Sunday, May 31, 2009

Discussion, Tracking Signs

This first poem is written in gratitude to Blaise Pascal, who first pointed out that belief in God cannot in the end be buttressed by reason and so can be approached in the form of a wager thus, if you choose to believe in God you may gain much and lose little. If you choose that you do not believe, you risk much and what you can gain is doubtful. While this may not be palatable as an underpinning of belief, it cannot be reasonably denied in anything like the ease with which it can be stated. This was a groundbreaking philosophical point that no one had done before him, opened up probability theory, anticipated pragmatism and voluntarism as philosophical movements, and was part of a group of observations that attacks certainty and thus may be considerred the first work of existentialism.

It is important that this wager not be understood as a reason to believe by itself. That is not how Pascal meant it at all. However, not everyone was pleased with Pascal. The wager was published posthumously and thus Pascal escaped all brouhaha. If you are interested in the replies that philosophers made and all that, just Wiki Pascal's Wager. It turns out there were forerunners of the wager in Islam and Hinduism.


You said, "Better to
Believe in God, risking there
Is no God than the other way."
I said, "Better to
Believe in the work, risking there
Is no satisfaction than not believing
Which guarantees no satisfaction."
God woke up at that, sang
"Boys will be boys.
And girls will be girls.
It's a crazy mixed up world."

January 9, 2009 3:37 PM


This poem brings to light the way women dissappear and appear in the north, or the winter, in the snow in my life. The View From The Northern Wall, Noordwal. In the Chinese version of the directions, the North is the place of solitude. South is plenitude, East beginnings, and West endings.

Or is it God? I'll wager :) Hmmm. Goddess.

Of course to bring it down home, my last lover left Oregon, emigrating to British Columbia. How much more literal can I get?

Tracking Signs

You've gone north and you
Expect me to follow you
But I see no trail.
That means I'll have to
Track the signs you've left again.
That will slow me down.

(shaking the rain off)

Not that I suck at signs, no,
I follow them well,
Hardly ever get
Lost so bad I must give up
In disgust, go home.

You know all of this,
Of course you do. I admit
This pisses me off.

Still, my heart hangs here
Now that you've gone walking
As if I don't count,
As if it's me that
Disappeared, or I didn't
Care enough for you.

January 10, 2009 9:15 AM

Saturday, May 30, 2009

In Living Color, Two Faiths

This first poem is quite personal and I have no right to explain it. Something happened that was amazing to me, that I actually did not expect. It was a very good gift, this "unmasking". It renewed my faith in spirit wishes and the strength of friendship.

In Living Color

To think I was there
At the unmasking moment
And saw your true face.
This is like early
Crocuses coming up, out
With their bright blue blooms
Just after the snows.
They too guess right times
As you did just now, showing
Courage in the gray.

January 9, 2009 9:23 AM


This next poem is a continuation of yesterday's discussion. I should explain a little on the quark side of things. Science guys have a real sense of humor, hence the name quark, which comes from the writings of James Joyce and they name quark attributes using all the names that I have used and more with the exception that I should have said color instead of green. Ordinary quarks and exotic quarks...the difference is that huge energies that begin to approach the energy of the so called big bang (this too is science humor) are required to give signs of the exotic quarks.

Ordinary quarks are bound in triads in matter-like particles such as neutrons and protons. They are found in pairs in fermions, a quark and its anti-quark, which if not bound as found, then anihilate and become photons of another sort, themselves a quark and its anti-quark. And that's the trouble with quarks. Under our cold conditions there is not enough energy available to break the bonds of the strong nuclear force and no quark can be found unbound to other quarks. Thus you can never "see" quarks directly.

What you can do is create special events of such high energies (thus hot) that you get telltales, but even then this cannot be maintained (there is no vessal to contain these energies) for more than the smallest amount of time (virtually no time at all) and the quarks are bound again, all new particles but still bound. So you have to trace the changes and understand that if quarks are not there doing all this, the profusion of particles and the changes in them cannot be understood at all. They call all this the Standard Model of Quantum Mechanics. There is a whole bunch more, of course, all based on real time instrument readings and very careful theoretical thinking and really difficult mathematics. Further, all this takes place with certain stages of it happening in public before other trained professionals, any one of which can and will challenge either the theory and/or the data if they think they have a way to challenge and thus achieve a better career position. This matter of professionalism provides a strong control in the dialog. If you want to join, you are going to have to accept a deep scholastic discipline and master mathematics and laboratory disciplines and risk failing at that quest.

No one has ever seen a quark, but they "know" quarks exist. Of course at the quark level, exist is an odd word, out of place, a characteristic of stuff orders of magnitude up the scale of appearance, indeed, Newtonian, and not really applicable to quarks. For example, quarks are sized so as to slip in and out of time as we know it. There is no way to tell time at the level of quarks. Time runs forwards and backwards equally easily. While this is true, so to speak, it is not useful. There is no way to do anything with that "fact". Facts require time as we know it. Quarks are of their nature beyond time as we know it. Time is still fuzzy this way one level up, but already there is a tendency toward the arrow of time that we know.

Two Faiths

My friend the faith guy
Believes in God's breath unseen.
I have another
Friend who believes stuff.
He's a quantum mechanic.
No matter how hard
He tries, he can't see
Quarks, up, down, charmed, strange, or green.
This makes my eyes itch.

January 9, 2009 10:25 AM

Friday, May 29, 2009

Immigration, Taking Guidance

I don't know why, really. The core of me is bewilderment. I know that is very old, perhaps the oldest. It is quite possible that is the first response I had at being born. Perhaps it is older than that. I favor reincarnation, do not care if it is really true. Reincarnation is just too elegant a solution to the "not fair" problem in a universe run by a perfectly just God. This planet at least is breathtakingly, amazingly unfair. This cuts all ways.

I have heard people say they were grateful they didn't get what they deserve. Yes. Me too. Also, there have been times when I get far more than I deserve, and so do you, and so does the little child who starves to death, or dies in some horrible way, like being born with AIDS. So yes, this cuts in every way. The bad guys win, the good guys lose, and every variation in between. And so reincarnation allows time for the tendency of the good to actually win out in the long run. Because we see that too. We control and diminish disease over time. No question this happens. We have managed to avoid world wide war after having it twice within fifty years, now avoiding it for over 60 years, even though we were beligerent enough in that time to threaten it. So if we can weather the latest threats, we give ourselves time as a species. And that may give time for reincarnation to keep us coming around and participating, reaping some benefit as we go. Or not.

In any case my mom and me we agreed. We have had enough here. We don't want to come back here, we want to go on somewhere else. We both agreed with the other end. Mom always used to say, "where does an alien go to register?" I say, "when's the bus coming back?" We both mean we want out. Not that we don't enjoy the good stuff, but that we disagree with the chaos and the unfairness. We both lived fairly successful lives in certain ways, and effing disasters in others. She died well. I hope I will. It is no accident that I live in her last house. She set that possibility up, though if my marriage had survived it wouldn't have happened this way. If I ever marry again I will sell it because it is really a one person house, how it is laid out. I live here quite well, me and the cat, but I don't really feel at home. It is after all, still her house.

