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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 )
 
   
 
 

Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

Hey Joe, where you going with that Smith art in your hand ? ! ?

Friday, July 13th, 2018


Rubicon, 41″ x 41′

Hanging art is an art, and Joe Vecchio done dood it good with his Smith family collection.

He and his gal are moving to Las Vegas, so we went over to fotograf my art he hadn’t packed yet. I haven’t seen them in maybe 20 years, and Lady K never has.

In the late-1990s, Joe and his brother Jim bought a bunch of pieces of mine, sometimes while I was still working on them on the floor (I work flat), and I haven’t seen most of them since.

So here’s one of Mother Smith’s and 16 of mine still hanging in his living room at what he calls Spahn Ranch East. Most the art is from the late 1990s.

north side, outside wall of living room:


Temptation, 24″ x 30″ x 5″
outside in weather 12 years or so
Joe calls it The Hand Of God

~

living room south wall:

Lost Supper Found, 26″ x 30″

Rom Rev, 26″ x 30″

Off Found, 26″ x 30″

Men New, 26″ x 30″

living room east wall

Rubicon, 41″ x 41″

Young Lenin, 22″ x 28″

Loch Ness Jesus, 32″ x 24″

Ripple, 17″ x 23″

Magritte, maybe 4″ x 6″


Spoonfull, 18″ x 14″
skeleton from fish I ate

Plato’s Barn, 1977, 24″ x 30″

living room north wall

Thank You Masked Man, 21″ x 28″

Ro 6, by Mother Dwarf Smith, maybe 12″ x 16″

living room west wall

Hey Joe, 50″ x 50″

William S. Burrough’s Totem Pole
freestanding, maybe 12″ x 36″
(top)





(shelf bottoms)





Joe Vecchio at work station

 

Smith text of last night’s reading

Sunday, July 8th, 2018

Text of my reading last night at Visible Voice Books in Tremont (Cleveland, OH) from “Where Never Was Already Is” with co-reader John Burroughs who also published my book.

~ ~ ~

Car repair
free pastries free coffee
six hundred dollars.

~ ~ ~

Wheel Deal

There’s something wrong with this world
I mean I wash the dishes
and more dirty dishes appear
I clean cat box of clayed shit and clumped piss
and more’s magically there
every day I defecate
yet defecate the next
dedicated to rerelease I guess
I eat in morning noon evening in-between
again and again
I drink water piss it out drink it in
again and again
in never ending script
get up
run the rat wheel
walk the rat wheel
sit the rat wheel
be the rat wheel
resolve to better
fall to fail
it gets cold I put on sweater
it gets hot I put on sweat
is there a seek in cycle
or learning in loop
something actually done
accomplished
improved
or are they just waiting for me to see the light
already seen in previous scene
done played
paid
replayed
repaid
is this but screen test
or something real
I mean what’s the deal?

~ ~ ~

Life with Wife

So strange,
I’m sitting quiet in my chair
and this beautiful young woman walks by,
stops,
leans over, kisses me,
and walks on.
This has been happening for over 12 years now.
I wonder who she is,
and how she got in?

~ ~ ~

Norman Rockwellville

Walked a mile to the country school
white wood, two rooms
grades 1 through 4 left room
5 through 8 right
the husband wife teachers
lived in the cottage on the grounds
each day I listen to my 5th grade lessons
then 6th, then 7th, then 8th
end of year they close the school
skip 2 of us in the 5th to 7th
the third, her mom said no
did not want her young daughter
in class with older boys with cars
and condoms
which I later understood

Walked a mile other way to country church
white wood, two rooms
youngsters in front
adults in back
preacher weekday carpenter
his family a good chunk of the congregation
one day in front room
sitting behind my 14 year old girlfriend
who’s teaching the kids parables
I run my 13 year old hand
up her leg
under her skirt
into her panties
to a bit of wetness beyond
where I pause in silence
as she continues her sermon

~ ~ ~

Dung or Diamond

On my lack of fame and fortune
I keep baiting the stream
But nobody bites

As for peace and understanding
I chase the spirit
I follow the sprite

~ ~ ~

Sisyphus in the Land of Sorrow

No longer waiting for my cream rise to top
nor my rock to not unroll
cuz that boat will never sail
in fact wasn’t even made
and its flag don’t fly
its tank is empty
its tires flat
and engine froze
no happy ever after fame and fortune
cuz unhappy race is base of game
no matter which rung you on
unless you let go
voluntarily
for real
and fuck fame
fuck fortune
love life
hug wife
pet cat
and of course
sip the coffee and toke the smoke
to set the yet for rising sun

~ ~ ~

Marriage Proposal

December of 68 I was lying on LSD on my bed downtown Baltimore.
Walls, floor, ceiling, doors all painted flat black.
Metallic mobiles and assorted assemblages hung from the ceiling
turning at will in low green and blue light.
My future wife walked in and sat so she could see me in the mirror.
So and so just got married she said.
That’s nice.
Silence.
Watch her reflection watching me.
So and somebody else also married.
More silence.
Watch her reflection evaluate my reflection’s reflection.
Even through the LSD I could see she wasn’t talking what she was saying
so asked.
I just want to know what’s going to happen she screams
stalking into the living room.
I lie there amid my hallucinations and resentfully realize
I’m too weak not to marry her.
Another’s strong needs always overrode my indifferent apprenticeship.
20 minutes later she skulks back to the bedroom.
OK I snap.
OK what? she snaps back.
We’ll get married.
When?
Six months I finalize
feeling sure the artist within will wither once reduced to marriage,
suburban boxes, the upperclass hypocrisy rampant in her family and friends.
We had a rich wedding in a high Episcopal-cum-Catholic cathedral.
Reception held of course at the country club.
None of my freak friends came.
The day of the wedding
I put all the trash left from moving in the middle of the floor
smoked the last of my grass
took off all my clothes
and slowly danced naked about the trash
sprinkling it with my box of monosodium glutamate
and chanting unknown chants of sorrow.

