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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 June, 2012

2 dead beds

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Happy Summer Solstice – foto Smith

Two dead bed poems.

After Mom died, I bought a new waterbed for Lady’s visits and had to sleep in dead Mom’s bed for one night while heating up the new bed (I was 59 years old).

59 Years in a Dead Mom’s Bed

He was 59 years in a dead mom’s bed
An organ of sensitive service

He counted the cracks, a number of webs
And wondered why he wasn’t nervous

— Smith, 2005

And after we decided to move to Europe we started giving away our stuff and this was my Craig’s List ad offering up Mom’s bed.

Free Bed, No Board

Have FREE single bed,
3 storage-drawer base,
free-standing bookshelf-headboard

hardly used by dead mom.

First come, first take, no charge, you carry.

— Smith, 2006

Glow heart – foto Smith


egg first

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Egg timer – foto Smith

A.Word.A.Day gave the answer away — since the first documented use of the word “egg” is from the year 805, and the word “chicken” is first found in 950, the egg came first, 145 years before the chicken. Now that’s some long gestation, or else serious foreplay.

(A-Word-A-Day is a daily email from

Why did the chicken cross the road?
To get revenge for the road crossing it.

Why did the egg cross the road?
To get to the chicken on the other side.

— Smith, excerpts from Jokerman

2-tailed chicken – foto Smith


Out at the In-laws

Monday, June 18th, 2012

Blue bayou – foto Smith

Out at the In-laws

Red-winged blackbirds sitting in a tree
Flashing red & black back at me
Big bull frog thrumming his throat
Let loose long low electronic bass note
Wind in trees rushing like water
Pond frogs turtles snake wiggling awake
Snails trekking under, dragonflies over
Hummingbirds dart in whisk and swoop
Cockatiel whistles back my three notes
Dogs and cat running rover
House and grilled sausage top of hill
Pond, reeds, trees at bottom thrill
Toss sun blue sky white clouds in loop
Riding wet blue a bright red boat
And you got yourself one of those days
A special link in life’s long way
Like it oughter

— Smith, 6.18.2012

Pond frogs nigh summer 2012 – foto Smith


smaller larger

Sunday, June 17th, 2012

Making myself smaller by Lady K – foto Smith

This poem is 7 years older than my wife Lady K.

For Sooth

As the fan efficiently whirls
air throughout time and space
those lore-laden history filled swirls
are now used for cooling my face.

Breaths inhaled by Caesar abroad
then exhaled by Christ when cross strung
those wavering wistuals of god
are now used for filling my lung.

Wind whistling through hand pierced by nail
wind whittling the whining as goal
these winds wild in wanting to wail
are now used for soothing my soul.

— Smith, 1965

Making myself larger by Lady K – foto Smith


Algorithm & Blues

Thursday, June 14th, 2012

Algorthm – foto Smith

Not sure it’s wise to write, record and post a song the same day but we don’t fear no stinkin’ Quality Police and after all someone has to stand up for all the offbeat and off key, so — Ta-dah, here’s the newest Ball & Smith stroll down strange musical lane.

Two tunes strung together: 30 seconds of my toke(n) take on Old MacDonald had a Farm followed by two minute sexual blues . . . Old MacDonald / Algorithm & Blues.

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, 2010


Algorthm & Blues

Need to glisten my glans
Seduce my mental plans
Do the DNA dance
Sport the spider prance
Come from growing
Moisture in the mast

Lose the lock and load
Detour down rocky road
Try not to goad
An out of balance whirl
Betting both abode
And our getting the girl

Ya gotta move me baby
Ya gotta move me baby
Ya gotta move me baby
Ya gotta move me baby
Get the party going
While you make the monkey moaning
Gotta move me baby

Chase the blues away
To up your cool cache

— Smith, 6.14.2012

There was more but reality faded about then.

Music mix recording Peter Ball; word and voice me.

