Monday, June 25, 2018


To Ache Well

I rarely do.
Have a comp-
lete thought
(you know,
without start-
ing another one,
I mean).  Take
the rock I’ve
been sleeping
on for a week
now, for ex-
ample.  Nice
view and all.
But it’s a rock!
And a very cold
one at that. And
however heavy
the wind blows
(also, quite
cold!), it never
really carries
me, my thoughts
or that confound-
ed rock (from
which what an
view!) away.
“Aw, shaddap,
Jim!”  “Okay,
okay,” says I,
“good night,
Slim.” “Good
night to you,
too, Mis-
ter Jim.”
To which he
just has to
add, with
his arms
and his
four fing-
ers in the
air, look-
ing just
like the
head he
never was,
“You rock!”
Then morn-
ing crows.
And it’s
funny how
the aches
are never
funny until
years later.
“Years later,
Jim?” To which 
we don our 
Devo ziggurat 
hats and fan out 
into the wilderness.

Sunday, June 24, 2018


Making Up for Lost Time
    (the anti-maudlin)

“Who am I?” spoke 
the Doolittle to the
Transamerica Pyramid.

“A dollar for a dollop 
of muh hot sauce,”
spoke the master to 

the orphaned squatter.
“Doomsday accrues,”
spoke Maestro Brosnan w/

a clean-shaven Irish brogue 
o'course. The buildings at 
the city's center all hum in

a vibrant sort of way.  The
foghorn is almost percussive.
“Caw! Caw! Caw!” spoke 

the crow in advance of
the careening sun as the
kooky squirrel that hangs

near the top of the foreign
tree awoke (the kooky squir-
rel being, as usual, between

me and the bullish blue of
the big old bay). “How so 
very ray!” spoke the squirrel,

which rhymed quite nicely
with the hum and the drum
of the hottish doom of a fog-

lit day; with the hum and the
drum and the salty-hot Irish doom
hovering over the stench of this over-

ripe foglit day.  P.S. The squatter
kept squatting, the bull remained
quite the bully (even into elderly

bullishness) and I, myself, the very
narrator whose report you now seek,
went on my merry maudlin Monday way.

Thursday, June 14, 2018


Waa waa road divider
                   —Ted Greenwald

I gave myself sun-
burn!  And look who’s
at the doorway, look-
ing just as sinister as
he never looked, the
halo almost a floating
aura around this month’s
bangs.  Why, it's YOU, 
that's who!  If, for ex-
amle, we were to ex-
change a glance or two
(we do, we did), I’d
think “and just to think,
it all started with I don’t
know you, you don’t know
me. Right?"  Right.  But
somebody must have really
wanted to know something.  
(Right?)   (And what a shame, 
ignorance?)  (Right?).  “Hey, 
sonny, can you make the 
burn go a-way?”  Or can 
you at least make it go 
thattaway.  And to think, 
the burn was the burn
of the party cake, the
slight heartburn of a
heart having a panic
attack.  And the angel
reminded the heart
that there was no panic
at all, was there?  No
panic at all.  Then the
burp.  Then the twinned
laughter.  "Can you make
the burn go away,  kiddo!"
started without the de-
ranged scream, was
more of a simple whis-
per: "Burn it up daddy, 
just burn it all up.  Ama- 
zingly, since burn nev-
er really goes up.  In
that sense.  It goes
down.  “Look it’s
all burnt down,”
said Sally for the
fifteenth time
walking down
Conifer Lane
for the fif-
teenth time
in a row, thirty
months after it
all burnt down.
The 5-alarm fire
that didn’t even
fry the doorway.
If you look, or at
least when Sally
looks, she can
almost see the
cherub, his red
flowing cape,
and long ash-
whipped nose.

Wednesday, June 13, 2018



of Sir
sir? How
very déjà
vu of you!
Quick, close
yr eyes and
make it just
another bad
dream (dream).