~ ~ ~

Cleveland Gray

Gray gloom blooms
Over my head
Dims my dimmer
Breaks my bread
Hurts my heart
Aches my gut
Empties my bucket of luck

Mom’s dead
Dad died
The homework ate my dog
My money fled
My President lied
He’s helping the rich instead
(what a big surprise)

Feeling blue what do I do to shake this Cleveland gray?

No home heart warmth
To keep me sane
Shadow sun forgotten same
Jams my brain
Makes hope a corpse
And life a pain
Over and over again

Maybe get some sleep
Or take a toke
Or shuck a sheep
Or shake a joke
Or just drown in downtown brown
Cuz I tell you true I’m feeling blue
Gotta shake these Cleveland grays

~ ~ ~

8-ball Boogie

I worked my ass off and now my pants won’t fit.
Kissed so much behind my lips are starting to stick.
This working class hero bit’s just another bag of it.

I’d eat the rich, but their taste is so bad. I’d serve
the poor, but too many already have. I’d play with myself
but I’m not all here. So I ask God, is She still there?

Reason drips in dropped disguise red through white
through blues departing in the night, the never right
hype the Man, his chicken stripe, and his doo doo do.

We worship Amway, Scientology too. As long as it’s
Brand Named we play the fool, pay first born foreskin,
a nipple or two. So break out your dead deal dust due.

Ghosts of gone before host our yet to be. No
flowers for the finished, no hour for their song.
Ground zero works in theory only when you’re wrong.

Weren’t for Monk, I’d catch Coltrane. Weren’t for TV
I’d have a brain. Heart and soul sold for junk. If I’m
the rat, best step back cuz I’m not the one gonna jump.

8-ball boogie gets you every time. Tried to fax the
factors in, they made me stand in line. Try to share
my truth with them, they stamp my life a lie.

8-ball boogie, get you every time.

~ ~ ~

Grease Your Grill

I’m an oven cleaner baby
Come to scrub your grill
Yes this oven loving man
Mean to steam your grill
Get the heat back baby
Flame and fire the thrill

I’ll rub your rust off lady
Get your grid to shine
Rid this mood of maybe baby
Lady let me lick your lime
Make much meat that might be
Moistened by munching lightly
Juicy, prime

Gonna grease your grill
Put the heat back baby
Then, send you the bill

~ ~ ~

Alchemy, Inc.

Kenneth Rexroth found his muse
a floating petal in slow stream
running gentle Asian arc
between his woman’s thighs.

Wallace Stevens rose unwilling
from unloving woman
to actuarial tables, champagne,
painting philosopher dust.

Bob Dylan mixed amphetamine,
coal dust, winter cold
lean and mean and bold.

Leonard Cohen went for love,
Zen guitar, droll wine women
in funeral parlor tone.

William Carlos Williams’ prescription:
red wheelbarrow, dusky attic,
dancing daily in the dark.

My wife Lady K slipstreams with All,
glad book in hand,
flux and flows with glow.

I take when and what and why I get,
grateful for any voice at all,
scramble for the word.

~ ~ ~

Black Ice

Late January
coming back from Snoetry 5
a 12-hour reading in Erie
three lady poets in the car
me driving
sun down
liquid ice falling from the sky
we enter 90 West to Cleveland
going 45 in a 70 zone
see two-car crash
and flashing lights ahead
I hit the brakes
the tires stop
the car doesn’t
we slide at same speed
silent on black ice
straight for crashed car
two backseat poets screaming
front seat poet talking serious
me thinking it’s simply too cold
and too far from Cleveland to crash
I slow turn the wheel to the right
and we gently slide right
just past the rear of the crash car
the screaming stops in amazement
but now we’re heading for the cop car
its top lights flashing NO NO
I gently turn the wheel left
and we slow slide left
between the front of the crashed car
and the rear of the police car
and go on down the road
in complete silence
ecstatic

~ ~ ~

Slipknot

Meet me in the meat lane
I’ll be lambing up the chops

trying to chase the safe
and not the not

laminating lamentations
crying up the crop

slipping slide relations
in cut of guardian knot

never wanted to fuck my mother
didn’t want daddy dead

actually loved my younger brother
before he blew off his head

they’re all gone and yet remain
in my side of am

none of this of course germaine
to jiggle jelly jam

~ ~ ~

Status Report 168

Rats sing.
Rats laugh.
Rats line their nests
with gnawed American money.

The rich sing.
The rich laugh.
The rich also line their nests
with money not their own.

I prefer rats.
They do it for love.

~ ~ ~

Confessional

I said I’ll make the decisions
because I’m old and male

and she said no

I said yes, says so in the Old Testicle,
and you don’t want to upset the Old Testicle
because it’s Big and Hairy

and she said don’t piss me off

I gasped, you’ve just offended the Sacred Scrotum

and she made the decision

~ ~ ~

Conversation with Wife

Leaning back in my chair,
Lady bends over and kisses me.

I reach up my two hands,
cradle her breasts.

“What are you doing?”

“I’m holding these up for you,
was afraid they’d fall and hurt me.”

“Oh, you’re sooo brave, and manly . . .
now can you make me some coffee.”

“Coffee for the breasts?”

“Yes, that is the price.”

“Ah, the booby price.”

~ ~ ~

Bad Boy Smith

At a reading at ex-dive bar
The Millard Fillmore Presidential Library,
Ray McNiece and his band Tongue-in-Groove
played Johnny Cash’s Folsom Prison Blues
to bring me up with the announcement
I “was Cleveland’s bad boy,”
had “done time.”

So I confessed.

Served 9 days in Juvenile Detention
in 1960 when I was 14 for stealing 13 cars.

Spent 1 night in jail in 1968
on false charges after an argument
over thermostat settings in the hall,
case dismissed,
arguing neighbor moved out.

Locked up overnight twice
for drunken lurchedness —

first in early 80’s
after cops in civilian clothes
beat me bloody for talking back,

second 1990
for being too drunk to even walk
and driving through a fire hydrant,
water spraying everywhere;
I was lying shirtless on the jail cell floor
when a guard asked if I wanted a lawyer,
I replied, “No, you’re going to let me out
in the morning anyway.”

