In an Every-Day Way of Things   Wednesday, August 19, 2015

San Antonio is a beautiful city, the kind of created and maintained civic beauty you find in cities that care about that sort of thing, but you can also find beauty in the city in wild and unexpected places. This week I'm skipping all the beauty, planned and otherwise, and concentrating on the not-so-beautiful places, the every-day places.

I'm starting a new book this week, a kind of hybrid history/fiction/poetry thing. I'll have old poems as usual. Instead of new poems I'll have some material I'm working on for the new book, all subject to potential shredding in the end.

I got into this new book by finding a picture that I  want to build a book around. It's a picture of my mother in father probably from about 1942, not  yet married, two years or so before I came along. I will use the picture as cover for the book, assuming I  finish it. Though the picture provides the inspiration and while the book will be of my parents time it will not be about them.

Here's the picture:

The problem now - write the book.

****Me - "1934" (from series progress)

****Hanhsan - Five poems

****Me - "star bright"

****Noelle Kocot - "The Mall Hookers"

****Me  - "What Do I Do Not Know"

****Arthur Sze - "The Rehearsal"

****Me - "1937" (from series in progress)

****Kathleen Fraser - "Stunned, magnificent,cylindrical."  "In white, she who bathed."

****Me - "days when"

****Philip Nikolayev -  "Talking Dirty" 

****Me - "our place"

****Keith Flynn - "Silver Surfer"

****Me - "1939" (from a series  in progress"

****Jorge Teillier - "The Last  Island"

****Me - "balance"

****Paul  Hannigan - "As If It"  "As"  "Even the Bombardier Has His Sense of Wonder"

 ****Me -  "a dog we hardly knew"

****Robert A. Fink - "Consider" "A  West Texan Looks  at Vermont"

****Me - "1940" (from a series in progress)

****Lesley Clark - "good  riddance"  "Little Things"

****Me - "this could be your final warning"

****Me - "1941" (from a series in progress"

****Me - "unfinished business"

This is the  first go at the new book.


Alcatraz  becomes a federal prison...
Nazi Germany passes the "Law for the Preventing of Genetically Diseased Offspring"...
Over 10,000 die in  Indian earthquake... 
First  Jewish immigrant ship breaks the English  blockage of Palestine... 
418 Lutheran ministers  arrested in Germany...
First high school auto  driving course offered in Pennsylvania...
Great dustbowl storms cross U.S. prairies...
Okaloosa, Iowa becomes first U.S. city to fingerprint its citizens...
 Bela Bartok's "Enchanted  Deer" premiers...


almost unnoticed
the Aryan Councils
prepare  to beat
their savage 


Fifteen years old, she  leaves school, marries a Canadian sailor. Together they live happily by the sea.

Two years older, he plays high school baseball. An all-round athlete, he stutters when  anxious, but tall, dark and handsome. the girls in the small town where he lives don't  care.

The world has not yet come to their doorstep.

Hanshan (which means Cold Mountain) was the pseudonym adopted by an unknown poet who lived in China as a hermit 1,200 years ago. These poems are from  among more than 100 of Hanshan's poems collected in the book Poems of Hanshan, edited and translated  Peter Hobson. The book was published in 2003 by Altamira Press, a division of Rowman & Littlefield  Publishers. Traditionally, Hanshan is often depicted with his friend Shide (as shown).

The poems are numbered in the book, 1 to 106.


I rest and sleep
                        in the deep forest
by am by birth
                       a farmer's son
brought up to see
                           the simplest of things,
not twisting my speech
                                    to flatter a man;
I do not look
                    to jewels in my surety
but you have yet
                          to find the pearl you seek.
You are a plenitude
                                of flowing waters;
open your eyes
                        and see
the wildfowl
                     dancing on your waves!


               your poems are rubbish!"
says my friend.
                        "In my view,"
I reply,
            "like me the ancient poets
were not ashamed of poverty."
At this he laughs out loud,
"As usual you are right!
I'm rather tight
                       for cash today;
how about
                 helping me out?"


My heart is like the autumn
moon melting its silver in
the limpid lake - what  else
should I compare it to?
- declare it to me!


