July 29, 2013

dizzy dizzy people rush by me at the speed of thought

William Monk, Furthur!!, 2013

* From Harper's August 2013:

-- Average amount a Water Valley, Mississippi, hospital bills Medicare for treating pneumonia with no complications: $4,552

-- Average amount a Philadelphia hospital does: $79,007

-- Percentage change in the number of Walmart stores nationwide since 2008: +13

-- In the size of Walmart's workforce: 0

* Nice Breeze are playing our first show at CD Cellar in Arlington, VA (2607 Wilson Blvd.) Saturday August 3 2013 with Harness Flux and Kitchen Noise. 7pm

* Hoboken Sound: An Oral History of Maxwell's.

* “The way to erase is to go forward.” -- Renata Adler

July 25, 2013

more often than not someone answers
crimes committed in empty pools
i told melancholy it should guide me
I fought a duel against the rules

Isa Genzken, Basic Research, 1989

* Nice Breeze are playing our first show at CD Cellar in Arlington, VA (2607 Wilson Blvd.) Saturday August 3 2013 with Harness Flux and Kitchen Noise. 7pm

* This essay If Our Goal is Simply to Preserve Our Current Reality Why Pursue It is worth a read. It concludes:

At the end of the Chronicle of Higher Education article Thrun is quoted saying:

"I feel like there’s a red pill and a blue pill … and you can take the blue pill and go back to your classroom and lecture your 20 students. But I’ve taken the red pill and I’ve seen Wonderland."

The clock is ticking.

The arts and culture sector in the US needs to be reformed.

Just because the arts have been an elitist form of entertainment as long as most of us can remember is no excuse for that to continue to be our story in the future.

Just because we have wrongly and self-servingly bought into and sold to others the idea that to be ‘talented’ you had to be a ‘professional’ and to make ‘art’ you had to be a ‘nonprofit’ doesn’t mean we need to continue to make the same mistake.

We got it wrong the first time.

If our goal for the next century is to hold onto our marginalized position and maintain our minuscule reach—rather than being part of the cultural zeitgeist, actively addressing the social inequities in our country, and reaching exponentially greater numbers of people— then our goal is not only too small, I would suggest that it may not merit the vast amounts of time, money, or enthusiasm we would require from talented staffers and artists, governments, foundations, corporations, and private individuals to achieve it.

Let’s be Finland. Let’s pursue Wonderland.

* Check out the book cover archive.

* "The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people so full of doubts." -- bertrand russell

July 23, 2013

one more cup of coffee for the road

Lynda Pogue, Source, 2005

At the Lion's Head
-- David Markson

I scowl at the bar
And confront a midnight revelation:
In ten years
I have contributed thirty thousand, cash,
To the fiscal well-being
Of this saloon.

If I wake, mornings, to
Is there a refund?

The Visitors of Night
-- Frank Stanford

This bed I thought was my past
Is really a monk in a garden

Hets dressed in white
Holding a gourd of water
Because I have forgotten Tangle Eye
And Dylan Thomas
The swarthy goose
And the moon in the pennyroyal
With its gut full of shiners
And the skeleton keys to my room
And the snapshots of my land

It seems like dusk
The voice and curls
left in the strange clothes
Roaming the forty acres of my closet

In the bow wood mountains some boats
Stray as dogs go down in the fields
Shadows yet in the land of the living

When the shade clean leaves you
To your rewards
Bad luck and trouble
Come breaking the laws and trysts
Of love and gravity

So have respect for the dead my dear
And watch your heart like a juke box

Death coming low with its cold set of tools
But you can't jimmy love

Worn Words
-- W.S. Merwin

The late poems are the ones
I turn to first now
following a hope that keeps
beckoning me
waiting somewhere in the lines
almost in plain sight

it is the late poems
that are made of words
that have come the whole way
they have been there
there is not a sound in the whole night

July 15, 2013

There is absence, there is lack

Wangechi Mutu, Riding Death in My Sleep, 2002

Not Fit For Twitter
-- Dennis Mahagin

Swear off our media
and the Beast will starve
you, shunned from the belly

of July's picnic trance
as a light plane drools
and drones at blue

was the blimp

in a scrutinized sky,

by the end,
I was so sick

at the sight of him,
started imagining
aftermath of a farce
wherein the bald lawyer
called West

might advise

a treadmill…

“Yeah George ...
Bowflex makes a damned
good one now I hear
in fact they're
the best,”

West might
say, grinning and
pumping the pasty
plump ham of his

infamous client.
Talking heads

it’s true
what the seers
have often said,

that Conscience
makes you do

things, start to eat, eat
say, in horrible earnest
after telling
Humpty, or Hannity
that the killing
“was God’s plan…”
I watched that man
on the tube,
sort of inscrutable bland
calm rabid Michelin Man

gone beyond

his ground

standing, Kafka
and still,



ribbon curl of hungry
lip twitch, starch
collar dolphin
flip tie on the cheap
tourmaline suit.

And somebody in my
circle of friends said
“ain’t hardly the end
for Zim... now he gets
to know how it feels
to be hunted …”
After the spectacle
that made me so sick, I
couldn’t stop listening

to what lawyers


over and over
as a bad glutton
being force

fed, being


I stripped
the day bed, did
dishes, scoured
every TV room
with Pine Sol
Windex and
“This story, sure had
some legs,” another talking
head said “it bled, and bled
and bled and
bled …”

Trayvon, long gone
with the fall leaves, skinny
skinny ass gust and swirl
while buy and

by George celebrates
incommunicado, fat

moon face deep
in five pies, blue
berry, mince meat
pumpkin, key
lime and

July 7, 2013


This house is a home
and a home's where I belong
Where the feelings are warm
and the foundations are strong

Philip Guston, Alfie in Small Town, 1979

* From Harper's July 2013:

-- Number of U.S. states whose highest-paid public employee is a sports coach: 37

-- Number of female prison guards impregnated by a single Baltimore city Detention Center inmate in teh past year: 4

-- Number of U.S. retail jobs Doritos Locos tacos created in the past year, according to Taco Bell: 15,000

-- Number of retail jobs created worldwide by Apple in that same period: 400

* Iggy Pop gives a tour of downtown NYC, in 1993.

* "Poetry is the only art people haven't yet learned to consume like soup." -- W.H.Auden