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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 April, 2008

back pat

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

Cleveland Poetry Scene, A Panarama & Anthology – cover by Jim Lang

april is poetry month thanks to T.S. Eliot, and it’s been a good month so far for creative recognition for me.

i’ve received my copy of Cleveland Poetry Scenes, A Panorama and Anthology. i’m one of 9 poets born in the 1940s to be included. they printed 3 of my poems, and Lady and I are both mentioned in half a dozen of the articles. book is available from Bottom Dog Press.

Cleveland Poetry Scene, A Panarama & Anthology – cover by Jim Lang

i had one of my fotos accepted as the cover art for Sara Holbrook’s new book coming out on Boyds Mills Press – actually getting paid for it. that makes photography, poetry, art, and publishing i’ve been paid other people’s money for so far. i took the foto inside the old walled city of Essaouira, Morocco, on the northwest coast of Africa.

the magazine Balanced Living is using both Lady’s and my art as illustrations in their next issue.

Jesus Crisis of blog is doing a blog on me in his poet series – i’ll be included with previous poets Alexander Pope, W.B. Yeats, Dylan Thomas, Jack Kerouac, and Ferlinghetti. believe i’m the only Unknown Poet he’s using.

i’m near the end of our 14th edit of our bio of my bad-boy past – CRIMINAL by Smith & Lady. the book is 309 pages, 135,000 words, and covers the inglorious low-lights of my life from 1946 through 2005 when Lady and i decided to split the u.s.a.

folks wonder how two people (Lady & Smith) can write one autobiography. when Lady first moved in, i started telling her my stories. she wrote them down. then she started interviewing me for more stories. we took her interviews of me, my previously written true stories, plus other stuff she or i or others wrote and said, and combined them into a memoir we’ve been working on for the past 2 years.

the book was Lady’s idea. she’s the one who arranged all this mess into a more or less coherent chronological order. she wrote some of it, rewrote some of what i wrote, re-flowed the entire manuscript, and kept it going even when i believed there might not be enough interesting stuff there. it is my story with a bit of her and my story at the end, but it is spiritually her book.

and it is a good book – funny, fascinating, and outrageous. now we need to find a publisher. this is a major book, so we need a major publisher.

cover to upcoming book More Than Friends – background foto by smith


trickle down reality

Wednesday, April 30th, 2008

graffiti – foto by smith

monster mask – foto by smith

advert – foto by smith


dead frogs when i have to

Monday, April 28th, 2008

advert detail – foto by smith

excerpt from CRIMINAL by Smith & Lady:

When I drank myself to death and ended up in intensive care, I got a call from Dick Head.

I told him, “I can’t drink anymore or I’ll die.”

He screamed, “Then why don’t you die! I’d rather die than not drink.”

Dick Head’s highlight was when he read poetry at the Old Brooklyn Inn wearing nothing but an octopus wrapped around his waist. The octopus tentacles hung down, and so did Dick Head’s dick. Dick Head’s holding a large stuffed frog in his left arm, a butcher knife in his right hand, and is standing on a plastic drop cloth. He starts shouting:

I only eat dead frogs / when I have to
lifes a bitch not a bore / Im a slut not a whore
live for lust / loves a drag / I only eat dead frogs
when I have to

Art is free / but paint cost money
The galleries are full / of commies faggots & more
I dont let it get me sore / Cus I only eat dead frogs
When I have to

Then he gut stabs the stuffed frog with the knife, and the cow entrails he’d sewn into it the previous night spill out on the floor

One of the finest poetry moments I can recall. Even the college kids sat up.

Last time I saw Dick Head’s dick was at the ArtCrimes 20 publication party. He had a stud in his penis head, I could see it flashing in the spot light as he read from the stage. I’ve seen him with leopard skin hair, I’ve seen him with half his hair shaved, and a safety pin through the scalp. I’ve seen him with bloody scalp.

Nobody knows how he’s stayed alive this long. I know he’s alive because he still makes noises, but no more dead frogs.

local stencil graffiti – foto by smith


head dress

Monday, April 28th, 2008

street advert detail – foto by smith

street advert detail – foto by smith

street advert detail – foto by smith


the lucky sevens (comic by smith ‘n’ lady)

Sunday, April 27th, 2008


psycho doodle do

Saturday, April 26th, 2008

1973 journal doodles – foto by smith

private journal, February 20, 1973

Paul psychology major says my in-class doodles are in his abnormal psych book… under the label of psychotic. It is nice to have labels. I like labels. I am a lot of labels: man, woman, boy, girl, ex-con, ex-this, ex-that. I am ex. Period.

1973 journal doodles – foto by smith

1973 journal doodles – foto by smith

1973 journal doodles – foto by smith

1973 journal doodles – foto by smith

1973 journal doodles – foto by smith


flux university

Friday, April 25th, 2008

white bird dance – foto by smith

Flux U – that’s the school of life i attended. their majors were Learn & Live and Live & Learn, with minors in Learn & Earn and Earn & Live. only problem is the school is endless, never lets up or out. i hope there’s no school on the other side, after death. i just want endless summer vacation. when i die, i want to be unaware and really dead.

poster – foto by smith


mexican food blog

Thursday, April 24th, 2008

La Vida (Photo by Lady)
Bad peach. Bad plum. I chuck them both in the trash. Took a chance yesterday and got fruit from the big box grocery store, Chedraui. I usually go to a street vendor or traditional market for produce.

