Saturday, March 6, 2021


How this man ever got his hat 
is beyond me. Earned his stripes?
Got paid for this crap? I knew his
sister, when she was still flat; just a
a kid with a training-bra and a wish,
with a whistle at that. Everyone 
grows up to be something, take 
it from me :  dead or alive, 
it's all you can be.


The center aisle will travel you
home with no need for a left or
a right  -  no side-steering needed;
no twists and turns. Surrender your 
ticket at the door, and you're on 
your way. To the left rises Mayhem,
but they get movies and snacks. On
the right sinks Morosity, and they
get peanuts and a force-fed ham.
Safer to stay with the endless middle;
you'll go without anything else, yes,
but have an enjoyable tip anyway.

13,470. HOMAGE

Michael McLure Allen Ginsburg
Frank O'Hara Lawrence Ferlinghetti
John Giorno Kenneth Rexroth,
Diane Di Prima, Gregory Corso, 
Lew Welch, Bob Kaufman, Diane
Wakoski, Richard Brautigan.

Friday, March 5, 2021

13,469. PICTURES

I wouldn't be able to say
anything right, even if I
tried. Along the coastal
walkway, the thatched huts
are all burning. My feet
are on fire, as well.
In my memory, another
place beckons : chipping
slate along some crumbling
hillside. Looking for fossils,
where  -  really  -  none would
have been. We are standing.
'Heretofore' : a word like that,
I was told, should never be 
used in poetry  -  it being far 
too 'prosaic.' Perhaps that's so,
but I like being the one to get
things started.
I invented the used of the word
'caveman,' even though it was
really but a symbol. No one ever
'lived' in caves really. Maybe
they once drew pictures, but
that alone was it.

