Sunday, September 19, 2010

one more: so she might

Stull called to her mulch &
the response was snappy

all froze up inside

times wuz caramelizin' all

up and down the avenue

we slip by the slippin' days in
our slippery ways
we canonize the duckery
quacking in our boots
the wood sends ripples
down the line
treadmilling the dance classes
of our native climes
it matters not the vagueness
of your possibilities
lines read between yield
all our fetid humidities
to the lingering rhymes:
fading embers fade
in the last day's
grooving endive, she don't
know betta, so she might
as well bring the feast
all round the playgrounds
close behind
the vision flatlines
the futures curdle
the rest is
all you ever want to know, so
claim it, revile it, praise it,
send it down to Goodwill
misery & blue
tunnels till all our days
is true.

[Thanks - apologies? - to Dylan and the leggy Michigan poet.]


poem: balanchine moonrush

withering hijinks,
meriwether fortissimo,

dobro backpedaling

down this rainy road,

asphalt Balanchine

(he the one done

tole ya):

after the moonrush

we wuz fived

to the dime,

Ansel squattin' down the line,

waitin' for the lights ta change,

all of us film school

rejects, pawning life

& times, wound up

pissants squallin' till

the tides done turned:

you, Mr. Pants all

fulla yourself,

western front diesel mama

sez go and the goin'

gits get:

under the umbrella, life

takes nuance one step

beyond passion into

crosstown rivalries,

laptop entropies,

fare thee well vagaries -

it's all in the possum -

shine up your shoes,

ape the latest tape,

take the vim with

the Maginot line,

two times its need

to haggle, fancy calculations

press the flesh,

interpolate the blonde

Giselle who comes back

for the holiest damn holy roller.


Thursday, September 16, 2010

poem: catamaran moons

(The first two lines were cribbed from a piece of notepad paper at the biblioteca this eve. It called for more . . . )

"Intersection collisions rank as the 2nd

most expensive type of traffic accident . . ."

Karaoke no-fault divorce ranks first,

rankling the ingenuity of your

single digit data farms

irrigating the sanitary enslavements

dissipating the yellow cabs of

a green future, making abundantly

clear just how much the willful

dither, complaining of salt

in the gears of war,

flawless navigations of

the neti pots, overlords

nasaling all the fragments -

yours, mine, April's convex


catamaran moons

insinuating pleasures

with Sunny no dime

would do -

five a throw?


who cares, when

Phoebe rings your bell

& the last time

you rounded

beat hell out of you,

cashing in on

the marginalized saints

simple tatters

beyond all manner of rhyme.


Saturday, September 11, 2010

poem: sugar vibrates

[Poem prompted by the Ducornet of La Coste. Her prompting photo here.]

slug nursery

corner of fifth & vine

the natural nasties

vigorous absolution

his dark materials

gauging the weather
vain, simple sugar
vibrates the moon
douses the lights
ambulates the most
lame, fisheries all
casting the rest in filigree
most fine
step into this
feel the vagaries
whisper the last
time you just
the whispers down the hall
most sluggish
most divine
most missing
the passage home.

[Accompanying soundtrack:]


Tuesday, September 07, 2010

poem: plated

calendar undercrunch
boisterous infrastructures

of nascent infinities

cast your fate

into the cauldrons

of nickeled plenty

you her merchant


her carry-on Samsonite

her casual endeavor

of the sidebar tombs

past the prime

meridians, the suspects

grow fonder

the bushy-haired

gnomes & all their

little friends up

& down the lakefront

shilly-shallying pines

in wanderlust

capital Y that

midnight torrent

virgin canopy paying

dues and dividends

to the hogs of war

the notarized arousals

by mail, your

destitude bypassed

on the Appian ways.


Sunday, September 05, 2010

staying power

Feels like walking into an old attic. Sent birthday greetings to San yesterday and said that it seems Muravia has gone on walkabout; today it seems that she wanted to pay a quick visit.


What a difference 1.15" in the rain gauge makes. I walked out the front door yesterday morning, headed for the Tobin, was met with a delicious blast of cool air. Swarms of people up and down the trail. I will now officially retire my occasional complaint about its paved surface. On the first leg, I passed a woman in her 80s, in hospital gown, being pushed in her wheelchair, jubilant in her greeting of me as we passed. Just around the next bend came an older gentleman scooting down the trail behind his tennis ball-shod walker. Neither of these folks would be enjoying the trail were it not paved.

The shaggy baked lassitude of recent days was gone, all the green stood taller, greener, happy to be alive up and down the creek, which was itself vigorous in its tannic flood. Bends in the creek now whooshing again; Egret Falls was in full gush. Birdwatchers even hit the trail. A few more colors out than just the hardy sunflowers: red Turk's cap peeking out again; purple morning glories.

On the south end, just before Rittiman, I walked over a shattered tree limb, followed for about fifty feet by a few horseflies, pesky buggers, but they let up at last. On the way back, I saw my mistake. Those "horseflies" were bees, as I walked through a swarm of them; more than a few stayed with me for about 100 feet, before letting up. A little farther up the northbound leg, I heard a piercing war cry from the trees across the creek: I'm guessing a hawk with something prophetic to say.


Two good flicks this weekend: Robert Duvall's latest turn in Get Low and the Japanese film Departures, recommended by mi madre. GL, with its lush cast of RD, Sissy Spacek, Bill Murray, Lucas Black, and Bill Cobbs, was instant transport. My love for Duvall is legendary, so he can practically do no wrong, but I saw colors behind his guises this time that I'd never seen; he sunk deep into this role. Sissy has always been beloved, but I've never been a huge fan; I was mesmerized by what she gives in this performance. Murray was perfectly cast as a shyster who comes to find his own depths: all of the good old tamped-down mugging, with sweet cider running through.

What a career Black has had, with the likes of Duvall here and in Sling Blade, and his excellent turn in All the Pretty Horses; all my grousing about Billy Bob's evisceration of the best third of Cormac's masterpiece (the way home) aside, LB stepped right into the boots of Sabinal-bred Jimmy Blevins and played him to the hilt. You can just see him soaking up all the Duvall / Spacek / Murray / Cobbs he can stand, for what promises to be a storied career, even if he ends up working in well-nigh oblivion. At least HE'LL know how good he is.

Departures is not a Murakami novel adapted to the screen, but it might as well be. I've been reading bits and pieces of Murakami's running memoir and some of his prose introductions: I feel like I've been getting to know not just his fiction, but the man himself: he strikes me as very transparent, very willing to show himself, and the voice feels like a close contemporary. At any rate, the energy of Departures, the gracefulness of its steady evolution, felt as if it might as well have flowed right out of Murakami's pen. As with Murakami, just when you thought the film was done blowing you away with its radiant heart and its incandescent images, something else would knock you off your feet. This film is a must.

My thanks to my mother for suggesting the film and to Lauren and Jacob (graduating seniors extraordinaire) for prodding me on to reading Murakami.