I go to the big box store for packaged foods, cheese, yogurt, sometimes meat, and convenience. I suspect that the meat is on the shelf too long, though. When I walk by the fish department, I hold my nose. It’s really vile.

My favorite part of Chedraui is the humungous baked goods section. There are five long racks of various sweet breads. Mexican baked goods usually look better than they taste. They match the form, and raise hope, but usually fail. One time I bought a brownie and it was like they’d used five times as much flour as should be in the recipe in order to trim costs. The brownie was even kind of pale, not a full rich brown. But Chedraui does have good pain au chocolate, muffins and fresh sesame hard rolls of various sizes and shapes.

The big box store is huge, but it is monotonous. For example, one half of an aisle is devoted to mayonnaise. The other half is canned peppers. And not much variety, either. Can after can of the exact same thing.

When I eat dry tortillas here it’s all I can do to keep from upchucking. I suffer tortilla fatigue. I suffer fatigue from Mexican food in general. The tacos here are not like tacos you might find at taco bell or chi-chi’s. Tacos here are made of suspect parts of animal bodies. Lots of gristle. I’ve not yet seen one made from hamburger. You have to have a kind of faith in humanity to order a taco from a taco stand. I’ve gotten dysentery at least twice here.

I’m dying for a bagel, and some fresh pita. I would like hummus with tahini, a thick steak that I don’t have to worry about, fried chicken that isn’t stringy and barfy… most of all I miss the wide variety of spices I can find in the supermarkets up north. One plus: the spices here are FRESH and cheap. And herbs too. I can buy a big fresh bunch of cilantro for 20 cents or basil for 50 cents.

Chedraui is new to Oaxaca. A friend tells me the big box stores started arriving here five years ago. She looks forward to the new Chedraui which is being constructed in her neighborhood. She says, “I go to these stores and walk around, cool down. I don’t buy anything. I can’t afford it. But I like to look.”

One day I bought a cake made of sweet corn. “Where’d you get this?” she asked.


My friend says she doesn’t know how to cook much. Her mother cooks the family’s food. So she watches me cook and writes down the recipes, tho I usually cook from scratch without a specific rules & ingredients in mind. I make food for her every week. The first week it was fajitas.

“How do these compare to Mexican fajitas?” I ask.

“These are better than what the restaurants here make,” she said. “This is not a regional dish of Oaxaca, though. Fajitas are from the north.”


4-6 limes
1 # chicken breast, cut into strips
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 red onion
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
olive oil
whole wheat tortillas

Marinate the chicken in half the limes and half the garlic. In a separate container, marinate the onion, pepper in the rest of the lime & garlic, and a splash of olive oil. About 2 hours is fine.

Fry the peppers & onions on high heat until onions are translucent. I like to fry them until they burn. Add chicken until it’s just cooked through (test middle of a thick piece).

Garnish with fat free sour cream, avocado chunks, cilantro & tomato salsa and hot sauce, or as desired.

No salt is necessary because the lime & garlic should sufficiently season the fajitas.


corps & creeps

Thursday, April 24th, 2008

graffiti – foto by smith

the u.s. social security administration has screwed me. because of their incompetence, i have to reapply for my benefits which were to start this month. that means every month it takes costs me a lost month of benefits. i answered every question they asked, supllied them with every official document they requested, and they fluxed it up anyway. a competent bureaucrat is an oxymoron.

reality seems a wee bit peeved i left the u.s. barcode box and started living life happy.

o well, my problems are so small compared to most folk, i can’t gripe about the little things. while other folk living up north in the cold have to get up to go to work for the corps and creeps who own it all, i relax down here under my sweet southern sun and midnight mexican moon.

still, i gotta admit, this is bumming me out – the creeps and the corps are trying to rip me off. never did trust the bastards, and they’re certainly proving me right.

ps addendum –

before i rail against all government employees, i must admit i’ve found a few good ones. we’ve called the sandusky ohio s.s. office thrice, and always received courteous help. and we’ve called the national 800 s.s. number thrice, and each time we’ve gotten immediate help and answers. they even emailed the painesville ohio s.s. office and told them to contact me, which of course they did not.

today we called the 800 number and told them the whole story, including that we’re living in mexico and using her mom’s ohio address as ours. mentioned the painful painesville office said i had to reapply. the 800 lady made a few calls, told me my birth certificate is indeed in the system, and that i do not have to reapply. she’s having the sandusky office call me today sometime to work things out. maybe they will be worked out, maybe they won’t – but at least s.s. folk are trying to help. see what happens.

i think the next Stephen King horror novel is to be titled The Painesville Ohio Social Security Office. at least they’re living up to their PAINesville name.

pps-adendum2 –

got a call from the s.s. office. they say my claim has been approved as of today and i’ll receive my 1st check next month. if true, hallelujah. if not, try again. wait and see.

i hate being at the mercy of others. but to be free in this world as it is, one needs money or power. i’ve neither. just have principles and inner anger.

graffiti – foto by smith


what the ?

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2008

down front of our apt from 3rd floor – foto by smith

posted remains – foto by smith

wrestling poster – foto by smith

wall hole – foto by smith

caution, building in bad shape – foto by smith

poster remains – foto by smith


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