Thursday, March 4, 2021

13,468. RUDIMENTS, pt. 1,150

RUDIMENTS, pt. 1,150 
(aliens, all)
Wanting to get somewhere 
different, I often let my mind get
ahead of myself. It was always
about that time that hunger
usually called : there was this
step-up place on 8th Street,
up maybe 10 steps; a little
elevated room, with windows.
A person could sit there and
look out. I used to order a
25-cent potato knish, and
something to go with it  -  I
forget what  -  to drink. It
was a cinch. A large and
filling knish, and a place
to linger. East, along the
street, was the Studio School,
but a block off; and in the 
other direction, 10 or 12
doors or so, was Electric
Lady Studios  -  that place
started by Hendrix, but 
which he never really saw 
to fruition, mainly because
he died. It was pretty big-time
for a while, and lots of people
and groups recorded there.
I was usually pretty tired, or
bummed out over one thing
or another. Being a regular,
or normal, guy was never my
style, and little things used to
irk me. Like, back in Avenel,
my 'girlfriend' always expected
a phone call at 7:30 on Weds.
nights. No big deal, right? But
sometimes, even as much as I
cared for her, it was the last
thing I wanted to do. You can't
imagine how I disliked, and
still do, the phone. I don't even
have a phone of my own, and
won't. Like stupidity, and like, 
now, vaccinations, it's one of
those things foisted on everyone
so that now it's considered an
obligation. 'Up yours,' on that
one, I say. My life has never
had a place for a phone, and 
won't  -  there's nothing more
bleary than idiots talking end
over end to others, sight unseen.
If I had told you that the mass 
of Humankind would now be 
doing that  -  fictionalizing an 
imagined person at the other 
end, talking, gesticulating, 
and emoting, verbally, as 
they strolled along, you'd 
have told me I was crazy. 
Then, and now! But it's 
all strangely illusionary, 
though it's all been 
indoctrinated through to 
people as the 'way' things 
are. A bolstered and specific 
reality. This all might have part
to do with my being an artist.
I don't much accept the path 
of others and I shy away from
observing the prescriptions
of them too  -  basically I
believe in nothing, and 
understand that  -  beneath 
everything  -  is a lie. A very
substantive lie by which
we have accepted and built
up our stupid world, calling 
it Society, and what's worse,
calling it right.
As an artist, I demand the
picture. I need someone in 
front of me, so I can read, 
in real-terms, their faces and 
their fabrics, their shirts and 
shoes, their being and their
attentiveness as they speak 
to me. It's a basic premise of
contact to me. Eyes and
expressions. Words alone are
too manipulative, especially
in the insincere and false
manner that idiot-phone-jive
allows. That's all hype, and
that's how people get taken  -  
the same sort of fake and
off-key indoctrination to a
state of affairs that is but is 
not, that is not but only is
said that it is. That's why
schools, as one instance, 
are so baseless. A person's
family and children, taken
from him or her, and given
over to the falsities of what
the 'State' teaches them 
through its own form of a
social and mass indoctrination. 
I'm not saying anyone here has
to believe me, but I can easily
back up all that I say: Two 
simple examples, just from 
today: The Government, once
again giving away tons of cheesy,
meaningless, money, in the name
of a decreed 'virus' emergency,
and one Senator  -  seeing how
egregiously out of line the bill
itself actually is  - all sorts of
built-in giveaways and money
hand-outs to others' (Demos')
pet projects, money, causes, and 
concerns  -  and HE, the Senator,
becomes the issue to be chucked
around like a football, and NOT
the Bill or the Senate and House
mis-appropriations themselves.
And then, once the 'Government
has finally seemed to get its
vaccination machinery in order, it
announces other 'strains' of that
same virus, needing further 
research and study, and new
ways preventativeness! They
can't even allow people to live
in peace, as the indoctrination
just goes on and on.
That's how indoctrination works.
As on a basketball court, it's a
feint, a fake, a quick-move to
set the opponent off while the
drive is done. I used to be able
to see all that, even in its most
primitive stages, from my small
perch with my 25-cent meal. But
I passed anger long ago, and I
replaced it with detachment, and
with the realization that all things
are valueless and without any
truth. Everything in the God-
almighty world went by me on
Eighth Street (that's the preferred
reference to it, in Village terms;
everywhere else, oddly, the number
of the street is used as digits, but
on 8th, it's usually 'Eighth,' - once,
in fact, known as Main Street of
Greenwich Village; never exactly
true, that, either).
I never knew what I was or what
I wanted, just that I knew, all along
the way, that I'd flubbed every
chance I had at anything. Even with
my own family  -  no one ever quite
understood that I wasn't really one
of them, spoke another language,
and held all with many other 
references for the things they held
as most commonplace. It was always
there  -  a distance, a gulf. I could
never make it up, nor bridge it. The
indoctrinaire spirit tells people that
they are great, have reached high
achievements, and ought to be 
acclaimed. It's all crap. Nothing's
lasting, nor of any value, and it's
all as ephemeral as spit. But no 
one will ever tell you that  -  
instead they attempt to instill 
falsehoods, and structure around
all things a framework by which 
their artificial ('working') edifice 
is held up. People slave and die 
for career, money, and success. 
And then the floor opens up, and
they too are gone.
We're just like pod people, the
sci-fi weirdos who get 'dropped'
to Earth, are half-helpless until
full maturity, and who must, 
ever 16 hours or so, retreat,
settle into a comfort pod, and
recharge; becoming selfless,
leaving their bodies for 7 or 8
hours while their lifeless pod
goes dormant and they travel 
forth into the larger-ends of
the other realms  -  where none
of those lies are in effect, and 
where things fly around, lose
shape, talk, and transform.
Then the lifeless pod body is
again re-entered, fresh and new,
but not within human concepts,
and the paltry alien-pod arises
again. You, my friends, are
long-ago indoctrinated against
seeing any of this. The fine
Government you boast of calls
it 'Science' and claims it must
be followed. Science : mass
destruction, nuclear warfare,
death, and dissolution. We
are all aliens.


Along this landscape nothing
much changes : wilds and crazies
maybe come out of hiding. But I
have nowhere to go.
Ancient rocks piled high to Heaven
somehow shear their ridges and
come tumbling down. Rubble.
Cinders of stone. Dirtbags of
wasted matter?
I saw a critter today : fox or coyote
or badger or something. Skittering
atop the hardened snow; even it
looked depressed in its outing,
leaving a mound of scat at the
door to my garage.

