Sunday, December 31, 2006

Causality Casualty

This way
I know

Things that are made
are often unmade
or remade new

Today, as I read
of particles, and waves
(until the room spins)

I look to capture life
even here, in the case
of a basket gone gray

(or grey)
(I like gris most)

It wasn't always
like this

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Uncaught Melody

Among the disorganized clutter
of words and half-thoughts
He picks a path to the stage

The light is on
and edging to the microphone
clears his throat

"I have nothing to say,"
he says
"thank you."

The notes are all there
and the strings are tuned
this moment passes, and another

It's late, the room is empty
and there is time
to breathe again

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


Life comes in waves

The child gets an assist in 'bye-bye'
and manages that marvelous
spontaneous smile

followed by a wondering look

Onto the bus
and a wave from the window
the mother looks to the sky

and morning, and evening

Out on the field
playing at fighting
glance to the sidelines

a special one watches, and waves

Sweep of seasons
reasons and rhymes
and calendar flutter

and wave roots travel unseen

across the stage
now dim, now bright
until all return home

(I'll write when I can)

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

A Few More Pounds

This year of time
I felt midrange
In snowless cold
beyond the wires

A few more pounds
from here to there
the mirror doesn't lie
or glance away

Here there be wagons
of childhood red
and ice cream, and you
rest my mind

Come back
as ever
or now

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

A Pound of Flesh

up on the roof
it's where I go
for a new view
of the ground
and many, many nails
to pound

a slight misalignment
of the hand
metal to metal becomes
metal to meat
and the wrong nail
gets pounded

oh, my fiddle
can wait awhile
and I strum
different chords
such swollen color
with a dish of ice

midnight meditations
throbbing thoughts
and tender touch -
missing medications
a pound of flesh
the nail gun next time

Friday, October 20, 2006


The modus operandi
for daily life
is now a construction zone

Re-routing, detournaments;
and mostly slow

Bumplification warnings
mergerology realignment
and cell waves flit unseen

Career shift
new levers, and
turns to learn

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Little Warning

And oh, I thought it would
be so easy and of course
it wasn't

but there is comfort
in the right direction
and promise

while children quickly
watch and grow

for all the world
run hardly fair
to hear most tell

a case of space provisions
not much good here
except to have and hold

in good times and in bad
in sickness and health
or until boredom sets in

some lines jump out
with little warning
and require the same

Take care of what
you've got

Saturday, October 14, 2006

Action, Missing in

The spoon clinks
on the cereal bowl
teeth grind the meal

Gray dawn awakes
rosy tints survive
and I remember

to write

Friday, October 06, 2006


Some of my friends never come near
this side of the screen

Oh, they're on the planet
and I suppose by random chance
we might share a little of the air
(would like to tag some
and see where it goes)

but there they live
and this is how it is

watching each other's words
weighing the thoughts

crafting a few more
while we can

It's a peaceful evening
misty, with a full moon

Thursday, October 05, 2006


there aren't many promises
left in the box -
a few - but mostly
picked over already

go back a few generations -
before cars or so -
was it different?
how can we tell?

the squirrel climbs
flicking its tail
against the sunset

Monday, October 02, 2006

Completely out of words

4$ 673, @@ ? *///
7 + 7 & > -

>< ><
%# " %# " %#

Sunday, October 01, 2006


bugs on holiday
hanging out in the shade
along the lightshore

Thursday, September 28, 2006


delivers the fuel
of a lifetime

tomorrow, mañana, demain
how they whip by
rewriting forgotten lines

brief candles flicker
a nod to the great poets
and then out, and out

Wednesday, September 27, 2006



this view
through glass -
slog on!

Sunday, September 24, 2006


How far to twist
stretch to new limit
knee lock

bent over backwards
stand on one leg
various letter shapes

maybe I'll be able
to touch my toes

Thursday, September 21, 2006


Past the reel's end
film thwacks, light fades
and silence lasts a frozen moment

always and...
(mustn't steal words, that would be copying)

endless slide
in stocking feet

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The Banjo

aged in case
gift from one
now gone

Mr. Crowder

Monday, September 18, 2006

It's not so much...

It's not so much
that you forgot
that you vanished
between the lines

Sunday, September 17, 2006


a rooftop afternoon
city backdrop
time on my side
(thanks to Randy for the photo)

Saturday, September 16, 2006

For the Record

hanging about the studio

all day

for the record

(it is a recording studio out many miles from the city)
(the people were friendly)
(and a dog had an endless appetite for playing 'fetch')

Thursday, September 14, 2006

But Wait, There's More!

Avert eye, sing
half to the moon
beyond exception

twist right at the top
with lower left
helical bundle flexed

disconnection, broken
thoughts collect
moted drift dust

wept away
across mist notes,
broken strings

Friday, September 01, 2006

slog against the wind

can be tough winds
to walk against

when I have
something to say
I'll be here

like some kind of prophet
I'll be out in the wind

Thursday, August 24, 2006

regression analysis

new blog of the beta flavor: blum (based on one of my favorite first words).

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Everyday Hero

Tonight I tried
to get an old mac
configured for the web

It would have helped
a lot, I think

It sits here now
quiet, disconnected
and green

I'll get it

my son is taping
a motorcycle phone
to my monitor

Monday, August 21, 2006

shoelaces, tripping on

[content removed]
need grounding
and gravity

Sunday, August 20, 2006

every new band's dilemma

the empty room
if they only knew
but perhaps they do
and yet

these times take things
that reach inside
more or less
distractions by the minute

try it again, this time
you take the solo
should we do it two times
or three?

these things take time
like an accident
waiting to happen
try it slower this time

Saturday, August 19, 2006



it will all seem
so long ago

Friday, August 18, 2006


Round midnight
a single cricket
out of time

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

A Really Big B


The Tuesday Blurt

just one big




There. That's better.


'prolegomena' fell out of the toolkit today
reached for it with index finger
glossed past chapter one
to read more -
jumped to
what to do?
I mean, nothing's there
this works better uninverted
and then I fear to think of wave upon wave of words

Sunday, August 13, 2006


when the printer needs ink
and is poised on the shredder
and the four-cup coffee maker in the
flimsy white plastic bag
has sandals propped up against it
not to mention the scrubbing pad
left on the filing cabinet
and rented movie dvd half on
the electronic label maker
I pause

turn on the floor fan sitting
on top of the dehumidifier
and write about it all

Saturday, August 12, 2006


that's what he was
to the end
or will be -

the bee also
who stung my shoulder
or died trying
to do more

the ache is not so evident
as i reboot the new used PC
and ponder how long
this will last

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

A Distant Drill

Ah, the dentist's chair,
the dentist's chair

I lie back
and imagine
beautiful skies
as a distant drill

Tuesday, August 08, 2006


It's nothing, I suppose
a passing comment -
words meant half in jest

Unknowingly not knowing
and shown to be so
despite otherwise efforts

a sigh, not at all
what we thought
next to nothing, really

how long can one hold out
on coffee from a machine
or even the expensive kind

my dear friend,
everyone's days
are numbered - you're not alone

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Magna Interview

This time I provided the questions.
Please have a read of Joseph Armstead's interview

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Musical 'Haiku'


(credit on the music goes to John Curtis and for the words, Kai Esbensen from the Immersion Composition Society)

Monday, July 31, 2006

Poetic Strains

Thought fog displacement
replenish the ice cubes
gaze at high 90 night (F of course)

conversational stir
swirled picture frames
refocus on the screen

a penny for thoughts
a thought for pennies
but gas is way more

simple news about wars,
weather, whatever -
heat crimes

thankful for the end
which passes understated
ready for the rewrite

Friday, July 28, 2006


This is one hot day
and after staring at
several months worth
of chaos
it's starting to wear

but chaos
is what's on
the menu
for now
sure is hot out

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Farther Reach

there are other days
when i can't believe
it will all be ok
because of this neglect
and that one

every day
has its own
even though
by tomorrow
it all seems the same

1000 yesterdays ago
(it's not so long)
the people I knew
would still be here
as I now know

most of them


is a state of mind

could I just rest here a while
in uffish thought
while you whiffle past
through this tulgy wood

I'm sure you know better
than I, else
why would I be sitting here
like this

['Jabberwocky' memorized in early August of 1979]

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Magna Interview

The Magna interview is posted today. Nearly every Sunday, one of the thirty or so people who contribute to the Magnapoets blog are interviewed. Today it's my turn. Five easy questions, five responses. There is quite a variety of poetry on the Magnapoets site, with some very good writers contributing. Have a look!

