Thursday, May 31, 2007

more of the wayback machine

OK, Sherman, get the Wayback Machine up and running. Today we go back to 1982-1987 era. Another of them there poems that're unpublish, unsolicited and yep, unrejected at this point.

more overtime on the horizon ... tomorrow's update may be the last for about a week. as for the contract (or lack of) - no news - i think they are talking again in mid-June? And no updates on potential buyers for the containerboard division ... so guess we're still on the auction block. anywho ... those are them there updates as of today. Now, onto the poetry ----


Horses are still being shot
in the infield arenas.
And gamblers still smile in disgust
as million dollar winnings
just missed again
are put down in the name
of humanity.

NASA views the Martian terrain
in agony,
remembering the glory
of moon walkers
and Saturn probes,
counting pennies,
always counting pennies.

i listen for the sound of rain
in these dog-day afternoons.
i listen
and hear
absolutely nothing
in the formation of haze
along the horizon.

If this were to be my last poem
and the void ensuing
extended beyond the silence
of your heart
would there yet be room
for understanding?

Wednesday, May 30, 2007


a quick update ... sorta out of it today, this is another poem from 1978-1981 era, unpublished, unsolicited.


on the tides
of foaming mist
and salt
sandpipers run
quickly, agile,
dancing so to speak, in the wet-sand.

Can i share
more precious, love?

Friday, May 25, 2007

a working poem

another "working" poem, about the old saw mill/veneer plant at Cuddeback Lumber, where i worked at for about 9 years, running the barker/cut-off saw. written in 97. it was a really crummy place to work, mismanaged to the max (well, isn't everywhere?) - but i learned a lot, and the job itself had some interesting moments.


i spit saw dust
& pitch seams.
somehow salvage a profit margin
of this garbage timber.

wind off the log pond
smells of hemlock sinkers:
two mallards find it a perfect place
to mate & raise their young.

my hands rubbed raw
by the wind
no longer cry upon pages
that have forgotten your address.
but they find moments
to peel crust off stale sandwiches.

my fingertips delight
in the swift beaks
of the mallard young.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

another variant of a prose poem

and yet, another - from 1978-1981 era, unpublished, unsolicited. yada-yada-yada .... a prose poem - sort of .... well, a variant of the form. hope to get another update tomorrow, then it's going to be rather ify for a bit - as i have a ton of overtime on the horizon ... they just love us at the paper mill ... can't stand not to be with us i guess. still no contract, no word on the pending sale (though the rumors are starting to crawl from the floorboards) and well, ya know it's a dog eat dog world out there where ya gotta watch your own back most of the time .... so much for the great society i heard about when i was so much younger than today (to quote Bobby D. hisself!).


In the event you have wandered this far (or is it waddled? No matter.) there are still some surprises along the way.
In the event you are bored with all this required reading, there's a skin flick on the tube and the next few poems read quickly and easily.
Besides, the test is a breeze.

Erato, i am older than my dreams allow.
There are marvelous temples along the way, all dedicated to false worship.
But mostly, i am lonely with the harsh and broken songs.
O, delicate Muse, the gods have been cruel to my ambitions.
Soothe me.
i am willing to accept comfort tonight.
With the cracking of light over solitary peaks of the Sierra Nevadas i may be willing to learn the effect of the smiles you offer.

Falling in love is too easy for old hands of pain as myself.
i understand the broken text of songs no one sings.
The bitterness is invigorating.
Perhaps the thin silence is more holy than the programmed chanting of your temples afar.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

a cartoon he said?

another unpublished, unsolicited poem .... as i mentioned before, i have piles of this stuff hanging around .... this one is from the 1978-1981 era .... the wayback machine, Mr. Peabody is alive and functioning well. this is a rather strange piece - almost as if a cartoon, or something cinematic, comes to mind.


There are giants
growling in the cellar
and dwarfs dancing in the attic.
The dwarfs dance
to the mad and horrid
music of the gypsy.
(The gypsy is in alliance
with the prisoned
and starving giants.)
Dwarfs dance
along the window sills
until one falls
into the crushing hands
of the giants.
(And the gypsy giggles,
but the music never stops).

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

JC spoke to me, and asked for a work poem ...