It’s sad I knew that.

Did have to spend 3 days in a hospital
after I got out
attending a You-Are-an-Alcoholic seminar
in place of being jailed for 6 more months.

But the big one was in the little house…
10.5 months in York County Jail 1970
for my second armed robbery;
after being caught,
my bulging pockets of stolen money
somehow reduced itself to $140
once counted by the head detective.

I am a bad boy.
But I’ve learned to pretend to be good,
seem to be getting better at it.

At least I’m not some cop
pocketing money another stole.

As for the alcohol?
Sober 27 years.

Down to strong coffee,
occasional grass,
driving too fast,
not respecting the government,
and jaywalking.

But I’m still one bad bone.

 

Friday Night

Friday, July 6th, 2018

A delirium of talk
from my head to my heart
tight burn hollows of shoulders
dog breath, a panicked cat
bird in the throat
bird in the ear
bird in the eyes
bird brain
Friday night

~ Lady

 

playing catch up with mustard

Sunday, July 1st, 2018

Still have 40+ poems lately unblogged. Not that it matters except for my own documentation since few read this blog. Had a lot of readers when we traveled, and a decent number when we returned, but once I got weary and posted mainly poetry instead of narrative, I lost most readers. Poetry ain’t the most popular kid on the block, and I”m not the most popular poet around. It is what it is.

On the other hand, this is blog #4,389 since June of 2006, and I am not famous, so what would I expect?

~

Du Jour

Washed out white sky
turns day grey with rain
soft drizzle gentle
soothes sound
cool and clean
smooths
except for the asbestos fibers
and industrial toxins
welded to the wet

Spring sinks silent
frogs heat in sleep

~

Status Report 267

Used ego for rent,
sale,
lease,
bye.

~

Spirit Juice & Bone Meal

To my left potatoes brushed in oil
and wrapped in foil
sizzle in the fire

On my right
the steady plop drop
of rain on leaves and wooden roof

My soothed soul
satisfied
between

~

Politics 107

Bad people
are doing bad things

~

Status Report 268

I prise apart affairs of heart
and hammer at the mind

~

To Be

I can’t kill myself
mainly because I can’t kill myself
but also because my baby brother
blew his brains out with a borrowed bullet
thirty-one years ago
(one year longer than he lived)
and I don’t do second acts

so I live
weary and wondering

of course that was before
Lady K stormed into my life
ignoring my GO AWAY unwelcome mat
which act six months later
found me homeless, married
and wandering around Europe
then Africa and Mexico
with a 40 pound pack on my back
for three years

somewhere along the way
I promised her I’d live to 101
minimum
with an option to glide

Mother Dwarf kept me alive
when I drank myself to death 27 years ago
because as I was dying
and tried to pass this line for next
a voice said, “What about Mom?”

Now Lady K needs me
feeds me
as apparently does the cat
so I Sisyphus on
71% of my 101 done
wondering what will be left
since I’m one metal hip
two metal shoulders
and two metal bolts in the neck now

then there’s the political grab and greed
the cultural cruelty, the social malfeasance
the climate change, slavery
the blatant hate speech and lying
of the child-abuser in office
in utter waste of human
which whisper
“go, it ain’t getting better”

I’ve lived large and fast
six full decades
with part of an earlier
and most of this later
and lately been weighting
the warp and weave of this weary wise

but know for sure
she’s the prize
ain’t no lie
wife is worth my staying alive

 

text of my 15 minute reading last week

Wednesday, June 20th, 2018


front book display at Mac’s Backs
me left, my collage up top, and Beats the rest

Here the text of the 15 minutes I read last week at Mac’s Backs bookstore. (takes 10 minutes to read).

These poems are from “Where Never Was Already Is” on Crisis Chronicles Press, published 4.2018 – 244 poems over 54 years – 29 collages – 324 pages – 6″ x 9″ – $15: http://ccpress.blogspot.com/2018/04/098Smith.html.

You normlly have to be dead or famous to get 244 poems in one book.

~ ~

Want Ad

I like walks in the rain
I like licking pink stains
There’s good and bad things baby
Crawling through your hair
Old lumps of new grown gravy
Calling from your lair
You wanna bite me baby
I wanna bite me too
Bite me three times
You got a deal

~ ~ ~

Lineman

Hey baby, what’s your sign?
Cum here often?
Wanna see my coloring book?
I’ve got a big red crayon
Fit right between your lines

~ ~ ~

Dada Greybeard

A lady poet followed me home
And asked if I could keep her
I replied
It must be denied
For I had no room in my freezer
She engineered her stay
Of relocation with play
Charm and elocution
Praised this and that
Allowed a wee pat
Counted on evolution
I may be cheap
And easy too
But for female I’m hard-wired
And too
It’s sort of cool
This once being the one that’s desired
Though I question her taste
Her need of rat waste
A too hasty fade
Will shatter shades
I cannot replace
Best to see
What she reweaves
What treasure in her trundle
Though it fracture my plan
I am but man
And man is meant to bundle

~ ~ ~

Love Potion

In the cool of the Fall
when we first fell
she was my B-movie star stable,
scrappy girl reporter one date,
witty secretary a la lusty librarian
or pouty pal with secret crush
the next,
sometimes all in one night,
it became ritual
each time we left I’d stop
two steps below
look up
demand one kiss for passage
and gauge
what girl tonight?

One evening talking witches
as she left I found in fridge
on white plate
thick wet orangeyellow mango slices
arranged in crescent circle
with mound of red slick pomegranite seeds
glistening in their midst
like surreal sperm on fertile egg,
and flashed, aha, a love spell,
and flushed it down the toilet.
Did no good though,
we married a few months later.

~ ~ ~

Life with Wife 5

Scrub tub
add epsom salts
fill with hot water
ease in
take a toke
lay back in hot wake
to soak away ache
and phone rings
wife saying
“Can you pick me up?”
“Now?”
“My eye hurts.”