Link to "Distilling by Drops on a Friday Evening".

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Retune for Whoever

Let me not to the tension of four strings
Allow in dissonance. Tunes are not tuned
Which falter with inharmonic ringings
No matter what melody to be crooned.
Oh, ho! A is A and never to be mocked
Though harmonica voice may bend and break.
My tuning meter shall be ere locked
On frequency solid, unbent, no mistake.
And in those jam sessions, where banjo may jangle
And mandolins twingle and guitar chords twangle
The fiddle shall need to blessed from the angle
Of digits on wires, ringing true like triangle
And yet, take Grappelli, or Ponty, even Bell
Masters of bent note make it sound - oh so well.

(The experienced reader will recognize the ruined shreds of sonnet 116)

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Gift Beyond Words

il y a des jours où
je n'ai pas des mots
pour vous,
pour moi

je suis désolé
parce qu'il y a
à dire

un jeune garçon
a apporté un crapaud
pour le jardin

je n'ai jamais eu
un tel cadeau
"il mangera des limaces," il a dit -
et maintenant il est parti

* * * * * * * * * * *

there are days when
I don't have words
for you,
for me

I'm sorry,
there's a lot
to say

a young boy
brought a toad
for the garden

I've never had
such a gift
"it will eat slugs," he said -
and now he's gone

* * * * * * * * * * *

Monday, July 17, 2006


xenonic reflection
image capture
and relax

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Preventative Maintenance

Time out, the dull edge needs attention
lest like an overwrought bird in a storm
the magnetic path home be lost

so here, under this rocky ledge,
rest awhile, resharpen
the daily navigation tools

it is enough to stop
a senseless beating
of beak upon rock

Monday, July 10, 2006

Crumbling Cliff

Too late, and too far
accelerative pull does its work
faster than firm footing recovery

All was prepared, all turning
but past performance is hardly
any predictor at all today

Dreamlike futile run, reach,
the reality sinks in and down
oh, to fly for just a few moments

Look over, look over,
find emptiness where
so much of late had been

Friday, July 07, 2006

Board / Ambition

nothing says ambition
like the lines in this face
crossing a mere half century,
not much in the life of some trees
or ancient nation morphology

pretention may carry the moment
sustain the delusion, provide
cracks through which to seep
but this pass too shall be left
walked upon by others to come

how liftingly needed
lake-supported skies
in times of missed glory
but questions come and go,
and leave their mark

wall construct gazes
past counted moments,
this waitless reach
unaware beyond reason
if nothing else

Monday, July 03, 2006

Mind the Gap

what isn't said
at times
speaks so loudly

a look, a gesture
and the deal is off
or on, as may be

overdone interest
invites distance
nearly every time

step up carefully
watch where you're going
and mind the gap


A speaker of few languages
Spanish French German
or a mélange thereof

it used to be this way
studied deliberately
midwestern evenings

Few nearby speak so
it is mostly gone
though shreds remain

My former language friends
have gone on to study Italian
I miss them

'il ragazzo mangia la pizza'
(the boy eats pizza)
is as far as i've gotten

easily lost
without continued
neural workouts

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Go and Make Some Hay!

Imagine the farmer of, say,
even 50 years ago
watching his son spend hours
at the computer

if you'll excuse me for a moment,
I think I'd better go out and mow the lawn.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

After the freeway

the old golden 10 speed
sailed the gravel roads
freely, alone

the young boy
skinny, so skinny
riding easily

over hills,
past cows and
plowed fields

how much
for a day
like that?

A morning memory

fine young man
gone several months now -
the image remains

Thursday, June 29, 2006


(clipped version)

when no one is looking
I reach to the sky
and say 'here it is!'
among other things

a skyward reach
is quite common

Wednesday, June 28, 2006


there are p's and q's
to mind, and whys
and wherefores
to find, and shoes
to be well shined...

...shirt ironed
glasses cleaned
eyes and hands and body
each with something to say

Do you wonder
about interviews?
I do.

Plane sight

I can't see it from here
but I hear the distant drone
of a small plane in the clear sky
beyond my trees

soon it fades
for me, at least
while for the pilot
it's just vibration

Lindbergh stayed awake
by keeping the window open
could have nearly touched the water
and saw things

What a day
to be in France
and see the little plane
come down to land

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Nuts by the door

A small handful of nuts
almonds, to be precise
slightly salted, in a jar
kept by the door

they came from -
who knows where
like hundreds of other things
within a few steps

the paint stays on the wall
for quite a while
then needs some attention
this happens so slowly

the bug on the window screen
behaves much like all the others
that have been there before
it's a popular place

my dog has gray hair
around her eyes
she walks carefully
and seems to smile

Sunday, June 25, 2006


There is no practice for substitute. This invert is logicated. The Fall in Spain rains plainly on the mane. Some sort this will get all dayed out. I get friends with a little bye from my help. I just love someone to need. And I someday pray that you will mean what I see.

Chance Meeting

synchronicity in the city
delayed driving
predetermined parking
not at all what I was expecting
but there you were


letters and meaning
released, unmade
beyond retrieval

Friday, June 23, 2006

Back Yard Gig

summertime back yard
aged brick
elegant with ivy
mulched landscape
tables, chairs, and a breeze

from work early by freeway
plenty of time
and grass to play on
a neighbor's dog howls
warming up

wheel and carry
past cooler and concrete
out by the plants
black boxes of sound
guitar cases laid by

electrical details
roadiless plans
configurations figured
microphones standing
the power light on

guests arrive
the dog has gone quiet
time to play
set list gently blown across the yard

they seem to like it
more guitar, cowbell, etc.
lovely wooden drumset
resting on the grass
how unknown

a song about dolphins
unheard until now
back yard premiere
the neighbors seem
to be ok

at a reasonable hour
sunlight remaining
freeway cruise
coffee house next

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


The water stands
reeking, opaque
my rolled-up sleeve
wet, patience consumed

a large bucket below the
plug, and a large wrench
yes, and with a few turns

it is amazing
how well water
runs along an arm
down to my shoes

but that was before
and breathing is easy
while the laundry
quietly spins

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

In the Still Quiet Night

In the still quiet night
the cat asks to be in
and I open the door

The sun will be up before long
time to get some rest soon
but first a few words

Life goes by
You can't always get what you want (thank you, Mick)
Trying does matter

you really are in the best place
though it may not seem so

Other times
the answers aren't around

It's good to have a place to eat and sleep

Some people have incredibly good sense
most of the time

can't get past the feeling
it's all been said before

electricity is amazing

and so is water

it's really time
to get some rest

see you later

Monday, June 19, 2006

Morning Boot

Awake is a relative term
with a mix of components
that boot up each day

and depending on the state
things were left in
it may take longer

years sometimes

like Descartes
thinking comes first

or does it
since it may be possible
to be awake without thinking

yes, I'm sure I've seen this

then there is the phenomenon
of warming up
half an hour at least for violin

wide awake
are we ever there
or does it keep shifting

not a simple on/off question

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Father's Night

Several children
have lived here
all their lives
(well, except the eldest)
along with a few dogs, cats,
and the odd lizard or two.

