Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Here Before

give up early resigned to rest
month state finished your work
goes on will wait enough done

three-way switch prohibits dark
night rain silence thumps from
next door meetings about love

we were here before we came
to view the redwoods marketed
to tourists eager to pass on by

Monday, January 30, 2012

Wide Awake

not in the mood is no excuse
really we know better feeling
follows action not the other
way around here we go again

late hour tiredness compels
sleep when still wide awake
you can do better start now
turn back the covers begin

Sunday, January 29, 2012

We Few

Mozart suffered but I didn't
mind your scales correct for
randomness of patterns or
is it the other way around

all I remember is the sex
well not the sex rather the
fact of sex whether or not
we did whatever we did

who followed whom never
why what we were thinking
we were doing what point
satisfied by clean execution

well never clean rather the
fact of doing it at all despite
general indifference we few
were enough for each other

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Another Hearing

what words release memories' meanings
stories' points whether either willingly says
seriously these people are worth knowing

no call to approve or not I do who loved
how long it matters to me only promise
another hearing if living for art's sake

Friday, January 27, 2012

Living Shape

carry the torch for me please
thanks for caring the way I did
it will return but not the same
which was not so great the life
is the people and for the people
demonstrates shapely unfolding
ideas of form in defiant action
imagination taking living shape
it is always worth doing a play

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Every Turn

it's so restful playing solitaire
the cards fall
you do what you can
not much
every turn another possibility
you fudge a little
the game works out
or not
it doesn't matter
but when it does
it's nice

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Forever Undone

hurry up and say it the time soon gone
the frame worth more than the painting

you are the one taken before it is ripe
eaten before the flavor fully developed

this is what it is this all this or nothing
to be done the rest be forever undone

all right then I will I do heavy lifting
if I can tell the imaginary difference

Monday, January 23, 2012

Stable Properties

deep luck good genes loving
mother faithful dad raw facts
produce behavior whence the
bug gnaws will thwarts desire
wasting years loves what you
do is plastic tries to be gentle

do you follow lead resist all
changes all the same what do
you do with it say what more
make than given read aloud
stable properties interactive
moves made for us long ago

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Other Images

still night rising
phrases like water
powerful endless
surge in the flow

rumbling clusters
outside the walls
inside the ears
threaten to end

other images arise
nothing interrupts
skin organ squirm
impression active

shall I go on how
much I want you
inside my feeling
one and everyone

Friday, January 20, 2012

Unnatural Disaster

horrors of economics that we have escaped
a miracle taking down the rest of the world
unnatural disaster made by the human brain

naturally one wants to think something else
progress reversed good undone my opinions
useless great interlocking money forces rule

miserable to live through it even living well
happy as can be can't excuse mass suffering
so a few can accumulate capital shame on us

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Brown Water

basements flooded sumps pumped the creek
turns into a river in spate whole trees rushing
past rises over fences into the easement gates
gain saving chains hidden lakes reveal threat
if you could hear it roar brown water bursting
spouting pale foamy swirls gravity-maddened

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Looking Back

you knew you should have told me
I would have listened I could save
time and fret if not money be rich
by now it doesn't matter then it did

looking back is worse than thinking
you know what happened were you
sorry whose fault was it mine must
have been wondering what nothing

be done with what was done is done
the old song again a novel unlike
memoir journal diary dear forgive
me I was thinking of someone else

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

More of It

don't be afraid of words use them generously let lines unspool as they will
when the music starts let it go on for a while people want to hear more of it
never start wondering when it will end whether it is winding up for a coda
don't think of time that way every instant is infinite beyond time and place

Monday, January 16, 2012

Busy Day

take a break from self
health "work" practice
do what someone else
needs for a change put
up movement-sensing
outdoor light for safer
barn-going in the cold
rain took all afternoon
other plans postponed
peel spuds improvise
hash in shepherd's pie
rounds off a busy day

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Boiling Soup

Ibsen "sat all day at [his] writing
table" the final word unable but

practice improves it amazingly
snow remains idea whenever you

wait for inspiration boiling soup
ready cooking all you can take

care protect manuscripts in case
guns carefully planted do go off

Friday, January 13, 2012

Still Here

too much more than enough
driving drama sitting in the dark

I called it off stayed home being
about is very rarely as much fun

little enough resistance to joys
always eating thinking pleasure

still here we are reading another
masterpiece a few pages a day

A Duet

the left hand has its private life
very often different from the right
which does things purposeful and
useful while the other wanders
gathering sensations making separate
moves as if it had another brain
as if not me alone dancing a duet

Thursday, January 12, 2012

My Quiche

say more or less what you mean or what
you mean to say what the intended effect
what will signify something you wish to
reveal more than real-world possibilities

this will happen or something else will
unbeknownst time set via email Ibsen
floating in the cloud of words not even
on paper no emmentaler for my quiche

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Not Italian

cool milk goes down smoothly
I like steady rhythms also jolts
returning to the regular reality
goes on wondering who I am

a stanza is a room in Italy we
would like to be there but are
not Italian northerners know
like Goethe Shelley to love it

this is the sizzle I waited for
thinking I had to what it was
stayed with me still a muddle
a musing a story all one's own

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Will Kill

more want more time fill what
kill for more what time want
for what miss will kill more for
time fill kill what will want more

Monday, January 09, 2012

Bone Chill

unpredictable unfolding each life only logical
backwards as if this had to happen the present
required the past becoming already over itself

still shocked by blunders inexcusable cruelty
needlessly inflicted as if in the grip of forces
bred in bone chill sapping warmer wishings

uncorrectable error blazes through old winter
loneliness unacceptable stubbornness wants
unmet willingness unoriginal sins repeated

regret nothing you may as well not have done
then this would not be possible justification
wavering light of the documentary evidence