Four weeks ago
doctors took her eye part way out
sewed on 21 radioactive pellets
put eye in
locked her down three days
while radiation bombarded tumor
popped eye back out
removed pellet plaque
put eye in again
sewed inner eyelid shut
and sent her home to hard since
her eye blurry from serious salve
pupil dilated due daily drops
eyeball swollen and bruised
burning from bright
tired of trauma
she works more to see less
amid multiple pains
shooting ache stab throb
burn itch pinch
and she is
… weary

“Sure, I’ll pick you up”
because pain trumps pleasure
and love binds both

and baths can be refilled

~ ~ ~

Yen

Had I my way,
the world would be at peace and fair,
and we’d all be out on the porch sitting in the sun,
bees buzzing, breeze blowing,
slow toking, coffee sipping, writing poems,
listening to friends, family, folk
picking, playing, harmonizing,
hope and happy on horizon,
the past a purr of catnip cream.

~ ~ ~

Status Report 220

Looked out the window
looked inside my head
didn’t see nothin’
so went back to bed

~ ~ ~

Primordial Ooze

First pre-dawn sip of coffee
followed by first toke of day
and finally, faintly, from afar
I hear Doctor Frankenstein’s mad cackle:

“He’s alive. HE’S ALIVE!!!!”

~ ~ ~

Tried & Traveled

After I died
in my dead end drinking
twenty years ago
it took
three days intensive care
and six months Nyquil
to beat alcohol,
cocaine to kick Nyquil,
poverty to kill cocaine,
valium to get off grass,
and weed to beat it all.

Tried most anything to get off me.

Now it’s one cup cowboy coffee
Costa Rican strong
each morning
and hope of toke or two
to take me through the month.

But what I really want is
copper brain wire
direct to pleasure center
battery hooked
finger on button
blaze of white light.

~ ~ ~

One-More Smith

My younger brother called me One-more Smith
He said
“Every time we get ready to leave
You say
One more toke
One more line
One more glass of wine.”

Now I’m 27 years sober
And he’s 31 years dead.

~ ~ ~

My Tree Barks

My bark is worse than my bite
although once my bite was worse than my bark
back when I was but burgeoning bark on tree
but it was a dogwood tree
so I was bark bark
and became known as Bark Bark Smith
and little dogs pissed on me.

It was a good life
warm and wet
before I matured into tendril stock
which warps and weaves
in woof woof wonder
which is why
I’m now known as
Bark Bark Woof Woof Smith
the One Who Never Whimpers.

~ ~ ~

Status Report 127

Piling high the sticks and stones
mixing muck, dirt and earth
She-God cries “Up and atom, Adam,”
then nudging his ribs
steals his bone
adds mirth
and laughing up Her sleeve
creates Eve
for better and worse

~ ~ ~

Sky Cog

O Great Cog
release me from this wheel
I’m but broken bit
neither tooth nor flair
save me from this pace
before I wreck the place
for I am wrench in works
will impede the flow
jam the am
and scram Your precious plan
You should offer me some slack
put me on the beach
coated with soothing oils
a book in hand
pen and paper near
grass in pipe
strong black coffee dear
food units to imbibe
the occasional magic mushroom
to color reason
and I will season tone
while You work the other drones

~ ~ ~

Spirit Bone

There’s truth in the dark
in the hours before dawn
if I could find the inner light to see

It whispers “I’m here”
soft and seductive
just outside my human
in the hour of the wolf
when sleep won’t come
and wake ain’t here

No baby being born
no madness lurking
so I light some nag champa
and om a hum job for the soul
while making coffee for mind and flesh

The truth is there
somewhere
playing hide and seek
offering wee peaks
like an old stripper with wrinkled skin
hiding behind pastel scarves

~ ~ ~

Now Zen

It ain’t age.
It ain’t sex.
It ain’t race, religion, height,
gender, color, class or learning.

It’s path, progress and position.
The road not not taken.
Be here now.
Hear now
o eyes unseeing
o ears unearned.

We’re all perfect potential
cept maybe republicans, lawyers,
the true organized crime called police
the true whores called priests.

You can walk on water IF water wants.
Just ask.
Walk willing.
There ain’t no dark night’s ungentle light.
Ain’t nothing outside but lies.
But even lie true ain’t for you.
Walk within.
Don’t need no god.
No catholic pimp pushing blood feast.
My lie’s mine.
Walk my own walk.
Fuck the talk.

Grasshoppers gone wrong become ants.
Bad ants cry uncle, cry wolf, cry baby.
Goats goad sacrifice to sun.
Ritual requires repetition, release.
Nothing stays river’s run
but drought’s dry dirt
(and river still runs).

Rub your ears together.
Start a fire.
Flesh alarm.
Let gone go.
Lock lip.

Listen.

~ ~ ~

Confessions of a Conservative

Let others munch spare frogs legs and things
Or their mother’s tidbits so fine.

Not me.
I prefer wee bumblebee wings
With a pipe of blueberry wine.

I’ve no desire for porcupine stew
Aunts coated in chocolate yea thick
Fried crocodile
Ala flayed caribou
Or some other chef’s table trick.

A simple table whenever I dine.
Not mine all these modern cuisines.
I’m quite satisfied with blueberry wine
And old fashioned bumblebee wings.

~ ~ ~


display dowstairs at Mac’s Backs where we read…
my memoir from 2012 by Smith & Lady on left:
“Stations of the Lost & Found, a True Tale of Armed Robbery,
Stolen Cars, Outsider Art, Mutant Poetry, Underground Publishing,
Robbing the Cradle, and Leaving the Country”…
my new book middle and right


portrait of me above Mac’s Backs cash register
1991, chalk by Tim Herron, collage by me
3′ x 4′

Got this nice blurb in Cool Cleveland:

Local Poet Steven B. Smith Shares Old and New Work in New Poetry Book at Mac’s Backs

Reading went well, extremely well, sold 2 books, had a poem videoed by Cool Cleveland who say they may review the book.

