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...and they lived happily ever after. Smith & Lady: poets, artists, photographers & adventurers.
Our relationship was forged to the soundtrack of Yoko Ono's magic,
frenetic, love-laden song, "Walking On Thin Ice." ( play song )

the small hands man

December 9th, 2016

white people

Mr & Mrs Sisyphus

Wife sick on couch
brought on by stress
of over work and money worries

The daily rolling
of the worry rock
up our uncivilized hill

In this country
we eat our own
after we eat everyone else

But don’t worry
every sale comes with
a conditional warranty

Nothing will break
until you get it home
and through your front door

Break two
get third break free
for thrice initial cost

All ingredients
guaranteed toxic
shoddy, bad for the body

Step right up
get your new uselessness here
no need to wait

Small initial payments
which will rapidly bloom
bigger than your eyes, head, or check

There’s a trump for every chump
small hands optional
truth not included

– Smith, 12.9.2016

Donny Chump, the small hands man


lizard brain wants!

December 8th, 2016


Lizard Brain Wants!

I’m down to strong grass
and strong coffee
and I’m out of grass.

Time to sage the soul.

– Smith, 12.8.2016



no breaks, just aches

December 7th, 2016

Great Eye in Sky

Yesterday was bad-good, bad-good.

Scurrying up the walk in freezing weather after feeding the birds before sunrise, I stubbed my foot on a brick on the walk and fell on my face on the stone, hitting full body flat, chin to slate.

First flash was for my glasses – they were on my face and unbroken. Second flash was for my left knee which I broke last January and it never healed because the doctors didn’t tell me not to walk on it, even though they knew I was… all they said was don’t bend it. Of course in retrospect it’s logical not to walk on a broken knee, but I’m rather stupid at times, and they did tell me to walk from one office to another without a brace, so I figured it was okay. Had I hit it, I’d be hospital bound, which would have interfered with my upcoming January hospital appointment. But I’d landed on my right leg right side right arm and right chin edge, so broken knee untouched.

I stood up to examine the rest of me – blood on thigh, blood on forearm, bruised rib, and chin so sore I thought I might have broken it. But no, no breaks, just aches.

Now that is about as good an outcome for a face fall as one can hope for.

Second bad to good is we thought MandyCat might be dying. She has failing kidneys and she’d stopped eating, lost 13% of her weight, did nothing but sleep. Took her to the vet. It was just a cat cold, so they rehydrated her, gave her an antibiotic, and forced an appetite pill down her throat. Brought her home and she was active again. This is our 8th year with her (she spent her 1st 7 years with poet Wendy Shaffer who has 30 cats and gladly loaned us one), and I’ve never bonded like this with a four-footed floor fur before – the thought of losing her turned me into a tear bag. Should have years left before losing her, and I won’t handle it well when we do.

It’s ironic. We had to give Lady’s 13 year-old cat 3PO to her brother when we left the country in 2006 to live in England, Holland, Poland, France, Morocco, and Mexico for 3 years, and that was hard. So when we came back, we decided to get a “loaner” cat from Wendy we could give back if we ever found the money to travel again. Lady was over at Wendy’s and Mandy came out from under the dresser and swatted Lady’s leg, saying “Hey, you, take me.” Turns out there is NO SUCH THING as a loaner cat because they own your heart.

Oh, the upcoming January hospitalization… a cyst in the back of my neck is bruising my spine, creating a minor tingling and partial deadness in my finger tips and throwing my balance off. They’re going in the back of my neck to remove the cyst, going in the front of my neck to remove an entire spinal disc, then fusing my neck spinal column with two metal rods. Needless to say I’m not looking forward to this. You cut me below the neck and you’re operating on my vehicle… cut above that and you’re cutting me.

Going to ask the doc for a tranquilizer prescription because I’m not up to worrying about this for another month. It’s getting to me. Will have to wear a hard collar for 6 weeks after… Lady jokes it’s a dog collar so I won’t bite myself.

