Wednesday, December 30, 2009

click post

Happy New Year Post

Monday, December 14, 2009

In which I invent the term Fractured homophone.

This two stanza poem, by me, "Ode to Bookstore and Dinner Out, in Spring," is a fractured homophone of the two final stanzas of Keats' majestic "Ode to Autumn."


Ode to Bookstore and Dinner Out, in Spring


The author haunts inside the stone store,

brick and mortar. I look for her to find,

caressing pages on a beige/blue carpet floor,  

her soft hair lifted by no window but by the wind

of a door revolving.  Others are found asleep,  

drowsy in fumes of coffee, as piped songs hook    

like twilight shadows of twin-stalked flowers crook

an urban elder.  Old New Yorker.  A gleaner keeps 

re-shelving.  Kids returning.  Laden cart, each book

confected by a press, with painted look,    

pimps my loyal roost. Each someone’s child.

You’d think I rooster, hour by hour, but I run.


Here is hungry Spring. When are harvest days?

Don’t think of them, we have our corner diner too.

Above dinner, tight clouds vice to a shatter or a fake.

No way in this wet season to not begin to be.

“See, son, rivers, Hudson, Seine, Tigris, mourn  

that human fish who hopes moss only grows north.”    

Over-thinking our clues to what lives or dies

is frowned on by my cool-bodied gulls just born.      

Idol contestants sing; and now with treble soft  

your waitress whistles at a sketch of Lara Croft,    

as, outside, bluebirds dive bomb from the skies.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find 
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor, 
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;  15
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep, 
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook 
Spares the next swath and all its twinèd flowers: 
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep 
Steady thy laden head across a brook;  20
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look, 
Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours. 
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they? 
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,— 
While barrèd clouds bloom the soft-dying day  25
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue; 
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn 
Among the river-sallows, borne aloft 
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies; 
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;  30
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft 
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft; 
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Court Street Red

Pictorial incantation, December 2009

Court Street Red
Stopped in dread

Court Street Green
Freedom dream


Sunday, November 29, 2009

stampworthy messages from the beyond


Harvey S. Moon, Upen Deesk Eye.

So far NY has said nix to frost so the tomatoes, blessem, are still growing.   Not tasty anymore but as beautiful as any well-cared for parkinglot (have you seen A Serious Man?).  Pictured here is a white yellow variety that in the flanken of summer was as delicious as the true fruit each of us was promised upon Edenic arrival, and behind it a little "sweet million" cherry tomato.  

Above please fine the moon tonight enmeshed in branches and seen from behind tree jewelry. 

Did you see Dexter?  It was good.  Scary.

accidents happen

There are many kinds of people in the world, but I am not one of them.  
Said the tree by the park in the dark.  Instead, I am the misnamed Loch Monster.  Neither Loch nor true monster, I do happened to be named Ness.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

is this thing on?

the cloud traffic was mild but steady.  mostly new, more energy-efficient compact clouds and a few hybrids but anyway, a lot of em.  in the distance, a bridge symbolizing a person who figures she might as well keep saying things.  look at the posture on those sentries!  you can't dismiss our civilization so quickly when you see the kelly osbourne grace of the deep lean away from all that face.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

Dear Fonzie,


In the middle of the road of my life

I awoke in the dark wood 

where the true way was wholly lost


I'm sure you too hear this first stanza of the Inferno sometimes in darker hours.  I've been hearing it lately, enough even to recall and reclaim that some sun rays rise and point the straight within a page, and terror subsides, but I can't finish the sentence there because only a few stanzas on the jaguar comes and has spots and paces and won't let him pass.  Still, at least you're moving again, if only side to side.


Friends, bleaders, Fonz, I am attempting an arise.  But enough about me, how you doin'?  I may be half vulcan half falcon (yes, I mean balloon boy), but I have feelings too.  And when I go outside, yes, yesterday I went outside and I did it again today and intend a threepeat this evening to teach.  So yeah when I go outside people look kind of miserable around the eyes.  Some of them are sufficiently distracted as to not actually be miserable, and of course, some of them are neutral, and yes, I'm getting to it, some of the sweet bastards are actually happy and healthy.  But it's kind of nice to be seeing these eyes that way, because either I'm projecting grief on minds that are actually at play in the field of their teams and dinner choices or I'm seeing what is really there but also not there, and either way it's weird and bad and good to be feeling especially empathic.  So I guess Betazoid.  


