From outside in
there are stars
a representation that
follows the same path
as Orion's belt nightly,
as symphonic an
instrumental burning up
the night and vanished
by morning.

Stars and sun and moon,
a morning blend, cats
and candlelight -
to me everything here
tastes and sounds
like belonging,
everything here touches
more like home than a
home ever was.
Indian Spring

There - with the sky still so dark
and the air so brittle and crisp
that if anything in this tapestry
should shift the scene would
snap and there would be left a
jagged seam to gaze on.

A break in the beginning colors
of the day moving on slowly over
the flatness of horizons, streamed
through barriers of branches
still towering and alive and
breathing unseen just under the

There was warmth offered in the
span of one day, then vanishing
sudden, now the trees are bitter
with hope of a false Spring, persuaded
minutes, hours into nearly opening
full just for us.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Awesome news today when I least expected it. I got my page proofs in an email from the publisher, to go over and return. That means "I Am Ready" will be ready and in print possibly as soon as the summer, and not the full year I'd thought. I'm so excited about this. I had to run and tell Robert, "Aw! You gotta come see this..." He was just as surprised as I was, that they decided to keep me in the loop and not make me wait again. I have to admit though, its hard to get a real grasp on the whole thing, I keep going back to the file, check and see if it's still there, lol. I'll definitely keep this updated, that's a given. :D
Gacela of the Dark Death by Frederico Garcia Lorca

I want to sleep the dream of the apples,
to withdraw from the tumult of cemetries.
I want to sleep the dream of that child
who wanted to cut his heart on the high seas.

I don't want to hear again that the dead do not lose their blood,
that the putrid mouth goes on asking for water.
I don't want to learn of the tortures of the grass,
nor of the moon with a serpent's mouth
that labors before dawn.

I want to sleep awhile,
awhile, a minute, a century;
but all must know that I have not died;
that there is a stable of gold in my lips;
that I am the small friend of the West wing;
that I am the intense shadows of my tears.

Cover me at dawn with a veil,
because dawn will throw fistfuls of ants at me,
and wet with hard water my shoes
so that the pincers of the scorpion slide.

For I want to sleep the dream of the apples,
to learn a lament that will cleanse me to earth;
for I want to live with that dark child
who wanted to cut his heart on the high seas.

-- A good article on this poet was in yesterday's Philadelphia Enquirer. I'd heard the name before, but only remembered it vaguely. But after doing a search on Lorca, I found some of his poems... and this one really stood out on the page. Also, if you want to read the article, here's the link: http://www.philly.com/mld/philly/entertainment/11051091.htm

Sunday, March 06, 2005

floggingmollyshamrock.jpg Just a shout out to all of you Celtic/Punk music fans out there. Check out Flogging Molly when they come through your area. These guys were in Philly last night and the night before (but alas, I didn't know this until today.) They are currently on tour and headed west. By the way... all you crazies in KC, make sure you catch them when they hit the Beaumont Club on March 11. From there, they'll be in Vegas, to Bakersfield, L.A. and various other California dates before they start on the European leg of the tour... Go to their official website and get the full info.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Just before falling asleep the other night, we heard from the next apartment a little jingle from a TV ad. No words, just a high-pitched tune, went a little something like this: Do-doo-do-do-doo, Do-doo-do-do-doo... So for the next few days, we were driving ourselves crazy trying to remember which commercial it was from... Then it hit me as I was sitting at the table late one afternoon, half reading, half listening to the television when it came across again. It was a Vonage phone service ad that also offers high speed internet... Mystery solved. But now whenever I'm in the same room or pass the TV on my way out to the balcony, that song gets stuck in my head... Do-doo-do-do-doo! Well, I suppose that's a sure shot better than "Who Let the Dogs Out," or the "Macarena" or even Dah-daah-daah-duh! which accompanied a Volkswagon commercial a few years ago... although, I'm not too sure if that's a good thing. I'm left to wonder... Do I have too much time on my hands these days?
I can't get enough of Bukowski... so here's another one from the book "Betting On The Muse"