~ ~ ~

2 Open Mic Sat Readings + Scriptoria Book Sale
Basement Zion Church 2716 W 14 Cleveland OH

12.10.16 – Russ Vidrick’s 2nd Sat open mic 3-5pm
12.17.16 – Winter Solstice Potluck open mic 12-2pm

Scriptoria Books closes 12.31.16
10,000 books must go
$3 hardbacks, $2 large paperbacks, $1 small
paperbacks (sets and a few scarce items more)
11am-3pm Wed-Thur-Fri-Sat through December 31, 2016

check Craig’s List under CLEVELAND & BOOKS for changes

~ ~ ~

Life with Wife 3

Kale onion quiche
baking in oven
homemade applesauce
bubbling on stove

– Smith, 12.7.2016



Sisyphus enough

December 5th, 2016


Sisyphus Enough

It’s an everyday thing
or less
this eating
this sleeping
this cleaning washing
going coming
the coming gone
up and down and down and up
even love is built day by day
then rebuilt
as hope is used
then recharged, re-fused, re-used

In every way
the circle eats itself
then excretes itself to re-eat
in endless repeat
day by day

– Smith, 12.5.2016



waiting at the station

December 4th, 2016


Waiting at the Station

Reading bad man news
when lone train moan
faint from the Flats
whispers in my ear
“There’s a better way down the line
if only you would go.”

Been hearing that same wail
since it crept up the mountains
of my youth.

“Come down the track
where you’ll fit in
where they’ll like you
where you’ll like you
where life makes more sense.”

Been saving for the ticket ever since.

– Smith, 12.4.2016



Tsi-s-de-tsi, the 4-foot mouse Captain

December 2nd, 2016

her third try at drawing Tsi-s-de-tsi
her first two attempts

Lady’s been writing an alternate Earth novel where a 4-foot female Cherokee mouse named Tsi-s-de-tsi is Captain of a large ocean sailing ship with a crew of 6-foot rats who have rescued a young human girl named Beatrice and an even younger human boy named Hill. It’s for both children and adults. She has 64 pages so far, and the writing is beautiful, the story interesting.

Here’s a taste of four recent pages.

I pronounce Tsi-s-de-tsi (the Cherokee word for mouse) as Siesta-sea, but the actual Cherokee pronunciation is something else. You’d have to check online for itthe correct pronunciation.

She reads each new section to me as it is written, and I am thoroughly enjoying it.



pleather pleasure

December 1st, 2016

cookieladycookie Lady

Conversation with Wife 30

Who knew I had 30 wives.
“You’re not the man from St. Ives are you?”

Thought you were going to write.
“Yeah, I’m going to.”
Good, I’ll sit over her and wrong, then.

“Fold me once, fold me twice,
I won’t be fold again.”

“I’m going to lay down, I don’t feel well.”
Good, sleep’s the best thing for being sick.
“What about ice cream,
is ice cream good for being sick?”
Sure, ice cream puts you in a better mood
which increases your positive energy
which strengthens your immuninites.
“Immuninites? My ancestors were Mennonites.”
More likely Mennonites and Womennonites.
“You’re not Mormon, are you?”
No, I’m less man, more mutant.

What you working on?
“I’m Photoshopping out the background
of a picture of a battery. I need the energy.”
Batteries in some cell phones have been exploding.
“Are they re-volting?”
No, reading crime fiction, took up assault & battery.

She sighs.
What sigh are you?
“What sigh am I on?”
Yes, are you in-sigh or out-sigh?

Leaky Sneaky they used to call me
until I started pissing in their corners
when they weren’t looking
now they call me Sneaky Leaky.
“Where’d I ever find you?”
In the bargain bin
underneath the Blue Light Special
I’m next year’s model of last century’s design.
“Well I’m an earlier version of myself,
about a year and a half ago.”

As she bends over tying her running shoes
I beat on her back with my hands.
“What are you doing?”
Playing my solo.
“Your Hans Solo?”