A third-rate simpleton
who reads my verse
will fail to understand
and bluster his dissent;
a second-rate or
average man
will ponder it, and then
pronounce it excellent;
a first-rate sage
will laugh out loud
as soon as it is
put into his hand,
like Yosuh in the ageless
tale, cracking the cipher on an ancient
tomb, and laying bare the wonderment
that hides behind the meaningless.


a house
            that has my poems
has better reading
                            than the
                 write them out in style
on paper screens,
                            and read them
        in a while.

This poem is from my first book, Seven Beats a Second, published in print in 2005. It is available, new and used, on Amazon.

star bright

imagine the stars
on cold desert nights,
spread across the wide, black sky,
beyond the desert and high mesas,
past prairies where the trickster coyote calls,
past the land of mortal men
to the place where no man goes,
the place where spirits hunt
ghosts of buffalo

imagine sleeping
with this blaze of night around you,
black  stars bright
with cold, unchallenged light

how  you must fear the starless night,
when clouds close the sky around you
and bind you prisoner to the dark

The next poem from my library is by Noelle Kocot, author of six full-length collections of poetry and recipient of honors including an NEA fellowship and inclusion in the Best American Poetry anthologies of 2001 and 2012. She was born and raised in Brooklyn and lives in New Jersey.

Her poem is from her book Sunny Wednesday, published in 2009 by Wave Books.

 The Mall Hookers


I'm back,  singing, the core of the earth is a giant,
Singing, the core of the earth is a saw-toothed plant.

I walked promptly to my Dumbaholics
Anonymous meeting and shared about my fear
Of the mall hookers that come disguised with babies.
I sold all my land back to the fiery archipelago,
Bought a plot of rubber trees in the  generous afternoon,
And the it hit me, my camouflage is unworthy
To  hide my outcast spirit glimmering
In a crowded restaurant on  this hot day in June.

Hell, what to do I, who weeps prairies
Every night from a hopscotch box,
What do I know about the mall
Hookers, lamp-lit canoes haunting fickle rivers
In flowery skirts and breasts swollen with blue milk?
I decided they're really bank robbers with perfumed notes
That read, I have a booby trap, give me all your money.
Yeah, that must be it, and finally I could sing again,

The core of the earth is a giant,
The core of the earth is a saw-toothed plant.

Another from Seven Beats a  Second.

What Do I Do Not Know?


    I do not know
the  price of tea in China;

    I do not know
the effect of superstring theory
on the certitudes of revealed religion;

    I do not know
the square root of twenty seven thousand
three hundred and forty three;

    I do not know
how Superman can circle the world at
the speed of light causing the world to
reverse in its rotation so that he can save
Lois Lane by backward go time making.

    I don't get that at all.

   What else do I do not know?

    I do not know
how a hummingbird can fly so fast
and not run into trees and things and
    I do not know
how pelicans can fly at all, front-loaded
as they are with fish and salt water and god
knows  what else in their droopy pelican cheeks

Many lesser things I do not know,
curiosities,  facts and fiction, trivial pursuits
good for crossword puzzles and nothing more.

And the other things I do not know.
    How love grows
    and why it fades,
    why heats break and
    how they're mended,
    why we laugh
    and why we cry,
    how we grow
    and when I'll die.

All these important things I do not know
and probably never will.

So what do I know?

Well that's a subject for
    another time,
This poem, you see, is about what
    I do not know.

Here's another from my library, this one by Arthur Sze from his book, The Redshifting Web, Poems 1970-1998. The book was published by Copper Canyon in 1998.

A Chinese-American, Sze was born in New York City in 1950. He is the author of 8 books of poetry. Professor Emeritus at The Institute of  American Indian Arts, he previously taught at Washington University, Mary Baldwin College, Brown University, Bard College and Naropa University. He is the first  Poet Laureate of Santa Fe, New Mexico.

The Rehearsal

Xylophone, triangle, marimba, soprano, violin -
the musicians use stopwatches, map out
in sound the convergence of three rivers at a farm,

but it sounds like the jungle at midnight.
Caught in a blizzard and surrounded by wolves
circling closer and closer, you might

remember the smell of huisache on a warm spring night.
You might remember three deer startled and stopped
at the edge of a road in a black canyon,

A child wants to act crazy, acts crazy,
is thereby sane. If you ache with longing
or are terrified: ache, be terrified, be hysterical,

walk into a redwood forest and listen:
hear a pine cone drop into a pool of water.
And what is your life then? In the time

it takes to make a fist or open your hand,
the musicians have stopped. But a life stops
when what you want is no longer possible.