Oh yeah. Neither my mother nor I either blame the human race or God for this. We have different stories about that, she and me. For my part, I suspect it to be the cost of inserting free will into things, and I actually believe that quantum mechanics demonstrates that the precursor to free will shows in the private lives of fermions and bosons, especially fermions. We have a little trouble getting them to be definite. They are always going, "but on the other hand..." If you want free will in a universe, it has to be made like this to be lawful, and then in the aggregate of distressingly huge numbers unfairness develops right along with creatures who exercise the image likeness of God. This all lies at the heart of everything, and we are a very small part of that.

This is getting too long. What I wanted to say, I quite genuinely feel like a stranger here. I tell stories about that many different ways. Here's one.


I'm standing in line,
The new immigration queue,
Looking for the man
Who will stamp my heart
With welcoming ink and show
Me the ropes I need
To take the high road.

January 8, 2009 3:52 PM


I do so love some of you. I love Frances, my last lover because she is so infuriatingly optimistic. She so loves it here, especially in the natural world. She simply has to have adventures. My old friend Phil stands alone. He taught me one fundamental. I know he's right in some way. We either all go to heaven or we don't. Period. That's actually the old Universalism side of Unitarian Universalists. So many people in AA, and now on the blogs, so many of you teach me some one thing that is immensely important. So I witness. That's my main job I think, that and the ongoing training so that I witness better. I am in training right here, right now.

Taking Guidance

That you stretch the lines
Is one reason - I never
Color well between
Lines myself. I watch
What others do and decide
What my life will be,
How I should cherish
Your heart, how to say this thing,
How to love this world.

January 9, 2009 7:31 AM

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Adam's Sacrifice, No Guarantees

Here are two related poems. They were written 24 hours apart, seem to be about the same character with a long time between the views, at least that is how it seems to me. It seems that Adam got told what to do, did it, and this is what he got, years later.

In AA, we are instructed in this way, " is clear that we manufactured our own misery. God didn't do it. Avoid then, the deliberate manufacture of misery, but if trouble comes, cheerfully capitalize on it as an opportunity..."

So here is a story of just such a condition, and then it's long term aftermath.

Adam's Sacrifice

That you should require
My separation from you
Is what baffles me.
It feels bleak and hard
That I must walk out the door.

I know I started
This situation in truth
By my argument
And I think I'm right
But still, what a steep deep price.

And on top of it,
At the high capstone,
You want me to do this thing
As if willingly.

January 7, 2009 11:51 AM


No Guarantees

I ache in hidden
Places and have for years now,
Following your lead.

This is the price discipline
Has laid on my heart, saying,
"Regret would be worse,
Trust me on this, my old friend."

But how can I know
For sure?

January 8, 2009 11:55 AM

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Chocolate Truth, I Won't Go

I really like chocolate. I like dark, bittersweet chocolate. Actually, they don't usually make eating chocolate dark enough for my taste. I stop short of creating my own. That's because I am really lazy. I am more lazy than I like dark chocolate, because real baker's dark has no sugar and that is not what I mean. I would have to make my favorite chocolate concoction...nah. That's actually a truth of my life right there. I can't think of any dope on the planet that I went really far out of my way for. I worked hard as a dealer, but that was just me trying to earn a living.cvvvvvvvvvvvx <---Cat decided to add this... Of course alcohol is found at the corner store. I was too good at planning to get caught in a dry time without a supply. So I have never been tested to find out how far I would go for a drink. Without dope, just fall back on drink. I have never put work into getting my chocolate dark enough. Idleness trumps chocolate. Probably booze trumps idleness. Just how it is. Not was, even though I am sober now. And that, my friends is a directive. If booze trumps idleness, then don't get that kind of idle. See the intro to the next poem about that.

Chocolate Truth

What a wake up call
On this rainy strange morning
As I settle in.

To see you as ripe berries
Or an avocado heart
Puts all my senses
On alert. I start hunting
For chocolate truth.

January 7, 2009 8:22 AM


Here's another one of those poems. These poems are not sad poems. I like the tone of them. I don't even think of death as a sad subject. But then I am in the third stage of life, which starts according to the Hindu vision at age 56. This is the idealized cycle of Saturn and progressed moon. The idealized departure point from the planet is the start of the fourth cycle, which is age 86. First you have 28 years to become full grown, then 28 years to pay back, then you retreat to finish your self and spiritual development, in that sense, retire for the last 28 years. The ideal Hindu way of this is the begging bowl and the forest. So I am retired whether I work or not, because this is what I do, paying attention to matters of spirit as an individual on a path in the trackless forest. Dogma is not really useful now, though it might have been well served in the last cycle, and required in the first. However devotion might be useful. Hindus call that Bhakti Yoga.

I Won't Go

Coming right at me,
You think I would welcome you
At this big moment
But I don't. Not yet.
It's too soon for me
To go through heaven's wood gate
And down the ladder
To hang there waiting
For your boat to come for me
To take me to you.

January 7, 2009 9:42 AM

Oh by the way, I know what started this poem. On Robin Starfish's site, Motel Zero, which you can grab any time you want on my blog page, there was a great photo of a wooden dock gate with a ladder going down to a tie up. That was heaven's wood gate. Also, while I don't remember what site, perhaps Lucy's Box Elder, there was a picture of fruit for Chocolate Truth. It was submitted to a quarterly, I liked it so much. They did not use it. :(

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Serendipity, Hidden Wealth

Serendipity is a great word...happy good luck with a hint of someone behind it...and my life had been filled with it. I would like to be able to say I am properly grateful. Instead, I say things like, "It's about time I caught a break." *cringe* Well, not so much any more. I am better at expressing gratitude now, after a whole lifetime. But I must admit it's been a long time coming, and I am still in the background a God fighter. I still think there's enough wrong here with all the pain and fear in the world, I mean the real stuff. It's hard for me to take the good stuff as a gift when there is so much lack and need. Even when it's cool with me, then I can ask, but why me? Why should I be so blessed? There's something wrong with that.

But the wisdom of the day is to just accept and if I can, to show gratitude. If not then seek forgiveness and give a gift, pay it forward.


When I landed here,
Right at her hearth, by her side,
Whispered in my ear
Saying, "I'm really the deal
He's given to you.

"You will have to wait
For me to arrive again
And meantime you shall
Act as if you can do it
All on your own. That's
What he wants of you."

January 6, 2009 10:21 AM


I don't know why I wrote this poem. I think there is something to it though. Some of the gifts of the spirit are not meant for the light of day or public display. I kind of think that way about the music I play on my keyboard. I rarely have an audience and would be slow to gather one. On the other hand, I have been happy to give readings of my poetry. I don't know for sure what the difference is. Maybe it's like this...

Hidden Wealth

I looked underfoot
Expecting nothing for it
But found something there.

I wanted to stake
My claim but you said, "Nothing
Doing little man."

I don't think it fair.
It's so close to me, easy
For me to pick up.

That is how it seems.
You said, "It's your hidden wealth.
Must remain just like that.

"Won't fire you up otherwise."

