Posts Tagged ‘spirit’

follow the words

Thursday, December 30th, 2010

Can you follow the words, even though they lack familiar meaning or intent?

Can you let the disconnected images bounce off your mind and make something new?

Can you get beyond the irritation this exercise may bring and get beyond the frustration and loss of focus to just let the words fall like gentle rain on your mind’s inner room?

Read it again and just let it glide until you picture different things that will engender some meaning in their random connections to your inner self.

Listen as the words become pictures and change their meanings and tumble and echo and spark with contrast and confusion into paths of light and sound.

Follow the words and enjoy the bouquet that forms into glyphs and clouds
as you chant and sing without realizing or intended thought.

Can you follow the words, follow the words and swallow the words
and allow the words and tallow the words and mellow the words and — the words… the words, not just words.


Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

The yellow barking of a hand saw,
the swirl of rubber on pavement
the squawk of the electric drill
over the riffs of Coleman Hawkins

The eternal running of those with wheels
searching for peace and a piece
that passes them with no understanding
but satiates for a moment their greeds.

Winds in the cords of dreams and memories
strum at the fibers in her neck and twitch
at her crotch while humming in her right ear
come back and move on in relief, sweet relief.

Settling in to the cacophony of dirigibles
slanted toward the pane onto the yard below
harmonizing in delight at the sound of birds
and the sight of squirrels hiding their faces.

Minds can think and even realize
but never recreate the realities that have passed
into oblivion and memory with scents of myrrh
and old fish trembling in ecstasy’s blight.

Lonely sounds bring comfort to the bridge
as airplanes and telescopes bend toward the night
into which pours the candles and blocks
that burn out of sight and darken our world.

But, the dawn brings a replay of echoes
over and under each other that weave into a piece
that plays its symphony to bears and doves alike
while the dreams for the other subside and fade.

Keep paddling and pushing, planting and burning
as the willow spurns the turtle, so does the swan
swim in the air that wraps its tendrils around us
bringing home that longed for effervescence of life.

breaking out

Tuesday, September 28th, 2010

I’m not a drunk nor am I a drifter

I’m not a nasty old fuck nor a saint

I’m not poor or a man of considerable means

I’m not well read nor am I stupid

I’m not suffering from depression

I’m not angry at the world

I’m not mad, sad or particularly glad

I am too serious, on the outside at least

I am pretty loose, on the inside anyway

I am feeling a little stiff when trying to express

what lies wiggling in ferment inside my head


I think I’m living in a shell

one that looks good on the outside anyway

one that is a veneer of rule following

one that is acceptable to those around it

one that hides the real me inside it

one that only shows little bumps when pushed from inside

one that keeps the fire and sharp barbs in

one that I am constantly trying to break through

one that has taken on a life of its own

one that I compromise with to maintain balance

one that I plan to shatter before it smothers me entirely.


Inside I hate rules and directions given

can’t stand proven methods or routine approaches

I prefer the challenge of the unknown

to tackle on my own

without any directions

or rules to follow

nothing to do but lead myself

into whatever mess

and see where it leads

without any care for its end

or where it takes me.


It took me years to build my shell

years of training and practice

at looking like I fit in

at learning how to say

… not what I really mean

… but what will sell

at sounding like I’m educated

… by something other than my own experience

at coming off as credentialed

… by institutions I abhor

at appearing to be a part of a society

at smelling clean

at doing the right things at the right times

at not farting aloud

at not talking to myself

at being acceptable.


How can I be a poet or writer without being a drunk?

How can I capture your imagination without some pranks?

How can I sound credible without a little rancor?

How can I stop hiding my fire and sharply pointed sticks?

How can I break through my shell?

How can I even tell

when I have?


I’ve been a drunk at times

I’ve pulled some pretty awful pranks

I’ve spewed forth terse invectives

I’ve poked and prodded the mighty without shame

I’ve broken through my shell on occasion

I just don’t settle into continuing patterns

… by choice

I’ve been and done many things

and I’m seeing so many more to be and do.


So I feel like a chick

pecking at its shell

that already has some pretty big holes in it

hoping to chip my way through

so I can no longer hide

my real self inside.

I’m more than ready to ride

just got to let it slide.

rotting to perfection

Friday, September 17th, 2010

I used to feel like I was part of a mass movement for good
like a particle in a sea of positive elements all moving
in the same direction generally, each contributing
even though we are all very differently endowed.