This house is simple
more cabin than house
first conceived and built
100 years ago (nearly)
there is almost room
and lots of light

The dishes are washed
at the sink.

The warm air is blown
by fans.

The trees house various
squirrels, birds, and bugs.

There have of course been:
trips to the emergency room
broken windows
formal complaints, and
boyfriends staying too late

But what I remember tonight
is holding each of them
to comfort and calm
and laying them down
to sleep

Saturday, June 17, 2006

cell phones, et cetera

cell calls to cell
to reach, to touch
to exchange codes
to create, to grow

et cetera

this sea of infinitives
begins, and rarely, or falsely
ends, as the ancient
Coelacanth shows (yet so rare)

and ancient western-speak
sings loftily to the wind
while millions drive past, and
cell calls to cell

we hold these phones
to be self-evident,
to pursue happiness,
and let the sound of freedom ring

[I finally got a cell phone]

Friday, June 16, 2006

pre-storm poem

Hail in the west -
thunder echos
and inland seagulls
cry misplaced tunes

my glass of wine
thoughtfully waits
while lightning queues up

light wind gusts
brush leaves
then subside

a loon flies past
hurried, warning
of approaching brilliance

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Last Call

wordless whispers, a
last call for help, in
language of depth-bound ships

calm water belies
the history of lost hopes
and dreams

this too,
shall have been

childlike writing
puts questions
where they belong

and each day
has its own

o my fugitive,
my wild, wild

forgotten lines
remembered late




Finding a few moments

Reach down behind the sofa cushion,
and find a coin, or failing that,
a pin that stirs the wisdom of sight

Pull the refrigerator out from the wall,
reach for the broom, erase
evidence of long quiet months

Feet make scuffled patterns
and stop too soon, no footnotes
while others scurry on, searchless

Time passes, untired, moves
dreamless, imaginary construct
of elusive substance

Thursday, June 08, 2006

Time Brakes

(for no one)

Sticker on the bumper
Passing opportunity
Knocks me over

Days of silence
Will return
On the way back

Thinking of you
Wish you were here
Ciao for now

Monday, June 05, 2006


the notes
were not

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Fence Memory

Many years ago
I built this fence
to keep the dog 'in'

Now, the gate can stand open
and the dog just looks

When I was nailing the final pickets onto the rails,
a neighbor girl (who was used to cutting through)
made one last run and slipped through the space -
her smile is still etched in my mind.

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Gentle June

This morning
I sample the heavy metal
from a link on my son's website

I remember spending hours
listening to those big plastic disks
via diamond transduction

The sound of the needle
sliding across grooves
like life jarred off-track

It's a lovely quiet morning
Birds and distant traffic
and a clicky keyboard

The first cup of tea
tall children waking up
telling me their dreams

Monday, May 29, 2006

Memorial Day Update

slog2live came about Jan. 1
in the usual resolute way
not at first for poems
not at all

More typically, something along the lines of
"Beautiful warm summer day, the sound of a boat motor drifting under the jet noise some miles up..."
no, even that sounds more like poetry now...

But it is a beautiful day.
I'm sitting on the porch,
off to my right is the recently featured oak tree
and on the table, a cup of hot tea.

I don't know many war dead,
or for that matter, war living.
A few. There are many.

A dog strolls into the yard,
sniffing purposefully.
I shoo it away, or at least
shout. Then, run out
and throw a tea bag at it.

The dog is quite friendly
and comes wagging its tail.
I remark that it's too friendly.
It gives a slight woof and moves on.

Memorial Day. My wife and son
went to watch the parade.
I suppose I should have too.
He wanted to watch (and hear) them shoot the guns.

Boys are famous for liking to make things into guns.

Today I want to take stock of where slog2live:

  • has been
  • is
  • is going
This is also a pattern that people are famous for doing.

The trouble is,
I don't really feel
like there's time to do a recap, and
I doubt that you
really want to spend time
reading about it.

(I mean, it's all there in the archives)

The only thing I'd point out is that initially it was an effort to get organized.

Then it morphed to being an assortment of efforts at poetry.

I'm not very sure where it will end up. But I do hope to improve at being organized, and also at being expressive with poetry.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

Broken Branch

Before (what I'm doing for fun today):

"That time of year, thou mayest in me behold..."
when a large branch inexplicably breaks from the old oak tree
and I ponder whether it is worth the risk
to set the ladder against the tree
ascend some twenty feet
and by means unknown
remove the rest
of the broken

Means of ascent (above)

Security jump rope (below)

Break time (post these shots, tie a rope on the branch):

an amputree...

And so it ends, this drama aloft -

and I, safe upon the ground
know well that many a man
could and would have done
more swiftly and with greater skill

but nonetheless
I'm grateful
that the ladder
didn't kill

Friday, May 26, 2006

Side View

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

An After-Dinner Meeting


  • whites, blues & grays
  • tree outline
  • touch of sunset
  • water
  • Other


Delicate wings
fill the evening sky

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Delivering Results

There are those
you can always count on
to come through

Saturday, May 20, 2006

better than this

"it doesn't get
much better
than this"

he said, and
I just looked
and nodded

Wire We Hear

Life at the end
of a wire --
connect time

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Backyard Path

step by step
I watch you grow
and when you go,
the path will still
be here

Monday, May 15, 2006


Ah, the challenge of an open page.

Too little living and the writer turns inward
to feed on writing thoughts
and in this self-consumed state
sends everyone out
with a click

Forgive Me

I've gone around the sun
yet again
seven times seven


Sunday, May 14, 2006

Rest (anagrams)

need more rest

metered snore

de mort 'serene'

or meet sender

there be more
(beer theorem)


A fluent birdsong
cardinal red
cat attentive, restless

dog inspects
the property line
checks the bark alarm

boy stops in
munch, munch
and back outside

radio frequency
internet flux
another IM afternoon

vapor trails
past the shadows

alternative naptime

Saturday, May 13, 2006


Generations of computers
flow through homes
and lives

web net surf click
wrist carpal phalanges
and a stiff neck

look up and far often
execute stretchitives
listen visually, watch sound

synaesthetic cacophony
resolves on exit click
while the meter runs on


put them on in the morning
brain circuit rearrangement
surely it will be better

clarity in some spots
while others lacking;
worse, perhaps -

rhinos and moles
and whales, I suppose
may have a tough time
seeing past their noses

whales are actually reported to have good vision, though I'm not sure how that is determined

Friday, May 12, 2006

How to Lose Blog Traffic

Too specific
way too much data
not general interest

I think you just lost
your grip
on my website

please come back

this entry prepared with special consulting help from Peter of clear blue sky

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Copper Time

Here at 8:29 PM
and about 35 seconds
noticing the house across the street
which seems to be a different color

Of course, it's evening
and sometimes the light is different
especially when I feel
like I could sleep for a whole day

yes, I suppose
but it didn't have that coppery look before
I'm almost positive

Copper has 29 protons
and about 35 neutrons
for an average atomic mass
of 63.54, or 63.5436 (to be more exact)

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Just Write

two open editors
four hands
quietly compose

just write


when I maybe should have been
there were all these ideas
so I came down here
to tell you
and now
I'm going back.
Mainly, I wonder
what's next
which sometimes
just leads
to more

Monday, May 08, 2006


Write all day
write all night
won't fill up
this monstrous drive
for e-motion
it doesn't matter
if you use capitals

Poems in a Hurry

After lying in a fetal-like position most of the early morning,
I take advantage of the daylight
to protect my feet
and get out of bed.
A glance at the clock and I know
that there is barely time.
And yet I read the news,
watch the sky,
revisit yesterday's writing,
and wonder how long those pinkish-purple blossoms will last.
It could rain.
I know
there isn't much time

Not a good idea to hurry poems.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

What is it...