January 7, 2009 12:26 PM

Monday, May 25, 2009

Firing God, Finding The Balance

Speaking of fantasy. I hope nobody thinks I really talk like this to God, or thump him on the noggin... That's probably not something I would do... And what is that "back in the last days of earth" thing?

Firing God

God, you're keeping score?
I fired you for that
Back in the last days of Earth.
Don't come around here
With your tally marks.
I'll have to thump your noggin.
Imagine talking
To you like I do.
It's what comes from old friendship.

January 6, 2009 9:34 AM


Actually, there is a connection to my life in this one. In AA we will say of the Higher Power, if He is not working for you, you can borrow mine. And another way, if He is not working for you then fire Him and get a new one. In the meantime, maybe Group Of Drunks will work, otherwise known as God With Skin On.

And this next poem is one I am rather fond of. I actually think sometimes when a poem like this comes to me that I may have some hope after all.

Finding The Balance

I am here again,
Trying to figure it all,
Trying to square things.

I know I'm not all alone,
That others wish to balance
The ball precisely.

The perfect poem won't fit
In the perfect life.

January 6, 2009 9:57 AM

Sunday, May 24, 2009

The Man I Loved, Stripped Naked

This first poem is about me and my StepDad. Robert Henry Hileman was a Marine in WWII, just old enough to get in at the last, landed in Okinawa and was headed to invasion of the main islands when the bomb stopped it all. The other man was my real father, Vance Leonidas Teague. He was a genuine war hero, in the army air corps as a co-pilot, the plane all shot up and the pilot dead and all of them wounded, he with arterial bleeding in his calf, tourniquet and the presence of mind to fly the thing back to land it all broken up.

My mother married this man, then realised that she had made a mistake. She had me and left him. He was convinced to his dying day that she tricked him somehow, got what she wanted, took me from him. So when Stormy Hileman (he was a football hero on the Cal Rosebowl team of 48 I think it was; then he tried for, almost made a professional slot on the 49ers) got serious about marrying Mom, Vance, my father stopped his regular Sunday visits with me.

I have no idea what really happened in that two year marriage, which was my mother's second(...she annulled her first. She also annulled her fourth, and was married five times. She always said she had affinity with Liz Taylor, knew just what Liz was about.) I do know that near the end of his life we were in contact and I made a small remark and got quite a letter back. His wound after nearly fifty years was still fresh.

I was a childhood asthmatic and really was pretty sick. This man Stormy married us anyway, what was to be an eighteen year marriage.

The Man I Loved

I was only four,
A sick little boy, breathing
The air of two men.

One came on Sundays
To take me places, I said,
"See you someday." (Wow)

The other came by
More often, and I asked him
"Would you be my Dad?"

He married my Mom
Soon after. That's when they said
It was me proposed.

January 5, 2009 2:46 PM


Damn. The heart attack changes everything. This too feels prophetic. In fact I have no idea now what the original referent was, though I am often found reaching for heaven in this poetry I write, or so it seems to me.

Stripped Naked

My stark lightning bones
Are thin, and look quite fragile
Reaching for heaven.

I was stripped naked
By a mighty wind
While sure I should stand my ground.

Then you come along,
Take my last picture
Before I fall down silently,
Old before my time.

January 6, 2009 9:15 AM

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Seeking God Himself, Barking At The Grinning Moon

Back in January, writing about the coming of spring. I did not know that my spring would be marked. I did know that I felt heavy.

Seeking God Himself

I carry this weight
Doing my part as you do
Accepting the chill.
At the edge of me
Is the bud waiting for spring,
Then to swell, intense,
Ready to burst with
Green flames, to look for lifemates,
To seek God Himself.

January 5, 2009 9:00 AM

To burst with green flames...a solution to heart pain.


When I encounter the spiritual life I press so hard against the edge of me that I wonder if I can move at all sometimes. There is something about seeing with the eyes of God. That resolves some paradoxes. However living today as I am, another bozo on the bus, all I get is that the paradoxes do resolve. Trust me on this. Right.

There are no answers here, not real answers. There are dogmas, tenets, assertions. There is faith. If you try to hold one horn of the dilemma and then try to stuff the other in beside it, it won't fit until the other falls out. It's the shape of the mind, not even really the size of it that's the trouble. The paradox would fit if it was shaped more humanely or the mind shaped closer to God's shape.

There are something like higher dimensions involved. Those words do not have the right shape either...not higher dimensions, not in the scientific sense but yet these words evoke how the infinite is present in mortal life. So we say that eternity lies at right angles to spacetime and that has to suffice.

Barking At The Grinning Moon

Without God I'm fucked,
Without free will, this also
Screws me to the wall.

There is no matter
More important than my time
And what I might do
Yet nothing's required.
God, how shall I reconcile
Me with paradox?

If you think I know
The answers, then you're barking
At the grinning moon.
He taught me this truth:
It's the questions that move worlds.
Answers will kill them.

January 5, 2009 2:20 PM

Friday, May 22, 2009

Following Instructions, What Is It?

I do have trouble following instructions. I simply don't like being in the position of needing instruction. I never have. Sometimes I have some topic grow on me and need to grab hold of it. Then there are instructors but they are superfluous. Then I am chasing the data. Most often I don't see the need for that subject and see even less need for the tasks I am assigned. Going to college was a could I find courses where either I already knew the material and so could get a grade, or I was actually interested in the subject. I found some of both and wound up near to graduating eventually, really only needing one good solid year to graduate, or three more at the rate I was going.

That's when my life hit the fan and I splattered off into the distances.

I did not return to school for eight years, and then I entered the Prior Learning Experience Program at a local school and put my self taught home schooling to good use. I used their format and wrote a book length document to get my last 28 credits. It took two years, the first to figure out what I was attempting to do and the second to do it. I went to almost no more classes, just sat at home and wrote. At one point I was a guest instructor in an intro to a layman's understanding of quantum physics.

That it took two years...that's me having great trouble following instructions.

Following Instructions

If I could follow
The instructions I wouldn't
Be here in this mess.
I had to argue
My side all the way with him
Until he let me
Weasel under the tent wall,
Saying, "I'll show you!"
Sure I really would.

January 4, 2009 10:06 AM


Here's a longer poem than I usually write.

What Is It?

Consider the snake
Or is it a stick passing
For a bleeping snake?

If it bites, then it might be
A snake, or a real good trick.

If I look closer
And the snake is then revealed
To be a damn stick,

Here is illusion.

What the world is like,
The veil can be pierced by me,
By you, by heart, soul,
By simple plain means,
By a small effort in truth,
Is not devious,
Is not hidden with
Purpose and malice building
Clever nasty walls.

Constant discipline
Is what it takes. Yes, of course.
A good memory.
I need simple heart.

God promised me this: that I
Could trust the essence,
Would need no special
Tricks to get along with Him.

Here is simple faith.

January 5, 2009 8:09 AM

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Are We Done Yet, I Won't Talk

Here are two role plays, two very different role plays. 26 years ago, I admitted to a major leveling of my pride when I admitted to alcoholism. I agreed that the description of addiction disease agreed to by the AMA in the fifties and extended through the decades since by significant research and experience both inside the treatment community and in AA and other self help groups (as they come and go), I agreed that this body of experience defines my condition. This is one way I am basically interchangeable with perhaps 10% of the rest of the world.

