Tuesday, May 28, 2019

Confession Tuesday - If I'm Still Here in the Morning Edition

Dear reader:

It's been a week since my last confession. A week of rain and tornadoes. A week of abysmal baseball by my Sf Giants. (I still claim them as my team0 A whole lot of rewriting on my part and Submissions over the weekend.

Reader, we have tornado weather here in the Midwest again for like the 13th day. I confess that I believe this is what climate change looks like to us. Bigger and more frequent tornadoes. I personally am in no imminent danger but parts of our county are under a warning - we are still in the watch mode for now. Most of the shit seems to start on the Kansas side of the state line and comes over here to Missouri. Relying strictly on the literary perspective, I blame the Wicked Witch of the West on these. Having lived in Missouri my whole life I have been used to summers with tornadoes. Sometimes we would have a couple bad days in a row but this has gotten ridiculous. I confess I like tornadoes in literature a lot better than in real life.  I'm praying for those in the path of tonight's tornadoes regardless of where you are. 

A shout out here to poet Victoria Chang! She has been selecting the poems that for this month that are showcased in the Academy of American Poets poem-a-day.  I confess that I have found her selections extremely good reads for me. She has selected work that sometimes has shown innovation, challenged my thought, made me smile or in the alternative mad me sad. It's been an exquisite blend of reading. I must confess that  I would love for her to create my reading list from here on out. Yes, that would be a lazy way to go. You would hear no complaining on this end.

My copy of December 30.1 arrived this weekend and I have dipped into it a bit. I cracked up when I brought the mail in and the wife says, "anything interesting in the mail?' My reply, "Just December in May." Tonight I saw that Ronda Piszk Broatch just heard she has two poems that will appear in the next edition. How cool is that!

I have procrastinated (isn't that what writers do?) for a week now - putting off a review of a book that I need to do. Of all the things I can procrastinate about, writing reviews is right up there high on the list. And yet, I believe it is an important function of writers. Additionally, I always feel excited upon finishing a book and wanting to talk about it. It's that point where the pen and the paper come in that I want to stare off into the galaxy in hope of finding, oh, I don't know what. Maybe motivation?

Does anyone else have a list of journals they'd like to crack into? Who do you want to be published in but have not achieved yet? I mean, besides the New Yorker.

Anyone have a really good poem to recommend, by someone besides a celebrity level poet. Is there such a thing, or did I make that up?  I guess poets like Billy Collins, Sharon Olds (I adore her), Claudia Rankin, Natasha Tretheway, Mary Jo Bank, Marie Howe, Jane Hirshfield, Terrance Hayes, Tracey K. Smith,  Ocean Vuong, Jericho Brown, Louise Gluck, Naomi Shihab Nye.  Yeah, I'm sure I've missed poets that maybe should be on here or you may think some should not be considered celebrity poets. I confess that is always the danger with lists of anything. Including shopping lists.

Enough for tonight! 

Be of good cheer and be safe~

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

Confession Tuesday - Clumsy as Newborn Colt Legs - edition

Dear Reader:

There have been four SF Giants wins and 5 losses, scores of rainy days, one mother's day, One Poetry reading, numerous yoga sessions, one Republican Congressman's call for Donald Trump's impeachment, more China tariffs and 12 days since my last confession.

I hope the Rain-god and God are not the same because I confess right now I really want to hurt the rain god. That is all.

I've been reading What You Have Heard is True by Carolyn Forche' is a memoir of Carolyn Forche's journey to El Salvador as a very young woman to witness the struggles and oppression that would bring bitter conflict to the country.

Much about this book is amazing to me. Not the least is the amount of danger that Forche' placed herself in, at first perhaps naively, but there was a point that this had to be so obvious.  I confess that I have come to a realization from reading this book, just how much travel can play a beneficial roll in the life and work of a poet. Forche' is actually very well traveled. and it seems that this has informed so much of her poetry. It doesn't hurt that she writes a lot of witness poetry and her travels have informed her world view and created the ability to count on so much opportunity to tap into her experiences when writing.