What is it
when I can sit all weekend
and read and write this poetry stuff?
Where did this come from?
I never had time to read
and now it seems so easy to choose.
What if the piles by the door grow a bit?
And that camera - keep it handy,
and keep the batteries charged.
My son now, he likes to write, be like dad.
Well, not quite like dad, but you know.
I pull out the violin and play a few jigs,
put on Bach and cruelly mangle the memorized lines
but some day it'll be there.
Meanwhile, I feel pretty good about this.
Don't know what makes good poetry, but
know it when I
read it.

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Moon Rest

orbit down
mind spaces
for you

wreath note

simply blue
hanging around
and a little down

Field of View

I pondered whether I could write any decent poetry.
No...ponder is too strong a word.
Worried is closer to the truth.
The garage roof is a wreck.
Shouldn't be hard to fix, really.
But somehow each day goes by
and the roof is still like it was.
This is kind of a problem.
It's not going to collapse in
for at least 25 years, I'd guess.
But I know the neighbors must hate it.
And so do I.
Guess I'll call some handyman guy
who knows what to do.
It's there,
Just past the monitor
in my field of view
like a permanent background

Ship Building

Industry by the sea
hard working guys
a chilly breeze

for love
for money
for daily bread

labor to be had -
an economy turned
and ships were borne away
US Patent 6543210
a ditch mower

Friday, May 05, 2006


Behind the scenes
a car ad of all things
I had to watch

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Careen Path

Fire a marble through a set of pins
rattle tattle tattle tick
kinetic friction absorbed, reflected
final spot selected

Everyone goes home
night music starts
stars quietly sparkle
moon's night off

old town restaurants
assorted mixed nuts
primary color light

Orville and Wilbur
paid an attorney
to get the patent
the second time

Wednesday, May 03, 2006

Looking Up

"I'll look you up sometime"
It's almost time to go
the last few words

Scout Boy

Let's see
what's in the barrel
...a bit moldy

old boy scout shirt
nice badge on the pocket
a few pins

20 mile hike
look for the ride
that wasn't there

morse code -..-
a merit badge
for dits and dahs

award ceremony
4 evening miles
past farm dogs

it was enough
and joined a band

Tuesday, May 02, 2006


we start

Crack of Dawn

listen -
that bird
just started

stretch -
joints move
and add
to the crack of dawn

Sunday, April 30, 2006

Rock and Rain

On this last day in April
rain gives the look to rock
that it could grow things

Midnight Snack

Up from delta depths
hallway lightswitch shuffle -
your thoughts on the screen

Saturday, April 29, 2006

The Other Side of Sunset

Gazing to where
prestellar penumbra
rises and fades
evening rust

Friday, April 28, 2006

Chicken Wild Rice Soup

After this head-stretching day
complete with rollerskates
I read about 1940's physicists
and have a second bowl

Outside the Gate

I think I'll wait
right here
take your time

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Time Dependent

The joy of not knowing
leaves me exultantly typing
x's and y's everywhere

And then the bill comes
finding the roof still leaking
and the cat looking up
beside an empty dish

How crazy and careless
when I was younger
to think that I would know
at some later time

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Fresh Paint

I reach for sky blue
short on oxygen --
burn the brushes

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

The Gig

I arise at four,
sort all of the black cables
camping style, in bags

The first big speaker
and the next, and two others
and take a short break

out to the blue van
forth and back and forth and back
lug the amp upstairs

PA loaded up
grab the dusty gig bags
and away we go

simple two wheel cart
my back forever thankful
up and down the stairs

The gang's all here
noisy tuning, test, 1, 2
how many minutes left

first chords, wailing voice
thunder tune opens, check sound
watch for feedback, please

less keyboard, more bass
don't be afraid to sing out
violin gently weeps

break time, be right back
second set well grooved, smoother
stories in our eyes

they cheer and leave us
which is fine, as we all turn
to tear down chatter

homeward night freeway
mozart on the radio
unpack - tomorrow

Monday, April 24, 2006


A pair of squirrels
scoot about morning branches
across purple clouds

Sunday, April 23, 2006

undeveloped skill

There are some things that
I simply have no clue about...
this is one of them

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Carry That Weight

Synchronous eye-mind movement
a pause, a reach, a toss
the juggler reaches new heights
(4 min. 27 sec.)

Back in a Moment

just have to
get out

Friday, April 21, 2006


sixty million monitors
cannot be wrong...
they simply shine


evening campfire
incessant bark...
hand me a log

(wouldn't really do it, of course - well, not usually anyway)


what I meant to say
from sky through cloud...
lost in the synapse

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Day's End

A sight for sore eyes
come sit beside me awhile
sweet companion mine

Easter Sky (20060416)

at cross-purposes

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The Researcher

Arms awave, he smiled
and they let him continue
for another 5 minutes

Blue View with Horizon

There is always
a horizon

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

5:23 PM

Where you are
and whether
and each day
reaching, reaching

If I could hold
could hold
would never
grow old

This melody
arises without words
or knowing
or thinking twice

Last Night, There Was A Sunset

> 98% of the human genome is said to be junk
noncoding intergenic introns
...last night, there was a sunset...

Monday, April 17, 2006

The Last Minute

Quiet drive
classic Cinderella music
my post office is closed

Saturday, April 15, 2006

Guard Duty

Ground-hop gently
mother squirrel
and carry your burden softly

pause long
to look
at me

hold your young
by the nape
and squirrel-climb the maple

jump -
all the way over
to pine branches

your young in nest,
keep guard
at the branch


A or B

A and B

A and/or B

B and then A

B and not A

B or not A

B or not B

Friday, April 14, 2006

The Next Gig

Here's a scary one:
we were on firm footing
I thought

Know that plans
can change, rearrange
into unfamiliar shape

Gravity always works
and so do lots of people
with inversely related power

Increased future uncertainty
diminishes hope and focus
by a path negatively exponential

While energy is conserved
entropy rules secondly
and action calls for reaction

The experiment is over,
time to write it up
and move on to the next

they say
you're only as good
as your next gig

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

To Brother, With Golf Club

Do you remember that time
that you chased me around
the harvested corn field
with a golf club in your hands?

The late afternoon sun
cast slanting shadows
and you meant to give me
a piece of your mind

Living in daily proximity
has its challenges
and thankfully
I could run

Now you live
several days by car
on a hill

I look at an old golf club
and think of your birthday
and how proud I am of you

my brother

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

A Few Simple Questions

An inquiry into poetic tendencies (courtesy of Carol):

1.Where do your poems start? What causes you to sit down and write a poem? Is it a certain emotion?

They typically start with the question of whether I have anything to write about, and I'm usually curious to know what it is. It's also typically a 'want to do' break from a 'have to do' day.

2.Do you have different stages to your poetry? Can you see how you've matured or changed over the years through your poetry?

Been at this for a good couple of months, and so far find that I do lots of second guessing. It's a learning process...

3. Do you have a favorite poem that you have written? What do you like about it? What does it say about you that you like?

