Wednesday, April 25, 2007

You asked why it's hard to feel loved

When our dinner is done, plates put away,
when witches mount their stout brooms
and the sun hurls its fire towards Australia,
I release what still binds dirty secret.
A freed jailbird, I sing of those nights
I flew into black coffin skies,
saw him do things to that child left behind
who no longer was me, but rather some
golden haired semblence of me.
My stand-in. My prone, breathing
diary of foreshortened memories
incribed by this man, with his back to the moan
of creation, bartering his soul for
one tiny shudder into a child's silenced cry.

I shear off a lock of my hair,
burn it as sacrifice to witches and children
who fly now where I did, give thanks
to the coven of women, my sisters,
whose spells cauterized and blindfolded me
to what no child should bear
in this lifetime of songs sung
en sotto again.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Voting Has Begun...

..for poet laureate of the blogosphere. The polling site is HERE.

It's fun being part of this. Thanks again, Michael Parker, blogger extraordinaire, for nominating me. And hey, guys, I don't want to be the winner, but if you like my blog, go make a vote?? (I'll remember you in my that may not be for MANY years, but...)

And another photo to amuse you from my yesterday's scan of some old slides. This was in my mid-thirties in the Bershires. It was the only graffiti I saw. I call this PrisAtlas Shrugged! Click to enlarge.


Tuesday, April 17, 2007


Something I did with time lapse photography a few years ago and discovered recently. Now, in the wonderful world of graphics programs, an old slide such as this can be cleaned up and enjoyed again. This shot was taken in my room in the commmune in Boston, so the photo is 'ghosts' and also the ghost of my past.

Click to enlarge.

Monday, April 16, 2007

A Word With Bukowski (an older one)

It's no good.
Me, doing that
mirror, mirror
on the wall thing,
smearing my
wrinkles with Arden
while you moan
about old chorus girls
and the horrors of
ingrown toenails
in prison.

You always could
out talk me, you know.

I tell you I have visions
of Dorothy's shoes,
empty on the yellow
brick road, and that
mid-earth explosions
will destroy our dreams
anyway, hoping
to impress with profundity.

You roll bored eyes,
tap one finger on the countertop.

I wish you could have
come when my breasts
still burned men's hands
and my laugh chased
away all blackbirds of sorrow.

But those days have been
drained, like fine wine,
so yes, let us talk
about worn-out furnaces,
overdue mortgages,
liver spots,
and watch the buzzards
draw straws over who
gets the last rib.

Pris Campbell

The poem that prompted this response is The Blackbirds Are Rough Today..

This poem was given a Bonsai award at Mipo and published in their Bonsai poetry collection. Thanks!

It also appears in my chapbook, Abrasions, published by Rank Stranger Press.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

A wonderful blog about Kurt Vonnegut

Birdie of the Beauty Dish blog and other blogs not only writes, she sings. In this post, she writes of a chance encounter with Kurt Vonnegut. It begins this way.

I have alluded to this particular chance meeting a few times during my three years blogging, told bits and pieces of the story. Here it is in its entirety. When I lived in So Cal I managed, like all other beach bums, to see Hollywood stars in their native habitat. I never found much inspiration in those encounters, a few laughs or moments of introspection, but nothing that gave me great pause. One day, thirteen years ago on the Indiana backroads, I met one of the great writers of this generation... to read more, go the the Beauty Dish Blog.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Poet Laureate of the Blogosphere!

Michael Parker just wrote that he'd nominated me. Michelle Buchanan nominated him and even has a tee shirt made up to promote him. Go, both of you! And thanks, Michael. This sounds like fun.

The site is HERE.

I see Helen Losse of The Dead Mule is nominated, too. Congrats, Helen!

Now's the time if you have somebody in mind.


Thursday, April 12, 2007

sunrise (a haiga)

This haiga is based on a photo taken at sunset on the Intracoastal Waterway somewhere in the Carolinas on my six month boat trip from Boston to Florida, via the Vineyard and Chesapeake Bay, among other places. All is a 22 foot sailboat. We saw our first dolphins in Beaufort, North Carolina, and, after that, they swam with us many times and circled the boat when anchored.

Click to enlarge.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Short Hiatus

I'm again spending all of my available energy just keeping up with my two blogs (though MySpace is only periodic poem posting...yet the number of comments there to respond to are high and take more time), my posts to Haiku Hut, and SLOOOOWLY working on yet another novel with a co-author. This doesn't even begin to include email, poetry submissions, and other things like that. I can't spend this much time on the computer and have energy left over. So...I will be posting here periodically for a while until my energy from this bug that really zapped me hard two months ago releases its hold more.

In the meantime, I always love it when people brouse my archives. Plenty of them there to dig through :-)


The Elegy

In honor of poetry month, is emailing a poem a day with links to other poems and a link to a discussion of the form. To read more about the elements of the elegy, go to this poets. org link .

The featured form in the body of the letter and printed with permission by them is this one.

by Michael Longley

(In memory of Kenneth Koch)

You died the day I was driving to Carrigskeewaun
(A remote townland in County Mayo, I explain,
Meaning, so far as I know, The Rock of the Wall Fern)
And although it was the wettest Irish year I got the car
Across the river and through the tide with groceries
And laundry for my fortnight among the waterbirds.
If I'd known you were dying, Kenneth, I'd have packed
Into cardboard boxes all your plays and poems as well
And added to curlew and lapwing anxiety-calls
The lyric intensity of your New York Jewish laughter.
You would have loved the sandy drive over the duach
("The what?"), over the machair ("the what?"), the drive
Through the white gateposts and the galvanised gate
Tied with red string, the starlings' sleeping quarters,
The drive towards turf-fired hilarity and disbelief,
"Where are all those otters, Longley, and all those hares?
I see only sparrows here and house sparrows at that!"
You are so tall and skinny I shall conscript a heron
To watch over you on hang-glider wings, old soldier,
An ashy heron, ardea cinerea, I remind you
(A pedant neither smallminded nor halfhearted):
"And cinerarius?": a slave who heats the iron tongs
In hot ashes for the hair-dresser, a hair-curler
Who will look after every hair on your curly head.
That afternoon was your night-season. I didn't know.
I didn't know that you were "poured out like water
And all your bones were out of joint". I didn't know.
Tuck your head in like a heron and trail behind you
Your long legs, take to the air above a townland
That encloses Carrigskeewaun and Central Park.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

April Fools Day (Click to enlarge)

Do you have a haiku or short poem or a prank pulled on you, perhaps, for April Fools Day?? Share, if so.