...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 )
You are currently browsing the archives for the Music category.
Kathy Kieth, the editor/publisher of Medusa’s Kitchen, published my Stations of the Lost (for Lenny Bruce) poem online Sunday. This is pretty amazing since it has something in it to offend almost everyone. I wrote it as a stand-up comic routine for Lenny Bruce, and I thing he would have liked it.
As Mae West said, “Those who are easily shocked should be shocked more often.”
This is my 15th appearance in Medusa’s Kitchen since October of last year when poet D.R. Wagner included my found Ferlinghetti poem at the end of his weekly feature. I am honored to have become a monthly member of their crew. My next feature will be Dec 23 with my anti-Christmas poem/song Ex Christmas.
We are born in cave of shadow
washed in birthing pan
walk with shadow in search of sun
till washed again at end
How well are our ways wound?
If I put left sock on left foot first
instead of right sock on right foot
does it make a difference?
Or yesterday’s right on today’s left?
Does the moving shadow
of my belt buckle on the floor
portent play of day?
Do things change if I put my pants
on left or right leg first?
What about both legs at once?
I know kindness to others,
listening, caring, compassion, patience
sways day’s way.
But what of stretch or no stretch?
yawn or no yawn?
left or right side of bed arise?
Is there a right right
and a wrong right?
Of the mother thread of life
Clotho spins and sings of is
Lachesis measures in song of was
and Atropos cuts, sings will be
Do they care what sock I wear?
or right left of wrong?
– Smith, 12.14.2016
Lady and I woke at 3:20 this morning and lay there talking.
Told her in my dream I was a young 40’s Harrison Ford and was lying on top of a bed with my ex-girlfriend Melania (our next First Lady) who was her current age age. We were both fully clothed and it was not romantic. I was worried I wasn’t going to get the movie role I was trying out for, and she was helping me prepare. I asked her why she kept breaking up with me and she said because I was so insecure.
Then Lady told me her dream.
She was back in elementary school, drinking beer (Guinness Stout), but was an adult. In fact all her classmates were adults too. She was taking stuff from her purse and putting it in the supply cupboard – 20 packs of Post-It notes, cookies, some other stuff, and slices of roast beef.
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.
Free will ain’t free
more fee will if you please
when you don’t bow down on knees
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
As the child is father to the man
we are mother to our darkness
give birth to our own sin
Gettin’ weary but ain’t givin’ up
this burden on back busting my nut
keep sloggin’ thru muck
hopin’ for luck
can’t quit cuz no consolation prize
unless reward is giving up lies
otherwise work till you die
in this worship of why
Billy Clarksville remixed our 2nd recording from August last year so I don’t sound quite so rough… though still rough and unready.
Some folk have a three-octave vocal range – mine’s more like three-notes . . . here, almost here, and somewhere over there.
Slow Look Around (remix), 2015, 3:24, Billy Clarksville music, mix, recording, me word&voice >
Wind in trees
rain on leaves
sky losing light
season leaking heat
cold sneaking in
and the thin within us all
vegetation dying to fuel rebirth
the air cold, crisp, clean, electric
full of hope
what with the dry leaf crinkle
and whiffs of wood smoke
Recorded new song with Billy Clarksville – my move into lounge lizard singing (think my vocal must have at least a 2 or 3 note range on this one). . . Billy Clarksville music, Smith word&voice
I do my samba dance in song / fumble feet in sweet retreat
Tangle-tongued I try to slog / slow and awkward beneath her feet
Look up her dress at fresh abound / hear Ray Charles’ Mess Around
Inside my head where I always run / look for ways to sway fun bun
She keeps it hidden in the dark / yet still I feel her sensual quark
It waits for touch of magic rub / but who and when, aye there’s the nub
She twirls on air above the beat / in between melody’s line
Shakes her hips in rising heat / tapping toes in tempting time
She belongs to spheres above / for she’s my long time love
She fits my me like we’re a prime / completes my ending rhyme
Inside her dress flesh abounds / pulsing sweet in cotton surround
she swirls the air above the beat / shakes her hips to raise the heat
Dance the samba dance tonight . . . Dance in samba’s sweet delight Dance my samba all the day . . . Dancing samba watch me sway
– Smith, 9.15.2016
Two new pieces, collaborations with poet/artist Kevin Eberhardt . . . both pieces 23″ x 19″.
Red one = The Future Is Closer Than It Appears, blue one = Kind Of Blue.
Lady & I have uploaded 4,123 blog posts in the past 10 years on WalkingThinIce.com.
When Lady started this blog, I asked why. Now I’m hooked.
Except for our first 6 months together, the blog documents our soon-to-be 11 years together, our 31 months of living in 10 countries on 3 continents, our art, poetry, friends, family . . . probably 10-15,000 fotos posted. What a treasure trove to mine for our second memoir.
Thank you Lady.
Did a full day’s house husband work . . . one load of laundry, washed the dishes, made a batch of navy bean soup, and arranged picking up our new batch of bees this weekend. Had to sacrifice a needed nap and bath cuzza time.