I think so far I like the one called Ripple Effect, which was written after very intentionally reading through some Keats poems on a day when the ice melted from a nearby lake. I like how a moment to be shared develops and the turning to look and find that person.

4. Do you have a favorite that someone else has written? What does it do for you? Does it give you an answer or cause you to think a certain way? Does it motivate you?

Somehow I gravitate to Frost's 'Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening', likely because I memorized it as a child at my father's prompting (I think there was money involved) and I later made & published a version called "Distilling by Drops on a Friday Evening" which is heavily adapted to the chemistry lab world where much of my life has been spent. I like Frost's simple, clean ways of evoking an image - at least that's how it seems to me.

5. Do you only write poetry or is it a part of a vast array of writing methods that you use to express your self or your thoughts?

Most of my writing is carefully worded emails on technical work-related items. On rare occasions I work some haiku-form bits into the text:

These are wonderful
I wish I could write such things
but not enough time

Monday, April 10, 2006

The Monday Race

this one needs to be sent back to the kitchen!

Just think back
on all the marvelous Mondays
raring to go
chomping at the bit
pawing the ground
and wild-eyed

There's the bell
and they're off!
round the first turn
it's Green Tea by a nose!
over on the backstretch,
Bacon Bagel closes in
it's scrambled legs (***weak line alert***)

Hoof thunder
well-leaned profile
crop at the ready
there you are
fighting for place
ever edging forward

Home stretch
give all
don't fall
there's the line
camera flash
the Monday race

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Ripple Effect

Borrowed sun-distant form
seals over half the year
clearly congealed and smooth

Long day edge-wise remover
reveals the rippling melody of light
a fluid dance from farther shore

Such brightness freely taken
I turn and look for you
and all that it can tell

Guitar Man

From the all night focus on getting the sound
to this morning as I'm thinking about how to get that
Carlos Santana flow out of my effects box
and "should there be any delay?" -

I remember Jimi and how he didn't make it to the hospital

Saturday, April 08, 2006

stricken words

"Take a hike!"
such cruel words
I have not heard
but feel

so I put on
my hiking boots
check the pack
pack some meals

trail head here,
it seems
and leads -
let's not worry

set a pace
"study as you goes"
from rock to rock
step carefully

with others on the trail
but don't complain
and do not be surprised at rain

take care of feet
rest when needed
signs and warnings
should be heeded

scheduled for removal

Owie Zowie

this one was written upon waking up with a toothache on a Saturday morning and not having a very clear idea of what to do next - it doesn't hurt so much now, which is inexplicable. I was going to delete this one, but here it is anyway.

"Get thee to a dentist chair!"
the weekend is begun
a painful tooth begins to flare
this is not fun, I do declare

what have I done
to earn the right
to twist and turn
in bed at night

but surely this
is not amiss
or so I think
after her kiss

I will sit and write
and on that tooth
try not to bite

Friday, April 07, 2006

10 second poem

what was that?

that was breakfast flying by
on a returning goose

what a weird thought!

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


Enough of self pity

what's left then?

about fifty-three cents

Dealing With It

The train of news
pulls into town
this time letting
everyone down

cries of "what will it be,
and what will become?
our plans are all ruined!"
our ease is undone

"give us this day
our daily bread!"
are more than words
just idly said

my daughter cried
like someone had died
her grief is real
and too new to heal

but evening comes,
and morning too;
putting 'deal with it'
on my list of to-do

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Sharp Distance

Through cables of light
your word reaches me
with a point to make

to challenge the distance,
question intention
and inquire sharply

I awake and think
about whether I've made
a real mistake

a genuine fake
would not lie awake
to think of sharp distance

Monday, April 03, 2006

A Fine Man

(in 12/8 time, if you please)

Oh, I want to be a very fine man
an' live in a boat with a hat and a pan

an' when the rain falls, I'll hold the pan up
an' when company calls, use the pan for a cup

(an' nothing to do with the book I'm currently reading - "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman")

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Racing Along

an aside...

Mozart's "Abduction from the Seraglio" includes a chorus by the Janissaries. These guys were typically 'recruited' from captives of the Ottoman empire (starting around 1330 - it's amazing how easily this type of thing can be looked up!) and given a kind of elite training in customs very foreign to the land of their origins. In a way, this created a new race of sorts, which grew to a point of revolting and later, control. And they made a type of marching music.

There's an essay about 'Race and Language' in the Harvard Classics by E. A. Freeman which explores the question of what defines people groups. (A great line from that essay: "We may thus seem to be landed in a howling wilderness of scientific uncertainty")

Just wanted to park this here for reference.

poetic scraps

perceptive perspective
repetitive reception
inimitable intidimation

we don't expect anythingless messages
but sometimes that's all we get

Chocolate Chip

freshly baked and warm
"not for you, leave them alone"
later -- cookie jar!

Saturday, April 01, 2006


Seriously now.

Everyday the whiskers grow
and get cut off
rinsed thoughtlessly down the drain

This done with the same care
as picking a shirt with not too many wrinkles
and remembering the belt

The same tired, hurried traffic shuffle
on and in through door upon door
switches flicked by the automaton

I've become.

One Chilly Evening

amid bills. tax forms, and feeble frenchifications
poetic pretension raises its twisted face
and ekes forth a half-sounded note

(it were better to practice with a mute)

personal fog drifts through his words
leaving listeners wondering why
or simply leaving

but still he makes eyes at the stars
not seeing the ditch into which he soon will fall
heedlessly, headlong and hard

this one is so strange
but so are bats echolocating dinner
and deer that run right into oncoming cars

Le Jour Du Poisson

today is April 1st,
April Fool's Day

my son drew a note -
'Kick Me!'
and stuck it on his mother's back

they love each other

Thursday, March 30, 2006


one can slam
almost any words together
too many and they become

some things
encourage addiction
more than others

i've been in blogland
most of the day


years ago
I learned to swim
under water

that was great fun
long as I didn't go deeper
than I could stand

one time
I did

it was not clear
where the bottom was
or, for that matter, the top

it was -

the lifeguard came
and pulled me out

I sat on the shore
in my towel

I remember
that rescue

Tuesday, March 28, 2006


Citizen Kane
lost it
in the end
at the start
which we find
was the loss
from an angry father
it seems

and it rolled
and it broke
the little snowscene
which is all that was left
of his sister, her name
(not his sled)
on his lips
as he died

Monday, March 27, 2006

Fambily Note

Dear Fambily,

Since here has become
So poetically inclined
You can find what used to be here
Over there

See the 'Profile'?
That's the place
to look
for 'just us'

And that's what it is:
just us

Where You Are

sometimes, I cannot be
where you are
it is too far

we sit together
but our minds range,
oh, orthogonally

it's alright though -
at least we know
where the other is

Sketch Q93.067

fighting the monday significance fear
where does it live?

the sky is red, perhaps it will rain
not perhaps, my friend

flowers and leaves brown at the cold window
the clock keeps ticking

city freeway traffic report on the switched-off radio
salvation plastered across a billboard