Wednesday, March 3, 2021


Well, if one can just keep pushing
back it seems they'll all go away.
These hordes are like mountains
of sand. If the hairs on a head are
God-counted, so too these creepy
heaps can be diminished.
Everyone keeps a meager effort
going: boys park their cars and 
walk to the bars. 'Boys comb their
hair in the rearview mirrors, and
the girls try to look so fine?' 
You may have heard it that way 
too. Everywhere I go, there is you.
Sunshine came softly to my window
today? Rather than linger, I just
walk away.

13,465. OUTTAKE

Giving nothing, to take nothing
back. John O'Hara and Jackson
Pollack, somehow, are buried
at The Springs, in East Hampton,
just a few feet away from each
other. The eye wants to wander
over that scene, and ask why.
Motor vehicles both, they both
had to die  - by a curious choice
of either's chance. One fearless 
and roaring, the other a dance.
Life likes to give, and then takes
it all back. The cards on the table
are fleeting.

Tuesday, March 2, 2021

13,464. SHAN'T

In an old phone book  I found,
there were 9 named Shant; and
all without the apostrophe, of 
course. I smiled at the thought.
Must be family linkage there.
Can't be unrelated.
The phone book was Elmira,
1974  -  on the cover was an
illustration, a painting by 
Winslow Homer, entitled
'Snap The Whip.' I had to 
think hard for a minute. Was
there a family there, as well?
Named Snap. With some smart
prodigy offspring they called
'The Whip?' Nothing doing; not 
a trace. It's a grand illustration,
however. As a cover for a rural
phone book? Not so sure.


Dimensional negatives, I suppose,
can break their own paradigms, 
and act then as positives. It's the 
way the world works, after all.
Tomorrow's big deal is yesterday's
goof; the loser last decade wins
hard today. How do I know these
things? Transactional edicts.
You'll need to spice the cinnamon
cake with rum, or something of that
nature, before I'll go near it. Your
cooking shows make me nauseous : 
Flitty men on this edge of fairy, and
boisterous, sly women yielding
cleavers and knives : No wonder
that foolish guy withers.
Yes, I meant well. The barn door was
open, but only the Tomcat ran outside. 
No worry. He'll be back.

Monday, March 1, 2021


This feels good  -  a natural
hammock around my neck.
Though you say it's a noose,
I'll take it yet. 'Relax,' said
the night man...


Maintain the pose: The guy was a
Puritan at heart. The salacious days
of streetside hordes went all un-noted.
Gendarmes of the purse, and women
of every color, strolling by. Yellow
cabs and big red trucks. Cement
mixers wallowed on wheels.
Union labor comes with a cost  -  the
men leaning on buildings and sitting
on walls, for lunch. If I were a skeleton
grinning, they'd tie me back and keep
eating: 34th Street; a limousine; some
card-counting character with a cigar.
A dance like this on the street of life.
Hands on velvet ropes : If I had to
live this way I'd die.