I've been down and out a few weeks, if you like your writers fluish, let's say that then, but the girl was more honestly bluishs.  This though is a note to claim revival, the author awakens to find she is convalescing in a wonderful life.  I have at least a sense of sun rays, and an intimation that I the jaguar can be outlasted.  


I have a regular Weds blog at the Best American Poetry site and after having not posted quite regularly these past bunch of weeks, I managed happily to post today, so have a look if you feel like it.


Fonzie, I'm just not the type to jump the shark, but I was feeling awfully like a Triumph hovering over Jaws.  I know it couldn't have been easy for you either, so much pressure, such ridiculous expectations, living in someone else's family, banging on things to make them work.  I just want you to know that I admire your courage and sympathize completely with the anguish of it.  I am holding you in cupped hands in my minds eye, and Fay Wray is holding me, and the ape's got her.  Lois Lane has the ape, and Superman has Lois Lane.  "You've got me?  Who's got you?!"


Well, for what it's worth, I've got you and I think probably the Green Lantern has me.  Because the Green Lantern lives by poetry and does the best he can.  That's Fay above, of course.  I considered the other easily available shots of her, but if you look you'll see that the idea of them paired with a blog post about an ice patch of depression makes them utterly terrifying. 


So right Fonz, feel the love and take it one heartbeat at a time, but, you know, take it.





Monday, November 2, 2009


Here's the full moon sunset over Brooklyn last night.  Did you see my recent Newsweek mention?  I'm trying to write a book review for the American Historical Review.  Haven't been free to talk in academic for a while, it's kind of nice and kind of newly foreign.  It's hard to be a popularly oriented public intellectual, friends.  In case you didn't know.  Oh well, it's like everything, I suppose: pick a language and speak it.  

Friday, October 30, 2009

kids are wild things, crowned teacher is max

masked man

Halloween Wants You!

Monday, October 26, 2009

nice bridge

Tonight I'm going back to my old school to a memorial for a professor who was more a mentor to me than anyone else, and then we were friends, though we weren't in much contact, but here and there, over two decades.  I've been asked to speak and am honored to do so, but feeling the weight of it.  Anyway, nice bridge ay?  Yesterday we went to the flee market they hold under this thing on Sundays.  Man they got some good eats there, by the way.  Many strange and misplaced matters, historical widgets and lost lots.  Love bright sunlight on bric-a-braque ephemera. 

Sunday, October 25, 2009

fall under the bridge

Autumn was blowing the willow around under the Brooklyn Bridge today, which was Sunday.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Yes He Does

I've been encouraged to blog.  But which of this basket of thoughts to uncrinkle?  

Praps I'll just say I've been defending Obama's peace prize these last few days (in facebook status and casual convo), and except for all the thanks it is a thankless job.  I don't usually bother weighing in on things (beyond buddies and 'book), but I can't help saying I think all this nope saying is the contempt of familiarity.  

Every year they go in the room and try to pick a name of somebody who that year made the world peacier.   It's supposed to go to someone who is fighting the fight that most people were saying can't be fought and changing the faces to maybe.  

Sue me, I say Yes He Does. 

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


I was wondering what the world really looks like so I took some random pictures and so far as I can tell, I think this is what it looks like.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Sonnet on the Ribs of Laughter


Those who find the sun in every sorrow

may yet cry thunderstorms when in their hiding.

Not rarely, who teaches hope can barely borrow

what it takes to make it through a day’s colliding,

that is why they talk so much of hope.  Tomorrow

and today are both a moment in aligning;

joke is that the hawk-heart is a swallow

by night.  Who hears the music also hears the sighing.

By night who sees light, by day so sees the harrow,

but never ruled by sun nor star as law abiding,

no, the bilious cloud that knows of sorrow

comes at its whim, as does its twin: the dove arising.

Be kind to us we singers of delight,

we sing because we sigh in day and night.


From my second poetry book, Funny.