Tom Mulready of Cool Clevelnd told the audience my memoir – Stations of the Lost and Found – is one of the best he’s read and should be required reading for anyone interested in the arts or the underground. Wow.

 

catch up catsup ketchup

Monday, June 4th, 2018

Last posted a new poem April 7th… I’ve 40 poems since then unblogged. Think I’ll post 6 a day to catch up.

Hard to blog lately. The blatant evil rampant in the Republican party and the 62.96 million who voted for Trump and the egregious racism and greed shown since are getting to me. Never expected a lot from people, but I expected more decency than this.

Here’s Lady’s latest poem from June 2.

~ ~ ~

“You’re Prickly Pear’s Paramour.”

Remember when we were in Morocco?
Remember when you carried me on the
roof by the parapet?

“Were i Spider-Man I would whishhh my hands
over to you and tear your blouse off,
that’s what I’d do, touch the tips
of nipples where the milk used to be”

You have a serpent’s tongue slithering out

“We’re all innocent –
the serpent’s innocent, the mongoose
is innocent
but one of them’s going to win
I’m not even positive it’s nice
to eat vegetables. They might have
tiny little tomato screams. Rhubarb
might be begging for its life
lawnmower out there sounds like
big angry fly
looking for some shit”

You are just so many facets…

“Yeah, there’s the hot water facet,
the cold water facet”

~ ~ ~

and my most recent 6, from 5.15-6.4.2018.

~ ~ ~

Splice of Life

The panicked deer
desperate
dashes three westbound lanes
of 60 mile-per-hour expressway
that no one’s obeying
and with quick wit luck
leaps triumphant the concrete divider
success surging through brain
when SPLATTT
eastbound truck paints partition red.

And yet
she dies in dance of joy
euphoric escape last taste of fate
which rebirth
reshapes as joy over hate.

Live on edge, die on edge,
happy way go round.

And then of course there’s slo-mo-go,
the easier way to roll.

But is it?

~ ~ ~

Philosophy 172

I been working in the quandary
wandering my weird wrong way

If you go when you’re happy
take happy with you

If you go when you’re sad
leave sad behind

Count sheep if you will,
just don’t look in the mirror

~ ~ ~

Zen Box

Kneeling on the floor
before the cat box
removing clayed clumps of piss
and dried shit
then smoothing the surface
I realize this is my Zen sand garden
the urine my sins against others
the shit my sins against myself
the baking soda confession and forgiveness
for past’s smell
so I start new day new
clean
free
knowing I’ll be on my knees again tomorrow
for same old shit

~ ~ ~

Fork U

Washed the dishes

past 24 hours we used
3 tablespoons
1 teaspoon
3 knives
8 forks

one tablespoon and knife every 8 hours
one fork for 3
one teaspoon per 24

could be clue
I mean, 1 goes into 24 24 times

would make a good poem
if I knew where to go

all moments are interesting
not all poetic

and are

~ ~ ~

Conversation with Wife 41

I need to write a poem.
I feel better after writing a poem.

“Then write one.”

I don’t have any poem words.
I don’t have any poem pen.
I don’t have any poem paper.
I’ve got shit and toilet paper, that’s what I got.

There, there’s your poem.

~ ~ ~

Sisyphus Sum

It’s hot with strain of ache and pain
this pushing rock up hill
in another day of try and loss
no hope of less
so grasp what’s good
like chirp of bird
and glint of sun
or inchworm on my arm
sometimes a cloud will move just right
or drop of sweat catch the light
as lack brings laugh
and loss a like
such sips quench my worse

 

new book – Where Never Was Already Is – 244 poems, 29 pieces of art

Wednesday, May 23rd, 2018

I have a new book of poetry out – Where Never Was Already Is – on Crisis Chronicles Press, publisher/editor John Burroughs.

324 pages – $15 – 6″ x 9″ – 244 poems, 29 collages – 5.5 cents per item.

The poems cover 54 years – 1960s: 2, 1970s: 6, 1980s: 9, 1990s: – 10, 2000s: 29, 2010s: 188.

One collage is by Lady K. Smith, and 5 of the poems are co-written by her.

Order at: https://ccpress.blogspot.com/2018/04/098Smith.html

titles of the 27 reading rooms
each room has its own collage
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
1: Men as Birds and Women as Water
2: Broken Crumbs in the Snow
3: The Melancholy of the Cycle Calling
4: Weren’t for Monk, I’d Catch Coltrane
5: Yesterday’s Gone, Tomorrow Ain’t Here
6: The Homework Ate My Dog
7: Red Wheelbarrow, Dusky Attic, Dancing in the Dark
8: No Wrapped Supply of Fly
9: We Who Rise in Heat from Dream
10: With Drum and Tune of Bone Prevail
11: That Little Snake
12: Eating Dirt While Dreaming Sky
13: Light… Dark… Light… Dark…
14: Unbowed Before the Bacon
15: Shadow in Search of Sun
16: Womb Warm Wonder
17: for Lady K., wife, collaborator, partner, friend
18: Sometimes Sleep Slides Us
19: No Heart to Pierce with Truth
20: East of the Sun, West of the Moon
21: Ghost Dance of None Against my Skin
22: The Lying Moon Whispers Untruths
23: Light Like Liquid Zen
24: Do Again the Done Before
25: Surplus Meat in Land of Sharpened Teeth
26: Just Cuz It Is Don’t Mean It is
27: Meet Me in the Meat Lane

 

8 April poems

Saturday, April 7th, 2018

Writing a poem-a-month through Leah Muellar’s Poetry Feast. She’s giving daily seeds.