13,460. RUDIMENTS, pt. 1,149

RUDIMENTS, pt. 1,149
(coupon-books to the top!)
New pens and things of 
that sort always excited me.
That probably sounds weird
enough, but it's true. When, 
about 1960, those first, clear
Bic pens came out, I was
elated  -  the thing, in my 
hand, I treated as a wonder.
No-click, a pen that just was
a pen; clear plastic, acrylic,
whatever that was. The ink 
ran down as they were used.
It was so cool to be able to
see that. On the side, about
midway, there was a tiny,
little airhole and the embossed
letters 'Bic'  -  which was also
very cool. I used to save them
as I used them up; at one time
having rubber banded about
25 or 30. It used to be that
the little tip thing at the top
would come off, but now the
later ones no longer do that.
I always thought I'd use them,
the empties, for something  -  I
wanted to maybe build a sort
of clear, model, house of them.
In any case, I stopped using
that particular type of pen
long ago. I'm pretty particular
these days about which pen I
use, and have found a favorite
and just keep buying them over
and over, or even just re-fills, 
if I can find them. There was a
time when things of this nature,
like sunglasses, were special and
costly; but nowadays any of
that ephemeral stuff can be had
cheaply  -  pens, sunglasses, and
watches too. Why bother.
1960 was a long time ago, but 
I sensed even then that things 
could be changing. Besides the 
Bic pen name, (a product 
originated in France, as 'Bich' 
company, though it was altered
later, for the American market,
to Bic; the idea of having 'Bich'
as an American product name
didn't fly). Then they also came
out with lighters  -  colored, plastic
Bic disposable lighters, once more
blasting the American market 
sky-high and rendering yet 
another once 'expensive' utility
item into a 19 cent throwaway.
Things were getting weird. Dannon
captured a 'yogurt' market that
had never existed before (in the
original wax-coated little containers
now long-ago made into still
more plastic disposals). My 
friend's father worked for Droste 
Chocolates, in NYC; Dutch, I 
believe, and always exotic  -  it 
never really traded itself down, 
though  -  but, bought and sold, 
bought and sold  -  the company 
is now just more dreck from a
multi-glomerate called 'Standard 
Brands,' worldwide. The fact that
it was Dutch was interesting. My
uncle from Germany had the same
sort of exotic resolve, a far-frame
from another place, and all that
always captured me. The guy with
the Dutch chocolate connection,
as well, had the first TV Guide
subscription I'd ever seen  -  that
too was amazing, they'd get it
delivered right to the house, by
mail, weekly! I don't think we ever
had a TV Guide in my house my
whole time there.
I guess, when you're a kid, you
notice things like that. Funny now,
too I don't have a taste for chocolate
at all; it fact, I avoid it. And all that
time I'm speaking of here, I don't
remember any chocolate 'samples'
floating around their house; no treats
or giveaways. I do remember the
endless array of Raleigh cigarettes.
The husband and the wife there 
both smoked them, I think, and 
they collected the 'Raleigh Coupons' 
that came one to a pack  -  redeemable 
eventually for any of that standard 
array of treasured 1950's things  -  
toasters, clocks, etc.  -  if turned in
when the right number of coupons
had been amassed. Again, a fairly
normal 1950's gimmick  -  smoke 
your way viciously to the early 
grave, but turn in your coupons
along the way!
There were Green Stamps. There
were Plaid Stamps. There were
cigarette stamps. That WWII
generation was a weird bunch, 
staid yet bizarre in their own 
ways. Isolated and perverse too.
As children, in the Depression
years, I guess they'd all grown 
used to ration cards and the window 
stamps and stickers allowing gas
and grocery purchases, so that
the idea of redeeming these curious
postwar stamps for things meant
really little, being innured to all
that as they were. I shudder to think
now of what sorts of things today's
kids and people are already used to;
a shrug and a so-what towards all
sorts of strange things carries it all
forward except mostly now it's again 
a lot of that what you can't say and
who you've been with stuff. The 
same kids today, with their hand-helds
and message boards, barrels of porn
and endless stupid games have already
walked themselves fairly well into the
shroud-fog of AI, and already think 
nothing of it. On paper, it can be
argued that any of this is merely the
end-result of the American push for
Freedom and Liberty, and that curious
phrase 'Pursuit of Happiness,' which
is no more, in modern terms, than an
allowance for ignorance. You can be
as crazy and dumb-assed, unlearned
and foolish, as you want to be in this
country, and no one will stop you  -  in
fact, by crowd impetus they'll applaud
you for going along! Redeem those
'Stupid-Coupons' now! I'm not much
for politics, but I have to admit that I
was never more proud than when I
watched an able, but twice-impeached,
ex-President talk his way, strongly 
and with strange bravado, back into 
the tin-foil mix unfolding, by calling 
things, finally, for what they are, and 
calling them out  -  the precocious, 
the stupid, the disgusting, the dead. 
It somehow felt good to see someone, 
finally, at work trying to throw out 
those damned coupon books. There's
enough gasoline around; someone
ought to throw the match.

Sunday, February 28, 2021


One day  -  as I was sitting  -  at a 
favored watering hole of mine  -  a
man came in to break the peace. I
looked up. He threw an urn down
on the floor, saying they were his
own ashes, and then he proclaimed :
"Who says a man can't be in two
places at once!" I was as confused
as could be. Rattled enough too,
you might say. Thinking. Then,
down the seats some, a drunk 
guy piped up, 'Yeah, but you're
both in the same place!'

13,458. I'VE DRAWN

These guys were all legends: and
this photo-gallery shows them all.
Dillinger, Moran, Capone and Siegel.
I'd suppose if they were ever in one
place together, it would have been
murder to bear. 
In any case, they drew their time
time, and I've drawn mine. Death 
erases nothing but the harsher ends
of memory's stepkids. Those big,
round cars they drove in? Cool.
When I was 12 I got an eraser for
my birthday. I found it erased
nothing  -  but just made the past
more vivid with each scratch-line
I'd rub.


