Anticipating   Thursday, October 15, 2020



sunny day
beaming down,
sunglasses at 7 a.m.

just enough
yesterday morning

to wash down
accumulated city grime,
leave it all

in the morning bright
after a cold night...

trees screaming
early green,
signs of anticipation spring up

like the two old men
at the table next to me

about movies,
about that crazy

Angelina Jolie and all her tattoos
back when she and that guy

were carrying around
of each other's blood

the one old guy talks about
a movie he saw last night, he doesn't

the title but it was pretty good
and the actress, whatshername, in her twenties

now, she was pretty good, too,

24 years old
the other guy says

did they show her naked?
he asked,

pretty much, the first old guy said..

prematurely green

old men , perpetually
horny -

spring's got nothing
to do with it

Here and Now


squashed armadillos and other mythic creatures of the Texas plain 
all brothers of all brothers 
another Sunday morning 
anniversary thoughts on a winter night 

Victoria Garcia-Zapata Klein 

From Ode to Your Giving 


a fair wind tonight 
winter post card 
and it’s another fine da when nothing happened 




fresco on the other side of sunset 
post-it notes and Barku

A little dated this piece, but just change the names and nothing has changed since I wrote it.

squashed armadillos and other mythic creatures of the Texas plain

I know people
who are so far out
on the right fringe of ideology
they make Genghis Khan
look like a daisy-smoking, fire-spitting
girly-walking socialist liberal anarchist freak;
people who are like black holes,
ever circling
rightward into another dimension
where the rules of everything from gravity
to the basic laws of mechanics
and motion
are altered; where sunshine shines up
from the earth to the sun;
where dry rain falls
from arid skies;
where Glen Beck makes sense and
Sahar Palin is a rocket scientist,
a place where
tennis balls
and clouds never break to the left ...

that kind of people,
people for whom I am a kind of token lefty
among their circle of other true

on the other hand,
I know other people so reflexively left wing
they take forever to get to the supermarket because
they won't make right turns
and can only go places they can get to
by making a series of left-turn boxes,
moving squared box by squared box
closer to their goal...

from their perch
high in the clouds of gooey-gooey
they bemoan my troglodyte tendencies,
my insistence on evolutionary theories o
gradual getting-betterism;
my understanding that government, if it is good,
is a creature of the  people,
including people 
who care more about their next paycheck
than they do about
academic theories of the casual effects
of meat-eating on
interpersonal relationships between
prairie grasses and endangered insects,
people who want things to work
and don't care
if a few cockroaches get stepped on
in the process...

who my left-winger friends
care about
only after they're a hundred years dead
and can be re-configured 
as working class heroes
instead of just plain folks living
just plain lives
they found rewarding in their own bourgeois way...

my left-winger friends
for whom
I am a kind of token rightest,
good a parties
for the amusing of their ivory tower friends
who luxuriate in the dirty words
they were too prissy to use
before - like,
I'm a mean motherfucker
now pass the brie
and hold the ammunition...

I often feel like the smashed armadillo
a former Texs politician
was the only thing ever in the center of the road -

white stripe
white stripe
it's an uncomfortable way
to live in these times

An old  poem, but one of my favorites.

all brothers of all brothers

it's true,
I talk to my animals...

even saintly Reba
who can't hear me,
but she can see my lips move

and know
she is on my mind, like the blind cat
knows she's not alone in the dark

when I stroke her head as I pass
like the friendly nod
I exchange with people

I pass on the street
because we all need to know we are not
alone in the dark -

such acknowledgement
of our shared passage we should
pass on to all the creatures around us -

balm to repair the primordial weld that has bound us all
since creation, the weld that is separating now
as all become more remote from the others...

if you believe in God, remember he ceaed us all
as part of his plan and it is not our place
to redraw the blueprints of his creation;

if you do not believe in God,
remember instead
that we are all creatures at base

of common ancestry, basic elements
that give us,
as our relatives

the snake, the bird, the fish in the ocean,
the lion in the field, our neighborhood
across the fence, the daffodil growing

wild as any creature on the meadow,
and the earth beneath our feet as well,
and the stars that shine overhead

all brothers of all brothers

Bits and pieces from...