The point of saying all that, whatever happens to one of us alcoholics, whether by choice or by accident, can happen to or be chosen by every other alcoholic given sufficient time in the active part of alcoholism. We talk about the in it hasn't happened to me yet, or I have not done that yet. One of my practices then is to own my imagination. If I can imagine it, in some other really possible life I could have done it.

That's what happened when I left drugs behind. My change of life hinged on the very real threat that I would be forced by my own incapacity to snitch on a friend, something that would go so far over my own moral lines that I would be left with suicide as the only alternative. So I quit dope and started drinking to survive my losses, because when I quit dope I quit life as I knew it, and admitted to deep soul failure. That is just true of where I was, leaving all the people including the woman I loved because I had to, because I did not have the strength to do otherwise.

That's what I mean. If conditions happen just so, I will crose any line that I think I can draw and hold to. I know it. So here is a poem of a failed spirit, and then a poem of a monster.

Are We Done Yet?

You left me a sign,
Impossible direction,
Merge up, so it says.

How am I going to do that?
I forgot my flying boots.

My toes are frozen,
My ears burning, don't like this.
Can't we go home now?

January 4, 2009 8:42 AM


I Won't Talk

I don't know why they
Stare at me like that beyond
These bars. They put me
Here two days ago
Shouting something mean, awful.

They keep taking me
To this room, trying
To get me to say some shit
About what I did
Last week to this girl
But I tell them nada of
What really happened.

January 4, 2009 3:25 PM

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

My Hopes Shiver, This Ghost

The women I like are strong women...little wonder with the mother I grew up with. I understand the special challenge that biology gives to women, and I am fairly interested in all the different ways they try to solve the conundrum of children and career, for example, or the simpler but still difficult issue of marriage itself. My last lover left me, I believe more to stay single than to leave me. At least she said so often enough. And yet in doing so she took on another different sort of relationship aimed at giving a young and talented man a chance to thrive. She adopted a young Mexican illegal who just happened to be an amazing baritone with a yearning for opera. Then they worked out solutions and what happened, he was able to go to Canada and become legal. So now he can't come back to the States but he is legal going to school for his opera in Vancouver. This took most of two years to set up. She has a singular and unique path. So do her children. One has ties to Japan and a Japanese wife. Her daughter is going to get a Masters at the London School of Economics. That daughter has already spent a semester at university in France.

My wife was arguably among the best cross cultural specialists in child welfare in the state of Oregon before she crashed. What a tragedy her loss was...she raised a couple kids in the course of her work, both girls. One of them was totally institutionalized when she took her on, deemed hopeless, but she worked and eventually that kid became a dental technician and survived easily on her own. The other kid was born to street gutter drunks. She took that kid and engineered a life that led to a higher math degree at Yale and a 100k a year job out of the gate after graduation. Neither of these kids could have done it without Ann. There were of course many others.

My Hopes Shiver

If you would hold still
Then I could touch you just so
And we would rise up
As if we had wings.

You insist on your freedom
And my hopes shiver,
Come apart at seams
I didn't know could be there.

You aren't what you seem.
I have to admit
I'm not either. I am less
Without your magic.

January 4, 2009 10:45 AM


You might notice that seams figured in yesterday's post too. And I wasn't done this day with looking at women separating from me in the interests of freedom, not wanting to be saddled with a man. January is the month when my two lovers since divorce have left me...There might be something about me that doesn't make me good sticking material. Hmmm. I live entirely too easy alone, I think. My women all come to a point where they say they don't understand what I want with them...Yet from inside, I know I am a "married man". It is how I love. I come home.

This Ghost

The sea should swallow
Me and take me down.
This is how I think this day.
You unwind me as you go.
I'm left on the sand
Behind you, thin, gray.

I know you're sad about this.
You have to go now.
I've become this ghost,

Trying to follow you home.

January 4, 2009 11:15 AM

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Hot Leads, New Eyes

I have direct experience of altered states. It was a long time ago. It was also not fun. I did not do drugs for fun, not after a certain change. But at the moment of the change, something else happened. I have been working hard ever since, casting out what needs to go, keeping what needs to be kept. I share what I know by writing poems among other things. Here is one side of the experience. If encountering raw spirit is much like grabbing hot electrical leads, then one could surmise some things.

It is not always like that. The encounter with spirit can be amazing and easy, peaceful, full of love. But it can also be a dangerous matter. The Bardo Thodol was written as a guide for Tibetans who might enter demonic realms in their spiritual passage. And more. Because the wise will point out that the bliss of spirit can be even more dangerous, entrapping a soul short of the mark.

But the biggest thing to know because raw spirit can burn you, get a guide. Another thing to know, if there is such a thing as insulation, then get some of that too. Another thing to know, if spirit is stronger than you, then beef up. These images have actual counterparts in the spiritual disciplines. The only reason to strike out into the spiritual wilderness without discipline, training, guidance, fellowship, tradition and practice would be a direct call of spirit to do it, or as happened to me, by "accident", meaning spirit comes to you.

But that accident was no easy thing. I nearly paid with my life, also with my sanity. The next thing that happened to me was four months in an institution and two more years on antidepressants, and at least some of that really needed. I have journals from that time. It is amazing to me that I have this double vision. I know I did not feel depressed. I was really excited, chasing spirit, hoping to learn what happened to me, and being convinced it led further than my insides into what was happening in the world. But. When I read those journals, I read the work of a depressed young man. Wow.

Hot Leads

I asked if I'll snap
Stretched like this. You said, "Maybe".
That's just friggin fine.

I've been here before,
Took me years to untangle
And stitch a new seam.

This spiritual stuff gets me
All riled up, hair stands on end.

Like grabbing hot leads
And power searing my soul,
I just can't let go.

January 4, 2009 9:14 AM


Here is praise for the internet. To have these moments of communication on a global scale is just... We take this so for granted. Nothing like this was happening twenty years ago. If you are young, this seems like a permanent feature of things but for people like me, this is simply amazing. I actually make my living in a way that started for me in the nineties, but my trade actually started in the seventies. I spent twenty years doing mechanical and industrial design by book, calculator, SLIDE RULE, pencil, templates and straight edges. My most used tool? A mechanical eraser. I got into computers (AutoCAD) by a fluke, though I earned my chance. New Eyes? Internet eyes, phosphor eyes, led eyes. When I started AutoCAD, it was a DOS program and we grieved a little when Windows took it over. Heh. I still miss XTreeGold for DOS as the file manager. There was a global file view which made picking out all the newest files very easy even though your machine file saving architecture might be quite complex, like mine has to be. So back up of the necessary newest files was really easy then and has never gotten any easier. Windows was a loss of speed and clarity in this way. As far as I know, it remains so today. DOS is so much closer to the machine language. Manipulations of the file architecture is way more simple and easy without the Window overlays. Other things than file management pushed windows. I believe there is still a core of DOS involved somewhere in the deeps of Windows.