And never coming back. That's me.
Fleece-lined overcoat and long johns
of harsh velvet. Man, I'm svelte.
Mannheim? I've dwelt there too.

13,456. MUSEUM

Those small rectangles of color are 
said to mean something: Art on a 
spoon is often ladled out like money,
though a classroom of kids wouldn't
know that. So they have to come here.
While their teacher explains? But
what do they care? Nothing is done
this way anymore : Pre-Covid art
has a way-different feel. People
were able to walk by, in numbers,
and mutter. Now, only six at a
time, and they stutter behind 
decorated sashes of ad-art masks; 
artfully decorated artist-manques
for sale at gift-shop counters and
the museum's store.

Friday, February 26, 2021

13,455. RUDIMENTS, pt. 1,148

RUDIMENTS, pt. 13,453
(the at-hand moment that the present is)
I once read something which I
call the Pizza Parable  - just a
stab at categorizing it; I'm not
even sure it's a parable by format.
Maybe not even a lesson'd-out
fable. Anyway, let's call it here,
'The Problem Of the Slice.'
This kid loves pizza, and one 
day, out with his father, they're 
walking along and his father 
stops them into a pizzeria for
a lunch. The kid orders two
slices. The father's watching
the kid, who is wolfing down
the first slice with his eyes on
the second. He wasn't even
tasting the first slice, in that
rush of eating it down. The 
father says, 'Son, you need to
learn that while while you're
eating that first slice of pizza
you should be eating the first
slice. Because right now you're
eating the second slice before
you've even finished the first
one, let alone tasted it. You 
can't always have your eye on 
that second slice.'
Well, perhaps it's not much of
a lesson, but I always liked it,
and it was validated for me lots 
of times. The giddy activity of
the 'activity' itself most often
shields a person from any true
experience of life, or of the
living of it through its successions 
of moments  -  each moment
being a building block of time.
To be savored. To be appreciated.
In my own life, I once or twice
came to a point of just 'stopping.'
It was the only way to bring sense
and sensibility to the fore. (This
also always brought up the curious
aspect of the writer Jane Austen,
who used that as a title once, and
who seemed overly fond of, in her
titles, using the 'and' conjunction.
Perhaps 'Pride and Prejudice' would
outplay 'Sense and Sensibility' or 
Time and Money, or 'The Power 
and The Glory,' which of course 
was by W. Somerset Maugham 
and used the article 'the.' But that's
all another story...). The idea of
the slice episode, the parable of
taking stock, appreciating the
moment, etc., made lots of sense.
What got funny about it, later, was
how the 'philosophy' side of me
would go along with the charade
of 'Maybe when you're eating the
first slice you're really eating the
second anyway?' It went nowhere,
in that vein; and it only led to the
most dangerous aspect of life, which
is when you proceed to the point
of ALL of life being conjecture.
Once a person accepts that, he or
she might as well jump, or put that
bullet, yes, to the brain.
A hundred old-timers I'd see every
day and, to all practical purposes,
none of this had ever bothered
them, or, at least, if it did, it left no
visible traces or scars. Old people
always seemed bent and busy just
going on and very involved in their
task, whether it be walking, gathering
some grubby old grocer-supplies, or
just sitting on a bench somewhere
to face the sun and take it all in.
It seemed as if, for them, activity
was all over. Finished. Whereas
for me  -  an early 1967 all ready
to burst nut-case, it was all potential.
Errant; wild; crazy; anarchic; without
any reason except possibility.
I figured perhaps it was all like sex;
even the pizza parable part of it. When
a kid gets rolling with that sex stuff,
it's all future, all expectation  -  the
legendary hard-ons begin, everything's
all set up, you're all over the girl
in expectation  -  as is she in hers  - 
snaps and buttons are flying, the
rolling moans of salvation begin,
everything a'jumble. It's as if, even
in the moment of all that, the stupid
brain is always leaping ahead, in
its fiery expectation, to the next step
or level and the actual 'moment' is
never fully appreciated, or experienced.
Even as the big blasts start hitting, the
male mind turns to 'where do I put
this stuff, what should I do next...'
Too much thinking ahead like that,
and the moment loses value. (Well,
probably a crummy example, but I'm
hoping a reader would get the gist,
even from my inestimable approach).
Hopes and Expectations. Hits and
'To find one's art is to kill time dead
with a single shot.' Well, damn, how
about that! It maybe all goes back,
no matter how, to a parent or a teacher,
telling a kid: 'Do one thing at a time?'
I remember once, my own parents,
after having visited with my 2nd
grade teacher one day, on one of
those parent-teacher day things, when
the parent(s) are invited to sit in, at
the back of the room for 20 minutes 
or so, to watch the proceedings and,
I guess see their kid in action, (they
had these things, anyway, at Avenel
School 4&5, in the 1950's. I don't
have a clue if stuff like that happens
now; I guess maybe you can watch
the whole class on some sort of live
computer remote, if you cared; but
some dweeb would probably say 
that was predatory, and the stupid 
system  would agree with them and 
have it stopped. Some beer-guzzling,
unemployed, Dad, I can picture, saying,
'I don't care none much about the kid;
I think the teacher's hot!'). My father,
driving a car with us in it, after school,
going somewhere that day, along Route
One, tells me that from what he saw
I hunch over too much, I squish down
too much at the desk, when I am
writing. I ought to sit up straight and
not hunch so. He demonstrates my
posture  -  and nearly creams us into
the center-divider at 55mph, while
demonstrating my single-minded 
dedication to he craft of putting pen
to paper. Thinking only of that,
ONE, pizza. The at-hand moment
that the present always is. I already
knew how to get lost in it. 
Anyhow, that's the way it went. Old
folks lining Broadway, uptown, sitting
on all those benches in the middle of
Broadway. 1968; often Nazi-camp
victims, survivors, yet alive, hanging
on, nearing death. You could see it in
their eyes, the hurt, the sorrow, the
lethal anxiety, all still there. It had
stopped everything  -  talk about 
dwelling or doing on thing at a time!
Their lives had become calcium. Bones.
Ghost figments. Irrational and Fearsome.
Lethal and Haunted. Dead and Alive!