More songs at

Blues – foto Smith



Wednesday, June 13th, 2012


The space between times that are named
is sometimes a solemn gestalt:
my companion’s breath heard
in the bathroom,
the rasp of toilet paper,
a tree coughing in the woods,
a train running up and down its ribs
at night

We protect our ears
so we don’t hear ourselves


We protect our ears
so we don’t hear ourselves–animals–
know ourselves–animals–
as animals
in the bathroom
using toilet paper
in the rasping coughing
nest of porcelain sterile echo place
for our scat
to plap

But it’s rich
that sound

Yeah, when I close my eyes
and open my mind
I see and I sort

I see and I sort
contrails from fog
discern minnows in the shallows
now-you-see-it now-you-don’t
magic eye mandalas
in my inner ear

From flat black
I turn dividends
from the velvet
of the static hush

I turn the shell inside out
the cornucopia in which I hide
the hall of my lush ecosystem
the hall of my magic kingdom
the echo of the holy bathroom
to shake down an idea

And then I step into the next room
the pocket of parallax
to check my honesty

Integrity sometimes minnows
in a river of batter
sometimes too much,
then pain

I step into that room again,
I step into that room

And do I care?
asks my inner policeman,

Oh yes I do!
I pat myself down.

I say I care,
I do declare
I care
I am conscious
and I assert
I care

When you are a friend
who is next to me
When I have time
and when I am your neighbor
and not just a reference
to an idea

Be sure to say hi
no more ghosts
of living

You know?

We are the same
yet everyone is special
no equal sides and no equal angles
yet we asymptote within wind
looking for the ideal
in fluttering inequality
shuttering dichotomy

To be regarded
to be then disregarded
it’s not all very understandable
but it’s all very understandable

Stop stepping in the same place again
Stop stepping in the same place

Consider the dividing line:
when hands were feet
and arms were legs

~ Lady


Industrial pudding

Tuesday, June 12th, 2012

Industrial pudding – foto Smith

Industrial Pudding

This n that n thus.

Drip drop thot plop ought not stop plot.

Once told a boss I had a checkered past.
She laughed and said, “Smith, you have a checkered present.”

When you put new siding on your house, is it ethical to put it on the front and back as well, or just the sides? I mean, it is siding.

I once rode shotgun on the sagecoach
broke wild scallions
backside the bar code in the unpenned land.

Be bait: bread & butter bread & water bread & basket which one is it have to ask it.

Titillate is titillating.

Everything isn’t everything.

It’s all icing on the skate.

Ice sage.

— Smith, 6.12.2012

finishline – foto Smith


left, right, gone

Monday, June 11th, 2012

Coffee Smith – foto Smith

Final Answer

Found fragment
From the gateless gate

— Smith, 2005

I suspect there are no final answers, at least while drawing human breath, but I daily work on temporal answers moment by moment, parsing the sequence of time.

Boy o boy is coffee a drug, a major drug, and it’s legal! Just had my first cup after five days daze and my eyes are wide, my brain moving, my tongue talking.

Due to operation and heat wave that followed, I lost my appetite. Then Saturday’s tooth which broke off at the gum made me less eager to trust my teeth to eat. Woke this morning weighing 164 pounds, down from 175.

Graduated high school 49 years ago weighing 165, went to boot camp and came out 185. I’m 6 foot 3 inches tall so I’m starting to resemble William Burroughs’ build. Been up as high as 260 pounds back in my heavy drinking days,

In April I began my 22nd year sober. Over a decade since I did coke and chemicals, 4 years since hallucinogens, 5 days since I smoked grass. Think the monkey on my back just got tired and bored and left . . . which reminds me of a 1955 Elvis Presley rockabilly song — I’m Left, You’re Right, She’s Gone, which of course has absolutely nothing to do with this blog. And here’s a great slow version of the same song, both recorded March 1955 when I was 9.


