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Ghost Fern

By on Mar 27, 2016 in poetry

I took this picture in a shady forest in Oregon. I call it a ghost fern because that’s what it looks like to me. I don’t know what it’s actual name is. Most of the poems that I’ve posted here so far were written by me within the last 5-8 years. None were written in 2014 or 2015 because I don’t think I wrote any poems in those years! Too much moving, too much change, confusion, turmoil, and not the kind poetry can help unravel. My friend C has been moving and I was at the old house briefly helping just a little bit. They also moved last year, a major move, but what they did that time was, for the most part, just transport things from one house to the next. This time she is trying to purge and lighten the load. It’s both painstaking and freeing, even just to watch. I’ve known C and her family for many, many, many years. I knew her when I was much...

Quinella

By on Dec 11, 2015 in Poems, poetry

Quinella   Thursday. On a whim my lover, D, and I, go to the horse races. We bet on some horses, mostly mid range long shots. We win, we lose. We are at Hollywood Park in Inglewood, and it’s pretty run down, pretty grungy, but there is something about its rundown, offbeat air that I, in a weird way, love. Like the green bathrooms with their eerie lights and vintage smell. The old men are studying the favorites in the newspaper, yelling when theirs comes in on the rows of TV screens above our heads. In between races I walk way, way out to the car, where the parking is free, to get the book I’d brought to read. On my way out a black man comments on my legs, says he can tell I haven’t been hanging out in prison, cause my legs don’t have marks on them, they are pretty, he says. I smile, just a little, to keep it friendly. I keep walking. I hope I don’t have to see him on my way back....

Bright. Glad. Willingness.

By on Mar 29, 2015 in poetry

Today I walked on the beach and noted with deep appreciation the opal trailings of the sea burnished by the early morning light. Today I stood in sweltering heat – unbelievable heat for spring even in Los Angeles, if you ask me – talking to several men who are artists. We were convened near a tarped area meant for working. They live in a place made of tents and, I don’t know what you call them, but to me they are like shacks, and they live in them, and they make art. What lacks in their space for beauty, civility, clean silverware, privacy, they make up for in art supplies, hand tools, ingenuity, the persistence of the artist to create. Today I was in the bookstore, on a break from working and worrying about things, and held a book of poems in my hand. A new book of poems by Jane Hirshfield called The Beauty. The dust cover had a wonderfully subtly pebbled texture and...

the last bookstore

By on Mar 1, 2015 in los angeles, poetry

This weekend a semi-spontaneous excursion to a store called The Last Bookstore in downtown Los Angeles. I don’t know if it is the last bookstore but it might as well be. We got stuck in some traffic going there and I thought: This might be the last bookstore I ever visit because I might implode right here on the freeway while driving 2mph. But eventually we made it there. Me and two book loving teenagers whom I know through association. (It’s not true that no one reads books any more, and it’s encouraging to me to actually know young people who read and love books in the same way I did and that I do. This proves to me that there must indeed be a God.) It was night time and fairly sketchy walking downtown after 8pm. Not super sketchy, but a little bit sketchy. The bookstore is a huge building with two levels of books, some small art galleries, a labyrinth, an immense...

Stars Sparked

By on Feb 23, 2015 in poetry, soulful gifts

Greeting cards loaded to the new shop, at last. Check them out here.

A Book Should Be a Ball of Light

By on Feb 16, 2015 in books and publishing, poetry

Friday night I was at Barnes & Noble, waiting for a call from a friend I was to meet with later, and needing some time outside the house. This is Southern California. It’s February. The night air was almost balmy. I’d heard that Mercury retrograde had ended recently, a relief to those that subscribe to its edict that all things, especially electronic, shall malfunction under its effect. But it seems to me that Mercury is always retrograde – what is up with that? The moon was full, too, but I don’t recall seeing it that night. Up on the second floor of Barnes & Noble I was looking at the poetry books. A couple of times the floor trembled, I mean literally shook, and I was, for a second, afraid. At first I thought it was an earthquake and that we might fall through the center of the floor which seemed to be lacking the proper supports (well, in my mind, it...

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