New Eyes

How good to see it:
Flying all that way to her
Would turn my winter
Into her summer
And I would shed my woolens
For her cotton prints.
I would not have seen her thus
Until you offered your eyes.

January 4, 2009 9:49 AM

Monday, May 18, 2009

I Won't Come Back, Louis MacNeice Said This

In 2001, I went through an extraordinary year. My Mother died in January, then my lover left me in February, the one I was speaking of in my last post, she who gave me the poetry of my later years, then in June I lost my Dad. In the following October, Annie died, my wife of twenty years but by now several years divorced. In some ways losing Ann was the worst. In others, losing Mom was the worst. In still others, losing Maire was the worst. I crashed in the first months of the year. I couldn't work. I didn't go back to work for several months. In that time I slowly cleaned out my old house that by then I could never own outright, even though I had been there twenty years, I moved here, Mom's house, a different, marginally better economic deal.

Here's the deal...Mom was a Minister...Hypatia Hasbrouck is a well known name in Unity School of Christianity. She got the Myrtle Filmore award for lifetime service, basically for establishing a track for ministers to become fully ordained in Unity while in service in the community, instead of going back to Unity headquarters and entering in the full academic program that takes at least two years. She was able to do this because she had been a teacher before she was a minister at the high school and college levels. First she became an ordained minister, and ran a church. Then she began teaching at Unity School. Then she organized this department of ministerial education. Then she was drummed out for political reasons, but later, there were so many ministers that she had trained who succeeded that she was given praise and honors and became a minister emeritus.

I am not a member of Unity School. I have never been. I am not much a Christian at all, though as a high school student I was confirmed in the United Church of Christ. Now I chant Sanskrit Mantra, feel at home with certain forms of Buddhism, and have studied intensively in one of the five Chinese Classics, I Ching since 1969.

Yet in this matter of death and what comes next, Mom and I held exactly the same attitude. She did not, I do not, think of death as an enemy. We both hold it to be a doorway, an exit. We both told each other just as I write it here. There were others who told me that she showed up in their lives after she died. My sister said. A certain minister nearby also said. Some others. Not me. She was absolutely silent with me. Gone. As she should be, as I hope to be.

Mom died in late January. Still this is an eighth year anniversary.

I Won't Come Back

Mom looked at me then,
"I'll not come back here," she said.
To this I agreed.
I said, "Me neither."
I said, "You go on. I'll be
Leaving this place too."

In the end, coma,
Her body attempted one
More breath, in or out,
Either would have done.
Neither worked any more, no.
It was done. She left.
I never saw her
Around here after that time.

We burned her old bones.

January 03, 2009 7:41 PM


This poem crossed my path and I fell in love with it. So I wrote about that.

Louis MacNeice Said This
(See his poem Snow)

God, how you said it,
There is more than glass between
The sides of the world.

There is snow falling
And on this side, pink roses
Display, arguing
Suddenly against
The outer cold white snowflakes
While I eat my fruit.

How you said all that
Is a flaming bubbling pot
Deep in my true soul.

January 03, 2009 8:41 PM

Sunday, May 17, 2009

In Your Service, Mean Spirit

There is something to swearing fealty. It is fantasy and yet is also true in deep heart levels, in intentionality. This is the very same place that if magic is to exist, magic involves.

In Your Service

I will tend, honor
You as a blossom gives life,
And you will not die
Today, nor will you
Even fall ill in this time.
So I swear to you.
So will I do this
As I am called by my lord
To act in your stead.

In this way will my final
Place be ever by your side.

January 3, 2009 8:40 AM


And of course there is the other side of things. In some strange way how we can reach beyond ourselves do not cancel out. They can't. Otherwise there would never be the appearance of dark magic in the world, not the stuff of horror movies but the real thing, access of deeper energies to enhance activities on the planet that end up arguably evil.

Mean Spirit

You are so damn pleased
With who and where you are now
That I just must snarl
And stamp my sore feet
In sheer jealousy, that French

Then I go and bang
My aching fat head against
Another damn wall.

January 3, 2009 10:23 AM

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Entangled Lovers, Baby It's Cold

Here are two poems about love. Both are true stories. The moons of Jupiter are really, really cold. Methane is the fluid in the oceans there. Hot and cold running methane....don't go outside without your sweater, lovey.

Entangled Lovers

I once got between
Lovers entangled like squid,
Wound up on the ground,
But he was too torn
And twisted to do me harm.
He'd broken her heart.
He broke my one watch.
Then ran off into the night.

I walked her home sad.

January 1, 2009 7:50 PM


Baby It's Cold

When she left for Earth
I came undone though I dreamed
I would have held up.

I take all of it in stride,
Keep navigating just fine,

Until this moment
Of her god damned departure
From these frozen moons.

January 2, 2009 9:05 PM

Friday, May 15, 2009

Turn Honesty Into Art, It Really Is Magic

Here are two poems, quickly written in the evening of this year's first day. There were things going on, and one of them was settling ever more into this thing I am doing. I am still under vows. I have said it many times now, like I mean it, and even deeper, I have acted. I have posted 328 poems. Actually 329, because one of them was published in a quarterly and I have not posted it here. My list of poems to publish numbers 436 right now and I have two more to load in from today. 438 poems yet to publish... It won't be a year until August.

Part of this was a deep and unfocussed sense of mortality, as I thought it might be. That's where this heart attack comes in. It is obvious I would think, now that it is revealed, that the heart trouble was building over time, and I was living with it, not interpreting the symptoms right. I expect, if the stent works that several vague and not so vague issues will dissipate. I am fragile yet. But I feel in certain ways better than I have in a couple years.

I don't think this is all of it. Why am I under vows to write two or more poems a day?

I know who...I am under vows to the Master of Poets. God in this facet. I am under vows as was Hafiz, the Sufi mystic First Poet of Persia. From time to time one feature or another of my situation arises in a poem. Usually I say, Yup. That's true. Then, I say, that's not it though. Turn honesty into art. Yup. That's not it though, or else poems of fantasy and science fiction wouldn't count, and they do. Oh yes, they do. In this particular game it has to resolve into one thing, the poetical Theory of Everything.

Turn Honesty Into Art

The way this thing goes,
This poetry thing happened
And now I'm in vows
Like my man Hafiz
To turn honesty to art
Before the Lord, you,
All of you, spirit
Moving across my heart bones,
I turn in my grave.

Digging myself out
Or maybe digging me in,
Deeper into God.

1/01/2009 7:11 PM


Right after I wrote this, I found myself on a certain blog site that inspired me to write this next poem. I had no idea what would happen and it was a deeply personal poem. I chose to take a risk. It worked and now I have a very good friend. Diplomacy is not always about staying safe.

It Really Is Magic

Gosh! It's like magic
The way the words flutter down
Into dancing dots,
Into this small box,
Into your heart through sad eyes
That are turned away.

I wonder how I'll
Turn you 'round or if it's me
That does this thing.

January 1, 2009 7:26 PM

Thursday, May 14, 2009

The Edge Of You, Fare You Well

This wouldn't be fair if I didn't offer a possible reading of the symbols. Otherwise you might wonder where love comes in. I mean I am happy here about sharpness, keen edges and all that, but love seems softer than that...