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Data Dump 20060326

revised data dump

what to do in this life and today i pour it out like this i like violin getting organized writing poetry doing research and playing guitar but it seems small while others build something with value. takes focus i'm sure and where does that come from besides deciding what to not do. i eat oatmeal and drink tea swim and shoot baskets or play raquetball with care for the knees and most days i check Dilbert. some people are much wiser and say less, think more, choose well, act considerately, are reliable, trustworthy, honest, prepared, and have straight teeth. all of this takes attention and of course time but mainly attention and ability to stay with something more than two minutes. this year an organization effort paid off for a while but the maintainence has slipped and here is a saturday and the choice is to reflect and write while the tea gets cold. somewhere my dad has written life adventures and someday i will read them, and somewhere my son is resting. ben franklin's autobiography is chocked full of advice for his son who had no interest, it goes like that. i wanted oh so badly to be a musician on the stage but chose instead chemistry which is full of problem solving and can be fun but when it becomes work is definitely work and it's not so easy to get it right. you see from the lab coat and safety glasses what this has led to, with the smile that thinks about being on stage. with chemistry came a focus on medicine and a selection of school and hours in the lab with a squirrel in my pocket, yes, a squirrel found quite young on the sidewalk, raised on a bottle, my companion and would sit on my shoulder, rarely bit, climbed up the curtains and had no clue what to do on a tree which was pretty sad the day a dog got it and reason enough to not repeat the experiment. life in the lab held instruments and computers and making them go and these years later much the same and my hair turned gray in grad school but that's genetic. yes graduate school because i liked solving problems, i also like plato's cave and wonder what's ahead. i've read the bible through and studied, schooled and golden ruled, argued and led and won but you know it all comes down to being desperately in need. i've asked for fixing and laid it all down and offered it up, admitted, committed, done groups and paid sessions, and journaled confessions, regretted regressions and forgotten concessions. i've spent hours learning to talk to machines and errors are frequent but found pretty quickly while people simply stop listening.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Data Dump

what to do in this life what to do and today i pour it out like this i like violin and getting organized and writing poetry and doing research and playing guitar but it really seems small and empty while others do a wonderfully focused job of building something with value and it takes focus i'm sure and where does that come from besides deciding what to not do. i eat my oatmeal and drink my tea and take my medicine and swim and even shoot baskets sometimes or play raquetball with care for the knees and other times exercise machines in a room of mirrors TVs and other exercisers. most days i check Dilbert because it is funny and often feels like the author must know somebody at my work he is so good at that. i like this writing but i don't know why. some people are much wiser and say less, think more, choose well, act considerately, are reliable, trustworthy, honest, prepared, and have straight teeth. they've learned, read, watched, known about, and in many cases, have been and done. all of this takes attention and of course time but mainly attention and ability to stay with something more than two minutes. this year so far an organization effort paid off for a while but the maintainence has slipped as it will and here is a saturday and the choice is to reflect and write while the tea gets cold. somewhere my dad has been writing out life adventures and i'm sure someday i will read them. and somewhere my son is resting. ben franklin wrote an autobiography chocked full with advice for his son who had no interest, it seems to go like that. i went to school like many and wanted oh so badly to be a musician on the stage but chose instead chemistry which is an acquired taste and full of problem solving which can be fun but when it becomes work is definitely work and it's not so easy to get things to actually work a lot of times. you can see from the lab coat and safety glasses what this has led to, with the smile that still thinks about being on stage. with chemistry came a focus on medicine and then a selection of school and hours in the lab sometimes with a squirrel in my pocket, yes, a squirrel found quite young on the sidewalk and raised on a bottle, my companion and would sit on my shoulder, rarely bit, liked to climb up the curtains and had no clue what to do on a tree which was pretty sad and one day a dog got it which is reason enough to not repeat the experiment although still hard to imagine leaving it as first found. life in the lab held instruments and computers and making them go and these years later have seen much of the same and my hair turned gray in graduate school but that's genetic. yes graduate school because i liked solving problems and am in awe of people like richard feynman who open up the nanoworld to the rest of us on the planet. i also like plato's cave and wonder about what's ahead. i've read the bible all through and studied and schooled and golden ruled and attempted to argue and lead and win by example but you know it comes down to being desperately in need. and i've asked for fixing and laid it all down and offered it up, admitted, committed, and all the rest, through groups and paid sessions, and journaled confessions, regretted regressions and frequent concessions. with many words comes many errors, i've spent hours learning to talk to machines and errors are more frequent but at least you find out pretty quickly (most of the time). people sometimes simply stop listening.

Face Value

The Face
has appeared
but only
on this planet

Friday, March 24, 2006

Simple Prayer

just take me
like i am

More Garbage

"if you've seen it once
you've seen it for always"

the words ring
like a curse

how will they eat
if i lose my way

The Weak End

I felt only
that the others
did it better

Thursday, March 23, 2006

A Cleaner Flow

traces des pensées
que je ne me tiens plus
ils sont dans les ordures

ils étaient ici
pour tous à voir

une révélation
je suppose

la vie est si courte

* * *

traces of thoughts
i'd rather not hold
they're in the trash now

they were here
held up for display

some kind of disclosure
i guess

life flows by
so quickly

Sunday, March 19, 2006

The Reason Why

unwritten rules
seldom spoken
never heard

First Quarter Update

creeping like a frightened rat
along the cold damp edge
of some rotted old farm shed

a pile of miscellaneous treasure
by his bed, books unread
music that may never see
the light of day

poems reduced to bits
and bites of words
heard by a few

time spent, all of it
a hunger for pulling off
something really impressive

or failing that
to learn
the hard way

Broken Blogger Blues (for Pat's Muse)

(Background for this is Pat Paulk's recent "Wait Staff" - about server problems)

This mornin' for breakfast
I chawed de mornin' [error]
This mornin' for breakfast
Chawed de mornin' [error]
But this evenin' for supper
I got evenin' [error] to spare

(adapted from "Evenin' Air Blues" by Langston Hughes)

I've tweaked this several times ("err'r" instead of the original "air" was the first attempt, then just "err", then "server" instead of "mornin'" and "evenin'") but have decided that it's simply a good example of unskilled adaptation. Pat's poetry is pretty good though, and as far as I know his server is working again...

Saturday, March 18, 2006

On Doit Choisir

Il n'y a pas beaucoup de choix ici
parse que j'ai soulement cent (ou deux cents) mots
mais quelques jours
je dis moins de cinquante

* * *

One Must Choose

There isn't a lot of choice here
because I only have a hundred (or two hundred) words
but some days
I say less than fifty

Friday, March 17, 2006

The Meaning of Goodbye

two brave young boys
in the front row
beside strong, caring dad
holding hands and saying goodbye
to her
such a thing
for them to learn
the meaning of goodbye
(goodbye, Kristy)

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Asleep at the Mouse

overtime gaze
screenwise nod
mouse nap

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Haiku Malpractice

think hard and long
wonder about impact
look for comments

take the afternoon off
read hemingway
(become an errand target)

read about a false friend
feel somehow guilty
ashamed of pretense

write it down
regretful lack of skill

calm down
it's all right
try again - later

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Moon Distance

full moon tonight
travel here
by cloud

* * *

an improvement
offered by aa -

full moon
cloud travel

* * *

Monday, March 13, 2006

Snow Day

what a lovely day
when the snow comes
an unplanned vacation

spent the morning
resting, reading,
thinking, and writing

fetched Chaucer from the shelf*
and dove into
Troilus and Cressida

reading by the fire
a love story from 1380 or so
albeit in modern English

(with middle English in ye middle)**

such a confused arrangement
with a go-between
a sure recipe for disaster

demanding rhyming structure
supplications at the start of each section
to keep the poem going

i don't blame him
or the translators
who pulled it off

tomorrow, it's back to work
but better rested
and the richer for having read

*see Aurora Antonovic's inspiring post on spending time at the bookstore
**here of course i would love to have been able to say it in middle English
***this footnote is going nowhere, and is just for show

Heavy Snow

I know next to nothing about proper haiku. Today there is snow so heavy that several arborvitae in the yard are bent over to the ground. Will try:

wet flakes floating down
growing thick on slender branch
small tree leaning over

my wife has taught some poetry and recommended changing the last line, especially since the trees are in fact about 10-12 feet tall. Again:

wet flakes floating down
growing thick on evergreens
trees bent to the ground

something about the 'wet flakes' and 'floating down' doesn't seem right. How about this:

heavy snow in spring
grow thick on evergreens
trees bent to the ground

like listening to someone learn violin, this must seem dreadful to those who know better. Your comments/advice welcome.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Et Maintenant, Le Lingala

my wife would visit

with sewing machines
and friendships
in the jungle

there is a history
of connections
and disconnections

one must take care
study, prepare
for a few words there

in Lingala,
mbote! and ndenge nini?
are hi and how are you

i found more Lingala
though noted in French
so much thirst, so little quench

i do not know
how it will go
but i can only hope

that cars and planes
and river lanes
will run, and not need rope

and lights will light
and no one fight
or in the darkness grope

that flies won't bite
or caterpillars squirm
in food, and may she cope

with smiles and nods
and looks inquiring
and find it in the end inspiring

while i each day
when she is away
will mumble Lingala, or French, or just pray.

