Monday, December 23, 2013

L'Homme Au Gant

                                                [1977 Kate Painting of Geo.]
[1975 Geo. Poem about Kate]
So I told her, "Kate, whenever you see me today
Please just smile and say 'It's all right.'"
So I stepped off the el and looked round
For a circus, laid my face to the colors
And grabbed the trapeze as it swung by.

The crowd was disappointed.
I'd let them down --half up the
Ladder, I could go no higher.
"Listen folks, I can't do the
Triple flip into the flying forest
Fire because I got a train to catch!"

Then WHAM! 
Halfway down the ladder, skinny
Me in sequined tights, caught
Punched my ticket and said,
"They're applauding the guy who
Threw it, but it's all right. 

Thursday, December 12, 2013

In Mind Is Time

In mind is time bisected,
Order imposed upon 
Imploding past--
Starts asleep in uncertain
Night, stars turn into
Thought, moon into 
Memory, edges light--
And night, heavy under
Dreams of things to be, 
Shambles into the sea.

Friday, November 22, 2013

Persian Wheel

Sat, Mar 25, 2006, #2:

Bit of rust speaks:
Is it? Is it?
Is it important
How we feel
At this journal
Of the Persian wheel?
A squeak:
Observer rimmed
In buckets, undershot,
Climbs round to
The observed,
Like a noria lifting
Water from a stream,
Is it? It is.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Uncle Joey

Tue, Mar 28, 2006, #7:

Carving by spinthariscope
A monument on the head
Of a pin to my great uncle
Joey --b. 1864, small and bald.
Got smaller, balder til last
Detected a century later.
A good likeness: Little,
Down to brittle bones
In blue-veined wax between
Enormous ears. When
Ninety years old he began
Visiting my childhood and
Always had a big happy
Whore with him.
Under the lens a scintilla
Drifts from pinpoint
To fluoresce in time.
Oh! Laughter? Joey?

I should mention you can read the introduction, what Willie calls "the genesis of this blog", by clicking on the date over this poem and the one just before it. My current project here is to illustrate some of the original pieces with doodles and tabletop installations.

I guess I should also clarify that when I was a little boy and got to know Great Uncle Joey --the oldest man I'd ever seen-- my grandparents and parents simply said he was "in the hotel business". When I grew up I learned Joey's hotel was a whorehouse in Clarksburg. I also learned that, in 1915 through 1917, a flu hit the delta and killed many many people. Joey addressed his staff and said if they wanted to help do for the sick, cook for children of sick mothers, bring in crops, care for livestock and generally keep the riverfront economy going until people got well, he would keep them on the hotel payroll. The community was so glad to get this staff of nurses and it helped so much, that law enforcement looked the other way. Other whorehouses followed suit and, despite devastating mortality rates in those years, farms did not fail and families clung to their dreams. So when I'd ask who one nice lady or another was when Joey visited, I'd be told, "She's a nurse, Geo."

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Recuperation Poem


Sun, Mar 26, 2006, #3:

I have built a
Little clockwork tree
That climbs itself
Into the sky and
Comes free, which
Amuses children
And would make
A fine gift, but
Each one gets
Away from me.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Fires At The Mind Parted

[Normaphoto of an old Geo. doodle]
What is this age, air rarefied,
Reason or reconstruction?
Fire at the mind parted--
An old doodle on an old page
Startled at play, lit by
Light of other days-- still
Lingers, a flame of shadows and
Fingers, begun --and time
Has left its lines undone.
All possible selves gone on
Their separate ways: an old
Page in an old book.
It does no harm to look.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Each Hour Unfolding Is

Each hour unfolding is--
And I can close a gate against
The course of other things--
Its own green timepiece,
Planted to perfect the past
In mystery, enclosing
Grass, those roses, these
Easily illuded eyes.
Each hour, however
Cannily planned,
Includes surprise.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Back Porch Poem

Where pen angles
Over its shadow, 
Webby yellow light
Thrown down in
Autumn enfolds an
Old man in his
Back porch chair.
But yes, it is I,
I who sit there --
Me-- alert to piscine
Thoughts that must
Be caught and 
Returned to the sea.

Friday, October 4, 2013

A Young Man Photographing His Father

A dream mirrored in 
A mirror dreamt
Trains itself, flowers open.
Dark unmeasured
Mind extends its tendril
Into time and night
Turns into day.
Am I smaller or 
Farther away or more
Or all three in a garden we
Dreamed a future for?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Instant Unceasing


Where your shadow falls
Across wildflowers
Is an altar
Apart from time,
Age, art, pleasures,
Pain, sadness, hours.
Meaning keeps
Amid its measures.
Peace survives.
We must assume
It is alive. 

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Mar Vista

Where sunset spun light
And vapor into gold and wind
Unrolled what came before,
Something else --something more--
Goes under it, in to supper
And bed with that miracle
In its head, its brain
Dreaming in night.
What remains is
Finally just the light.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Della's Pump

His old mother's well quit
Quite in the dark.
Condenser, relay,
Romex rusted under weeds.
Here we chose our places
And our deeds--
Useful under stars, black trees,
Probing earth for logic
On our knees.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Her Garden

Nothing imagined could
Dismiss the rightness
Of this: you plan,
Plant, improvise,
Provide and I'd feel
No less near if
I fell from another star,
Here, to be astonished
By what you are.

