Saturday, August 8, 2020

A Lifetime of Collected Stones

I wouldn't write but it appears I have to say something again, something that got lost in the mid-eighties. From my perch in the hay loft - between books and guitars and a lifetime of collected stones - I watch chickadees hop from branch to branch in the hemlock tree. Pale sun, frail son. Some of the men who scared me are still alive, and what can anyone do about this? Days pass stacking tires along the canvas tarps that will keep the hay at least a little bit dry. Snakes pass with their mouths full of toads who are maybe saying goodbye, maybe asking for help. I remember mornings going out into the fields, wondering how far I'd get before that little voice began calling me home. Even now you can hear it, a breeze just over the hill, a thunder storm on the other side of the river.

Friday, August 7, 2020

Relational Conflagration

Perhaps nobody needs anything and all this was just a confused cry in the darkness. At 5 a.m. I wade through grass to feed and water the chickens, pausing briefly to admire Venus, bright as a glass bead between branches of rusting hemlock and, closer to the barn, actual beads of dew on which royal purples glisten and shimmer. When you fall in love, you don't know you are falling because it feels like a joining, but when you land you realize you are not not-alone and it's okay - it's more than okay - which is all love ever teaches anybody. The coffee, the cold calls, the interior chrysanthemum floating in a mountain brook. Miniature cities in which lovers consent to relational conflagration. Five nights running the ghost of a certain dead dog appeared, accompanying me through difficult hours and work I have yet to sufficiently understand. A woman tosses in bed and I watch from what feels like a thousand miles away but is actually just here, just another dream in just another skull, going nowhere but wherever the current says. Late, but not too late, and with the precise joy becoming of a priest, I embrace the pure neutrality of Love.

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Murmurs and Rumors

After rain. The trees are like saints, old hemlocks so tight with grace no disturbance or distance is possible. Who cried, who told the truth despite the many good reasons not to, and who ended up in a small town far away from home?

Jesus is a way of emphasizing beginnings. When shall we be captured? 

Antiquated texts. Letters to mothers.

Sex at 5 a.m., unusually urgent, the heat yet to begin yet our bodies sweating, birds sounding tentative from over beyond the barn. Demands to which I acquiesce gratefully. Growling coming because of the deep place touched.

Coffee after. And after coffee, sex again, but sexlessly, soundlessly, shamelessly.


The lake was almond-shaped and stories were told about what had disappeared into its depths, one or two of which were affirmatively frightening. An early emphasis on cannabis.

On a platypus anarchist.


After rain, finding oneself in twilit writing naturally softening, and by softening elongating, the sentences reminding me why I shift in their direction always. Blue jay feathers, smooth stones in the river, towering clouds, and other non-iconic icons.

And murmurs and rumors, all saying what.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Certain Prayers Are Now More Helpful

Morning quiet, soft skies. I make a pot of tea for Chrisoula, then coffee for me. It's really interesting how well math works.

Slipping into poetics as a means of persuasion. You have to be brave and cunning and act fast, seems to be one of the lessons of the fairy tale. We talk about Greek gods all the way to Pittsfield.

Mirrors abound. Lately blue jays have been the augurers but the real point is that augury is not extinct. To what critical ideas are you adjacent?

Sweating cleaning the barn. Rice, zucchini, roasted green beans. A folding shovel used in WWII that's a bit rusty but still basically functional. 

Who died? Hours pass in the back room trying to integrate. I have memories that I cherish, others by which I am haunted.

Paper snowflakes. Sleep patterns. Phases in which we don't want to be seen.

A sense that certain prayers are now more helpful than others, and so praying accordingly. Something is always being born, no?

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

You Made Happen this Lovely Presence

The one who is in my life as a god who is in life on behalf of Love. 

Handjobs punctuated by deep kisses, the parking lot mid-day, as if what? Who is looking and who is no longer looking away

Gasoline rainbows, beautiful and useless, or harmful. Decks of cards, beautiful and functional.

Broken rubber bands, beautiful and dysfunctional and therefore beautiful.

Who at night reminds me to balance my fear for the sheep with respect for the neighbors and the lines that bind us and indeed, half an hour later, the sheep are quietened thusly.

Who is rain falling all night, cool breezes all night, and near dawn is roosters crowing, cacophonous cries criss-crossing the landscape, like overdoing consonance but in a way makes clear you know how to be consonant. 

And Narcissus always, and the rank pool always, and the faint - barely noticeable, always unactionable - regret always.

Writing cross-legged for you.

Red threads and bangles on your wrist.

Eyes closed at the end, head back, and your soft "mmmm" at the end, like liking what you saw you made happen. 

This lovely presence, this instructive relationship, this needed-like-oxygen healing.

So it doesn't make sense to the world, so what.

And fifteen, and sixteen.

And all these prisms, all these rainbows, and all this light!

At dawn with coffee writing you love letters, cross-legged on the couch, thinking how much of my life was given to writing love letters to women who were grateful to receive them and who thus gave me writing, this writing.

The horses in sunlight, dew on the clover.

All this without distance, instantly: this us, and that us, and all the other us's unto infinity.

Monday, August 3, 2020

Kneeling is Welcome, Revered, Allowed

Soon a storm will come. I say what I say, then sit back and listen. A lifetime.

The Universe is a distinction within What-Cannot-Be-Named. The west-facing window is full of clouds and wind. My legs hurt. My jaws are tired from chewing so much meat.

Sunlight in the grape arbor. Bones of cows. Snakes escaping through seams in the concrete.

You put eating pussy on the table, so I eat pussy again.

Hail Mary, full of grace.

What Hermes wants and does not want in his capacity as Messenger. Environments and circumstances in which kneeling is welcome, revered, allowed.

Footnotes are sexy. Footnote fetishes. Footnotes within footnotes within footnotes. It is footnotes all the way - but you know this already.

What you know already, what I still have to teach you.

The distance that separates us widens, becomes unbridgeable. Unsolvable? Well, not unnameable anyway. The universe is a distinction within a distinction within a distinction within "but you know this already." 

Crescent moon, starlit wells of sky.

Starlight, the Standishes, sellouts. Satisfactions. Seals.

Once again I open my arms, my heart, my mind to accept it. All always. And always always you. 

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Not Romantic, Just Irregular

I wrote "Our patriarchal emphasis on linearity and hierarchy creates the illusion that it's better to be this or that."

Compassion arises as a natural function. We are not throwing away anything, let alone the ape. Leonard Cohen dying alone.

Alone in blue lights.

Captured for her, made safe for her. Kneeling in clover to see if the fallen pears are soft enough for the horses. It's a language thing mainly. 

A Creator needs others to maximize and extend creation. Traveling to other states to protest executions there.

Certain libraries in western New York. Beads, buttercups. We got lost on back roads and it was not romantic, just irregular.

Nobody is doomed.

Yet ask: what is the fundamental issue that needs to be addressed? 


Her image is interior, glowing, a living flame

Centering prayer, settling there. All is well and all that is well is well.

I mean a little church for one who needs reminding that the altar is already everywhere.