Friday, September 11, 2009

uplit blooms in the eerie dreary

This is something I am trying to establish for myself, but which often eludes me.   At present all is well, as a wet wren is bothering my window sill.  

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Jump shots


Sunday, September 6, 2009

plant fruit as fairy lights

These unsheathed themselves out of green fiber and into being and like dark matter fingers they are expanding.  Hope is the thing with eggplants that's pendent in the soul and sings the tune without the words and never stops at all.

Monday, August 31, 2009

both sides

Same leaf shadow on leaf, looking from the outside in and then the inside out.

sky sighting

This morning over Brooklyn.

Monday, August 24, 2009

A New Poem by Me (and WS and TJ)

In the practical, it's not ideal to post a poem and then hope it finds a journal home, to post is to publish to a degree.  whereas after publishing a poem somewhere, posting it is fine too.  So for efficiency, why not only post poems that have been published, and save the sweet young things at home?   Because sometimes something new gets stuck in my head and I just want to say it out loud and show it to friends so much that I sacrifice its future upon my desire.  What desire? I wonder, and guess it is a desire for communion.  Which reminds me of the subject of the poem.

A Marriage of Love and Independence

When in disgrace with fortune and men’s eyes

When in the course of human events it becomes

I all alone beweep my outcast state

necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands

and trouble deaf heaven with my bootless cries

which have connected them with another and to assume

and look upon myself and curse my fate

among the powers of the earth,

wishing me like to one more rich in hope

the separate and equal station to which the Laws

featured like him, like him with friends possessed,

of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them,


with what I most enjoy contented least

We, therefore, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world

Yet in these thoughts myself almost despising, 

for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name,

Haply I think on thee,--and then my state 

and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies,

(Like to the lark at break of day arising 

solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies

from sullen earth) sings hymns at heaven's gate; 

are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States

For thy sweet love remembered such wealth brings 

That then I scorn to change my state with kings. 

Sunday, August 23, 2009


Friday, August 21, 2009

tonight's sky

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

also on governors island

I wonder if the photographer David Maisel has google alerts for himself and will therefore see this?  I saw this color decay and thought of him, or rather, you, if in fact this works.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

every 44 minutes or so a cannon would go off and the children would go running at their mothers. fun!

is the only way to say "this is not sarcasm" to say "seriously"?   nonironically is too cumbersome.  noniron?


dearest bleaders, 

civil warring on governors island

before the siege

Friday, August 7, 2009

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Three Thousand Words -- poem in three pictures

click to see more detail.  or don't, but note that as a sigh is just a sigh
some things abide as this truck goes by.
i love more information.  i love information that cancels previous formulation.
Devious formulations.  Let my epistemological nightmare be your good fortune. 

There's moving, and there's storage, and that about covers it.  

Well, here we see it travels, proving H G Wells so much more than a cheap date.   Time Tweet? Sure, maybe some ice cream.

Monday, August 3, 2009

garden jewelry V

Slant light in glass, opacity of cherries, blue where it has no business being.

Yes, it was my 3 year old who strung the brick in one of the below posts.  Also don't miss miss spider's contribution.

garden jewelry IV

garden jewelry III

I like beads but don't like much self-adornary.  I like slant light in glass.  I once bid on a big box of beads at an auction and got it for a song.  I like placing blue where it has no business being.  

Cherry trees are pink in March and in August fretted with red berries, impossibly opaque beside the leaves and beads.   

Basically my littles (3, 5)  like to do my art with me so I do this because they can do it (beading doable) and they don't ruin everything (so less frustrating for me too) and they like the whole business entirely.  I call the beaded danglings "pretties" and the kids do too, as if it were perfectly natural.  Which it are, aren't it.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

horse of another angle -- click pic

ready for my close up

I like to get closer and stay longer which is why I'm always makin' with the pictures.  It is always intended by the Dear Fonzie establishment that all photos be clicked.  They are taken with lots of information and so pretty when embiggened.   But looks like if I pile six pix I lose the ability to click bigger all of them, or does this de-splay my working knowledge of the computer innards as involving a rodent running on a rolodex?    Anyway, let's see if having posted this I can click it bigger.