Thursday, November 17, 2022

to Sir, with love

Cruising down Wooster Road, headed home

10,000 Maniacs best of + rarities, oddities on my CD player

Natalie belting out To Sir With Love

Chord changes that are impossible to follow

The flight pattern of an elusive bird

So beautiful, the voice, the words, the puzzle of tune

Second verse, a guest singer

Oh God, it’s Michael Stipe, frickin perfect!

A big, fat sax break in the middle

The two join each other for the final chorus

I am singing along, screeching, unable to reach

That high, a few tears gather at the corners of my eyes

Aloft on this song

Lights of Lakewood loom ahead

I want to hold this feeling in a frame

Instead, it is slowly escaping

My blissful, broken heart

The Cranberries' "Dreams" comes on at the cafe


Dolores at Tower City
walks by the front kiosk
simple sweater, flat shoes
she seems shocked
that someone recognizes her
fearful I'll blow her cover
I praise her music
she thanks me and keeps walking

her end, a shock to us all
to the many who struggle
with self-loathing
thoughts of suicide
she comes in a song every now and then
I still love her music
she still lives
in little surprises
such as this

Thursday, November 3, 2022

down into Silence

down into Silence

a ladle into the saucepan

a boy down the well

in search of his dog

you cannot tell

who you are

in the absence


vital systems, pumps

and pistons, soaring

into dysfunction


but this is different


raises rather than slams

listens rather than fixes

your best pitch

and the ditch has risen

to lift the ball

over the heads in the outfield

your last meal

and you eat to fill

your good karmas

your paltry inaction

gorge to gross completion

immense satisfaction

just leave it

your hopelessly tousled hair
your midriff leaking out
from under your shirt
that itch in your calf that keeps returning
you have to bend to scratch
and invariably throw your back out of whack

you know, just leave it
you're in the top 50%
of souls departing middle age for Valhalla
on the train in the night undercover
of faithlessness and tremors

you'll be okay
just remember what made you
the light that shines from within
your top 3 reasons for waking in the morning
the kindness you did once
for a worm washed by the rain
let it sun out on your shoulder
when no one was watching

Saturday, October 15, 2022


makes these atoms
dance, interpenetrate
evolve into forms, musics

but it takes love
small smooth reptiles
hulking redwoods
to hold them
pinned here
to existence

Saturday, October 8, 2022

the journey

heading for the peak
you have arrived at the foothills
the sun's corona
the entrance to her apartment

it is not the map
that will carry you
but the journey
treading the path
up the mountainside
entering through her door

and you must continue
until you are burned up
divided out into molecules
until you touch her cheek
lift her veil
press your lips

mount the summit
in absence of Self
presence of bliss
the supreme kiss

limitations of safety

the training wheels
in place for so long
you have become numb
to insecurity
dumb, from having another
guide your soaring body
over the sidewalk

but it is time
the gauze removed
from the slashed finger
medications purged
from your ill body
it is time

for the training wheels
to be shed
to see for yourself
within the terrific dread
of falling of not falling
how you become a rocket
jettisoned into space
free then
in never quite knowing