I recommend that in the background you let part of quantum mechanics run if you can. Everything we see is a manifestation of the electromagnetic force and its carriers, the photons of various energies, which means colors. Instead of going faster or slower, photons, massless, travel at lightspeed, or slightly slower in various substances which are transparent to light. Lower to higher energies go from infra red to ultra violet, and lower or higher yet, a change of color. That's how photons handle energetic variation.

All chemistry then has in its background color. Proof? Burn the substance. Light will be given off. Use the right spectroscopy and that light will always carry a particular color (wavelength) signature such that we can identify what a burning substance is by its colors.

Electrons exchange photons and that's how electricity works, in its background too is color.

Atoms, all atoms have a "hard" knife edge shell of electrons in one or more layers woven by the electrons as they move very quickly, nearly at light speed. Sometimes they jump layers. When they do, photons are given off or absorbed. There is more energy closer in to the nucleus and less energy toward the outer edges. Here is the knife edge of love, the way that all we know on the planet is here for us, and beneath it all is light and color. Literally.

There is more, of course, way more, and some of it is really exciting to those who care about such things. Going after more, that's going behind the wizard's curtain, and going somewhere else, where color as we know it no longer can be the complete metaphor.

The Edge Of You

It's the edge of you
That gives you light, let's you shine.

I can't breathe near you,
Your eyes take my breath.

Your edge is a knife. It cuts
Me out of the old,
Passes me forward
To the new day, the new year.

If I look away
It all frays into
Bright soft mist fading away.
No sharp edges left.

January 1, 2009 10:50 AM


I want to say something now. I am convinced with Einstein and so many others, the theists in the scientific community among others, that quantum mechanics and what it may lead to as we get closer to establishing the Theory of Everything, prooving the Higgs Field and all the rest of it, I am convinced that we are also approaching an accurate interpretation of God's physical language. What is just amazing about all this is that as we go to the really really small, we are forced more and more into going into the largest clumps of all. The infinitesimal singularity that starts it contains everything :) The further out we go, the closer we get to that.

Here is a poem about living farther out.

Fare You Well

I come awake here
Next to you with the thought of loss,
That you have to go.

The next boat out will be yours,
The next port parsecs away.

We made the best love
In these last hours as I tried
To cross those light years.

1/01/2009 5:00 PM

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Beyond Reason

So what happens January 1 for you guys? For me it was sacred space this year. Here is just one poem. I think tomorrow's post will also be one poem. I don't know beyond that.

Beyond Reason

You touched me one time,
So completely real beyond
All other real things
That I tend to float
An inch or so off the ground.

This was through the veil.
It has no logic,
No logic at all was there.

Axioms are torn
Open by your touch,
Cannot be relied upon
When I sit by you.

Only in this way
Can the rules hold in this place,
That you say it so.
So you have promised
That for this moment, this flash
Within eternity,

You will not break out
Unless you find you have to,
And you have before.

January 1, 2009 9:02 AM

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Just Do It, How 2009 Started

This is just spooky, now that I have had the heart attack. Some of you may remember how I have written here that I feel I have limited time to do this poetry. I wrote five today for example. On Dec. 31, I wrote nine. There have been many days like this. So I was sitting in the end of 2008 and beginning of 2009 as if it were an omen that I was trying to read and here is how it read in those winter days.

Sinking the Ch'i is Chinese and the Indians have a similar set of concepts. The Asian energy sciences (they insist that this is science verified by experience in inner space of the Self, that you too can verify if you accept a trainer (guru), a lifestyle under his guidance, and join however loosely in a fellowship of practice). Sinking the Ch'i is basically an "inhale" from beyond into bgvvvvvvvvvvvb (I am leaving that because my cat thinks it belongs here) so, again, sinking the Ch'i is a kind of "inhale" of energy from beyond into us, but it is principally experienced as a lowering of blockage.

Just Do It

Before I go there,
Before I do sink the ch'i,
It's impossible.

After I go there,
After I let the ch'i sink,
It's so easy. Lord!

Exactly. Lord help me now.
Help. Do what my heart cannot.

December 31, 2008 7:59 PM


Help. Do what my heart cannot. Wow. Those were the last words in a new poem I wrote on New Year's Eve. It is unquestionable that most of the set up for my heart attack was in place already.

So I spent the Eve alone, which was fine, and at nearly 26 years sober then, I wasn't sneaking drinks. And the alone part. I am sitting here alone right now, well, since I have fed my cat, she's leaving me alone. I am not only used to it, I enjoy it. I was okay New Year's Eve too. There's an old joke among alcoholics, even the active ones...we stay home on amateur night. It's just too dangerous out there. There was a sober dance I could have gone to. I know many people who did. I didn't. I got up pretty early on New Year's Day. I wrote this

How 2009 Started

A dark, stormy morn
Greets my timid thin shuffle
Into this new year.

There is no shadow of me
And no sun to throw it down.

I hope no omen:
This bleak and black announcement
Says, go back to bed.

January 1, 2009 8:10 AM

I hope it is no omen...I wrote this headed into a couple months of unemployment. Then I got back to work and very shortly allergies started and opened me up for virus, which in turn drove the allergies down into my chest, where everything stalled for five weeks. I lost five days work to this. It lifted finally to give me a few days sort of healthy, and then BAM. Heart attack. I lost four days work to this. Now my whole life is changed. I have no sense at all of what is to come. But it will be ordinary. Probably.

Permit me to far as I am concerned, this all fits within the bell curve of ordinary life, admittedly sort of far out on one end of the curve, but in it none the less. I have been through far worse, meaning that in worse times the demons were busy eating me as well as events were happening or stress was transforming itself into physical distress. This year the demons were not attacking. The vultures were hanging out on someone else's bedpost. There are no vipers under my bed. Deeper, Coyote is still my friend and Death on my shoulder is a light burden and good advisor.

I hope you guys see the humor. I do.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Castle Walls, Another Aww Shit

On this last day of the year I wrote nine poems, as I wrote a couple posts ago. I was all over the map too. Going to all the places in me perhaps. Saying goodbye to the 2008 Christopher, the man who discovered blogging quite by accident and then in trying to figure out how to say what he wanted to say found the poetry. I have written all my life, but most of it not that good as far as I am concerned. This latest stuff I think passes muster pretty much. So does my music now, when I sit down and just start improvising in Eb and related keys. I do that for at least ten minutes most days. If I really wanted to improve it would be as ever, more like two hours.

But what has happened is now actually tested, when a whole team of people took seriously that I might actually be circling the drain. I no longer have anything to proove here on the planet. I have no children and not much family. I can live lightly because I am done with anything like hoping that it gets better, or somebody or something owes me, or I owe them, or if I just do one more of that I will finally get it, or that maybe I'll be famous someday, or that there will even be a someday. That's all over with. I had thought so, but now I know it. I was happy either way in this heart attack thing. I just was not afraid, nor was I regretful I hadn't even had a chance to tell everyone goodbye. Just whatever. What a relief.

