Friday, December 30, 2011

two trees

Alessandra Celletti
Paul Barton, piano

Monday, December 26, 2011

the girl with the laughing face

You ask me now, I don't think she heard me 'cause she was laughing. Only got three quarters of the way through - she did not laugh like a horse, how wonderful - the teasing parable of the hurdling 100-year comet orbiting the Sun(it's meritorious tail presented to man, more beautiful than its face, through the lens for minute study) and striking the earth with such force to reveal its pearl core. And she was a hot exquisite result - including the tail. I looked at her and she was laughing, me too then, and I never got to say this: How she is rare, once in a lifetime for all mankind. But maybe it was good she did not hear. Besides, I don't think she ever laughed nearly as much as she wept.

by Bert Stern
The Last Sitting (1962)

Saturday, December 24, 2011

a midnight clear

Savior's star above
Snow scape tolls silent footprints
Vagabond comfort

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Monday, December 19, 2011

winter sketch

I can cross the threshold, but angry shadows can not slip pass through the keyhole labyrinth. Savoring a kiss that steams up our glasses, two bookworms, we miss so much, except to remain embrace-ably warm before we take up our quills to dot another i. So, we clean our lenses and start over, in this drafty barn, a place to hang our hearts.

image: Lee Friedlander, 1966

Friday, December 16, 2011

fireplaced haiku

Silent night's hearth blaze
Home's smokey blue moon-ward drift
Haiku my heart? Aye.

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Monday, December 12, 2011

swept away

She placed the black stone in my hand - the kind found along a seashore, smooth from centuries of polishing waves. Tempted like a child, I wanted to skip it along the sparkling surface and follow it to the other side of the world. She laughed, 'go ahead, I want to die, don't you see?', and when I turned with my back to the open sea to respond to her outrageous game, she was gone. I spun around and heaved the beautiful disc as hard as I could with my eyes shut, little white splashes dotting the calm blue, the silent finish so melancholy.

A dry row boat appeared, bobbing ever so queasily, abandoned. No footprints except my own, hold it steady now, her body sprawled out in the bottom on a cushion of more smooth stones I felt compelled to heave, arms above her head, pale dead. I kissed her forehead twice, once for you since the boat had your name scrawled starboard, escorted the vessel knee-deep against the current and shoved it with my bare shoulder into the clouds. A solitary seagull circled above and laughed as I shivered in the cold ashore.

image by Mostafa Habibi

Friday, December 9, 2011

Venice shrine haiku

Sons and daughters drawn
To Mary's loving aura
Beyond simple shrine

photo: Churches in Venice blog

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Thursday, December 8, 2011

quote of the day

The artist’s life cannot be otherwise than full of conflicts, for two forces are at war within him [or her]—on the one hand, the common human longing for happiness, satisfaction and security in life, and on the other a ruthless passion for creation which may go so far as to override every personal desire … There are hardly any exceptions to the rule that a person must pay dearly for the divine gift of creative fire.

~Carl Jung (1875-1961)

Monday, December 5, 2011

english for beginners

Sunday, December 4, 2011

first hot meal

I remember it was quiet, just in off the street, and we sat in a first-come first-serve shuffle, everyone in hard heels, strangers of brother and sisterhood, avoiding eye contact, but no matter, my mouth was hurting for food. It was a clean hall, and new, but dim lit. Everyone needed a bath, all dressed in ill-fitting salvation clothes, the men with top button fastened and straight ties. Silent, expressionless ladies served thick, square, slices from loaves in clear bags with no writing, and the best ever fried baloney with crisp edges slid off a spatula of a second lady server, the one nearest me had a hairnet, but no safety net for her hairy arms.
I felt a nudge on my right elbow and wanted to ignore it, but the man said excuse me barely above a whisper and I felt compelled to clear my throat and excuse him. Our eyes met quick and I could see he had been crying.
It was so quiet. Me too, 'cause I was saying grace the whole time. And then about two rows behind me a new man said he'd sure like some hot coffee.

painting: Lunch
George Tooker, 1964

Friday, December 2, 2011

no ordinary heart

Bundled hearts aloft
Wherever vagabonds roam
Burdens cast aside

painting: Madonna and Child
by Adolphe Jourdan(1825-89)

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Thursday, December 1, 2011

happy 76th, Woody

The Dick Cavett Show

song of the day

I love Gillian Welch's version of this old W.C. Handy classic, Make Me A Pallet On Your Floor. David Rawling's masterful playing tops it off nicely. Enjoy!

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