sold american / nipple fx / teddy bear

half a Doors – foto by Smith

I found three on-line word/music jams I did with Peter Ball aka Apartment One back in 2005 that are fairly decent and interesting, though of course somewhat odd.

I’ve been jamming with Peter for 7-8 years now. It’s an interesting process because I have no idea what music Peter will play and he has little or no idea of what words I’m going to say so it’s a one-time through free form unrepeatable process.

I have maybe 120 musical jams with Peter on various cds around the apartment, – and I think at least a dozen or two of them are decent enough to post. I’m looking into ways to do this.

I’m gonna be a rock star, or at least an underground musical oddity.

Here are three Smith / Apartment One jams online at DMOMA — The Digital Museum of Modern Art — at

My favorite is Sold American, but I like all three. You have to go to the bottom of the lyric box on each song and click the play bar – if the play bar doesn’t show, pass the cursor over the bottom area and it will appear.

W. Logan Fry, Curator of The Digital Museum of Modern Art, included these songs in an exhibition of my art and poetry you can peruse at

W. Logan Fry also has a bunch of other exhibits worth a look as well at

more coffee please – foto by Smith

84 yr old open mic virgin

Lady’s Grandmother reading at her 1st open mic – foto by Smith

Mystery Muse

Poets work from the
edge of darkness somewhere on
the sad side of town

– Steven B. Smith, 5-20-2010

Lady’s 84 year-old Granny read her poetry at her first open mic last night and was quite a hit. She read from a small vinyl chapbook she handmade titled Soul-Mates #1 – Poems by Lenore.

Soul-Mates #1: Poems by Lenore – foto by Smith

Granma & Lady K – foto by Smith

We were at Visible Voice Books for poet Russell Vidrick’s publication party for his latest book Love Poems of the New World Order. You should see the three of us walking along the sidewalk – I’m six foot three, Lady’s a head shorter than I, and Granny’s a head shorter than Lady, definitely under five feet tall.

Love Poems of the New World Order by Russell Vidrick – cover foto by Charlotte Mann

Granny was fearless – she took over the mic, the room, the people and had all the poets watching fascinated. It’s not often they get to hear an 84 year old first time open mic reader.

Here’s the first of seven poems she read.

“Pa” Mein Vater

I did not like using the name “Pa”
That was for foreigners, people from the old country.
We Americans – our children say “Dad”.
Aren’t we the La-de-da?

And Pa did many wrong things in life –
Didn’t pay his bills, sneaked from paying rent – moved at night.
I went to twelve schools – can you imagine?
But Pa – he sang to his little spoiled girl –
In a high falsetto he sang and sang!

And my Pa, he rocked that little spoiled girl;
She said “Pa, rock me some more, rock me some more!”
So he sang, and he rocked, and he sang, and he rocked
So that little girls knew –
Not only God loved her, but Pa loved her too!

– by Lenore Joyce Ireland, 2008

Granny with poets Marsha Sweet and Kimberly Diamond Bones – fotos by Smith

rosary candle cable wick

reflecting woman – foto by Smith

Was scheduled to jam yesterday with Peter Ball aka Apartment One. Just before I bicycled over to his studio I realized I wasn’t happy with anything I had so sat down and quickly wrote this sexual blues from 12:15 to 12:30. By 1:30 we were jamming — me on words and voice and Peter on everything else music and recording-wise. Did three 8 minute tracks in an hour and the second one’s not bad.

I love this computer age – at noon none of this existed; by 3 pm I was back home with my newly written words on a cd surrounded by music. I have to find a way to get some of our jams online.

~ ~ ~

Rosary Candle Cable Wick

Well it makes no difference to me
because it’s all 3-D Jesus you see
and that brings it down to thee and we

For you’re my validation baby
you know you drive me crazy

Makes me wanna rub your rosary
jump your cable
light your candle
lick your wick
hold and rub you inch by inch

Your fuzzy wuzzy fur
I’ll kiss into a purr
lick you like
we’re cat and cur
when limbic low I go
ain’t no one better slow

You ain’t no twit tweet twat
to that we put a stop
you ain’t no common you
but old old riff run new

Ain’t no twit twat tweet
but old old riff run new

reflecting man – foto by Smith

sunny rise

foto Lady – foto by Smith

Once More With Feeling

A new day with a
new cat purr a new wife kiss
rising inner sun

armchair cat – foto by Lady K

unfine whine

back of Pere Ubu t-shirt – foto by Smith

Received this text message on my el-cheapo Net 10 cell fone last night – “Tel kebo bitch ass i ben outside 4eva.”