The second piece from the untitled book in progress.


Howard Hughes sets transcontinental air record...
Second Stalin purge trail, 17 sentenced to death...
DuPont patents nylon...
U.S. Steel raises worker pay to $5 per day...
First state contraceptive  clinic opens in North Carolina...
Gas explosion in school in New London, Texas, kills 294...
Fritz Zwicky coins the the term "supernova"...
Spinach growers in Crystal City, Texas, erect  statue of Popeye...
Debut of Daffy Duck and Elmer Fudd...
First  commercial flight across the Pacific...
 "Gone with the Wind" wins Pulitzer Prize...
Hindenburg explodes on landing, killing  36...
Police kill 10 strikers at Republic Steel...
Amelia Earhart disappears  over the Pacific...
Buchenwald concentration camp opens...
China declares war on Japan...
In a secret meeting, Hitler informs his military leaders of his intention to go to war...
Nazi exhibition, "The Eternal Jew" opens  in Munich...
Walt Disney premiers the first full-length animated movie, "Snowwhite and the Seven Dwarfs...


Heigh-ho Heigh-ho
the urge to purge
America's most beautiful
barbed wire around
a new summer camp
merit badges
killing Jews


A widow now, with a son who grows rambunctious and wild, living with relatives as a part-time
housekeeper, decorating cakes at a bakery, her life promises little more.

A high school graduate, his father's business taken by the bank, his sister  home from college to stay -
the Great Depression sucks life from opportunity and ambition. He applies for work with the Works Progress Administration, but does not get called. He plays semi-pro baseball , loses eye during pre-game warm-up.

The shadows of war darken, but noticed still only in passing.

Kathleen Fraser was born in 1935 and grew up  in Oklahoma, Colorado and California. Author of eleven  books of poetry,  she taught at San Francisco State University from  1972 to1992 where she was director of the Poetry Center and founded the American Poetry  Archives.

The two pieces below are from her book, il cuore: the heart, published in 1997 by Wesleyan University Press.

Stunned, magnificent, cylindrical.

With only me and you,  racks of lamb in the spring of the dark,  rough
wood. The Octagon, two kinds of red not easily compatible, the thinnest
intend of denial. Meanwhile,

those tiny strawberries piled in crystal, fraises des bois.Your sapling shining.
Balustrade of the long wish. Someone smaller sanding in shadow, as
though moving, but not here. Holding my hand. 

In white, she who bathed.

Everywhere, rooms are leading to other rooms. The brain, she thinks is
her corridor and her strict casement when she is a window. It is believed
that she understands partially, but cannot speak, except haltingly, and
about nothing in particular.

Another from Seven Beats a Second, available at Amazon, or, if you're in San Antonio, at a greatly reduced price at IAMA Coffeehouse.

days when

wore my cowboy hat today,
to keep the rain off my head
and my boots, too, for puddles...

reminded me of the old days when me
and my colored friend Toby
would shoot pool and drink Pearl beer
in little West Texas highway honky tonks
that didn't  often see a black face
come in the front door, except by mistake

but I was a big sumbitch
and Toby was mean  as a snake when riled
and looked it even when he wasn't
so we mostly got along, drank some beer,
played some pool, made a dollar or two
to get us started back on down the road...

honky-tonk cowboys is what we were

never punched a cow
but kicked some ass in our better days

Next a poem from my library by Russian emigre poet Philip Nikolayev. The poem is from his book Monkey Time, published by Verse Press in 2003. Born in Moscow and raised in Russia, Nikolayev, the son of a linguist, grew up speaking both Russian and English. He immigrated to the United States in 1990 where he earned a BA and an MA from Harvard and a  PhD at Boston University.

Talking Dirty

My dick swells up  like a silver spoon in heaven.
The angels and archangels will easily recognize my dick,
that elegant utensil reaching for its sugar basin,
where it belongs. My love will pardon me talking dirty!
It's just that I am convinced that poetry can exist
at any level because it is absolute and pure.
Swear words are perpetually Elizabethan. Forsooth,
they hang in mellow clusters. Have I or have I not
this welcome transgression made into your pussy,
my soulful boner communicating fertility? Naturally,
I have. And now I, doting on your skin and moaning
and beloving your tits, I'm soon going to squirt
and like to hold off a while with metaphors, as I'm not
technically ever talking dirty, just telling it  like it is.

