30 October 2010


Tomorrow is

our wedding anniversary.

Today we carve

pumpkins and dig


29 October 2010

Riparian Bastard Me

Time seems to be running at full brisk these baby days. What's the hurry? I look around and spy elegance and debris. Luck. "You're a lucky bastard," I tell myself, and kick a tin can into the river, watch it malinger in eddies before dropping down into shoals I can faintly detect.

28 October 2010


Out kitchen is a place of whimsy.

27 October 2010

Month Ten In A Series of Twelve

High winds persist. And today I took four more ripe red tomatoes off the vine - probably our last tomatoes of the season (a freeze is expected later this week). What a strange thing to still be eating vine-ripe tomatoes in October! (By Janelle's count our five or so plants have exacted 80+ fruits over the past few months.) And as I type this the gourds outside sway violently in the gale...

October Meditation

This precarious kairn is made from rocks we found on the shoreline of Lake Superior this summer. It has been stacked like this on our front porch for the past two and a half months.

26 October 2010

Gospel Sounds of Rain

Dear Thelonius, I was up at five this morning eating toast and writing down my dreams while cold rains swept across the region. I thought about the African-American church and how I once read that your sound was a gospel sound. Then a memory: my grandmother halfing a stick of gum and silently handing it to me while the pastor rained down his hellfire.

24 October 2010

Vinyl Siding Gives Me The Creeps

"Krishna is the source of the oversoul of the world, Vishnu, and from him countless manifestations of divinity descend, ministering in every species of life...Unbound by time & space, the avataras appear in time and within space. They develop within our frame of reference for the purpose of delivering us from its limitations. Such is the grace of God and his devotees in their eternal play."

Reign Of The Bipeds

Early this morning while most of AmericaTown, U.S.A. was deep in its R.E.M., I was up, coffee, grokking bentback Harper's, in half-lotus by our pre-historical clawfoot tub while a bathing Eleanor waged riots between plastic facsimiles of large amphibians now extinct - & every now and then the mighty RAR! of an uppity-ass sauropod.

23 October 2010

Spree's End

Two weeks ago I took our scooter in for a repair. The folks at the Honda place did some diagnostics and listed all the things wrong with it via one very depressing voicemail. I called them back and asked if it was worth making the costly repairs. "I wouldn't," said the voice on the other end of the phone, "I mean, not if it was me."

Later, I stopped by and haggled with them. World's worst haggling, in fact. What they agreed to, in exchange for keeping the scooter for spare parts, was to shave a cool $50 off the purchase of a new scooter or motorcycle. "I'll be back next spring," I said, and had Janelle drop off the title later on. And so - fifty dollars of store credit later - the deal was done. And that was sad. Truly.

But you know what's weird? Now, all I can do is fantasize about getting a real bike - and this is something I never thought I would do (not since I was a dirtbike-obsessed pre-teen, anyway). So, now the gleaming Honda Rebel has become my Girl With The Golden Hair. And I'm sure this all has something to do with Dennis Hopper dropping off and my own Thanatos-urge and, of course, the classic up-sale by the boys at Honda. But I'm of a mind that we sometimes need our illusions. And, as Axl Rose reminds us, that we can even make use of them.

20 October 2010

End Times Square

Once, in 1974, a wild-eyed man wearing a doomsday sandwich board in Times Square passed me handbill all about the Satanic illuminati, looming End Times, and purported microchips that will be embedded in every citizen's skin by the Powers That Be in the not-so-far-off future. "This is paranoia," I thought, cranking up my hubris. Shortly thereafter began the final days. And the UPC symbol became the new face of god.

19 October 2010


Every morning for the past, oh, three months or so, I've walked out beneath Eleanor's window and pulled down the gourd tendrils that climbed up the window screen overnight. Tenacity, thy name is Cucurbitaceae.

18 October 2010


Soon I will get it together in my heart.

Soon ballistics by no one, emptiness itself.

Soon the moon blesses every street kid, punk, mendicant, lost child.

Soon the old men turn loose of the reins.

Soon all angels reborn no more into Pure Land.

Soon a cure for the common violence.

Soon vegetation for the people.

Soon the animal spirit is resurrected in human flesh.

Soon the word liberated, mind fleur-ing.

Soon the cancer will eat itself.

Soon the galaxy bangs back in rhythm to soon, holy NOW.