~ ~ ~

Mistakes

It’s always Miss Takes
never Mister Takes
or missed aches
though mist aches as well
as does misgivings from missed takes
for vampires never miss stakes
while vegans may miss steak
in wake ache
of gold ring miss/take

– 4.1.2018

~ ~ ~

Sisyphus Play

I play this game
where I get up before dawn
sit in dark brooding
sipping coffee
taking a toke if I’m lucky
pop pain pill
trudge to mountain
see which rock I’ve been assigned
which worthless route up which hell hill
and begin the begin again
roll rock up
watch it slip back down
roll rock
lose rock
aim’t no rock ‘n’ roll
just me up here and loss below
day after day
again and again
pain in brain
pain in body
pain in pay
today… and today… and today
forever and ever
anen

– 4.2.2018

~ ~ ~

Resurrection Ritual

Low hope
body closer to dark than dawn
lids locked
eyes blurred
bone bruised in battle
spirit sagged
flesh failed
I crawl broken before dawn
from bed to sink to stove to coffee
in resurrection ritual
worthy of Doctor Frankenstein
or the unlovely Lazarus
for rise in radiance
as holy caffeine
rolls stone to new daze
and second cup

– 4.3.2018

~ ~ ~

Zenless

Thin id
Reduce grandiosity
Less more

Everything is nothing at all

– 4.4.2018

~ ~ ~

D.C. Diet

Government assembly diets
of gimme politicians
the lowest of the low
corporate slime
(but I repeat myself)
scum buckets come
with hands out-splayed
morals delayed
truths un-sayed
from both sides their forked tongues
greed belly jiggling
small dick dripping
birthing their bromides
of racial crimes
and culturcide
as they pad their less
with our more
hating happy
killing healthy
stealing unsteathily
our daily food
our nodes of hope
shouting nope to every maybe
with force of might
from mostly white
mostly men
mostly fat and ugly
paying for sex with our dime
they whine
of changing times
sit in theft
bereft
shitmen with greasy lips
expanding hips
rich
old
white
men
whose best use is fertilizer
so
if you see a rich man drowning
toss him a big bag of pennies
a die it for the diet
and their unbalanced books of red

– 4.4.2018

~ ~ ~

Brain Drain

Trump’s brain is not on vacation
is neither particle nor wave
might be a vacuum
or immoral virus
is as small as his hands
dumb as dim
it’s said no one’s home within
I’d say his heart’s hard
if he had one
instead of Big Bankrupt signs
in chest and head
and yet I don’t want him dead
wish him long life
so he can drown in history’s sum
of his immoral dumb
and dumber sons
crooked daughter
hostage wife
what a life
tacky gold stained walls
rich white trash
making an ash of himself
and us
what’s the fuss
just one more rich fat fuck
pushing his luck
stuffing his pockets with our buck
I wish him slow syphilis
and endless humiliation
this man accused of raping his wife
raping a date
raping a 13 year old girl
do I hate
perhaps I do
but I’m more aghast at his crooked past
and present
may he suffer through and through
and if he’s down
I’d kick him good
again and again for the hood he is
the good he isn’t.

– 4.5.2018

~ ~ ~

I Gots U Babe

Wife usually cooks
and workwebs a lot for little,
much more stress than bucks.

I quit work 12 years ago,
she’s 27 years behind me,
has 15 to go.

I do dishes, laundry, catbox,
errands, make some soup, this n that
to ease her squeeze.

Both poets, artists, fotagrafers,
we share words, ideas, objects,
each the peach.

Laugh with and at,
croon over cat,
always at bat.

Our differing looks
soften brittle,
lift luck.

These 12.5 years so far
are 27% of her life, 17% of mine,
100% ours.

Share time, place, grace, rhyme;
don’t know why
but it seems to work.

– 4.6.2018

~ ~ ~

Silver Lined

On street unlit in town unknown
nowhere here to somewhere gone
looking for the light
after hours over
time moved on
somewhere
nowhere
down the line
awaiting the unarrived
grateful for disaster’s delay.

I see sad women
husbands fallen from hope
exit failing houses
to meet at the well
where forgetting pain
they laugh in gossip giggle
wetting buckets
warming heart
knowing they are not alone.

Darkness sparkles stars
harsh with heart
pearls of diamond night.

– 4.7.2018

 

Cat & Dog

Saturday, April 7th, 2018

Cat & Dog

Cat was on the feather
Showing me where the feather was, dear

“Did you catch a cat?”

Barely, like one of those quantum particles,
snapping my fingers,
hard to hold

Our cat knows
which one is the prey
in our current game

I saw a woman
play Three Card Monte with her dog
she’d put a dog treat under one of the cups
go swish, swish, swish, mix them up,
and the dog would point his nose at
the correct cup every time
and eat the treat

While this is impressive
it’s not quite as impressive as it looks
because she cheated;
she kept her right hand
on the cup with the treat,
never took it off,
went swish swish swish swish swish and
always kept her hand on the treat cup

The dog just watched it go
back and forth
and never left the right hand

When she stopped
he would touch his nose to it;
he would get the treat

Instead of a fireplace
we low-class have a water tank
there’s usually 10 seconds
between the bubble burps in the aquarium filter
but sometimes it’s 11 or 12

I am a wee odd.

For example, I count how long it takes you
from locking the door
to becoming visible in the parking lot

It used to be 31 seconds

“You mean you count?”

Yes, 1001, 1002, 1003

It used to take you 31 seconds to get out
and then 41 seconds because you were cold and you were carrying more stuff
and recently it was 51 seconds
and I started thinking, ‘this is getting
too long but you’ll probably stop at
the mail box,’ and I saw you and you had
a package in your hand.

If it had been more than 60 seconds,
I would have come down and checked

“Wow, that’s very nice”

I work what grid I can, he said
black cat, red feather, white line.

~ Smith & Lady

 

buncha poems from past 3 weeks

Wednesday, March 14th, 2018

Haven’t been posting lately. Lost interest.

Here are the rest of February’s poem-a-day… did 50 poems in 28 days., plus my 4 March poems so far.

Turned 72 last week. Feel as if I don’t have to pretend as much since I can say, “I’m 72, that stuff doesn’t matter to me anyore.”