Just Some Guy

i'm just
some guy
on the web
that's all

there are lines
in my hands
that i can't read
maybe you can

there's a book
by my bed
with some letters
in red

it says
loved so much
that they gave:

(it's greek to me)
for whoever


these all tend to get stripped away
by the bad breath
of daily life

must brush
and floss

just some guy
on the internet
that's all

much of the world
goes to bed

while we
spend time
on the web

guilty as charged

some guy
on the internet

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Better Left Unsaid

eager inhalation
diaphragm compression
and out it comes

the flow of words

it's amazing, really,
how much damage
can be done

by a few words

hoping to impress
or win favor
or otherwise mislead

often does quite the opposite

just thinking out loud -
or doubting, rather.

have you ever read
the first few chapters
of Descartes' Meditations?

he had a lot of time
to think
and deliberately doubt


i don't know many people
who have that kind of time

but it's interesting reading -
i listened to my daughter read it
for her philosophy class

i was simply happy
to be there listening
and talking about it

her computer needed repair
so i was there
waiting for more help to arrive

i'm more careful what i say
since i don't know - really -
how many chances i'll have

this is getting long
and it's late
but please know

that i was thinking of you

Crack of the Bat

over the fence
and into the lights
the final home run

Kirby Puckett
a Twin unlike any other
rest well

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

A Noisy Rehearsal

into the warehouse
of what was manufacture,
now workshop of rock gods

behind locked doors
the sound cannot help
but be heard

we arrive from the day
and adjust the lights
to reds, blues, amber and green

the tuning, the list,
the listening, the question
of who will sing, and which part

once through, and again,
and on to the next
some are ok, some need repair

at 9, we consider
to stop, but one more
and then it happened

such sound from next door, like no walls at all
we imagine their faces to be melted cheese
and how will they manage to walk down the hall?

we send over a volley of electric guitar
answered with volumes of smoke on water
for a minute or so

and then silence
we laugh, and yell over
'you win!'

in the parking lot
talk about work
and friendly goodbyes

i feel quite certain
the sound is still there
through much of the night

Morning Tea

almost every day
she makes the tea
and i squint-eyed shuffle
into the kitchen

she is reading
and the shower is running
for one of the girls

the track-lights shine
and i settle into the chair
almost every day

and you are there
and we share a few thoughts
one side at a time

the sky out the window
may be foggy, like today
or cloudless, or still dark
the sky goes very high

here on the ground
there is all manner of living
and dying, and losing,
and finding, and keeping

and after all
i've said
much as i would

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Down Time

push push push
shove shove shove
grit grit grit

how how how
can can can
this this this

keep keep keep
up up up
? ? ?

must must must
not not not
stop stop stop

go go go
on on on
on on on

why why why
write write write
more more more

draw draw draw
some some some
lines lines lines

/ / /
+ + +
- - -

have have have
to to to
quit quit quit

soon soon soon
or or or
break break break

thanks thanks thanks
for for for
asking asking asking

how how how
are are are
you you you

??? ??? ???
??? ??? ???
??? ??? ???

Flutter, Splutter, and Avoid the Butter

turning to the pool resource
i finally ask for help
on a basic thing

learning to crawl
without drowning
or running out of steam

inhale on each stroke
then blow bubbles
clear it all out

then kick alone
thrashing, but no motion
"oh for a camera" my daughter said

easier on the back
though still some coughing
"keep the knees underwater"

breathe, kick, glide
arms sweeping wide
this one goes the best

tired but unashamed
at last taking the plunge
to make like a fish

Clothing Time


to go out into the world

to turn the lights on

to finish up

and not stay here

Monday, March 06, 2006

The Fade

"day is done
gone the sun
from the lakes
from the hills
from the sky..."

who can know
the mind of a soldier
once the damage

is done

Sunday, March 05, 2006


lovely snow today
i'd show you if i could
the mud is all covered

the blog takes time
too much some days
with uncertain gain

i would play along
if i knew some of the tunes
of the poet maestros

they are pretty good
every day it seems,
masters at reasoned rhyme

and there are those
with pain disclosed
with wounds that need to heal

i'll silent be
except for here
or when i simply feel

the need

Saturday, March 04, 2006



the brooding list

parents(hi there)

don't mind me, please

when in the course
of human events
it becomes necessary
for one people

to brood,

i go to my desk
in the cold basement
and write declarations
of dissolving and assuming

but today:

i received a brooding lamp
from the resident chick
who keeps me warm

it hangs over the keyboard
to warm my fingers
while i type

and for my feet
a ceramic heater
it also dries shoes

she doesn't mind
being called 'chick'
as long as it's clear
what i mean

she looks
quite good
to me

i think i will leave
the brooding
til later

Friday, March 03, 2006


like usual
the comforting keys
and colored glow

a dayload
of half-thoughts
in tattered piles
needs sorting

it will have to wait

i look for you
and you are there
or were
and said
or wrote

but i have cleverless words
of promises i must keep
and piles to go before i sleep
lovely, dark, and softly deep

Thursday, March 02, 2006


pity the fool
who puts foot forward
pulls it back
starts again
only to stop

a simple thank you
is preferred
over a foolish display
followed by apology

more simple advice:
when another is on stage
appreciate, and
keep your harmonica
in your pocket

The Open Gate

somehow i left it open
like so many times before

Wednesday, March 01, 2006


"is keeping me waiting" CSimon


we rehearse


"...don't push, don't shove,
we don't need no help
fallin' in and out of love"

it's by

recorded in
cape town

there's a violin solo
in the middle

i like it.

a lot.

*you can listen:
"Don't Push"

Tuesday, February 28, 2006


"We, who are on the road,
must have a code that we can live by" -- CSNY

emerging from his laboratory world
to look about and find they are there,
the poets, musicians, who daily check
round the world, and create, and admire

tentatively joining in, uninvited, hoping
but not too sure
that the time spent
is otherwise misspent

he pulls his violin from case
tightens bow
feels the resonating
and wonders

"how are they today"
asleep, some
for it is night there
though soon they wake

can be so close

Farming Away vs. Here

Seated in the this small town at the edge of a modest metropolis amid cornfields and river in the midwestern US, I tippy-tapped along to Corante this morning to read about farmshoring. Business gets 'insourced' to these midwestern lands where labor and space welcome the interest.

Time for another cup of tea.

Monday, February 27, 2006

Built to Fall Apart

Added two silly blogs to the portfolio:

one for keeping track of food intake (several in our family are doing this in their own separate ways)

and another on a garage roof project that is long overdue.

How silly.

But, you know, if it helps me get them done...

What do you think?

Running the Bulls

Why do they do this?

