Thursday, July 31, 2014

Otoliths 34

Otoliths 34 is live.  It looks fat and sassy.  I'm pleased to note, too, that a chunk of my Appearances is in it.  Kudos to Mark Young for another great issue of his wonderful e-zine.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Taking a break from Appearances until I can see it with fresh eyes.  So fucking frustrated (300 some sections into the damn thing after 2 and a half years).  "Fail better" as uncle Sam once wrote.


I've been working on a new catalog poem called "The Skin Of."


Cool, rainy day.  Clapton on the stereo.


Thursday, July 24, 2014

My laptop's fried.  And, while I usually like fried things, this isn't good.  Really don't need the expense and hassle right now.


My belated birthday present from B. arrived in today's mail:  a silver guitar pick which has my name engraved upon it.  Very cool and a total surprise.  It makes a lovely sound as I rake it against the strings.


Did I mention that my laptop's fried?  The computer on which my manuscripts, etc reside.


Though I mostly practice on the acoustic guitar, I've been spending more time with the Strat lately. I bought the instrument a little over a year ago and am developing a deeper appreciation for the thing.  I even like the humbuckling.  And don't get me started on my wang bar.


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

I've been thinking about rhymes--my antipathy toward them, but also the complexities they can reveal.

I'm Starting to Think Questions Again

What constitutes enough context to make a decision?  How does one decide that?!
Listening to Keith Jarrett: The Impulse Years, 1973-1974, a lovely 5 disc set.

All the fans are going.  It feels like rain.


I've been leafing through Being Nude: The Skin of Images (Fordham University Press, 2014) by Jean-Luc Nancy and Federico Ferrari.  It's a book of  meditations on 26 pictures, photos, paintings which are arranged alphabetically by subject.  It goes like this:

A    Acephalus
B    Bathsheba
C    Caress
D    Disfiguration
E    Equivocal
F    Fenestration
G   Goya
H   Humus
I    Incarnate
J    Joker
K   Khaos
L   Lumbar
M  Model
N  Nimbus
O  Optic
P  Presence
Q  Quodlibet
R   Resurrection
S   Scopophilia
T   Trans
U  Use
V  Veritas
W  We
X    X
Y   Y
Z    Zero

I'm going to sip this book slowly.  I know it's going to be delicious.  And I'm wondering if I might find some inspiration in it for new work of my own.


Listening to Charlie Haden's bass playing on the Jarrett discs and thinking about the power and resonance of individual notes.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Gone But Not Forgotten

In the course of going back through the six issues of The Difficulties, I was struck by the fact that many of the contributors have passed away.  Frank Samperi, Hannah Weiner, David Bromige, George Butterick, Robert Creeley, Fielding Dawson, Larry Eigner, Jerry Estrin, Dick Higgins, Ronald Johnson, Jackson Mac Low, Paul Metcalf, Gill Ott, Cid Corman, Robert Ashley, Theodore Enslin, and Douglas Woolf are sadly no longer alive.  I miss them all.  Especially Fielding.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Drive-by Colonoscopy

(my forthcoming memoir
from Wrecked Him Press).

This Just In From Nico Vassilaksis

  "Reason: To share a recent set of work

Item: A short series of letter composition, imagetext and alphabet vispo

Size: 35 pages

Cost: Free

Wishes: All the best"

Check it out.  There's some interesting work in this portfolio.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Bought a number of used CDs this afternoon.  One of which, Coverdale * Page, I'm listening to now.  Hell, yes.  Jimmy Page always brings it.


B. made her world famous sour cream banana cream pie for my birthday (sugar free in this case).  Wow!  And homemade gazpacho (or Gestapo as my brother John always calls it).  I know, we're a strange bunch.


There's a groundhog living under our garden shed.  It emerges to survey its domain and to chow down on our flowers, etc.  Well, Moby Twerp, plans are afoot to relocate you.  It's not personal.  It's a business decision.  I'm gonna make you an offer...


So I was picturing a horse head in a groundhog's burrow and thinking "WTF's wrong with me?!"


What if the Godfather Trilogy was reenacted with groundhogs?  Far out, right.  I might be on to something.


A quick postscript to my last post...The Difficulties has found a digital home with a diligent curator and should be available in a week or so. I'll let you know when it goes live.

I've been going over the scans and experiencing a kind of intellectual-emotional archaeology, reliving a number of significant moments/encounters.  I was unprepared for the overwhelm.