I’d rather pleasure pleather.
“What about Naugahyde,
how many Naugas does it take to make a hide?”
If I become a proselytizer, will you be my pimp?

All hail dyslexia – tuck Frump.
“I can’t believe this reality we’re in.”
You mean the Presidential election?
“Yes. It’s crazy.”
I think someone left the wrong gate open.

“Dad says drones aren’t evil but sometimes
they’re just flown that way.”
I want to be a good drone when I’m flown up.

“A good reign is a dam long applause.”

Thank you thank you thank you you’re too kind.

 – Smith, 12.1.2016



philosophy 117-121

November 27th, 2016

spring will come again

10,000 used books must go by December 31 2016

$3 hardbacks
$2 large paperbacks
$1 small paperbacks
(sets and a few scarce items more)

Open Wednesday through Saturday 11am-3pm through the end of December 2016.

2716 West 14th St, Cleveland, OH (Tremont) in the basement of the 148 yr-old Zion Church

Saturday December 17 at noon, Lady K (aka Kathy Smith) will be hosting her annual Winter Solstice Poetry Reading and Potluck there as well. Everyone welcome, open mic, no sign-up, no featured readers, just read if and when you feel.

Michael O’Brien’s Scriptoria Books has until the end of the year to sell his amazing inventory of used books because they’re turning the fine old-world stone church into apartments and condos for the well to do.

Fantastic books, incredibly inexpensive – the perfect Christmas gift.

You can check his Craig’s List ad under CLEVELAND and BOOKS for later information.


Philosophy 117

Life’s a beach
and then you dive


Philosophy 118

Gotta re-leave myself
too much money bizness


Philosophy 119

Flesh is such sorrow
from worm would to mold


Philosophy 120

Six layers in search of a surface
lost & profound

Spirit up, bone down
the dance since chance began

Soul high, flesh low
all run by remote control

We start inside
don’t end outside


Philosophy 121

Just like Sisyphus
it’s endless

– Smith 11.27.2016

spring from winter


more fee will if you please

November 26th, 2016


This is my 12th month featuring in Medusa’s Kitchen… 9 poems, 9 fotos, 1 song.

As usual, editor/publisher Kathy Kieth’s layout is superb. I’m grateful for her generosity.

Now to continue month by month into the unforeseeable future.


Philosophy 113

Free will ain’t free
more fee will if you please
when you don’t bow down on knees


Philosophy 114

Philosophy is song sung of soul and self
to restock the shelf

A few hints to focus flow
help shoulder the burden of go

Every moment has 360 degrees of exit
but when is best to flex it?

Can’t stay past, future ain’t here
then don’t last, when not near

Don’t run the wheel
repeal the deal

Past talk shapes tomorrow’s lips


Philosophy 115

As the child is father to the man
we are mother to our darkness
give birth to our own sin


Philosophy 116

Gettin’ weary but ain’t givin’ up
this burden on back busting my nut
keep sloggin’ thru muck
hopin’ for luck
but fuck
can’t quit cuz no consolation prize
unless reward is giving up lies
otherwise work till you die
in this worship of why

– Smith, 11.26.2016



philosophies – 4 for the price of none

November 24th, 2016


Philosophy 109

It ain’t what it iz
or iz what it ain’t
just iz what it iz

– Smith, 11.24.2016


Philosophy 110

Anger as seasoning is okay
but for main course it’s poison

– Smith, 11.24.2016


Philosophy 111

Arranged relationships
prudent marriages
sacred lies

We go from room to room
testing the precepts
touching the tiles

– Smith, 11.24.2016


Philosophy 112

Seeking new path chanting old chant
working the koans for better chance

Wake up ten, wear down to one
go back to bed, recycle again

Flow from dream to fog of wake
mind schemes, body aches

Been here before, be here again
won’t know the score until it all ends

– Smith, 11.24.2016



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