I’ve always done the laundry and dishes. It’s only fair because Lady cooked; but she’s been frantically working 70 hours a week for less than $5 an hour trying to save her family’s web design business since she took over as President 8 months ago, so I’ve taken on at least half of the cooking and some of the bee business and cleaning and shopping.
I’m in a remarkably good mood considering I’m three weeks unstoned because we can’t afford to buy me grass or much of anything else – of course outside of getting stoned, I don’t have many needs.
To reduce my un-stoned stress, I’ve considerably cut down reading the news because it riles me, especially with the political charade going on, and I’ve also cut way down on coffee for the same reason.
Finally accept that my art and poetry are not going to make me money or bring me renown, even though I’ve been chasing fame and fortune for 50 years, but that’s okay cuz I do it for me – it’s the main way I’ve kept myself sane since 1964. Fuck fame, though a wee bit of help with the finances would be nice.
Been at it a long time – my 1st poem was 1964, 1st art piece 1965, 1st fotograf 1956, 1st drawing 1958, 1st blog 2006, 1st web site 2002, 1st recorded song with me singing my lyrics 2002, 1st published story 1969, 1st published newspaper article 1973, 1st published book of poetry 2008, 1st non-fiction book (my memoir co-authored with Lady) 2012.
I’m with the one I love and the one I loves wants to be with me, and we’ve a fine feline to make us three. So there you go. The poems come almost every day, and I’m working on a second art piece for Shawn Mishak’s Doubting Thomas Gallery group show next month on gentrification.
Now all I need is some grass and a huge reduction in my wife’s stress levels and life would be divine.
PS – interesting soup this time: 1 gigantic and 2 medium onions, 3 large cloves garlic chopped and sauted in 1/3 cup olive oil, add 4 large carrots, 6 celery stocks, 4 green onions, 12 sprigs parsley, 6 sprigs thyme chopped and saute some more, add 3 small cans navy beans, large can diced tomatoes, 4 chopped green onions, 2 zucchini squash chopped fine, good splash of sherry, couple pinches bonfire smoked salt, generous shakes black pepper, 2 bay leaves and slow cook for an hour; take the bay leaves out and throw them away (although I washed them off and put them in my new art piece), put about half the soup in a blender and puree, pour back in, add a package of frozen corn, simmer another 40 minutes and serve. Delicious.
Looking out our 3rd floor window at the sycamore tree next door, its new spring leaves are exploding in wee bursts of yellowgreen, giving a whole different view and ambiance to life . . for the better.
It’s so fast. The buds break, there are wee peeping of green, than WHAM, tree’s suddenly nothing but leaves and I have to weave and bob my head to see the traffic lights through them so I can bet on the red/yellow/green.
We need to slow this down, so I offer Season Savings Time.
We’d turn spring to half speed, so the new green glow would last twice as long, day after day of slow grow green, endless flower blooms, achingly sweet soft breezes caressing Cleveland cleavage in endless just-warm-enough sun.
Then summer and fall we’d go back to normal time, and of course having to balance the equation, we’d speed winter up twice as fast and get it over with.
But now I reflect, fall is magic too, and summer here frequently brutal, so speed summer up by 25%, speed winter 75%, slow fall 50%, and we’d have it all, with even Goldilocks happy.
Especially since Winter now is basically 6 months, Spring maybe three weeks, summer endless, and fall all too short.
Speaking of timing (musical, that is)…
In C by Terry Riley, 1964, 42′ 03″
plunk plunk plunk plunk
pluck punk plunk
each step in journey a journey
each journey in journey a step
night chimes in soft sun on daylit porch
coffee dark with hot opium steam
a catching of the carousel
with a scratching of the rote
tunnel down and loop back heart
bouncing brave on rubber rung
sung in song such simple sayings
singing swaying in sun
run run run run, run run run more
till bottom drops out of floor
– Smith, 5.2.2016
Can’t remember whether I came across In C, Terry Riley’s 1964 recording, in 1968 or 71, but it’s my favorite 42 minute musical composition (performances can vary from 15 minutes to 2 hours), although actually it is one of my favorites of any length – definitely in my top ten tunes along with Yoko Ono’s Walking On Thin Ice and Leonard Cohen’s Everybody Knows.
Here’s a 10 minute taste –
“In C consists of 53 short, numbered musical phrases, lasting from half a beat to 32 beats; each phrase may be repeated an arbitrary number of times. Each musician has control over which phrase they play: players are encouraged to play the phrases starting at different times, even if they are playing the same phrase. In this way, although the melodic content of each part is predetermined, In C has elements of aleatoric music to it. The performance directions state that the musical ensemble should try to stay within two to three phrases of each other. The phrases must be played in order, although some may be skipped. As detailed in some editions of the score, it is customary for one musician (“traditionally… a beautiful girl,” Riley notes in the score) to play the note C in repeated eighth notes, typically on a piano or pitched-percussion instrument (e.g. marimba). This functions as a metronome and is referred to as “The Pulse”. Steve Reich introduced the idea of a rhythmic pulse to Riley, who accepted it, thus radically altering the original composition by Riley which had no rhythm.” —https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/In_C