~

Sects Plex

You got your in sects
you got your out sects
you got your God sects
and your sect sex
consecrated cunts
and privileged pricks
sectioning life
to select vex
and unelect ex
it ain’t complex
so relax
put back on your slacks
and watch your backs
for penis imperfection
and vaginal compression
in the factual crime
of physical penetration

Wife sez I’m disgusting
but I’m not sure
what she’s discussing

Don’t trust the flesh
it leads to mess
and children yes

Worship the form
if you want to keep warm
but use condom
if you get wanton
or it leads to swarm

– 2.21.2018

~ ~ ~

Mushrooms to Rent

I’m not insane so much as outsane,
but inside my head it’s banana bonkers.

Hi whore hi whore it’s off to work we gore.

Want to repair the earth?
Buy an Eartha Kitt.

One needs very small hands to milk a cowbird.

Do you know what a worm’s life is like?
Boring, pure dirt boring.

All fathers are motherfuckers
except for the remote inseminators.

Does polyester want a cracker?

Gonna write a new song for Xmas —
I’m Dreaming of White Christians.

Einstein sez time & space are in-laws.

When they drop their bottle of Viagra,
Viagra falls.

Add mature to old, you get mold.

What do you call the first cell firing?
Original synapse, of course.

May those without sin smoke the first stone.

Why do people get harder of hearing
the louder I drink?

– 2.21.2018

~

Black Cat Scat

Black cat ignored my lap
for couch rub next to Lady

When I got up
black cat took my ass warmed place

When I sat down and put her in my lap
she left me for a fly

When fly got away
she went back to Lady couch

Where’s my I in this food chain?

– 2.21.2018

~

Dystopia

I’m zero, not one
off, not on
I live in dis topia
I live in dat topia
hoping for a topiary
or a top hat
to top this
top that
while you go round the block
reverse your path
forget the underground
cuz you’re above that
stick right foot in
speak with forked tongue
and whatever you do
dumb down the young
because they’re seeing truth
you don’t want known
your money tricks
hating skin not your own
and barefoot women
are starting to wear shoes
staying out of the bedroom
with empty wombs
so I gotta find a way
to live happy in sad
gotta go good
as the rich run bad
mean little pricks
with hands roaming wrong
hiding accounting tricks
far too long
time for the tar
and feathers too
pitchforks and torches
under full moon
ride em on rails
to the edge of town
tie em to ant hills
and never look back
better the gene pool
by removing the scum
for the core of conservative
is con damn dumb

– 2,22,2018

~

NRA

Bullet in chamber
finger on trigger
child in ground

– Smith, 2.23.2018

~

Me & Elvis

1975
when Elvis was alive
he saw a black woman
in Memphis staring longingly
through the display window
at a new Cadillac.

He went in, bought it,
and handed her the keys.

In 1968
on an out-of-town torture trip
trying to sell bulk paper to printers
I stopped in the heat
at an outdoor pop machine
and bought a bottle of cold Coke.

As I turned to leave
a boy on a bike
stared lhungrily at the bottle
so I gave it to him
because I’d always wanted
someone to do that for me.

He grinned big
thanked me and left.

I turned back to buy a second bottle
and found I had no more money
and laughed in delight
at Reality’s joke.

But I felt good for doing good
even though as always
I had made no sales.

What a politician is to honesty
was me to salesman.

Two years later
I was jailed a year for armed robbery.

Two years after Elvis bought the Cadillac
for Minnie Pearson
he died from drugs.

Elvis started 9 years before me
now he’s 30 behind.

– 2.24.2018

~

Shadow Shallow

I fight rhyme
in climb for stars
so far as I am able
in this unstable mime
of time and space
in place of other
under nights gone
to long day’s decay
in way and why

why lie?

I rise from sleep refreshed
and unmesh shadow
of shallow new to study old
in mold of morrow
sorrow the price we pay
to stray upon its
summit

sticky wicket

I bubble broil as troubled toil
roils rest
to best this earthly route
with shout of mirth to make rebirth
worth the walk about

in and out

– 2.25.2018

~

Unweave Wove

Dada Longlegs rises wall
banana perks on stove
orange crush circles love
while wail wobbles woe
please sir the sire exclaims
bubbles bouncing forth
sick the health to heal the lame
else farce will reckon force
for I accept my blame in this
my aim way off course
as always missing is
I reuse remorse

– 2.26.2018

~

Waiting Room

Overheard Doctor walking by
cell phone to ear,
“I’m not supposed to tell you…”
pause
“I’m not supposed to tell you…”
pause
“I’m not supposed to tell you…”
pause
“You’ve got to swear not to tell anyone else.”

– 2.26.2018

~

The Poetry Thieves of Barcelona

In Bezier train station waiting for Barcelona
an Arab showed me a xerox
of his 2 children who were hungry.

Not believing
I gave him a couple Francs anyway
because it was cheap
and better to be taken
than too hard of heart.

Hour later I watched him
hand the xerox to another man
who eventually showed me his starving kids.

It was their job.

Punch in
show folk fake hunger for a shift
punch out.

Professional liars.

Just like the young men
walking the Moroccan beach
with trays of cookies
all handmade by their mother named Fatimah.

Half dozen young men
same time same tray same cookies
handmade made by same Fatima
who must have had one big rumpled bed
and a heck of a kitchen.

I wrote their act in a small notebook
I carried in my back pocket for poetry.

Down the line
boarding Barcelona subway
man bumped me sideways
as door tried to close
between my back and pack
hitting and retracting
with each bump
he pushing me back into the door
in counter bounce
while he looked up to read the route
which must have been wrong
because he left.

Watching him and his friend walk away
I flashed “Pickpocket”
felt my empty back pocket
and laughed.

My money was in my front pocket
so he’d taken my poetry notebook instead.

Perhaps not a total loss for them
since my notes on the Bezier station scam
might give them some new wrongs.

I wonder what they thought of my poems.

– 2.27.2018

~ ~ ~

The Last Rites for Past Wrongs

Who do you blame
Eve, Adam, or the snake?

I know the snake had a grudge with God
and fomented unrest
in the land of ease and plenty

But Eve was certainly complicit
taking that bite
then smoozing Adam to eat

Yet Adam was dumb, weak,
or pussy-whipped to follow,
allowing good and evil

But the villain was God.