Now I feel more like I am a piece of discarded refuse
in spite of my continuing contributions and activities;
a piece of rotting food on a pile of more rotting food
used only to fuel the vagaries of a few vultures and rats
who quarrel over the few remaining bits we comprise.

Politicians, bankers, generals, preachers and pirates
feeding their insatiable egos on the rotting remains of civility
and reasonable order, enjoying especially the mindless
scent of their misguided followers’ rantings and alms,
pushing them further into the greedy nirvana they crave.

How far will we have to rot here before we become choking
in our putrescence — how vile must we get to have an effect
that reflects the nature of our situation until it rightly gags
the devouring giants and hungrily-nibbling rats
toppling them into an abyss from which they again feed our growth.

Its probably just another example of the balance of everything
over time, repeating its rhythmic dance and my anxiety is nothing
but my part to be played in this tableau so here I am,
promoting being to the extreme, being to our limits and just a little
beyond since that is the essence of life — pushing and pulling.

Whoever you are, now is the time to act out, to hold no reins
and be a part of the life that surrounds us in this beautiful chaos.
Burn brightly from every orifice and do your part what ever it is:
devouring and becoming fatter yet or rotting and becoming putrid
enough to do the choking of those greedy bastards. Get up and dance!

mind find grind

Sunday, December 13th, 2009

I’m not asking for much
just to be in touch
with the voice inside
who lately’s chosen to hide.

I watch others clever inventions
and artfully gravelly voices
make my soul seek its intentions
while they seem to have real choices.

Where are those words that once seemed to float
in torrents that gave me such pleasure
the ones that could make the word “goat”
just right to fit with my newfound leisure.

Do I really have to take things in my own hands
and force it if you will
or does it simply come from one of those glands
that feed the longing skill.

Its forced and I know it, it just doesn’t feel right
it hasn’t that ring all poignant and warm
if it doesn’t just flow on its own, out of sight
and then, reeling back with such wonderful form.

Where are you oh welcome stranger whose left me stranded
on the distant shores of wanting and vacuous flight
feeling not just wordless but wain and wrong handed
Come back and please, just help me write

Flowing words and catchy phrases
that lift the soul and tickle the inner orchestra
with thoughts and sights that spur praises
at the insanity of meaning and acoustic aphasia.

Does it matter what’s said and what we read?
Of course you fool, and you’d best take heed
To force the muse you will certainly strangle
whatever little thoughts it started to wrangle

And leave this sitting all dazed and confused
when all you wanted was to re-meet the muse.
There’s something inside but it just needs to bubble
in its own time to yield without all this trouble

as it cries for silence to surround its shell
or at least the end of such irrelevant chatter and din
but from which must arise at last and as well
the pieces of trash that make it ring deep within.

Om mani padme hum
the mantra rings still in the temple of my mind.
It takes a fossil fueled ‘varoom’
and makes it into a beloved ‘bump and grind’

Out of the clatter comes a song
if only the rhythm you can find
and see that really, all along,
its all just part of the presence of mind.

faces of children

Tuesday, October 27th, 2009

The faces of children, eager and innocent
portend a future hopeful and good

while adults afar debate and wrangle
over dollars and power

these seeds are watered and fed
with both love and garbage

I pray their innate wisdom will help them
to glean what they need to grow strong

in spite of the decay and wrongs meted out
by so many of us elders in our misguided pride.

Faces of children, open and ready
lead us all to our place in the sun.

how its supposed to be

Saturday, October 10th, 2009

My partner Jane has a favorite faucet
which she has mounted on our bathroom basin
it is one of those with a raised and arching spout
a small version of what one would see in
a doctor’s office.

She loves it because its great for washing her hair
and I’m pleased that she has the knowledge and skill
to have mounted it herself though
she placed its base backwards and as a result
the faucets turn the reverse of what would be expected.

Though its been several years like that
each morning as I shave and wash there
I still fumble with their turning directions and feel
that something just isn’t as its supposed to be.

We had noticed an occasional dripping
slowly in our absence and hard to detect
and finally I decided to deal with that
and take the so-called washerless faucets apart.

Washerless faucets are supposed to be better
than their washered predecessors but I wonder
as I pay ten times as much for the delicate spring
and flimsy plastic sleeve that serve in the washers place.

In completing the repair I realized an opportunity
to correct the turning direction of the faucets
to how they are supposed to be and did just that
so simple after all these years.