I confess to having never traveled outside of the United States and I do confess that I actually feel this is limiting as a writer.

On a bit of an odd note, I have realized that I wish I could dance well. I wish I had danced well. When I was in Junior High and we had sock hops, I was one of the kids with zits and legs like a newborn colt that stood on the sidelines and watched and then promptly joined the other socially awkward kids that went to the alternative site, a classroom where games were played.

By High School and after meeting my High School Sweetheart and wife to be, I did go to Proms. Still, I admit I did not dance to the proficiency displayed by my wife. We have danced since, though not often. I love music and I think that is why I always wanted to dance well. I saw it as becoming one with the music besides your dance partner. There was the INFJ screaming make yourself small and don't do embarrass her. Anyway, I confess I have just revealed a deep dark secret.  Sometimes this makes me sad because I feel like life itself should be a dance.

Friday, May 17, 2019


A whole world all wrapped up inside a person. A world that wants to be let out. The anxiety over the need to release pressure from this couped up world; a pressure cooker spewing steam from the cover, seemingly on the verge of explosion.

Sometimes, a writer has to find a place to jump in and start writing when there is such a tussle of atoms bouncing around off of each other ricocheting off the sides of the skull.  So much information. So much turning and spinning - trying to figure what word the pen will draw from first. That critical first line. A first kiss? A first plane ride? A new friend? A lost friend? A job ending? What will it be?
How to break the silence?

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Happy Mother's Day


Your Clothes

Of course they are empty shells, without hope of animation. 
Of course they are artifacts. 

Even if my sister and I should wear some, 
or if we give others away, 

they will always be your clothes without you, 
as we will always be your daughters without you.

Thursday, May 09, 2019

Confession Tuesday - Time Machine to the 80s Edition. Pssst! That's why I am late.

Dear Reader: The Giants have gone 4 and 3, I've had a reading  rescheduled, written, edited, written edited and written some more, BBQ twice, celebrated Cinco de Mayo at home with floutes and flan, did 3 yoga sessions, watched with dismay as the President fucks up everything he touches, and I visited the past - going back 30 years, and 9 days have passed since my last confession.

Follow me - I'm two days late for the confessional.

Reader: I confess that  I love music from my high school days. if you are counting that would be late 60's to early70's. But honestly, that period plus the rest of the 70s, 80s, and 90s produced some kick-ass sounds. Chicago, Air Supply, Three Dog Night, Foreigner, rocked my world. But so did Tiffany and Debbie Gibson in the '80s.  So I got all crazy excited and went to the Mixed-Tape Concert in Kansas City Tuesday night. New Kids on the Block were not my draw but the whole night was entertaining and the two girls, both I believe in their late 40's were awesome. The remake version of "I Think We're Alone Now" is even better than the first. I don't know what it is that makes me feel really good when I visit that time period but maybe it is the antidote for all this bull-shit crap we are going through in this country. I admit I'm all about nostalgia.

Where has this week plus gone? I feel like I've been writing it away. I confess that is not a bad way to pass through a week. I'm getting some more of those abstract urgings in my writing. "Let the poem speak for itself," says the poet. Ha!

My Facebook poet page had added a number of "likes"  in the past two weeks. I'm getting so close to the 100 likes mark. I think I'm either 3 or 4 short the last time I looked.  I know it's just a number but I confess reaching 100 right now seems to be a pretty big thing to me.  Anyway, I hope by next Tuesday I can report I've reached 100.

I need to better organize my writing. As it is presently, I confess it is many files on my computer with less than and rhyme or reason. I guess the rhyme isn't a big deal with me, but the reason is.

I don't  really know who to attribute this to, but it summarizes how I feel~

Some days I wish I could go back in life. Not to change anything, but to feel a few things twice.

That's it for this week folks.  Be safe, play hard, enjoy your life! 

All Best!