He/She/It made Lucifer
and when Lucifer protested being #2
(and why would anyone accept second?)
God cast him to belly hell

He/She/It made the tree
of the Knowledge of Good and Evil

He/She/It
created man and woman with dirt
and stolen body parts

He/She/It
made Eve and Adam defective,
too weak to follow orders

Or else He/She/It
made them too well
so they thought for themselves

What true God is so insecure
He/She/It would fear their knowing
right from wrong?

If You can’t stand the heat
get out of the kitchen

We should hire Snake Lucifer
to sue He/She/It for malfeasance,
bad design,
and lack of faith in It’s own creation

Got to break this God cycle
of guilt from above
sin from below

– 2.28.2018

~

Book Ban Burn

Recent studies state
the more intelligent you are
the more you swear.

I must be fucking brilliant.

I was born when you could be jailed
for saying fuck in a story, or a poem,
on a wall, in the street, on the tongue,
even though it was heard and seen
everywhere.

I was 11 when they prosecuted
Ferlinghetti for publishing Howl in spite
of the 1933 Supreme Court ruling on Ulysses
saying you could not censor literature for obsenity
if the obsenity did not promote lust.

The government assholes lost.

The authoritarian fuckers tried again
prosecuting Tropic of Cancer in 1934
and on anon for 30 years
until a 1964 Supreme Court ruling
told them to fuck off,
leave Henry Miller alone.

The Government pricks started early
and never stopped.

In 1629 the Massachusett’s governor
sent a military expedition to stop
Thomas Merton from writing sexy verse.

Boston had to stop sales of Walt Whitman’s
Leaves of Grass in 1881 because
the District Attorney threatened prosecution
yet when Philadelphia published 1,000 copies
the next year they sold out in a day.

1st officially banned book in America?
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
by Mark Twain, 1885.

In 1915 William Sanger and his wife Margaret
were both indicted for publishing
information on contraception.

1859 saw Charles Darwin raise a ruckus
with On the Origin of Species
but it took until the 1920s to censor it,
remaining banned until 1967.

Some cities banned Ernest Hemingway’s
A Farewell to Arms in 1929.

In the 1920s the famous “Banned in Boston”
caught Lady Chatterley’s Lover,
An American Tragedy, Elmer Gantry,
American Mercury, and Strange Interlude
and more.

Some cities and school boards banned
Karl Marx’s The Communist Manifesto,
George Orwell’s 1984,
John Steinbeck’s Grapes of Wrath.

Way too recently they’ve censored
The Catcher in the Rye and
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
likely because they undermine authority.

The most challenged book in the 21st century
is the kids’ book And Tango Makes Three
about homosexual penguins.

As late as 2003 Texas school boards
tried to ban Brave New World.

More bans on Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men
which is rated as our 12th best novel
and of course To Kill a Mockingbird
and the Harry Potter books.

Wikipedia lists Black Boy, Candide, Catch-22,
The Canterbury Tales, Captain Underpants,
Carrie (way to go Stephen King!!!), Fanny Hill,
The Decameron, The Federal Mafia, Homo Sapiens,
The Meritorious Price of Our Redemption,
Moll Flanders, My Life and Loves, Naked Lunch,
Operation Dark Heart, Uncle Tom’s Cabin,
United States – Vietnam Relations 1945-1967,
Women in Love, Drama, Absolutely True Diary,
and Looking for Alaska.

Won’t even go into the book burnings.

Who knew so many were so scared of thinking?

And of course Donald ‘Chubby Cheese’ Trump
would probably ban books if he ever read one.

This is but a taste of their wrongs,
there are many many many much more.

Appears the uninformed fear the educated,
the religious fear fact,
and the racists fear everything.

The sin here is the arrogance of the ignorant
believing they can tell the rest of us
what we can or cannot read.

So fuck the Puritans
and the perversion they rode in on.

– 3.1.2018

~

Once More Round the Bend

Sucked into the spiral
going forward faster than leaving behind.

I walk beneath the shaded leaves
knowing neither name nor number
my life a mercy
of luck’s good fortune and sense of humor
no way I’ve gotten this far and long on my own
gotta be a Joker in the deck
(who may be me0
with many a marked shard to spend.

Does the shoe worship the shoe-maker?
Does the foot fit the shoe?
Does the toe rule the foot?
The lace the tongue?
Or are they all appendages of each other’s lie?

Dismal day grey
Cleveland rain fog and warm cold
beauty in the mist

Driving down shadow lane
in shallow frame of thought
stuff once carried on tip of tongue
now stored in dusty boxes back behind my brain.

Big Sycamore winter bare reaching pre-sun light
trunk slow thinning
limbs branching smaller and smaller
till they fractualize sky
too small for our whys to see.

The sun comes up, the knives come out.

Wife looks at me with her cancer eye,
“I’m like a cat
I see the empty bowl
I want it full.”

We go on.

– 3.9.2018

~

The Garden of Eaten

Everything eats something
and is in turn by something eaten.

Fish eats snail,
bird eats fish.

So where’s fair?

What makes this death okay,
that death not?

Seems mostly the Rule-Makers exclaiming
eating is fine, being eaten ain’t.

As long as they’re the eaters.

History written by winners
while the vanquished dead rot.

The do as I play say
from eater to eaten.

So, what’s for dinner?

– 3.12.2018

~

Sand Cleans Water

This dirt road but dust on way to death,
neither sand nor water abide.

Been before, be again
in my unwisdom wander.

Words be slippery slope to sloppy charter
unless is meets oughter.

What we need now we learn later
at cost of blood, bone, time, loss.

One gets wily as one grows weaker
since less force needs more resource.

Each day strange road minus map,
detours not yet determined.

Most of us ain’t rich, too many hungry,
who hordes food from belly?

This is zero sum game
in which I stay until I can’t pay.

Promised wife I’d reach 101
regardless of crimps and creases.

Might have to apply
for some right-of-way eases.

Just a question of time,
whether I’m worthy.

Until then I sand words from tongue
to hold enigma.

Virgin spurt
& molten

– 3.14.2018

 

 
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