Soon we remember everything we've been forgetting.

Soon no more death dance on the women & children of Earth.

Soon blue sky adamantine, a pine tree breathing.

Soon I will get it together in & out of my human heart.

17 October 2010

Sacred Stone Circle

These lingam stones were carved by hand 4,000 years ago in the Indonesian archipelago. In 2002 they were brought to Iowa and arranged in a prairie about 5 miles from my back door.

15 October 2010


This is one of the four birdhouse gourds growing on our property. It hangs from a vine that tendrils up into the birch tree by our back door. Vines that blanket our yard. Vines from seeds five or more years old - I plucked them from a moldy Ziploc! My great uncle Ben had given them to me way back when I was finishing up at Naropa and starting life once again as a Southern gentleman. Back in Athens. Working on the psychiatric unit. I never could get gourds to grow - and I tried all the various methods. Here, now, in Iowa dirt, they have occurred. And may Mother Earth take care of the ones I love...

14 October 2010

825 AD

Here, Buddy & Maria are being Twilight Zone-d by a certain lock. Buddy looks bored by the human realm already, doesn't he?

13 October 2010

Or Sometimes This

Picked up a collection
of poems by Jack Micheline,
67 Poems For Down-trodden Saints.

Took a walk,
smoked a panatella, &
smiled hello to an old woman.

12 October 2010

When I Look Up I See This

The little one sleeps in its cradle,
I lift the gauze and look a long time, and silently brush away flies
with my hand.
-Walt Whitman ("Song of Myself")

Tempus Edax Rerum

700,000 killed in the Civil War.
16,000,000 killed in WWI.
70,000,000 (mostly civilians) killed in WWII.
The next one will be the apocalypse-
right down to the last human proton.

11 October 2010


Sand-rimed archaeologists with midwestern accents have long found keys in Egyptian ruins dating back some 4,000 years ago - before you, me, and Siddartha Gautama's mammy & pappy thought twice about piping hot kundalini stirrings.

10 October 2010

Things Start To Get Recursive

Eleanor's teepee had a baby...which means that Eleanor's doll now has her very own indigenous domicile.


This one floret comprises our annual broccoli yield. We ate it today in a lyonnaise omelet. And I don't know...maybe it was projection...but it tasted four-dimensionally awesome. Even better was to be joined by our friend (and doula during Eleanor's birth) Amy.

09 October 2010

And Now It is October Again Already

I planted some horsetail by the basement window in our backyard this spring.

08 October 2010

planet earth

by the dam two old riveters
sat on the tailgate of a blue pickup
torches and acetylene surrendered
leaves & acorns blowing down around them
& with naked hands loosened knots
in bread sacks removed sandwiches
prepared in kitchens of early morning /
the river passed over concrete and steel
and they ate slowly few words between them
as goslings slept on the bank
heads tucked down against the wind

07 October 2010

Fifty-Five Years Ago

On this day, in 1955, Ginsberg rocked the mic with "Howl" for the very first time.

06 October 2010

Iowa Killed Buddy Holly

Buddy Holly married Maria Elena Santiago, a receptionist for Peer-Southern music, at the age of twenty-two. He was a Southern Baptist hayseed just beginning his ascent into the god realm of rock n' roll. She was a Puerto Rican angel. He asked for her hand in marriage on their first date. Eight months later, his plane went down in a frigid-ass northern Iowa cornfield. Maria was two weeks pregnant with his baby. (She later miscarried.)

04 October 2010


The crow is in the feminist sky.

03 October 2010


When all is said and done, basically, I'm a Toaist animist. The Tao Te Ching sort of encapsulates everything I "believe," in terms of what's been written of the kosmos.

Depending On How You'd Like To Spend Your Spare Time

You can make an incense burner out of an orange peel if you want to.

02 October 2010

Dead Flowers

I cut down our dead sunflowers this weekend. From the sunbaked stalks, I made a blanket and bath towel teepee for Eleanor. Here she's changing her doll's diaper and singing a made-up song. My life = Sweet.

Space Madness

After a long, sleepless (new baby-inspired) night, early this morning I dug up an old VHS tape of Ren & Stimpy episodes to help ease the sting of Extreme Parenting. (Its reception was mixed, too. Even after repeated explanations, Eleanor just couldn't understand what Ren was or why he was so mad, like, in general.)