the shape of the star by Charles Bukowski

well, you know, he started out as a
and then it was decided to make
him into a serious
the public always like that.
and then we decided to make him
politically aware,
we got him to pitch
all the right causes.
then Publicity sent out a story:
how he pulled a woman from a
wrecked car,
how he contributed large sums
to various charities while asking
that his name not be
how he was going to give this
Benefit or that Benefit,
donating his time and
how he saved a child from
how he did this and that.
we worked our asses black
and blue to create his
Public Image,
we were just starting to reap
a profit,
then, what happens?
the son of a bitch gets
runs his Mercedes off a
cliff near Malibu
and kills himself.

we couldn't do much with
that one.
we claimed some communists
who disliked some of his
had messed with his
brake cables.

that took pretty well
but all in all
we finally had to write him
as a dead loss.

we got a new one now,
found some boy
working behind a fish
Tom is perfect:
totally bland features,
even a few
large empty eyes
and a dog-like
he's a bit addled,
but the clay's all there,
we'll shape him into
what they think they

only with this one
we're going to use a
new twist, we are going to
start him as a serious
and then turn him into
a comedian.

we're thinking all the time
that's what makes
what it

~ Bukowski

( I like to think that if you replaced the word "communists" with "rappers" the story would still be current.)

Friday, March 04, 2005

In Root

If you can stare at the blank
page long enough, they will come.
Stand guard over rides come to rest
in a parking lot long after dusk
has settled in for the night,
surrounding a first floor balcony,
they will surely come.

Analyze the bark where a tree stands
at the end, push-packed in
snowdrifts furthest from the drive;
they will eventually come.

They will come numbered as passengers
in planes beginning their descent
from the skies, the air
is full of them. They are myriad
meanings en route, in root.

Its all there.
Its all here.
How scary is the page, really?

At any other time, any other location
I would have prayed hard for deliverance
from all things of obstacle, that which
stifles and blocks and torments.
But not today.

Thursday, March 03, 2005

And the story continues:
I guess I'll keep posting updates on this until justice is served... :P

No there's nothing new at the moment... I did hear from Jason, and in a vague kind of way, Laura too. She didn't want to email me - says that email is so yesterday, in other words:

"emailing is for losers lol....how have u been..i have no minutes on my phone..so i cant call u..but u can call the house phone if u need to get a hold of me..well ill ttyl...luv yas..byee"

They all communicate out in the open now on their Xangas I guess. No privacy, nothing to hide... which, come to think of it, could be a good thing, lol.

I'm still waiting on calls. There's supposed to be one from Pathmark sometime today... I'm gonna take the job if they offer it.. I'm going crazy from not doing anything. I never thought it would be like this. I was told its just because its been a slow time everywhere, after the holidays. So I'm really hoping things will pick up now. I can't wait to start working again, I can't say that enough. This really feels like some kind of limbo and I'm more than ready to get out of it.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

There's a light snow falling early this morning. Unless you're looking out from underneath an overhang or out in it before anyone else is, you'd have to look at the streetlights to see that its even there at all. A haze over the best parts of the morning, and hardly a breeze; the snow is just drifting downward. Slowly. It was a little different last night when I wrote this:

Cause and Effect

I am surrounded by
the night air with its clear
breath of ice and plural
reflection its crystals.
This vision is pure,
I sense; too far away
and the soul is meant to
watch from where it stands
and wonder how long before
those still in existance burn out
From stillness the awful silence
churns since hours immemorial
until implosion sets a time frame
closing in on itself
like cardboard dominoes
becoming ash
in slow motion.

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

There is No Title

How many rotten things
in Denmark, Scotland
or Ireland...
My words gone
called away wasted
into a void, black hole
of eventual love tuned
out, turn away, tone deaf
when there's nothing to
say or hear...
My words gone into
a length of no tomorrow.
How many more times
would it be ok to whisper
in your ear, "I miss you"
You become a shadow I need
to touch. Kill me with this
closeness just out of reach,
worse than before and still
worth the pain.

I'm not alright,
but I will be.