New morning light
On yesterday’s shadow

— Smith, 2005

X u r here – foto Smith


reportable Realital Interaction

Sunday, June 10th, 2012

Life is just a bowl of cherries – foto Smith

Saturday was one of those days where bad bumps keep leading down one wrong way after another until all you can do is laugh.

Began with a misunderstanding with a friend on MySpace who thought I was making negative comments on her blog. I wasn’t, but I’ve been down in my head lately and my comments have become short, enigmatic, cryptic, so I can see how they could be miscontrued. It’s all been straightened out, but I was surprised how much the anger of a person I don’t know bothered me and shaped my day. I think it would be hard to be famous, what with all those unknown people fascinated or unhappy with you for reasons you have no control over.

Then we went to an outdoor poetry reading. My straw hat which I needed to keep my freshly shaved skull from sunburn had been crushed by being in the backseat of the car too long and when I tried to reshape it, my fingers broke through the old straw crown.

Before the reading I spilled my wife’s freshly purchased black cherry iced tea all over our blanket while trying to pick up a cherry seed to put in the trash.

But the big one was early in the reading — while chewing a soft croissant, a tooth broke off right at the gum line at the base of the crown. Inside the crown is just rot, so it can’t be pasted back in. Fortunately no pain since I’d had a root canal decades ago.

On the good foot, I found this note from my wife this morning when I woke:

  Dear Love,

  You will always have a crown because it is embedded in your name and you are my king. Steven (crown) Bruce (of the willows) Smith (creator).

  Love of my life,
  Lady-of-the-Lake Lady Gray

Now that’s a sweet way to awaken,

Lady says Reality is trying to defang me because I’m a wild man. Told her it wasn’t going to work because I could always gum Reality into submission without my teeth.

Poet-potter-publisher-photographer Lang says anyone who dies with all their teeth and all their hair die as failures. I still have my hair, but it won’t turn white to match my beard and temples so I shave my head every few weeks.

Lady’s been slowly rehabbing my body since we took up in 2005. Now we’re working with Case Dental School to stabilize my teeth since they’re about half the cost of a professional.

The rest of me’s pretty sturdy, but I bet I’d make an interesting physical study. I tell you, being born poor and living a wild life can be physically and financially expensive farther down the line — but boy what a ride so far these first 66 years; I’d say the trek’s been worth the toll.

Now since I’ve been off coffee, pain pills, and grass for awhile, I have to decide whether to start back up with my one cup of coffee a day treat, because everyone needs something special to look forward to each day. I turned down a free stone yesterday and breakfast meat this morning — I ain’t path perfect yet, but am working on it.

Lady K

If Eve hadn’t given Adam that apple,
I wouldn’t be smoking today.
Even so,
I tried to serve Sky God,
but I was drawn to that old Debbil Weed.
I became a happy pappy,
papa puff daddy,
gadfly to gladly,
nouveau bohemian in old school crowd.
Sir Laugh-a-Lot of Pot-a-Lot
to Queen MaryJane
Lady Day to Lady K
Kafka to a kiss

– Smith with Lady K, 2006

My nicknames for Lady K started 7 years ago with Kafka’s Lady because she was sooooooo strange, especially for wanting me; then morphed into Lady K, first for Lady Kafka and then Lady Kathy; turned into Lady Gray in a couple poems; and is now simply Lady.

This is Reporter Smith aka Sir Laugh-a-Lot of Pot-a-Lot to Queen MaryJane aka Crown of the Willows Creator signing off until next poem or reportable Realital Interaction.

Tooth betray – foto Smith


tip our tongue

Saturday, June 9th, 2012

Making myself small, drawing by Lady K – foto Smith


We’re in this waiting room
waiting for the set to change
except there’s no waiting
no waiting
just a few flowers
to feel
maybe fondle
as we tip our tongue
in tangle
and tango the won’t that awaits

— Smith, 2009

Lost Highway – foto Smith


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