Jason asked i put up some more mill poetry ... so i looked around and found this one, written in Sept. 1997. probably not what he was looking for ... but it's the one i found that sort of captured the way the papermill felt when i first started. (Still no contact, though that is supposed to be addressed in mid-June and neither side seems to be very concerned at the moment, so that means ???? - and still the containerboard division is for sale, but haven't heard any updates on that in a couple of days. most likely that will be a 6 month project to get sorted out.)

headed back to the paper mill tomorrow (the joyous night shift!!), loads of overtime over the next couple of weeks ... so updates may be a bit spotty, all depends on that ever elusive thing called sleep ... anyway, here's today's poem, for Jason and all you other working people of the world!!


can't buy heaven on a papermakers wage.
i tells you, lucky to get 4 wheels
& a roof sometimes, but, hey, it's
better than flippin' burgers - & that's no shit!

we (feeling more like Lazerus on rotating
shifts, than St. Paul)
pray to gods with our own terminology.
most days seems like he either deaf
or missing his dictionary.

slitter section bombed out - again.
so we override the computers
& set them by hand - the way
real papermakers did before they let fags & dykes
into the work place,
or so said the retiring backtender.
we not exactly saints, each seeking
cannonization before their own deity.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

quick update on a Tuesday

another poem from the 1987-1989 era - unsoliticted, unpublished.

again - formatting - centered lines are really just indentations in the original. i suppose i should look into that issue and see if there isn't a simple fix, but this works - and well, it works for now anyway.


footprints in the sand
emeralds in the surf
Hebe incarnate
to query your heart
i send rockets through the voids
to incinerate
mine has all the documentation
you could possibly digest
pavilions in disarray
dreams that soar
for the delicateness of your voice
i am forever

tonight it is nearly 20 degrees here
and snow is in the forecast again
there the gulf stream runs through your hair
and the laughter of bottle-nosed dolphins is at your disposal
i suppose you missed my dreams upon your dresser as if decrees from the pontiff demanding penitence for misdirected attention

tonight it is nearly 20 degrees here
and snow is in the forecast once again
there the bay glistens in the slanted sunlight as irish crystal upon your dressing table
and the scent of tropical flowers fills your lungs as an intoxicant
i suppose you have disposed of my aching pleasing poems into drawers full of garments of a former self relegated to haunting dreams and memories that no longer have meaning

Monday, May 14, 2007

2nd post today

a poem about inspiration, or the Muse, or whatever that thing is that gets the imagination in gear. Unpulsihed, unsolicited, in no manuscript, from 1987-1989 time frame. i have literally thousands of poems that i have written over the years, on my shelves - only in typed form - most of which no one has ever seen or read. i intend to share some in this blog. it just means i need time to type (and i will only slightly edit, if at all) and get them into an electronic form ....


the beer is hot and
flat the sky is sultry and
all the poems i held in
the palm of my hand just
minutes ago are missing

a monday update fer ya'all

Monday update - a day off, and i'll be working on a few poems to add at a later time ...

another poem, published by the small press magazine Struggle, out of Detroit i think, that has not been included in any manuscripts. again, the centering is simply an indentation in the original formatting.... again, support them there small presses!!!


- theyre all pushers
in the name of
one goddamned artifact or another

- all selling some
rat trap or another
as paradise with a framework

of their own greed
- all selling the same commodity
even though appearances vary

: and even if you could wash away your sins
who would want to
in a country as marvelous as this

Sunday, May 13, 2007

a couple of days off ...

received a nice comment yesterday from a reader that just stumbled onto this blog ... welcome and thanks to everyone for reading and commenting.

got a couple of days off now, before a rash of overtime at the papermill .... so hopefully a couple of updates will follow.

todays poem was published in Sulphur River Literary Review - their Spring 1998 issue. Another small press that keeps the essence of modern poetry alive. the poem was never included in any manuscript or book. Again, if at all possible, support small presses and their publications.


will you hold me
as if i were damion
fresh from the lepars
will you drink my blood
knowing it could be magic
in the veins of true believers

tomorrow the sun will slice between heavy rain clouds
rainbows will appear
and pine siskins will chatter beneath the nandinas

tomorrow the sun will slice between heavy rain clouds
the wind will be soft and damp
and life will appear as if on a post card

tomorrow the sun will slice between heavy rain clouds
i will empty the bitterness of amber bottles into my veins
and life will merely be penitence served for the sins of living

will you hold me
as if i were christ
fresh off the cross
will you drink my blood
knowing it could be magic
in the veins of true believers

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

is there anybody out there?

before getting back to poems accepted by small presses, but not published in any book - here is another from Proverbs For The Initiated - (c) 1999 Cedar Hills Publications. Another mill poem, which has become the core of my background after graduating from Cal-State Stanislaus.

is there anybody out there? most of the numbers on this here counter (to the right) are me making some changes, updates, and viewing the blog to see what they look like. too bad i can't reset it or have it ignore the "poster". guess i could delete it and find another one if the numbers become entirely bogus ...