another Sunday morning

falling toward the west horizon
slips behind a lacy morning cloud,
the shadows of its ancient scars

on cue
fly from their nighttime nest,
cover the sky
dark cape
of the Phantom of the Morning
strong winds,
warm and wet,
blow smells
of the southern sea
the stark remains
of northern winter
from a pinched
eastern horizon,
the sky not ready to open
to any new day
moon shadows fade
as sun shadows grow
toward the retreating night
does her morning stretch -
her length front to back,
legs reaching in both directions,
belly on the ground,
tail straight in the air,
little red anus
like lantern light
at the end of a train
in her bed,
too old for morning calisthenics -
eyelids lift, up, then down,
enough for now

An old poem from my first book, "Seven Beats a Second," available still at Amazon, new and used.

anniversary thoughts on a winter night

the cold night seeps
through the window
beside our bed,
damp, coastal cold
that makes midnight fog
fall to the ground, frozen,
reflecting in the pale light
like the sparkles
of broken glass
you see scattered
on the street

after an accident
the window,
when I brush against it,
is a cold jolt
that pushes me across the bed
to lie closer to you,
to wrap myself around you,
embracing your warmth
like an animal
drawing tight around itself,
seeking the internal fire
of its own warm heart
to protect itself
from the cold hand on night

are my fire tonight,
and nights past
and nights to come,
the warm nest that saves me
from cold and loveless nights,
the light that sustains me
through dark and lonely days

are the center of life
and warmth to me
you are,
and so I am

This poem is by San Antonio poet Victoria Garcia-Zapata Klein, from her book, Te Prometo, published in 2015 by Paloma Press. I'm pretty sure I've met the poet at one or more San Antonio coffeehouses and know I know a couple of people mentioned in the poem.

Willie Velasquez was a social activist and vote organizer from San Antonio. He founded the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project which worked to expand Latino and Hispanic social activist and vote organizer. He founded the Southwest Voter Registration Education Project which worked to expand Latino and Hispanic interest in voting, popularizing the motto Su Voto Es Su Voz (Your vote is your voice).

from Ode to Your Giving

para Willie Velasquez

Willie I don't
know you
but I know
Su Voto Es Su Voz!

I do not know you
but I know
who I went to school with
at St. Paul's

Cata who taught me
how to make a cappuccino
and an original Mayan Mocha

I know Cata
who hosted open mic poetry
in the Westside
Cata who makes me laugh
Cata whose smile
lights the room like Christmas
bulbs big as chilis twinkling
red, orange, yellow, green

I don't know you
but I know Memo
who agreed with my husband
that a street should be
named after you,
you, a San Antonio legend, 
a national hero,
a great man,
I am told
and I believe
since I know Memo
who fights
to raise awareness
about Epilepsy
Memo, who loves his nephews
as his own
Memo who makes me laugh
Memo show smile lights up
like sparklers
at a New Year's Eve

Willie, I don't know yhou
but I know Carmen
whose spirit is kind, loving
and friendly
Carmen who is by
her mother's side
to welcome the next
San Antonio Poet Laurate
Carmen who sits with us
at Salute's and even
shares a dance
Carmen, who is beautiful
as her mother, your widow
Carmen who makes me laugh
Carmen whose smile brightens
like blinding polished bells
ready to ring in song

Willie, I don't know you
but I know your children
well enough to know
that you had stories to tell
that you cared about people
that you lived your life
with a heart filled
with fight
and family
I know you made great change
in our world
that like Catarina, Guillermo, and Carmen
you made San Antonio
a better place
like them, you had to
make me laugh
and like them
you had a smile
to light up San Antonio
sunny as a glittery metallic
lowrider, cruisisn
through the west side

Dale shine
dale shine

Another poem from Pushing Clouds Against the Wind

a fair wind tonight

a fair wind
bare tree limbs
like dominos
on a scarred wooden table
at the VFW hall,
and the rustling
of leaves blown
down the street,
and behind it all,
wind chimes
playing different 
from backyard
up and down the street

a quiet night
with a fair wind
of neighborhood sounds

Several short poems on a common theme.