Now each morning I find myself still trying to turn them
the wrong way rather than how they are supposed to be
and wonder at my conditioning and reconditioning
only to find my condition not how its supposed to be

They were wrong and now they are right and now
I am fumbling with their rightness just as I did
with their wrongness.

Is anything ever what its supposed to be?
Thankfully not — and that’s how its supposed to be.

labor day

Monday, September 7th, 2009

“Too lazy to work and too nervous to steal”
– Aaron “T-Bone” Walker

Hearing this rang a bell with me
that’s exactly how I feel about my life
I don’t like work and can’t bring myself to steal
nor do I do well as self-employed
unless the work comes to me

I’m a lone wanderer and a watcher
rather than a joiner or teammate
and my life’s path has been just that
a meander without many lasting connections
to hold me down as I float free from the web

that seems to hold everyone else
in comfort and ease to do what they please
while I bounce along on the periphery
risking all and gaining little
but happy nonetheless to hang there

so when I leave this iteration
there will be but a faint imprint
where I have trod though I’d like it to be more
something of value that made the world
a better place for my heirs and more

Something of spirit now moves me to dance
and sing along with the winds of change
to ring out clearly and linger on
in the hearts and souls of my progeny
to pass on through love to this world and beyond

Too lazy to work, too nervous to steal
brave enough to sing and make it all real.

just be cuz

Sunday, July 12th, 2009

Yesterday I spent some time with some cousins
whom I hadn’t seen in years and it was on the occasion
of their dear mother’s death – someone else I hadn’t seen enough
and wish I had since she was so very very sweet and warm

love never fails to amaze me with its power to transcend
just about everything – make that everything.

I can see my aunt and uncle’s love in my cousins
and want to get to know all of them better – I have
sixteen or seventeen of them all totaled – from my mother’s
five siblings and wonder why I feel so compelled

Maybe its curiosity about what we have in common
and what our differences are and what might we have done
if living in a more tribal culture where we might be
more interdependent and what part of the larger
tribal milieu we might have filled with our talents

or maybe what we might yet do in some fashion
to enhance each other’s dreams and aspirations
before its too late

Our culture and upbringing has made us independent
and that has been a real asset and also perhaps
a limitation in its division as we have moved on
figuratively and geographically to separate lives
from our siblings and friends that leaves a cloudy hole

Might there be a missing piece we’ve yet to discover?

In the last ten years I’ve reconnected with several other cousins
and it feels good to just now they are there living their lives
in so many different ways

Yesterday on discussing a cousin’s reunion involving us all
my long lost (to me anyway) cousin Sandra replied ” Just be cuz”
and it hit a chord with me since word play is something
I love and often obsess over for fun – just because –

justBcuz – I love it!

A pun, a name for a movement, a rallying cry to our clan
Let’s reunite just for fun and see what we learn of life and love
and what we’ve missed of each other over these years
since we once ran around on Christmas eve’s and thanksgivings past
with our Grandma and Grandpa Stiles looking on.

We’ve spread far and wide and our means may vary
but I think we can find a place and time to meet that will work for us all
where we might blow off the dust of time and circumstance
to discover who we are and what our commons bonds have
to offer

Just because.

what I like about bicycles

Tuesday, July 7th, 2009

What I like about bicycles is
their simplicity designed to fit
the human body and propel it
forward most efficiently

While details and mechanics
may change the basic layout
remains the same – two wheels
handle bars seat and pedals

Form and function are meeting
in the barest of arenas here
as the body fits into this array
and dances with the parts

suspended in the air while moving
breath and muscle blood and sweat
to glide in rhythmic revolutions
over the earth beneath

If perfectly fit in size and angle
the bike and body blend into one
breathing watching adjusting
as the mind projects the path

forward and around with subtle hints
at azimuth and angle direction
and speed navigating obstacles
while keeping the course

past sights and sounds that surround
and fill it with joy and desire
as the heart pumps oxygen into
its carrier and endorphins burst

upon the scene being played out
as riding becomes the present
and all-encompassing experience
that is cycling and even when stopped

the cycle itself can portend that trip
by its aesthetic arrangement
of mechanical parts in the simplest
arrangements so placed

that its juncture with the human form
can be minimal in contact and thought
simple in operation by design
and a beauty to behold

one gear one body one brake
leaves the mind uncluttered
as the body and bike unite
with time wind and path