Frozen Soldiers

October 28, 2014 § 1 Comment

 A row of albums at attention across the shelf.

Automatic paintings of life lived.


Pin that butterfly, a moment in Maroon Bells,

Captured and detained, prisoners of grasping love.


Seamless sojourns,

Set pieces, aching in their perfect ruin.


Smile, come on.

No, the sun is in their face.

Oh, that’s a good one.


When mom left, a scavenger hunt.

Faithless scribblings from the distant son,

Knicky knacky detritus,

Even the crumpled tableau of that long dead boy.

All to the dumpster.


Frozen soldiers guarding punctuated images.

Waiting for the ruthless strangers

To render their release.


The Crime No One Can Abet

October 27, 2014 § 12 Comments

Empty page.

Enemy territory.


Ferocious solitude.


Really, why?

Go be busy.

Live in that zone of frantic illusions.


Still you sit.

And still you wait.


Just open the vein, he said.

Easy enough.

Until intention strangles her creation.


Mesmerizing mocking cursor.

Blink, blink.

Tick, tock.

The pulse of your palsy.


Sitting on the fault line between stillness and surrender.


Hustling the game only one can play.


Performing the crime that no one can abet.


February 2, 2014 § 29 Comments

Ever tried.  Ever failed.

No matter.

Try Again. Fail again.

Fail better.

Samuel Beckett

Some writing comes easy, especially the exposition of the critical- the writing that comes from the head.  But what is the worth?

Most writing now painful and difficult.  Hours spent at the computer staring at the screen without a single keystroke.  And so many passages, fragile and aborning, killed off with a slashing delete.

You seek to capture a feeling or a thought that it true and important, or you inhabit a world of your imagination, and then you take that precious and evanescent wisp and try to reify it in the form of words.

But it all falls apart like a clump of moist sand coming undone in your hands.  You reach down and try to gather the sand but it’s now scattered across an endless beach.  And so you go back, seeking again that place where the feeling lived but you stagger through a maze of spaces, lost.

And so you begin again.

The exquisitely painful work beckons, as irresistible as it is impossible.

Words piled on words.  A lifetime of writing.

Yearning only to fail better.




April 2, 2013 § 11 Comments

Nearly a year ago I began writing this blog.  For most of that time, I have been blessed by a connection with Susan Cooper- a brilliant writer and artist- a generous soul who always seeks to shine a light on the work of others.

Susan paid me the great compliment of proposing a collaboration- her art and my words.  Please go to Susan’s pages and see our entwined work.

Something Happened

August 27, 2012 § 86 Comments

A little more than four months ago I began writing this blog.  All to pre-promote a book project.  Instrumental.  Means to an end.  Nothing more than that.

Something happened.  I found myself drawn to this writing.  Drawn like never before.  I felt what every writer feels- the thirst for the work.  The writing itself.  Not a means to anything.

Something else happened.  People.  People came and read what I wrote.  Many of them left messages.  Many of them came back, again and again.  They brought me energy and strength, filled my pages with their kind and thoughtful responses.  They let me see their work- their amazing, stunning work.

Generous, brilliant, loving people.  Great, great writers.  People struggling with illness, depression.   Artists of every medium- the camera, pen and ink, the canvas.  Exceptional athletes seeking outer and inner fitness.  Wanderers.  Mothers and fathers.  Buddhists, Christians, Pagans.  Beautiful, romantic voices.  Flowing, rhythmic poets.

Their voices sometimes filled with joy, sometimes with anger, sometimes with aching, nearly unbearable, pain.  But always real, always present.

My work is intertwined now with theirs.  I feel surrounded by their spirit.  Not alone.

They are with me now.  And I am with them.



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