Now I can get on living as best I know, knowing I have no hidden agendas. Well, sort of, one...I don't want to end living in a box under a bridge, or even so poor I can't get on the internet or something. I don't need another girlfriend or to be widely published or even necessarily to be well thought of. But there is one thing that keeps coming up...whoever dies with the most love wins. To get it you gotta give it away. Gotta quit being afraid to take a risk. But I have been around the block. I am a recovered alcoholic. I spend a good deal of time amongst felons, the deranged and crackpots, a whole variety of shortcomings and lifestyles. There is real violence that lurks in the past and under the surface. People trying to tell the truth or not but seasoned seasoned liars. So when I say quit being afraid to take a risk, that means with both eyes really wide open, fully alert.

So there are these people in my life, and when something like this heart attack happens I find out there are people in the background who give a shit. They surprise me. God provides. I needed a ride home from the hospital. I was puny. No one was around. I was going to need to do the cab thing. I said, okay, that's it then. Then. Right then. An old friend I hadn't seen in a few months showed up. He took me home. Earlier, someone I know distantly demonstrated his own concern for me by coming to visit, a man I never would have guessed of all the people I know who might come. So you see? This has happened to me before.

That then. I love you. That's the only thing to stay for, to find out what happens next for you. With hope and trust, I pray that what happens next for you is glorious and real. I know I have almost nothing I can actually do except encourage you. But like in AA, not at the expense of the fucking truth. Eyes wide open and courage and trust and fancy footwork, so practice, practice, practice. Just like any artist or really good musician. Just like that.

God is in my life. But like the Buddhists know, I don't have to chat Him up nor impose Him on anyone. Find out for yourself. It's your risk anyway, just like it's mine.

Castle Walls

I stand on ramparts
I have built, indeed to lift
Me up to heaven.

But I trained with a master
Who instructed me on doors.

So below my height
Are doors well made, wide open,
And to my left, stairs.

December 31, 2008 3:30 PM


And in the interests of truth telling...

Another Aww Shit

I am feeling sunk
Because I don't sink the ch'i.
Diaphragm's blocking.

I need you to take the blame
Since it's you pointed this out.

I will duck and weave,
I will dodge this bright arrow
Pointed straight at me.

December 31, 2008 4:08 PM

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Winter Walk, Vanquishing Demons

I am getting on with things, trying to settle into the rest of my life, which is different now. I am looking at how all this is a simple pressure on my boss to divest of me. His health insurance just took a hit. It only cost me $200 to have a heart attack. It would be really good if I were no longer on the payroll. I will be slower now of necessity. Less productive. Demons. Both his and mine. You have no idea, but demons enough of your own, no doubt. I was headed into New Year's Eve with these poems and they seem to fit right now. The winter of my life? I am not dark. It is all right. Even at the darkest, most northern point there is still light poking over the horizon, just a little at the noontime of the day on the Winter Solstice.

Winter Walk

The freeze, the chill fog,
The red rose buds encrusted,
I am here put right.

I walk these paths with glory
On my mind, and you at heart.

The old is going,
The new is coming to us.
We're more willing now.

December 31, 2008 3:09 PM


I am sure that some of you are going to start recognizing these poems more and more. I don't remember where I first wrote most of them probably. I am pretty sure of Winter Walk, where I wrote that one. I was in the mood though. Someone put me in the mood. Back in the 60's I partially read the Tibetan Book of the Dead (Bardo Thodol?). In that book it pointed out that to the trained spirit the demons are just as I describe here, and your soul depends on not allowing foul smoke to govern your path, no matter how demonic threats seem to become real, to matter, to solidify before you on the path. So...

Vanquishing Demons

Imagine the world
Reaching past your fear of loss,
Giving you the sun.

The demons have departed.
They've gone underground for now.

They were just foul smoke
No substance, only swagger.
This will be your truth.

December 31, 2008 3:42 PM

Saturday, May 9, 2009


I wrote this today over at Faith's blog and it is equally apropo here, so I am jumping the queue. I have four prescriptions that I left hospital with. An anticoagulant, a cholesterol med (though my ldl cholesterol was in the excellent range), a beta-blocker, and aspirin. The anticoagulant I will take for three months to a year, to keep clots off the stent. The rest are lifelong. Shit.


Bitter white powders,
pressed and stamped, put in bottles
and dispensed for us
as if we shape shift
behind their white white influence.

Yet I know I need
some of what they do,
might even die without them.

I hate taking pills.

May 9, 2009 2:22 PM

What The Aliens Did To Me

I have had a small heart attack and received an angiogram and angioplasty. They found an obstruction near the base of the right cardiac artery, just before it branches into the terminal distribution to the lower right portion of the heart. I have received a stent and also marching orders for the next considerable period of my life. I was in the hospital for basically three days, though only charged for two. The doctor who did the procedure was apparently one of the best in this area for the angio procedures. I am a member of the Kaiser system. They are setting up a cardiac unit at their hospital here in Portland and this doctor is a keystone in the setup. It turned out that I was the second person undergoing the angiogram/angioplasty/stent placement procedure in the Kaiser operating room, though four or five people, including the doctor himself said I was patient number 10,000, plus or minus for him.

I am not moving so quickly but people expect me to return to normal
duty in three to seven days. Remember me saying how my poetry has
seemed to come as an emergency, get it done right now activity? Heh.

I have many friends and so I was well attended. People visited and
called. My renter took me to the emergency and waited to see what was
going to happen in the middle of the night. She is a friend of twenty
years' duration. I actually had more attention than I really wanted
but that was better than no attention would have been. The nurses
were great overall though I had my favorites. I had all that
attention from friends despite the fact that I was shuttled between
five locations in the hospital, the emergency room, the first night's
room, the operating room, the procedure recovery room and then
recovery in the cardiac ICU, not so much because of my condition but
because I could go to hell in a handbasket quickly. I left the
hospital from ICU. Finally, in the ICU I was able to locate myself in
space, recognizing the view I had from my window. I didn't even have
a wheelchair escort on the way out, almost a mistake. That was a long
rough walk, first to pay my bill and then to get my meds. A friend
had shown up just as I was getting ready to call a cab. He took me

I finally had my first hits of morphine which I didn't like and
dilaudid which I did like. I found out that the judicious use of
Afrin stops nosebleeds. That's a whole other story, not a happy one.

Anyway. That's what happened.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Here's one called My Human Condition

My Human Condition

Total soul eclipse
As I stuff myself with toys
And the sugary
Dollops, diversions
Of my own greedy senses,

Yet the dry desert
Of avoiding things
Builds toward an explosion
I just cannot stop.

Why then is it so
The middle way is slicker,
More slippery than
My poor toes can grip
And I slide to either side
Again and again?

December 31, 2008 1:54 PM

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Feeling Gray, Ode To Walmart

This first poem I know was inspired by the number of winter days, by the snow on the ground still, because there was so much of it this year for our neck of the woods.

I need to say, when I have poems coming, and this was a big poem day, there is a joy underneath whatever is coming out as print on screen, just like there is with sad songs...and I play them too. First there is for the player, for the writer, at least for this writer, because they are works of the moment, first there is the joy that I can effing DO this. It's working. I have had the intuitive hit, "Here's a poem!". Then its, "Look at that! These lines are just going together like that!"
and finally it's, "Wow, only two places did I struggle even a little." and the poem is done in fifteen minutes...