I don’t know Kebo, and I don’t know the sender, but if I were Kebo, I’d let his rude ass stay right outside 4eva where his insensitive macho self belongs. Since he accidentally sent the message to me, hopefully he’s still stuck outside. I thought about calling him back and telling him to go flux himself but restrained myself because I’m trying to spread less misery in the world.

We’ve been getting a lot of wrong numbers on our cell fones because the fone carriers reuse their discontinued numbers right away. I’ve found wrong number callers to be one rude bunch in general — they seldom apologize, plus often get angry as well.

In these past 14 months of living back here in the States, I’m finding Americans in general are becoming more selfish, less polite, and sloppier. Of course life itself lately is getting nastier and more desperate, so maybe they go hand in hand.

Got hit with employee sloppiness this morning at Wal-Mart. I went to pick up a couple six-packs of Guinness Stout beer for Lady. Put the first pack of Stout in my cart and picked up the second right behind it without looking. My dumb. Got to the checkout and found the second pack was some pale ale which Lady can’t abide so didn’t buy it. Took my purchases out to the car on my painful gimp leg and came back in, walked to the back of the store to get a second Guinness Stout and found they were out. So some sloppy employee or lazy manager just stole ten minutes of my life by not doing their job. Of course I was waaaaaay stupid to assume just because the front pack in the row was what I wanted that the pack behind it would be what it was supposed to be.

I understand people’s weakness and mistakes because we all have serious shortcomings — but we’ve all got problems, so quit slopping yours over onto me because I don’t smother you with mine (unless you’re my blog reader and then we both suffer my insufferability).

Too many people seem to be getting smaller inside as our world crumbles. Somehow I’d envisioned it the other way around — that we’d all become nicer to one another as our environment become nastier.

Dr Seuss WWII political cartoon from 1942 – foto by Smith

night stands

O – foto by Smith

Thinking on the 1951 sexual blues number by Louis Mann and Henry Glover which sings

It ain’t the meat it’s the motion
That makes your daddy wanna rock
It ain’t the meat it’s the motion
It’s the movement it isn’t the stock

Having tried meat motion, I’ve found that’s just plume dumb wrong and only leads to one-night blands – here’s the real road to sexual satisfaction:

Wick or Wit

Well it ain’t the meat
In love sex relationships
It’s the emotion

O – foto by Smith

then now

I got tired of this

as the cover of my poem book, so I changed it to this.

e i e i o

going to the pot party – foto by Smith

Lady wrote down one of my verbal silly symphonies, titled it, and emailed it back to me as this poem . . .

Nursery Rhyme for the Night

Old MacDonald had a farm,

And on this farm he grew some pot


With a puff puff here
And a puff puff there
Here a puff
There a puff
Everywhere a puff puff…

Old MacDonald had a time,
Glad I got to go…

– Smith & Lady 5-6-2010

weed & weeds – foto by Smith

Saturday Nights

“My head hurts.”

Due to the alcohol?


You’re drinkin wrong. There’s systems. You drink a bunch, and then you quit; there’s a bunch of time before you go to bed; so you hurt.

The ideal system is to figure out how long between starting to drink and going to bed there is. And then drink small amounts steadily at regular intervals during that period.

But this wouldn’t work for you because you like the “happy drunk” high. You start early, keep drinking too much, stop, pain… bed… feel bad next day. The ideal way to do it for you is to start drinking late, get feeling really good, and go to bed before the pain hits.

Smith & Lady

too long dues blues

peek-a-boo – foto by Smith

Conversation 30 May 2007 Essaouira Morocco

“So. You said you don’t believe in God.”

Nope. I don’t believe in a long-haired Dude sitting up there knowing everything, judging everybody, picking at his penis. I mean, if there are Gods, He-She-It says to us, “You’re born weak and broken, but if you don’t shape up and do everything We say Our way, we’re gonna kick you around your entire life, and then you’ll burn in Hell forevermore after you die.”

That presents two problems. Either God didn’t know enough to make us right in the first place; or, if accidentally on purpose he left something out, he really shouldn’t punish us for not fixing it ourselves.

“Kinda like a manufacturer’s warranty.”

Except there’s no return. There’s no repair shop. There’s no frigging manual, and it’s very badly designed, this body of ours. We’re basically piss and shit machines. And like any idiot engineer, he runs the sewer system right through the pleasure park.