Today's the 45th anniversary of the first moon walk.  It's also my 61st birthday.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

In a past post I alluded to my magazine The Difficulties eventual appearance online.  The curator of the project had told me it was going to be up and accessible in a few weeks.  I waited a year without hearing anything further, then emailed asking what if any progress had been made with the project.  I waited another month without a response.  So yesterday I wrote withdrawing permission for The Diff's reissue online. Interestingly, that got a rapid response.

I won't work with people who won't communicate with me.  No matter who they are or how nice they might be in other circumstances.  When someone initiates a project and doesn't exercise the minimum amount of courtesy, that's the end of things.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

The Blogs I Visit Daily

I read more blogs than those listed below.  But these are the blogs I never fail to read on a daily basis.  In fact, I usually swing by them more than once a day to see if anything else has been posted or to reread a post I've been thinking about.

Silliman's Blog

What can I say.  It's a great resource.

Charles Bernstein

Another great resource.

Zeitgeist Spam

John Bloomberg-Rissman's masterpiece in progress.

Allen Bramhall

Allen's one of my favorite poetry curmudgeons.  His work deserves more appreciation than it has received.

Alex Gildzen

A good friend.  A terrific poet.  My admiration of Alex only deepens as time marches on.

Crag Hill

Crag works both the vispo side of the street and the lineated poetry side also.  I am a longtime admirer of his writing and editing work.

Really Bad Movies

I love this guy.  He's a mensch.

Eileen Tabios

I love this woman. Her generosity. Her energy.  Her restless drive to make things, to make things happen,never fails to move me.

Rebecca Loudon

Speaking of women I love...Rebecca is a huge part of my poetry heart.  If I were in charge of picking the poet laureate of these disunited states, I would--without question--pick Rebecca.  I can't wait until her Henry Darger book is completed.  It's going to be a major event.

Mark Woods

I've learned so much from this blog over the years.  Woods curates selections from his voracious combings of the web.  Poetry, philosophy, art.

Mark Young

Prolific, generous, innovative and brilliant, Mark Young is my favorite genius.  And I am happy to think of him as a friend.

Lynn Behrendt

Speaking of geniuses, Lynn Behrendt comes to mind.  Her poetry and collages are stellar.

Speculative Realism Aggregator

Ian Bogost's terrific philosophy resource.

Monday, July 7, 2014

I'm still sore from the guitar stint I finished an hour or so ago (left shoulder, left arm, finger pads).


Busy weekend.  Grandsons did an overnight with us Friday and stayed until Saturday afternoon.  Then Saturday evening we walked downtown to the Heritage Festival and took in the Numbers Band, the Bluestones (my guitar teacher's band), and had drinks with Branton and Andrea.  Sunday was kind of a recovery day.


Listening to BB King now.


I haven't slept well for a few years.  The plus side of this is that when I'm awake staring at the ceiling my mind races and I sometimes get  viable ideas.  And that is how the latest installment of Appearances came about.


My poetry friend Lynn Behrendt sent me a link to 5 short tracks of her son Jake's guitar work.  Great work.  Exactly in my sweet spot.  Go here to hear.  I want to be able to do what he does.  That's my goal as a budding (at almost 61 years of age) musician.  That last track is my favorite by the way.


Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Earlier I was headed to the back of our lot to check on the raspberries and spotted a hummingbird in the bee balm.  That's always a little epiphany for me, seeing those small super fast creatures.  At first the eye isn't sure what it's taking in--a dragonfly? No. A hummingbird for sure.

I remember hanging out on Robert Grenier's patio back in the day and freaking out about the number of hummingbirds in the garden.  And they were huge.  I went on and on about it.  I'd never seen more than one at a time before and this Californian variety looked slow and obese compared to the little ones I'm used to.  I think everyone who heard me ramble about hummingbirds on that trip figured me to be a real rube.


Today (between exercise, reading, housework, guitar practice, etc) I've been obsessing over how to write one sentence (the next fragment of Appearances).  I actually started obsessing about this sentence in a dream last night.  It's almost, not quite, there...


The iPod just shuffled over to early Wilco.


This June there were nine inches of rain in this part of Ohio.  Our second wettest June on record.


The shuffle's on to Keith Richard and his Winos now.

Yeah, I'm not writing this without interruptions.


"Interruption" is a word that's important to me.  Especially in its Brechtian sense of  intervention.  It figures in Appearances too (not the word--at least not so far--the concept).