Continuing with Seven Beats a Second, published in print in 2005.

our place

the moon hangs up there, sliver-thin arc,
bright against the starless sky,
sharp as a blade poised over our head

below, we struggle to deny the real world,
the world we mean to bury under our malls
and parking lots, our  air-conditioned SUVs
and plastic mansions with make-believe trees
and fairy-tale lies,unreality shows to help us,
reality dust that frightens us because it is of such
base beginnings we are made and we so want
to deny the muddy secret of our origins...

we work to cover the real world  in the debris
of our passing,  but its  messengers often find us
at unexpected times to remind us of our place,
like the thin blade of the moon tonight, or the deer
I saw this afternoon stepping, with sharp, sure feet,
over rocks in the dry creek be by my office,
looking at  me as I looked at her, I'm here, she seemed
to say, right by this place where you work so hard
to  deny me and though the time will come when you
deny me my place, I will still be here with you
because you have seen me today and will  remember

and with graceful leaps, she left me
to stand alone with the lies I made today..

This is another poem from my library, the poet Keith Flynn, the  poem from his book, Colony Collapse Disorder, published in 2013 by Wings Press.

Flynn, musician, performer and poet has author five books of poetry and a number of musical  albums with several bands.

Silver Surfer

        for Stan Lee

A froth of moon reveals
the hissing river,
             for the silver owl
to drop
            on a rabbit and
orchestrate its death gurgle.

The roof,
                bathed in creamy glow,
seems covered in snow,
                                       but it is
late August and the white trees
in the waning moonlight
                                       are resolute
against the black curtain.
                                         The sky
is burning,
                  released from its burden,
to buoy
            on its fingertips
the mythology of a perfect night.

The suicides,
                      convinced it is so,
open their veins, step off
                                        the building,
or drink down
                        a Milky Way of Valium,
each star
               they swallow
their skull wit light.
                                I save what I can,
riding the crest of ever-
                             collapsing darkness,
trying to catch
                        the unbroken bodies
                        in my arms.

A third piece from my book in progress, which, to tell the truth, I'm beginning  to wonder if such a good idea.


Frieda Wunderlich elected first woman dean of a U.S. graduate school...
Daily newspaper comic strip "Superman" debuts...
30,000 killed by earthquake in Chile...
First experiment in the splitting of  a nuclear atom...
Filming begins on Gone With the Wind... 
Germany occupies Czechoslovakia...
7,000 Jews flee German occupied Lithuania...
Spanish Civil War ends, the fascists prevail... 
Membership in Hitler Youth becomes obligatory...
Marian Anderson  sings before 75,000 at Lincoln Memorial...
The Grapes of Wrath is published...
Dixie Clipper completes first commercial plane flight to Europe...
Nazis close last Jewish enterprises...
Frank Sinatra makes his recording debut...
The Wizard of Oz premiers...
Netherlands mobilizes... 
Hitler orders extermination of mentally ill...
First paper to deal with black  holes is published...
Germany invades Poland, WWII begins...
Soviet Union invades Poland...
Reinhard Heydrich meet  in Berlin to discuss final  solution for Jews...
Birdbaths installed in Union Square...
Assassination of Hitler attempted, fails...
USSR invades Finland...
Montgomery Ward  introduces the ninth reindeer,Rudolph...


sings and Dorothy notices
she's not in Kansas
the world order
but Christmas is saved
in America
by a reindeer with a very, very
shiny nose


She works, sees to her  son, walks to the movies on shapely legs tanned in the sub-tropical sun, her short skirt swishing, and men along  the sidewalk grow silent and watchful as she passes. She is alone, but for her son, lonely, but shy, withdrawn does not want what the men ask for  with their eyes.

He drives a wrecker truck, up the dead and dying along icy hill country roads. Finds a truck and trailer one cold night, overturned, beautiful white horses lying dead across the road, the owner sits on a rock, weeping, beloved horses,  his circus act dead, without his  horses he is nothing.

A school in auto  repair opens, seeing white horses dead and bloody red in his dreams, the wrecker driver decides to be a mechanic.