red flowers
over yellow
among blue

rainbow riot


blue eyes
under clear

on cut


a pewter

roll across the floor


black man
your silver flute
sing us
a song
to sleep


on white paper
bright red
like an apple
on a bed of 

winter postcard

white horse
on a white field
enclosed by a white fence
I am blinded
by the

and it's another fine day when nothing happened

not an exciting life I lead,
but I'm not such an exciting guy
and that's just fine with me

no scary movies
or conflict for me,
no rushing to and fro chasing dreams
or demons or wealth or power over events
that used to be me

but now I prefer to start slow in the morning
and keep that pace for the rest of the day
nobody cares much for what I think
of the issues of the day,
especially not those who could make things different

so I prefer smaller thoughts,
closer to home and closer to me
I like sitting in little coffee shops
writing little poems
that come and go like Saltine crackers,
a little salty on your tongue,
and mostly forgotten
I like keeping my decisions small
that's enough excitement for me

This poem by Baudelaire from the book, Selected Poems, published by The Orion Publishing Company in 1999. The poems in the book were selected and translated by J. M. Dent.


The bedroom fills with memories as you shake
Your head and curls come rippling down your neck:
O golden mane. O perfumed nonchalance,
What passion waken as I stroke that fleece!

Another world lies in those depths: wild, far,
Fiery and languid: Asia or Africa
Imprisoned in that aromatic tent,
I swim upon the music of your scent.

Somewhere, far off, sap flows abundantly
In men and trees: O sea of ebony.
Carry me there, dazzle me with your dreams
Of oars and masts and sails, of suns and flames.

I gulp the scents, the colors and the sound
Of a great port: the sea a golden ground,
The ships with open arms, the trembling air,
Eternal sunlight pouring everywhere.

An ocean lurks within the ocean of
Your tresses, and I dive, drunken with love,
In search of sloth and its fecundity.
Darkness encloses and caresses me,

A dark blue tent of hair that nonetheless
Reveals the sky, and twisting, tress by trees,
Intoxicates with odors - musk and tar
And coco oil, the perfumes of your hair.

I shall sow rubies, sapphires, diamonds, pearls
- How long? For ever! - in your heavy curls.
Never be deaf to my desires, but be
My dreams' oasis, a distillery
From which I drink long sips of memory.

fresco on the other side of sunset

of low clouds
as cotton candy
against billows
virgin white
a Mediterranean

I was sitting at a bar one evening and had an idea for a poem. But I had no paper to write on but a bar napkin. Thus was born the "Barqu" - a bastardized version of a Haiku, designed to fit on a bar napkin, 10 words on 6 lines, fun to write and very easy.

Also included, a couple of what I call "post-it note" poems, poems small enough to fit on a little yellow post it note. Again an invention arising from a lack of paper. Even easier than the Barqu, there are no rules.

Here a several Barku from Pushing Clouds Against the Wind.

post it note

I love
in little
flashes of
sticky note


in twos
and threes
I listen
I write


whale song
the deep
navy sonar
the tide

post it note

ibn repose


lonely whistle
in the dark
little bird

post it note

sun lies low
behind scrub branches

yellow jigsaw
at end of day


GOOD NEWS - the "comment"  function is working again after several years when it did not.

I'd love to have feedback from readers, about the blog, about the poems or pictures, favorite recipes from your old dearly departed Aunt Herminia, or anything else on your mind.

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

Also as usual, I am Allen Itz owner and producer of this blog, and a not so diligent seller of books, specifically these and specifically here:

Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBook store, Sony, 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 9:48 AM Blogger davideberhardt said...

interesting to see yr color stuff- get the feeling not so easy as black and shite- i ment white- all yr black and whites seem composed- which i like- (not like Frank or Winogrand) but not the color? bizarre- see Eliot Porter for the composition you have in black and shite (there it goes again) meaning black and white....color, to me, is more interesting than black and white- Porters was a process of dye transfer- do you know what tht is? my favorite black and white (and i like yrs and they should b compiled) is Weston's "My Camera on Point Lobos" - a startling achievement (the Spanish thot the barking seals were wolves!)

at 10:45 AM Blogger Here and Now said...

i think that part of the composition thing is that color is more complicated than black and white - more visual elements to compose.

also, i remember the days in movies when black and white was for "serious" films; color was for lighter entertainment fare.

i like the simplicity of black and white, but also the beauty of color

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