Trying to find direction without a
compass isn't that hard. The difficulty
level lessens as you get closer to home.
For whatever the reason, over time,
everything transforms : Paints fade,
metals rust, the solid stuff weakens and
the weak things solidify. It's a crazy,
mixed-up world. And one wonders
why oldsters start babbling on?
The human mind can only
take so much.


All the contracted attentions of
living: we come and we go. I left
your gloves on the heater. They 
were soaked and needed drying.
I'm just a bundle of nerves, trying
here to figure how leftovers work.
Heat and eat? I suppose.

Thursday, February 25, 2021


The nickelodeon won't take my
coin. Another nickel down the
drain  -  some rat kid, festering
with sugared acne, sits nearby
wolfing his crap. He watches,
but stays where he's at.
What wonderland I wonder is
this? Green cars and a bicycle;
two nasty mothers with their
five-year old brats, slinging
Ho-Ho's at nothing.


It's charming morning at the edge
of the world : dark skies vomit
lightning and the fierce wind blows.
It's all something like a reverse-oasis,
but it's not. I'm about to ride the
Caribou Express. 
Up along the hillside, the vacation
homes are empty  -  left idle four
months ago at least but more like
years. Simple fact, like Yogi said,
'That place is too crowded; no one
goes there anymore!'
Those teasing lines, funny quips:
Oranges hanging from clothespins
on some fiberglass, white, twine?

Wednesday, February 24, 2021


It's funny to watch Americans applauding
the way to the gallows. 'Nice hallway! Easy
Entry' Many things handed out!' The usuals
are back  -  careerists and blind fenceposts,
those in play for 35 years. No one cares.
Effectiveness, as movements go, heads
but in one direction. The missive is out:
'Keep them active and detained; keep
them busily entertained, while we
 run madly on our way!'

13,449. NOTES

The brown car from
Red Bank with the Blues
Brothers in it was last seen
leaving Orange, NJ headed
for Tanner's Falls PA via
what seemed Green Valley.
Watch out, Yellowstone,
here they come.