Next from my library, a poem by Chilean poet Jorge Teillier taken from his book In Order to Talk  with the Dead. The book is bilingual, presented in Spanish with English translation by Carolyn  Wright on facing pages. It was published in 1993 by The University of Texas Press.

Born in 1935, Teillier is considered by his countrymen one of the leading poets of "the generation of the 50." He was active with the poets and artists of that  generation and both  taught and learned from them. Suffering from liver cirrhosis, he died in 1996 at the age of 60.

The Last Island

Once again life and death get mixed up
like the rattle of oxcarts
coming into the courtyard
with the bucket's clank in the well.
Once again the sky recalls with hatred
the lightning's wound,
and the almond trees don't want to think
about their black roots.

Silence can't on on being my native tongue,
but I only find those unreal words
that the dead address to stars and ants,
and love and joy disappear from my memory
like light from a water jar
flung vainly at the shadows.

Once again one hears only
the incessant spatter of rain
that falls and falls without knowing why,
like the lonely old crone who goes on
knitting and knitting;
and one wants to flee to a town
where a top won't stop spinning
till I pick it up;
but where one's feet step
the roads disappear,
and it's better to stay put in this room
for maybe the end of the world has come,
and the rain is its barren echo,
a sound that lips dissolving
under the earth try to remember.

More Seven Beats a Second.


stars brilliant
in the clean night sky,
so bright they shine
through the ambient light
like a shrouded dome
over the city

     such a bright-star  night to  walk,
     the dog sniffs and smells and pees
     and I walk with my head arched back,
     wanting to fold the night around me

a new crescent moon hangs low
in the southwest, and beside it
the brightest of all the stars

     Venus, maybe,
     just a poet
     I don't know the names of things,
     just the human feel of them

the two of them, the moon
and its companion star
hang like a balance, bringers
of equilibrium  to the night

Paul Hannigan was born in Cambridge in 1936. In his self-biography on the back of his book, Laughing, he says he has worked at everything from gas station attendant to electrician helper to research assistant and technical writer to poet, claiming he liked the last best. He taught at Emerson College and had a relatively short publishing life from the late 60s to the late 70s. He died in 2000 after suffering debilitating illness for most of his adult life. I have three very short poems from Laughing,  published by Houghton Mifflin in 1970.

As If It

Of the women I saw that year
One girl had the beauty
Of a plain girl in love.
Her plain face was the place
Where It was.
                       As if it
Were a formality or a scar
She carried it down the street -
The burden of all our wisdom
Corrupting her otherwise
Wholesome life.


The freeman is known
By his freedom, spotted
And envied thereby
As buttercup
Is a pretty name
For that poisonous flower.

Even the Bombardier Has His Sense of Wonder

Surprising anything
So heavy could wobble
In the thin air -
But they do:

Bombs wobble
Through the thin air
As the grave earth
Sucks them slowly down

From our wonderful plane
And then we fly home
In our wonderful plane.

Rockets never wobble; on
The way up we spin-stabilize them
Just as nature intended.

Continuing with Seven Beats a Second.

a dog we hardly knew

found just last week
in a busy parking lot,
she jumped into the car
when I opened the door
and didn't want to leave
so she rode home with me,
looking out the window
at everything we passed,
black eyes afire with
puppy enthusiasm...

only days later,
with the quickness
of a winter night falling,
some dark disease
came over her
and now her shining eyes
are dull and confused

she can no longer stand on her own
so we hold her in our arms,
wrapped in an old shirt of mine,
as she grows by the hour weaker...

I checked on her  a minute ago
and found her gone from the little nest
we made for her on the patio

I took a flashlight
from beneath the sink
and began to search the yard,
then quickly found her,
huddled against the fence
beneath some climbing ivy

she's been to that same place
three times today...

it's the place she's chosen to  die,
I think, so I left her there,
covered with a towel for warmth,
giving her some comfort
at the lonely end
of her short puppy life...

sweet dog,
your stay with us so brief
we never settled on a name

Next a poem by Texas poet Robert A. Fink from his book  The Ghostly Hitchhiker, published in 1989 by Corona Publishing.

Fink has published five collections of poetry. With a PhD in English from Texas Tech University, he is professor of English and director of  Creative Writing at Hardin Simmons University in  Abilene and, since 1996, poetry editor of the Walt McDonald First Book in Poetry Competition at Texas Tech.