oh well, i'm headed back to the uncertainty of the paper mill tomorrow (still no contract, still no talks, and still no word on the sale of the paper division, though the mill manager has a meeting scheduled this week with a couple of crews, and i suspect that topic may be brought up ....

anyway- regardling the poems and this blog thingy: comments are accepted. they are lovely, really.


we watched the log deck burn,
even as we held hoses that were as effective as pissing.
we laughed, even as we took rakes & shovels
to piles of bark, burning as briquettes.
we chased down flaming embers, just like keystone cops.
it did not matter.
the flames were too magnificent for efforts as ours to subdue.
the fire-fighters came, eventually,
with real hoses, real water.
in the end, it was only laughter & comics,
chasing down flaming embers half the night.
the deck, as expected, was severely damaged
but salvageable, just like everything in that damned old mill.

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

another of the poems accepted

another of the poems accepted by a small press magazine - Half Tones To Jubilee in December of 1995. It never was included in any manuscript. Small presses come and go - but they need support for however long they manage to survive, for they are the very life blood of the arts.

today i added a visitor counter ... but it'll probably be a bit bogus, as it adds a visit each time i go to the page to check for comments or update & view the blog. Oh well, i think it will help me know if anyone else is viewing these pages ....

also worked up a dozen or so more posts to be added from time to time, mostly things that never appeared in any of my books, but not exclusively, and poems accepted by small press magazines, also not in any of my books ... so at least for the time being, this blog will continue.


we washed the sins of an entire generation from our souls in the dark california fog
upon the black rocks of the little sur we memorized the flight pattern of the speckled gull
it was a time for living
we were believers in dreams

we were hawks waiting for wings as we waltzed down the dusty salinas valley lettuce fields
in the ever shadows of the sugar refinery we hunted for secrets that had no formula
it was a time for living
we were inventors of dreams

Monday, May 7, 2007

another unpublished bit of life

another unpublished poem. once in a manuscript Shared Dreams, that was never submitted, and has long been discarded, reworked and/or absorbed by other attempts - i think most of the poems ended up in the Humbly .... or Hobo Dreams, manuscripts, but this was not one of them.
union and company announced Thursday they will start talking again in mid-June regarding our lack of a contract - 4 months after the old one expired. And a day before the sale of containerboard division was announced, so the talks may or may not even happen before a possible sale, and who knows what that will bring - stability, closure, or ...... ? stay tuned, boys and girls, and i guess we'll find out together.


the fatman in the mirror smiles
as if he were nearly famous
five poems in print
as if someone really gave a shit

Saturday, May 5, 2007

oh the joys of uncertainty and inevibility

this poem was accepted/published by Inevibility Press in July 1995. Another small magazine press - which is the lifeblood of poetry, really. be certain to check the archives, if ya wanna get to some of the other poems i've posted here ... any sort of comments are welcome (and appreciated - it's the only way i know if anyone has read any of this stuff).
still no contract at the mill, and now the news that the entire containerboard side of the Weyco is for sale ... who knows if our mill will continue to operate much beyond the immediate future ... oh the joys of corporate America ruled by a whimsy called The Dow Jones ....


unshaven i turn the night on an uneven axis
work the dust of industry into garbage bins
that will be certainly empty by morning

the worker i relieve is old
walks with an angry limp
tells me he is god, fallen upon hard times

& god, having lost his national grant, works the swing shift
on a lathe that performs no real miracles
but he collects the shavings
& in the deepest darkness of night he melts them
in a pot as black as despair
molds them into figurines that gather upon a dusty shelf

he tells me when he has amazed a perfect army
(dormant angels, he calls them)
he will free himself from the chains of this slavery
& build himself a perfect paradise in the night skies
beyond the corrupting fingers of this thing called man,
this the worst of all his creations,
man that discovered it all too possible to create (to take) life

unshaven i turn the night into little pieces of dreams
that fly (between the broken castles of industrial giants)
as bats seeking open fields & survival

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

a post before i head back to night shift

another one from The Fatman In The Mirror (c) 1997 - Pygmy Forest Press (Leonard Cirino, editor and great poet). you should get to know Cirino's work. it is wonderful, diverse, often challenging and uncomfortable - and that in itself makes it worth understanding. But beyond that - it is often brilliant and important. his work is available directly from him. i can pass his address (either postal or email) if you are interested. this will probably be the last post for this week, as i am headed to night shift. i will most likely be in the zombie-mode, which is merely doing essentials and trying to survive.


spider bites me & my wrists swells & i dreams
incredible death things or i dies actually
& my death is so unpure
i returns, beaded in sweat, to this hell
until i again be holy sacred