Wednesday, June 06, 2018


A thrilling smack
              —Ted Greenwald

who’s funnier when you’re
fifty (than when you’re in
your late thirties).   I, be-
fore e, except after sex.
Which somehow sounded
just as good at fifteen.
This is everything, almost
the very end of everything,
the everything that gets
stolen right from between
my legs.  Just got, that is.
What’s the difference be-
tween two black and gray
camouflage backpacks?
Funny just will not do for
this wise-ass crackpot,
will it?  Speaking of off-
color humor ... just will
not do for this wisecrack.
More comedy ensues, it
never fails.  For example,
take all of the instructions
at the Tenderloin Police
Department (a charmer of
a community haven, please
allow me to ensure you).
When asked about the
report I’d be filing, I
begin with fifteen pages
of handwritten words (“it’s
part of a much-larger pro-
ject,” I try to get out of the
dry craw near my goozle, and
somehow manage before the
now imaginary “and much,
much more...” comes out
like the square wheel of
my father’s long lost verb-
alized breath.  Ah, libido,
how surreal! I think, smooth
as a song as sung by Mel Tillis.
“...all of my important files,
you know, with labels like
“bills,” “housing,” “job-
search,” and “urgent.”
“It was really just a back-
pack filled with earnest
modesty and endless ‘im-
portance,” croons Tillis,
as if honey from my stut-
ters, “just a backpack
that fell alseep in the
wrong man’s backyard.”

Tuesday, June 05, 2018


Condescension in the Fiction Section

No one would believe my story.  And yet it would bore
pretty much anyone to tears.  My story, it ain’t no good.  
A story can come in many sizes and a good one will work on 
multiple levels, they say.  The same could be said of the icons of
today's blockbuster cinema: Superman, Spiderman, Naruto, Wolverine,
Magneto, the Avatar, Captain Underpants (he IS a cinematic superhero,

right?  I just ran into a 5 year old sporting an under-sized t-shirt with this
unlucky official moniker), Jack Black, Captain Jack Sparrow, Cap’n Crunch, 
Peter Pan, etc.  “I was born in the Summer of Love,” I say, just to throw 
people off.  I mean, look at me, do I look like the son of hippies (I certainly am
not)??  And then I wear a grimace for the rest of the day. What happened to
all of the love, I mumble intermittently from, I dunno, 4:00 to 11:00 pm 

(the latter couple of hours I mumble somewhat drowsily until later:
I wasburn in a Smermer of Loovthe!”  I shout somewhere on Haight
Street, knowing that most  people confuse this summer (not my mumbles,
necessarily) with 1969, the summer the twins were born (my little brothers), 
and the summer those men landed on the moon (or else the year that Stanley
Kubrick was an unusually prolific, not to mention quite stealthy director).  

Reality?  Most people don’t get 1969 confused with 1967.  On any level.  Um.  
Perhaps on some level, almost everyone (of a certain age) gets 1969 confused 
with 1967.  But what of 1968, 1971, 1975, or even 1979....1973?   Presently, 
I’m either depressingly or at least toyingly toodling with the distance between
the present and that grand demarcation: the Summer of Love.  Now let’s all
poke some fun at glaring half-centuries which ogle back at me like oversized

bobble-heads (aren't they all?).  And above those blurred bobs – in a precisely
delineated neon yellow – flashes the appropriate word, one we’d take on
decades later: “D’uh.”  So did folks living in the Summer of Love realize that
they were participants in the Summer of Love?  Or did that realization arrive
years later as a posthumously (so-to-speak) appellative?  And how subsequent,
if so?  This I am pretty certain is a fact that I should know, but, my memory.  

And, on a related note, as luck would have it, I’ve already lost all interest.  
Except in how it might pertain to me, as usual.  You know, that
particularly easy-going plump babe was born the second Thursday
of June; during  what (in such towns, such as the one in which I was 
born), lovingly (or laughingly) was called the morning rush hour (actually
two fantastical l-words of my own bias, because most citizens hereof had 

never even been anywhere else in the world (another fantasy/bias, if you'll
allow), when it comes to the rush of an hour, to even realize there can be 
a difference.  I was such an easy birth, too, just ask my mother, (who
definitely knows from worse).  That'd be me, born as I was in none other
than THE summer of love, a summer which will never again be half a

century in distance from anywhere else in the world (be that anywhere 
Vesta, Arkansas; Kyoto, Japan; Skopje, Macedonia; or either of the multi-
tudinous but  each unique canals of Venice, Amsterdam or St. Petersburg. 

Monday, June 04, 2018


Fake Excuse

When it's

to write
you can't
afford a
pen (and
you're too
shit to
steal one).