Which brings us to the Gnostics. They believe we’re ruled by a mad god named Samael. Insane Samael. And that there’s a smarter, kinder god above him who wants to help us. But of course being further up the chain of command he can’t very well let Samael know he’s not doing a good job, so he sent the Snake to the Garden of Eden to tell us the truth — that we need to eat of the Tree of Knowledge of good AND evil. For just like shade and light, you ain’t got the one without the other.

‘Course, good old Sammy’s been punishing us ever since for that one.

Gnostics also think Good God tried an end run around Bad God with Jesus Christ. But we fixed Him. Killed him and turned him into a church run by pedophiles.

However, since I’m entirely inconsistent most of the time, I daily try to say my Buddhist chant “nam myoho renge kyo” which I purchased for six dollars in San Francisco in 1966.

“I hear you saying that on the shitter a lot.”

Now, before we go into that, I have to say I find the Cosmic Order or the Universe or the Big It to be aware, with a hell of a sense of humor.

It communicates with itself along channels we do not know, but do have scientific proof of from the first Bell experiment in non-locality, run with particle colliders in 1972. Seems there’s a disagreement between Einsteinian Relativity Physics and Heisenberg Quantum Physics. Einstein says nothing can be known outside of locality. Locality being if an event happens, the carrier wave that takes that data away cannot travel farther or faster than the speed of light times time duration.

Heisenberg Particle Physics says that such information is available to ALL the Universe immediately.

I’m not educated enough to know these things, but apparently once electrons are paired, however that is done, they remain paired and whatever happens to one electron instantaneously happens to the second electron, no matter where, when or how far away it is.

The Bell experiment tested this premise by separating paired electrons, probably using divorce lawyers, and smashing the shit outta one of them with really big hammers.

This reversed its spin, whereupon the separated hostage electron really far away immediately reversed its spin as well, even though it was not being bombarded by the same forces. Ergo, the Universe has some way of communicating with itself that is faster than light, that is in fact instantaneous. The implications of this are astounding: the Universe always immediately knows what’s going down.

Now, to get back to what I believe — before I knew any of this stuff, I found I could talk to Reality. Sometimes it would answer. Frequently it would play jokes on me. And it seemed to appreciate when I laughed.

“You’re some kinda funky holy man.”

Yeah, I got holes all over. Also, my own life would cause me to question my incredible string of luck and adventures. I shouldn’t be alive, and if I should have been, I definitely shouldn’t be here having this much fun.

So, to get back to Science. In the Heisenbergian Universe everything is true simultaneously all at the same time — there is no yes or no but yes AND no AND all the possible maybes in between, just like in the famous thought experiment with Schrödinger’s Cat in the box. You seal a live cat in a box with a glass vial of poison and one decaying atom. The atom decays at a known rate but you have no idea where the decayed particle will go, although if it hits the glass vial of poison, you have Dead Cat.

Heisenberg says until you open the box and actually look, the cat is a) alive, and b) dead, and c) at every other possible point in between. It’s not until you ask the box, “is the cat dead or not?” and look inside that Reality collapses all the realities that are into one specific result to answer your question.


Another good example of this has also been tested. Say a star blows up really far away and the light takes millions of years to reach Earth. Now, I don’t know the intricacies of this, but light seems to be composed of both waves and particles, which is impossibly because they are totally different constructs which act differently. But if you choose to measure this blown star light using particle equipment, you find light is made of particles; if you test it with wave equipment, you find light is made of waves. It takes millions of years for that light to get here, so certainly your question isn’t going to cause something millions of years ago to do one thing or another. So both of these conflicting paradigms are true simultaneously. Your question forces reality to collapse to A or B. Now this has all been very very crudely put — I’m not a scientist and I’m not a philosopher (I’m more a class clown) — but everything I’ve said can be checked and verified by the curious.

I started off praying to God as an adolescent, then turned Atheist. Later I turned hippie-dippy flakey, and eventually morphed into a Flow surfer, which is half-way between the three.

Forgetting all that for a second, every single thing you do — every action, every thought process — can be done better or worse. You might say more efficiently or less efficiently, with more or less grace, more or less efficient correlation to whatever Actually Is. The possibilities are endless — if you do things Better, you’re gonna fight less headwind from the Cosmic Flow; if you do things Worse, you’re gonna create more turbulence for yourself and others. There may not be an ultimate cosmic Right or Wrong, but there is a Better or Worse way to Be, that will cause you more or less pain. To get back to Heisenberg, what you get from Reality depends on what you ask for, what you See rests upon what you Expect.