You have chanced upon a wreck
in the smoldering dusk
just over a hill
minutes from a cookout in the country,
a going-away party for a friend.

Your car hums sleek and fast enough
to escape this time, break through
the warp of memory
fading in the rearview mirror.

But you stop,  back up, first to arrive,
no one to pinch you back to sleep
relieved the melted shapes
indistinguishable as cars,
no need to venture deeper in this dream
to what might be windows to other dreams
darker than imagination.

Nothing moves but the wind
and you between the cars
a hundred feet apart, spun off the road
like errors in an arcade  game.

No time for contemplation
but the drivers are not  going anywhere,
their passengers asleep for now
and you're no Boy Scout,
so look hard into this mangled face
before the T.V. crews arrive
to pry the easy questions.

A West Texan  Looks at Vermont

Past Abilene, land spreads flat as Time.
From the east come tales of rain and trees
but to the west distance duplicated.
Over all is sky,
blue as the underside of mirrors,
clear as the hum of midnight trains.

Angles are straight here,
pure as the railroad tracks
converging to a point
disappearing at  the edge of sound,
in time, returning
to the place of origin.

Vermont is vertical.
No  room for left or right
where trees and mountains block the sky.
The past is never far,
the future close at hand.

(My note: I love this  poem and I hate to quibble, but I visited Abilene once - had a Regional Directors' meeting there - and though it's  a  very nice little city it is not West Texas. West Texas is mountains and desert, the Big Bend, El Paso, Alpine, Marfa; Abilene is west-central Texas, which puts it right on the edge of the Panhandle which  makes it a whole different kettle of tumble weeds. That's my opinion and I'm sticking to  it.)

The untitled book in progress continues, with a possibility of progress.


FCC hears the first transmission of FM radio with clear, static-free signal...
Mass execution of Poles by the Germans...
Britain's first WWII rationing, bacon, butter, sugar... 
Sergei Prokofiev's Romeo  and Juliet premiers... 
Finland surrenders to Russia...
Mussolini brings Italy into Hitler's war...
Germany invades Norway and Denmark...
Dance hall fire kills 198 in Mississippi...
Olympics are cancelled...
Winston Churchill becomes British prime minister...
First German bombs fall on England...
German troops occupy Amsterdam, Brussels, Belgium...
Britain and France begin  evacuation of Dunkirk...
American Negro Theater organizes...
German forces enter Paris and France surrenders...
Brenda Starr, first cartoon strip by a woman debuts...
Bugs Bunny debuts in Wild Hare...
The blitz begins the first of 57 days consecutive nights of bombardment...
Black leaders protest discrimination in U.S. armed forces...
First Abbot and Costello film is released...
FDR wins unprecedented third term...
The walling off of the Jewish  Ghetto in Warsaw begins...


who's on first
no longer a question
as war loads
the bases

should a turned left
at Albuquerque
and the Finns admit
they're finished

the Italians
put dumplings
on to boil

David's star is
put behind a wall
and pinned to  every
Jewish lapel


He's come south, a drag-line mechanic helper, keeping the big machines running,, building flood control levees on the river. Snakes, mosquitoes and mud - he will remember best the mud that cakes his boots so it's hard to walk.

He meets her at the bakery, spending a part of his small paycheck on a cake for his landlords' anniversary, a middle aged woman and her middle-aged husband, a jazz trumpeter.

He watches her decorate the cake, the graceful wrap of her hand as she squeezes the frosting sack to make curlicues and red roses in a nest of green ivy  that hangs across the cake just like real ivy on a fence at home. 

She rings up the charge on the register and takes his money.

"I'm Sidney," he says, "you can call me Sid."

She smiles, shyly, looks into his eyes and sees not the hungry eyes of the men on the street, but a friendly smile instead, a friendly smile on a handsome face, a tall man with dark hair, long and swept back.

"I'm Mona," she says.

The last two poems from my library this week are by Lesley Clark, which I took from her book, the absence of color, published by in 2000 by Orchard Press.