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Ably Nourished

burning eyes the fog searing
headlights wept for Ophelia
for Butch Flowers Hamlet
best I've seen I still can see

and happily hear Mahler's
Tenth beyond himself we
all can do more than think
feel more than we imagine

home in time chickens not
arguably aware of waiting
beady eyes aglitter in cold
hunger and ably nourished

Friday, January 06, 2012

Pure Sweetness

several possibilities resist assimilation
owners have rights they cry is it true I
made up the rest for my own pleasure

why should you not have been amazed
it was so beautiful that anything still is
after all it was worse than I remember

though not my problem I had taken it
on faith that we were linked not alone
mystic rapture racked by base realities

spell it how you will I know you now
promising distraction pure sweetness
without regret without making me fat

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Books I Read in 2011

"Spotted Horses" by William Faulkner (aloud)
"How I Became a Nun" by César Aira
"Out Stealing Horses" by Per Petterson
"Positivity" by Barbara L Fredrickson
Selected Poems by John Ashbery
"Just Kids" by Patti Smith
"The File on H." by Ismail Kadare
"Just Like Someone Without Mental Illness Only More So" by Mark Vonnegut
"Rameau's Nephew" by Denis Diderot (aloud)
"Wait!," "Last Lists of My Mad Mother," and "Playwriting Brief & Brilliant" by Julie Jensen
"The Fever" by Wallace Shawn
Essays by Wallace Shawn
"The Dead Republic" by Roddy Doyle
"Black Hole" (graphic novel) by Charles Burns
"Chronicles Vol. I" by Bob Dylan
"The Education of Henry Adams" by Henry Adams (aloud)
"Freedom" by Jonathan Franzen
"Rapt: Attention and the Focused Life" by Winifred Gallagher
"As Ever, Julia," Letters of Julia Child and Avis DeVoto
"Coming to Our Senses" by Jon Kabat-Zinn (part)
"I Curse the River of Time" by Per Petterson
"Justice for Hedgehogs" by Ronald Dworkin
"Clover" by Otto Friedrich
"The Hidden Brain" by Shankar Vedantam
"All Families Are Psychotic" by Douglas Coupland
"The Apology," "Crito," "Phaedo" by Plato
"Generation A" by Douglas Coupland
"Stop Sleeping Through Your Dreams" by Charles McPhee
"Geek Love" by Katherine Dunn
"The Year of the Hare" by Arto Paasilinna
"The Northern Lights" by Howard Norman
"Britten's Children" by John Bridcut
"The Weekend" by Bernhard Schlink
"Somewhere Towards the End" by Diana Athill
"The Fugitive" by Marcel Proust
"Chiva" by Chellis Glendinning
"Burning Man: Art in the Desert" by A. Leo Nash
"Of the Farm" by John Updike
Manifesto I edited by Gabriel Boyer
"Inside Looking Out" by Harding Lemay
"I Remember" by Joe Brainard
"Kingdom by the Sea" by Paul Theroux
"Eleuthéria" by Samuel Beckett
"About the Author" by John Colapinto
"Ham on Rye" by Charles Bukowski
Conversations with Pinter by Mel Gussow
"The Homecoming" by Harold Pinter
"Time Regained" by Marcel Proust
"We Have Never Been Modern" by Bruno Latour
"William James: In the Maelstrom of American Modernism" by Robert D. Richardson
"The Dance of Life" by Edward T. Hall
"Murther & Walking Spirits" by Robertson Davies
"Leaving the Atocha Station" by Ben Lerner
"A Cab at the Door" by V. S. Pritchett
"Our Mutual Friend" by Charles Dickens (aloud)

Lost Love

thus do our weaknesses become our strengths
we don't make all the same mistakes when we
do we know it all again but left behind among
lost love over before we began to understand

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Too Little

did I write what I thought
I wrote too much too little
spoken before imagining
forgot my most important
dreams the mind spinning

sit down and spell it out
I think this and this this
person thus I like gossip
without opinion without
thinking you know better

Tuesday, January 03, 2012

Speak Out

words unspoken fester converse among
themselves gang up plot against you be
vigilant they grow they will seize the day

speak out however you can in music art
living grace be at your best in gratitude
humility let them all come in be friends

words unread play dead fool themselves
for want of playmates admire their form
and airs imagine appreciation satisfied

Monday, January 02, 2012

Only Weather

I am the narrator's companion
watching him watching what
may or may not have happened
memory ever revising the past

my interest not being the same
I see him as fiction made up
unchanged from earlier years
except his mood is improved

he worries less knowing time
is running nothing will avail
mistakes are made weather is
only weather his life another

I will not abandon him if his
tale is dry his subjects trivial
judge him less than something
telling the only story he knows

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Cleaning Up

precious friends play their parts
appear behave gladly we end it
starts again everything put away

Schubert agreed to be perfect in
character I look relaxed excited
playing try stay relatively calm

bring out the whisky let people
talk observing natural mutuality
constructed at small-town ease

at another time I might have a
project of my own be going to
Italy or India worried fraught

instead of placidly cleaning up
play solitaire let be what is go on
with what I was doing before

Our Fur

retrospective particulars feed the general
smugness as Pollyanna keeps getting old

gas not as natural as it sounds electricity
never clean insulates against cold nights

how would we feel if we were really here
on earth constructed environment our fur

culture our comfort replaces raw being
northern animals pitted against winter

descending anyway as proper clothing
habits delineate the playable characters