That's when I look at it and say, "Huh. That's kind of sad." or whatever. While I am doing the poem, I am not saying to myself, "I am sad and want to write a sad one." That's just not how it goes, not in the writing.

I have seen art and photography like this and wanted to see if I could make a poem do it.

Feeling Gray

If I were to draw
Inside my mind, bring it out,
You would overlook
The piece, and go on
To something more colorful,
More in the moment,
More true to the church
Of what's happening right now.
It would be all gray,

With one color added in
Off to one corner.

December 31, 2008 10:19 AM


This next poem is an economic statement

Ode To WalMart

My mind is unhinged,
Slashed from my brain's outpouring
My head sparks and sparks
Great flashes of light reaching
Toward my thinking
While it recedes, fades
Into the further reaches
Of disembodied
Life, of odd freedom.

I will go shopping today,
Mindless to WalMart.

December 31, 2008 10:32 AM

I want to say, what a perfect 5 syllable line "neurochemistry" is. I never guessed I would ever use that word in a poem :) I know you can't write poetry like I do without wierd neurochemistry. My friend Rachel seems to have herself wired oddly too :) There might be one or two others out there ;0) Jung wrote of the four primary functions, Thinking, Feeling, Sensation, Intuition. In that sense, I am sure you can't do or understand poetry without intuition. Intellectual poetry sucks. Ooops. Just my opinion...

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Way It Goes, A Small Sad Rain

The trouble with living a long time, you get enough time for all the stuff that can happen to happen. That's actually an overstatement, but at least not really in the area of heart life. All the stuff that can happen has happened there. Boy meets girl, boy gets girl, boy loses girl, boy gets another girl, loses again. Several of these, even though one was over twenty years. Deaths, financial stresses, all the wars since the Korean war. Booms and busts. Car accidents. This and that. And still when I think of what has happened, what I go to first, I find, it's the heart stuff.

At years end, I found myself in the reminiscing mood and willing to write in a darker tone.

But this first poem follows close on yesterday's post, more sf. You know there is rather a large amount of science fiction poetry around. Lots of the sf writers wrote it. I found a site that I visited for a while but didn't really feel welcome there. It was heavily sf. These two sf poems came from those visits. I may have some others.

I should mention that "void of course" is actually an astrological term, meaning that the moon makes no other geometric aspects with planets or the Sun before it changes to the next sign in its orbit. When the outer planets are in the last degrees of signs then it is hard for Moon to be void of course. But the history is, the planetary system (not really solar system in the geocentric tropical zodiac) ended with Saturn. The outer planets begin with Neptune.

I often do that :) Like you guys would know what void of course means... How I understand moon void of course is an empty time, not good, not bad, but a time to avoid making big decisions because the normal conditions as they return will bring a change of consciousness too. You might or might not regret decisions made under moon void of course. That's where the rest of the charting comes in.

It could be a hidden condition in a natal chart, and under that condition, there might be some trouble with things lifelong turning out not quite right. In the natal chart this would be a moon in late degrees unaspected and then with investigation discovered to be unaspected in the next days also until changing sign, meaning in progressed terms that the native would have an unaspected moon for perhaps a few years, the primary formative years. I've never known anyone in that condition so I don't know really how that manifests.

The Way It Goes

The Moon's void of course
And Mars is not my home now
That I have lost all.

Exiled from Earth and from Mars
With no funds, can't buy back in.

I'm on a slave boat
On contract to the outer
Cloud mining comets.

12/30/2008 7:36 PM


This poem returns me to the home planet. It is my first poem of the last day of the year.

It is about the displacements of love.

A Small Sad Rain

Like a flower cast
Into the shallow pool left
By the small sad rain
That came when you left
This place and left me behind,
The rose of my love
Is now no longer
To the right of my torn heart,
To the right of God,
To the right of time.

December 31, 2008 9:15 AM

A postscript: this last day of 2008 was my most prolific day to date. I wrote nine poems. This was the first. My last was at 9 PM. So I wrote nine poems in twelve hours.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Kipling On Tigers, At Saturn's Rings

So much for the small about the big ones? I read a book not long ago, The Life Of Pi a story about a boy who was on an ocean voyage with his family and the zoo that was their business. When the ship goes down he survives by finding a lifeboat and unfortunately there is a zebra, an orangutan...and a tiger. He learns what he needs to and survives the tiger. Then the story takes a turn. Read it if you don't know it. It is quite fun and very strange.

Kipling On Tigers

Kipling spoke to me,
Showed me the tiger's new lair
And where his tracks went.

He told me Bengals swim, drink
Brackish water when they must.

Never, he said, no,
Do not ever look him square
In his golden eyes.

December 30, 2008 2:59 PM


As a child I was into science fiction so deeply it has never left me. I was definitely one who rooted then for big changes in that way, loved the actual space program, would still prefer that someone would figure a way around the light barrier somehow. So now I am rooting for both cosmology and quantum physics to get the TOE, the Theory Of Everything in a useful way.

We already have big pieces of it but in the form it currently is, there is no way we are going to leave the local neighborhood. Bummer. That means the strange lands of Frank Herbert, Ursula leGuin and all those other really really good writers are unlikely to manifest.

But in truth, if we ever manage to harness sunshine using truly large space platforms and also harness the transmission challenge, we will become so energy rich that civilization will change again, based on a truly sufficient for the long term supply of energy. Whatever.

We will have to survive the ever increasing multiple crises in the near term to ever get to such a place. There is not the belief, the will, the available resources, or the time at present. I am more than half convinced that there is something pretty difficult brewing, but I confess that I have felt that way most of my life...

We have hung that anxiety lately on the 2012 winter solstice. Maybe. Probably not.

I heard another prediction, that time is literally speeding up, in such a way that since everyone and everything is undergoing it, it only manifests as how we all feel time is speeding up, but no one can prove it. I heard that sometime around 2011-13 the nexus will be reached, time will be compressed to its maximum, and then it will begin to slow down. It started speeding up near the end of the 1800s. Time is supposed to do this on some cycle. I like that one as much as the alignment with the center of the galaxy, better even because it is independent of man's measurement systems.

I have trouble building cosmic significance out of alignments that are largely revealed through our mapping devices and simple math related to navigation. Mapping conventions are not scientific discoveries, are not realities somehow out there, but are man centered conveniences. The sources of the maps that tell time in the 2012 way are in man's psychology. We would have a whole different set of them perhaps not on the moon, but certainly if we were long established on Mars or a moon of Jupiter or Saturn. You see, it really depends on perspective.

That brings me to my next poem.

At Saturn's Rings

I look back at you
In this far cold empty place,
Can see only dust.

I know you're there still, at home
Perhaps, or in the city.

From here all is one.
All of you are found in one
Tiny pale blue dot.

December 30, 2008 5:10 PM

I was recalling a History Channel show, where they literally did this, kept going out further and showing what earth had to look like. Tiny pale blue dot - that's a phrase from the show. And then long ago, certain astronauts found it a compelling and even spiritual experience to see Earth from the orbit of the moon.

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