Tuesday, September 26, 2006

After a little absence

So anyone who pays attention to this space probably knows why I haven't been posting lately. Think about it.

I been busy. Mostly what I been busy doing is getting ready. Cleaning up. Letting contractors in. Paying contractors off. For a week before that I was kept fairly busy arranging and/or supervising & approving estimates. The final stage was when my Dad came out to help me install a thoroughly bitching ceiling fan.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Ahoy, Mateys!

ARRRRRRGH!! YAAARRRRGH!! Avast, ye scurvy mongrels! Happy Talk Like A Pirate Day to ye, one and all!!!

Friday, September 15, 2006

The Non-9/11 Post

LET me tell you about a moment I had some ten years ago.

I was working on a poem. I forget which one. It was something I had started writing before I knew what I was really after, which is how most of my favorite bits go. At one point I started to question myself-- what was I doing? Is this what the "market" wants? And then I said to hell with it. Who cares? Not like I was in the Academy or anything. I can write whatever the hell I want.

So I did. And I liked it. And I still do.

I avoided doing a post on September 11th this year out of a feeling that I needn't. A feeling that everybody else would. Alot of folks did, and everything I read was gratifying and appropriate, and a couple of things were illuminating. And I wouldn't begin to take anything away from anything that was posted, and I wouldn't begin to suggest that I had anything better to say. But now I want to do what I felt like doing, what my impulse was last Monday morning, what I didn't do because I didn't know if it was necessary.

This is what I wrote at ten fifteen on the eleventh of September in the year two thousand and one.


"The nation reeled in horror as the work day began with a series of bombs and crashes that left the World Trade Center in flames and smoke billowing from the Pentagon.
[In Boston]A visitor from Texas wept.
'I can't believe what I'm seeing. I never thought I would see anything like this in my lifetime," said 20-year-old Beverly Evans of Dallas. "How can we stop something like this from happening?'"
Reuters Report, 09/11/2001, 10:35 AM

Thousands of miles away. I am stunned.
I cannot get my mind around the image
off an album cover, out of a comic book, impossible
unthinkable, the twin towers melting down
like Roman candles, melting in the midst of New York
like wax. It strains credulity. In my minds eye I can summon
figures leaping from the tower, but I can't make out anything more
than a sillhouette; like in Hitler's paintings, they have no faces.
What I can make real is the faces of the stunned and wounded
wandering the smoke-dunned streets of Manhattan
trying to punch up numbers on their cell phones
or queing up to get to a pay phone
just to say I'm here; I'm safe.
I can hear sirens, and the murmur of tens of thousands of voices
trying to make things somehow better, less like
this horrible thing has happened. This does not happen;
my mind is fixed on a point of contention:
this does not happen, things like this
do not happen, as I listen to the reports
of emergency personnel rushing to the scene
to somehow stanch the flow of blood
from this gaping wound
in the Isle of Manhattan as I sit at my desk
in Charlotte, North Carolina
thousands of miles away

Where nothing ever happens.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

But Honey, This One's Eating My Popcorn

First of all, let me explain.

I found this poem the other day while cleaning put a closet, in the process of clearing out the place in advance of some home improvements. At the time of the writing, admittedly, I wasn't what you'd call a tee-tottler, hardly absentious, but that isn't what this is about.

At the time, the trendy thing was getting clean. Sobriety was the new catch-phrase, and there was a virtual revolving chorus of authors who were following book tours and talk-show spots with arrests for DUI and crash landings at rehab centers. So that's kind of what this is about.


Sobriety is out to get me.
Sobriety wants to eat me alive.
Sobriety wants to make my brain dead fuzz,
To gnaw through my chest to the back of my soul.

Sobriety needs to hear my pain
Creaking like a dead house in the wind.
Sobriety wants to live in me
Like a dead house
And re-arrange my furniture.

Sobriety wants to crush the nut of my heart,
Wants to call pain love
Wants to call death sanity.
Sobriety clutches the back of my neck
Listening as my voice dies in a high wind
Watching the light die in my eyes.

Sobriety sits on my chest at dawn
Grins at me as I awaken
And asks “Are you ready?”

Sobriety is out to get me.
Sobriety wants to eat me alive.