Saturday, August 10, 2013


Banisters, spiral stairs--
Ancestors descend in pairs
And dance floors fill.
Fingertips touch, disappear,
Leaving glows --
Each slowly rises.
Chandelier of swarming
Stars grows overhead.
We appear, see what we
Are and  will be,
And dance here.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013


[Norma photo]
From above,
A little light
Across a
Newly hatched dove,
Touching an autoelic
Spark inside.
That is awfully
Close to love.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Vagabond Journey

Dana Bate

b. 1939, d. yesterday. Actor, Scholar, Artist, Man Of Letters.

I shall miss him.

[Click on his name above and you'll get an idea why. Practical philosophers like DB are too rare.]


Update, 2/10/15: I have had to disconnect the link to Dana's blog, "Vagabond Journeys" because it has been co opted by a spammer.   

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

At First Sight

We haven't met, true,
But I'm as new to now
As you, so let's seek
And together go to
That peak and prospect
So close to now it
Barely answers when
Or why or how it holds
Us in the sky.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Genie's Nicitation

Before memory and
Mystery merge
I ought to ask what
Sort of task
Includes itself
In destiny.
And who was this
Infant self
That set it out
For me?
He did, and
I remember how.
He allowed himself to be
The me that
I am now.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Star Droving

If incandescent clouds lit
In old brass by the sun--
Run under, fallen in flame--
Became a bell that rang
Light instead of sound,
They would still summon night
And pull the settling
Stars around our souls.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Healing Is

Healing is
A concert turning
Under mind, under
Force and form.
I cannot find its surface,
Contour --it is more,
A shape, but where?
I can't ignore what
Is not there, yet
I heal and learn it is,
As I am, quite real.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Yesterday Morning

Quite a handsome herd of clouds
Sailing east over our umbrella--
Overtaken in an urge to
Stretch, vaporize and join
Them --made us forget
Our coffees and her hat, but
I am carefuller than that.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

One Sees

An old brass padlock lay
Upon a tabletop and
Could be closure to
Something inside itself,
But no key, or need.
One sees, and draws
Where drawing leads.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Where The Hammers Are

Her hammers, packed
In a potting shed, shimmed
In clothespin wedge and
Brick -- sledge, thick mallet,
A carpenter claw, all
Organized-- nothing stupid
About her box of hammers,
Or her.
On the other hand, mine
Are scattered all over,
Under ruins, sunken
Dikes, shattered steeples.
It's almost like we are
Two different people.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Rosa Vespidae

Hornet, at alert
Repose, shares
Silence on a
Rose --an echo
Of old stars.
If an echo
Hears an echo,
It is ours.

Monday, April 15, 2013


This, it does not
Qualify as prayer
But I look up past
Privet, rose, salsify,
Sailing billow under blue
And try to cast thought
Above the sky -beyond
Comprehension, beyond
Time- and I am
All attention.

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Goldbeater's Skin

Here in the antic cartoon
Of our souls, orchestral
Reels roll out ecstasies,
Repairs, encounters, cares,
Mirth, thought, love,
It is, it is us
Experiencing earth.
What came ahead,
Above and after
Forgets immensity --is
Lost or found in laughter.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013


To teach, that day,
A thing I could learn no
Other way, foam overtook 
The gunwale of my shoe,
Spun and dragged it undersea .
My foot wasn't in it.
Lucky for me.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

77000-Year-Old Bedding Found

[Prof. Christopher Miller sampling sediments. (Credit: Prof. Lyn Wadley, Science Daily)]

This is where they
Laid their heads.
They fell asleep.

We found their beds.
Between lines three
And four is a space,
Punctuation indicating
A pause of
Seventy-seven thousand
Years --amnestic mornings,

Nestled in settled stone
Waking alone, eager,
In love or sad, in
Their beds where they
Dreamed, worried,
Trysted, cried, laughed,
Whispered, petrified.

Here on prehistoric
Beds, this is where
They laid their heads.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Thanking Susan

I suspect kites symbolize
Something in us,
The brains of us,
That lets the sky
Communicate through tugs
On a thin line.
I flew kites as a kid and
As a kid again when I had kids.
I have grandkids now
And it's almost spring.
Thanks, Susan, for
Reminding me to get a new kite.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Cloud Computing

Closing over what is
And is yet to be,  clouds
Climb out of the sea
On waves of what has been.
Then fog divided by
Fog again divided 
Issues a quotient
Dividing one as well.
Future escapes its shell,
Crosses sand and follows
Shifting mist along the land.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Brain And Sky

Thought and lightning follow
The same plasmoid flux and
Leave a sound that destroys
Itself  --then silence spread
Upon an openwork,
A geometry of time.

Monday, January 14, 2013

She Photos

                                                                                                                           [Norma photos]

She photos frost
On table tops on
Days stunned in 
Frozen sunshine 
Out our window.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013


I believe threads of
Reason result from
Other rags, scraps
Slubbed, spun and
Spooled --done until
Artists schooled in
Dreams emerge to
Braid and to weave.