Sunday, February 26, 2006


Froelich, Iowa is reportedly the birthplace of the tractor. I found a few pictures of Froelich.

Saturday, February 25, 2006


on to more organizing

heater to basement, thermometer reading 62 F, this a bit better

the piles have grown, but today they go.

beautiful sunny day outside,16 F / -9 C

Peter being Aragorn on PS2. Me messing around reading online, 'blogsploring', wasting time, washing a few dishes. Time now to focus a bit.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

A Need for Space

Good article on with perspective that "...youth will continue to work out identity issues, hang out and create spaces that are their own, regardless of what technologies are available."

[The article is from American Association for the Advancement of Science, which publishes the highly-regarded journal Science. The author also posts to one of the Corante blogs called Many2Many)

Blogging with Distinction

Just finished looking through a Corante blog for lawyers. (Corante seems to have a very good selection of blogs on a variety of topics). The post from a couple of days ago discusses the need for companies to have policies regarding blogging.

This blog is clearly a personal one.

Listening this morning to Radio France International (RFI). Good listening practice.

The van passed the 200000 mark last night. Somehow I notice these things.

No mosquitoes today (they were talking about mosquitoes on the radio).

Girls off to school, and time for me to head along the road with bass guitar and laptop in the well-traveled van.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Thar's Gold in Them Thar Pills

One of my favorite drug research blogs is Derek Lowe's "In the Pipeline" which yesterday commented on the use of gold nanoparticles attached to antibodies to permit direction of the gold to cancer cells, followed by selective laser irradation that can go through 4 inches of tissue and heat up the gold particles, killing the cells. Derek's post includes several links to literature references (with photos of cells).

Scott Adams is fending off criticism for a stereotype of hillbillies - a well written comment on his Feb. 18 cartoon, with artful response.

Beautiful pre-sunrise sky in the east. Great day to be on an Appalachian mountain, I'd bet.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

If the Cap Fits

The cd "If the Cap Fits" by fiddler Kevin Burke arrived today. Loaded with tunes by Burke, recorded 1972 or so, mostly solo fiddle. Great listening material. Includes some of the tunes I've been learning.

Today at work I had a poster presentation to do and had the Mark O'Connor cd on the laptop there at low volume. It made the time go by pretty fast for me and relaxed some of the people who stopped by. Good sessions overall, more tomorrow.

I do like wearing a cap. On a visit to the UK we bought one, it was since lost but a replacement was obtained and I wear it during coolish spring and fall weather.

Monday, February 20, 2006

Carnegie Haul

Recently received a copy of this now old book, How to Win Friends and Influence People. Not being particularly good at either, it seems, it's time to read it again. Carnegie recommends re-reading it monthly for a while. Probably wouldn't hurt. Read each chapter twice before going on, underline, make notes.

Missed a good music listening opportunity last night - completely forgot, even though it was on the calendar at home. Simply too tired and worried about reading some patents. Imagine!

Available to help with homework. This needs to be the priority these evenings. Took Peter to piano lesson tonight, he got some special pens as a prize for practicing every day. I guess that's unusual.

Trying to eat smaller portions with a view to losing some weight. Ongoing theme. Had a good cup of Chai for lunch today. Treats abound at work, birthdays, engagement (one this past weekend), work anniversary. All good, but easy to overeat.

On we go through the end of February. It goes so fast.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Midnight on the Water

Got Mark O'Connor CD of this name today. Fabulous. Also put in order for Kevin Burke "If the Cap Fits" which is collector item, a bit difficult to find.

Had an hour-long fiddle lesson today. Resolved to get those Irish tunes memorized - it takes time. From there to coffee house where Beam Reach was finishing up their last set, sat in on a couple of their original numbers (Thanks Richard!).

Time to engage more in the fiddle. Tomorrow at Columbia Grounds there is a Bluegrass Jam running 10:30 to 2:00 PM. Sunday evening at Keegan's there is an Irish music session from 6 PM until close, recommended by my teacher.

List of Irish tunes to be located and posted here later.

Stopped over at Natalie's dorm, her laptop evidently has a dead hard drive. Left a copy of Knoppix 4.0 which boots up the Linux operating system and helps tide her over for a while.

Home now, pile to sort through in 'in box' to keep that part of the work up to date, and then on to the violin stuff. Looking forward to it.

Oh yes, also was asked for contact info today at the coffeehouse by someone interested in having violin on some of the songs that their group does (original composition). Good start.

All for 5:43 PM. About 11 F outside.

Great Django/Grappelli video here.

Friday, February 17, 2006


It was Friday evening of a long week and I'd had about all the caffeine I could drink. My eyes were sore from staring at the screen and my legs were numb from sitting too long. I pondered the motion of this planet turning on its slow trip around the sun. My usual blog checks were dry. I wondered whether it was foolish to even try. It wouldn't be the only foolish thing.

Mid February and we must be pretty far from the sun's warmth. Too many seconds and the skin starts to freeze. Breathe in and gasp down cold air. Run for the door, or at least trot. Where are my gloves? Through the doors and in. Impressive cold.

Lonely cold. Life gets lonely sometimes. "Tell me about it!" you say. Yes. I'm sorry. Should visit. Make it a priority. Moons come and go.

Listen hard
to the wafting
and raving voice
calling years ago:

"How much longer,
How much very longer
Can I stand firm
or stand at all?

I give all,
I fall,
I rest,
I did my best.

Did you hear
what I said?
It was for you -
It was
for you."

But I didn't know, and couldn't know, and maybe even wouldn't know.

It was Friday evening, and I wandered to my room, and laid down, and slept.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

A Fine Man

No, it's not Charlie Brown this time. It's Richard P. Feynman, who I've mentioned earlier under "Inside Out" January, 4, and especially regarding his 1959 lecture at Cal Tech on nanotechnology. Do take a break sometime and read this through.

Wits End Close

I love the names of the little passageways in Edinburgh - 'Closes' - I think there's one called World's End Close. The title here seems like it would fit right in somewhere along the Royal Mile.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006


Good morning. Chilly again, 7 F and some windchill. Several wood screws in the back walkway popped as I walk out to drive Cara to school for an early morning make-up test. She attended Steve's funeral yesterday (see post from a few days ago regarding Steve). It's good that the school makes allowance for things like this, seems like there has been quite a bit this school year.

Daughter #1 just called re needing new contacts. She's had some temporary contact lenses and it's time to get fresh ones. Fresh contacts. Amazing.

Sky a bright crisp blues, sparse bright yellow clouds, sun just up.

Got a nice valentine from Rose, saying that it's nice when I help her with algebra. Very sweet.

Conference with Peter's teachers yesterday, saw some of his writing and drawings. Seems to be doing real well.

Work stays interesting, research and otherwise. Sure feels good to have the organizing going into place, there's far too much going on to not have a serious organization effort.

Need to get to the Y during the week somehow, maybe early mornings. Music with Noisy Withdrawal tonight, with music team tomorrow night, violin lesson Saturday morning.

And that's life for today. Cup of tea done, a cup of coffee later, finish working on a presentation today, and try to spend some time in the lab.





Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Christo and Jeanne-Claude

A hallmark of much of the work of Christo and Jeanne-Claude is things wrapped up. The wrapped buildings, the blocked street, the Pont Neuf, the islands. Attention is drawn by covering the things up. The current project is to cover a section of the Arkansas River. They're self-funded projects, intentionally so to keep the art pure. I have a small piece of fabric somewhere that was part of the project to cover the Reichstag, it was a gift from a foreign exchange student who stayed with us for a short while. It's really amazing that these people can pull it off, it takes years to get all the permission and planning done.