Clark received her MFA degree in Creative Writing from Fairleigh Dickenson University and is currently an Adjunct Professor of Creative Writing at Rasmussen College.

good riddance

pure desire
construction boys changed
hot Paris  pants exposed
an angel sideshow on the loose

not just another pretty face
longing my frosted valentine

she flirts

intimate guess games
make a man remember
morning side sex
without strings

never thought
breath could kill

Little Things

masked clowns
in Geisha faces
monkey blood red lips
     spotlight severe coffee stained teeth
rubber red balloon  nose
propped perfectly

center of attention

highbeam  hair
boat feet
     brown children
like amphibians that monster ants

water spits from the
center of giant red roses

the audience uproars

we all forget what kind of impact that makes


Seven Beats a Second continues.

this could be  your final warning

      I've grazed in
   corporate clover

a been-there-done-that
   sleepy-eyed soldier
      in the halls
of grander ambition

strolled the power nexus,
      kept well my

but don't let it fool you
      down inside
   where the balance
of my inner spheres
      is truest kept
   I'm still the same
      South Texas
   redneck hippy
beatnik cowboy
          I was
      I was
   back in the cusp
of the ticky-tacky fifties
   and kick-ass sixties,
   putting it all together
      is about as much


as you can fit in one package

and right now it seems to me
that this whole damn world
          and all its
      dumb-ass politicians
and tight-collared pervert
and gangsters and punks
   pugs, mugs, thugs,
   captains of business
         and industry
   pollsters, tricksters,
and city-boy slicksters
   have come together
in some secret back room
    where sanity skips
    its mid-day muster
for one massive spam attack
   on the gentler ambition
      of my own good nature

and it's beginning to piss me

Last this week  from the book I'm working on, not yet titled. I'll pick it up again next week, for at least as long as it doesn't stump me.


The Japanese Imperial attacks the U.S. fleet at Pearl  Harbor with 353 planes, 2,304 people are killed...
FDR gives his Day of Infamy speech to Congress and war on Japan  is declared...
Germany and Italy declare war on the United States...


the world's misery
crosses both oceans
America's  misery as well

the righteous fight
is begun


Sid joins the lines at the enlistment centers, but is deemed unfit  because of his lost eye. Determined to serve, he tries to join  the Seebees, construction force for the Navy, but is again refused.

He is distraught, Mona relieved.

                                                                                                                                                                              My last piece this week is another from Seven Beats a Second.  

unfinished business

I've reached that point in my life
when I begin to understand
that I will not get out of it alive

and with that,

a million years of back-story
before us and consequences lingering
far past even a memory of our time,
leaving no end to things but the dark end 
that comes to us all, despite the struggles
with pharmaceutical and metaphysical
manipulations that occupy our final days...

but even as we fight to change the rules
of life and death, it's not  closure we want
but a chance to stay on this well-lit stage
past our character's plotted time, a chance
to see the play unfold past the limitations
of our own poorly written walk-on part,
waiting for a final act that will never come

your  life...

my life...

it's all about unfinished business

As usual, everything belongs to who made it. You're welcome to use my stuff, just, if you do, give appropriate credit to "Here and Now" and to me

As always, I am Allen Itz owner and producer of this blog, and diligent seller of books, specifically these and specifically here:

Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBookstore, Sony eBookstore, Copia, Garner's, Baker & Taylor, eSentral, Scribd, Oyster, Flipkart, Ciando and Kobo (and, through Kobo,  brick and mortar retail booksellers all across America and abroad)

New Days & New Ways

Places and Spaces

Always to the Light

Goes Around Comes Around

Pushing Clouds Against the Wind

And, for those print-bent, available at Amazon and select coffeehouses in San Antonio

Seven Beats a Second


Sonyador - The Dreamer

                                                                  Peace in our Time

at 10:02 AM Blogger davideberhardt said...

put yr efforts into a book of photographs- u know i like them better than the poetry-
this for ex:

In an Every-Day Way of Things Wednesday, August 19, 2015

star bright

imagine the stars
on cold desert nights,
spread across the wide, black sky,
beyond the desert and high mesas,
past prairies where the trickster coyote calls,
past the land of mortal men

why noit just write it as prose? eg Imagine the stars on cold desert nights, spread across, etc.

signed- yr helpful teacher, dave

at 10:19 AM Blogger Here and Now said...

because i write them the way i like them, dave. if i wrote them the way you like them, they wouldn't be my poems, they'd be yours.

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