I’ve found that my Own Personal Universe has a tremendous sense of humor. And it won’t hurt you unless it has to. It’s not vicious. I add that last sentence because essentially the universe is indifferent.

A lot of people have said this basic stuff a lotta ways, from greeting card to serious: the power of positive thinking, do as you would be done, don’t do as you have been done, etc. Buddha and Confucius and the Sufis had it down pretty good.

What you have inside your head–how you are and what you’re taught–affects how you see, what you see, and what you do about it. Let’s start with an imaginary totally neutral Thing. If you have bad eyes, a hateful mind, and a wicked heart, you’re gonna see a threat where none exists and do bad things, stupid things: you’re gonna turn this neutral object into an Object of Evil fulfilling your own expectations.

But if you have a good heart, a decent mind, honest eyes, you’ll see it as neutral or perhaps even as something positive. You won’t see bad so you won’t do bad so you won’t cause bad. Of course there’re limits on everything. Just cuz you see a bus coming at you and think it’s a fudge sundae don’t mean it ain’t gonna squish ya flat.

“I see it as the potential for individuals to reach some type of constructive Being by being together in a healthy way.”

You create your own reality. You are responsible for your own reality. As I said once before, if your corner of reality is a shit hole, you’re the feces.

“What does that mean about our situation here in Essaouira?”

We’ve cleaned up this shit hole we rented. And if by some sick trick reincarnation is true, then the owner of this place is gonna pay down the line. We’ve already been rewarded – we’ve brightened the corner where we are. We’ve become more happy, less miserable as a result. You don’t like something, don’t whine, do something about it.

But if something’s wrong, don’t keep quiet just because you don’t think anything can be done. If enough speak, evil listens. Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin proved that about slavery. Rachel Carlson’s Silent Spring defeated–sort of–DDT.

Saw a movie called Virus once. Pretty good sci-fi horror. Jamie Lee Curtis and Donald Sutherland. Energy being came along from deep space, saw what man had done to Earth, studied history, saw the Middle East was once a gorgeous forest but we came along, ate everything, killed everything, poisoned the rest… decided Mankind was a virus, a cancer. Decided to save the Earth by wiping us out.

I have to say, except for Jamie Lee Curtis, I was rooting for the virus killer. And even though it’s too late now to save the earth, even if we tried, which we ain’t gonna, it still comes down to how long we can keep our nest livable. And how miserable we’ll be during this time. Do good, last longer, suffer less. Makes no difference to Mother Earth, cuz after we’re gone, she’ll rest a while and seed a new garden.

We’ve turned the Garden of Even into the Valley of Odd. So if we’re wiped out, fair is fair.

“My death doesn’t really matter to me. But the idea of mass death is horrifying.”

I don’t much care about either, mine or mass. The only sadness I have would be your missing me. And we’ve had a close and good enough time, you have part of me always. We already have more in a short time than most get forever.

“I know I’m satisfied. I finally have love, faith. I discover another universe in you.”

I’m never satisfied. I can always do more; I can always be better. Like Camus says of this prison sentence called life, ‘the sentence starts the day you’re born; it ends the day you die.’ See, I’m committing one of his sins. I still hope for inner peace, to live up to myself, to do it right. And hope is one of his sins, because there is no hope. There’s only living this life as aware as you can, as full as you can, in as many aspects as you can. I got that part down fine. If I could just get rid of the fucking Hope.

“Well, that’s back to your question again.”

What question?

“The question you ask determines what you receive.”

Well, I have a right to be hopeful. There’s no way I should be alive or have had such a wonderful life along the way. I have more stories than anybody. My first motorcycle ride I left the road at 100 mph and didn’t get hurt. Fell off a cliff when I was seven. Jumped off rooftops when I was four. Fell out of trees, rolled my car in my own driveway… I shot up for 30 years, I’ve overdosed, I drank myself to death, ran from the cops, two armed robberies… yet I’ve had wonderful friends, accolades, art shows, poetry readings. And the best friend and wife in the world.


I hope for the best; I look for the worst. And I found in situations where there’s no time to think I do everything I can to stay alive. Yet I would not keep my life if I had to dishonor myself with another’s death unless the asshole were attacking me.

– Smith & Lady, May 30, 2007, Essaouira, Morocco

seize you on the downsize – foto by Smith