Rules of Retention

Rules of Retention

Knot the not with knowing reason,
solve the sum of some in parts.

Just as season follows season,
after bleeding healing starts.

New strange you’s are calling upward,
to sing song of purer sound.

The old what was got no reward,
ancient ways need look around.

Walk the walk of others walking,
stop and listen to the talk.

Truth such slippery undertaking,
never fits outline of chalk.

– Smith, 5.31.2014

Creature Feature


Creature Feature

I am the offsprung
of Sisyphus and a hamster wheel,
spawned in the great rodent race of now,
running ever faster to slower get
ahead of the pack since I’m the food
and they are hungry.

So run little me
but where will I go?
the pantry’s closed
and the food’s getting cold,
rock won’t roll and don’t didn’t hold,
it’s getting on and we’re getting old,
no ninety minute ending,
no finish to script
without the tickle of crypt.

– Smith, 5.30.2014

Got this email from Peter Ball: “Dug up a Mutant Smith oldie (such a goodie!) from nine years ago and gave it a fresh paint job and a new toupee. Remember Bad Light? Now we have Bad Light 2014! Crash!

I don’t remember . . . it sounds like a collage of my early odder attempts at song. Click here to hear Bad Light 2014.

door of perception

47 Steps

sin dealer from the womb

47 Steps

Down three flights to basement
start two load wash
come up
back down load 1 in dryer
come up
down remove dry replace wet
up again
down get dry
down with third load of sheets
back up for forgotten top sheet
down with upper sheet
up for forgotten soap
down start last load
down dryer load load
down get dry
down two flights to plant four milkweeds
then down to the basement to step count
940 steps, 7,520 inches, 627 feet, .12 miles,
the thousand steps of Sysiphus in training.

– Smith, 5.29.2014

New song cut yesterday – lyrics and voices me, music, mix, and recording Peter Ball, 2:22. Click here to hear Back Bottom Blues.

Back Bottom Blues (the song)
Going down to river bottom
see what’s washed up by the tide,
sniff and pinch and taste if nature,
pluck and poke and prise if died.
Or take a walk down back street alley
check on state of underground,
some new truths might be rising
offering us better sound.

Strange new views crawling upward
Anti static going down
Old ways no longer awkward
Need new true for firmer ground

– Smith, 5.28.2014

assistant Sisyphus




Ego slip slides in
on around and low below
seeking praise to win,

Turning rock rolling
stock bestowing ought or not
to humble showing.

Raised to beat meat,
demand entire street,
sneak sour to sweet,

Self parade going,
with no one else in glowing,
others needs mowing.

Walking endless path,
the heart and soul left for last,
mocking present past.

It’s a lonely road,
sad and long and ugly hard,
more like wart from toad.

Cease, ego disease,
go so we be free of me,
let self darkness ease.

– Smith, 5.28.2014


Out at the In-laws 11

Out at the In-laws 11

Moving with the wind driving under sun
heading east for a Memorial Day feast
of fresh-cut fresh-cooked French fries
and yard-grilled yard grown asparagus shared
amid ma-in-law’s despair of spargus regrowth,
with veggies and hummus,
sitting in sun splash,
shadow shake shifts around
as hummingbirds swoop and sweep
in court and sugar syrup eat.

We plant six stalks of milkweed
down by the pond for butterflies and bees,
dirt on my hands,
frog burp,
bird tweet,
airplane drone,
tadpole chance under sunwater dance.

We kiss in the pantry,
recharge cling
as they start the propane thang.

Pa-law states three laws of thermodynamics:
You can’t win.
You can’t break even.
You must play.

Talk of Peeble People,
Serpent mounds,
giftshops selling Almond Mounds.

On deck out back
train moan rumble rolling down track
clickety clack goodbye tract
invisible behind leaves of fact.

“Look, a beauty bush.”
“Is that what you popped off of?”
“Oh you sweet talker you.”

Telling Miles the large brown Lab dog
“I have no food to offer you, only affection”
when Lady says
“You sound like King Arthur.”
“That’s what he told Mordred, his bastard son,
I can’t give you anything but love.”

“Miles is getting old, will die soon.”
“No! Paint a picture of him, let it age instead.”
“Ahhh, the Picture of Mordred Brown.”

Filling bird seed feed
touch maybe poison ivy.
“My hand was tingling for awhile
but nothing shows so I’m okay,” I say.
“Oh no,” ma-law replies,
“it takes 24 hours, up to a week for it to show,
then just gets worse and worse.”
“Thank you so much for that reassurance.”

Poison ivy lore:
Leaves of three, let it be.
Hairy vine, no friend of mine.
Berries white, danger in sight.
Longer middle stem, stay away from them.
Red leaflets in the spring, it’s a dangerous thing.
If butterflies land there, don’t put your hand there.
Side leaflets like mittens, will itch like the dickens.

Cardinals in the tree going
“witcha witcha witcha” in a minute.

Bees surround the butterfly bush,
butterfly leaves bouncing by.
“Honey never spoils,
you can eat it after thousands of years.”
“Maybe that’s what the Bible means
with honey in the rock.”
“Great 1950’s Sun Ra tune
Honey in the bee box, honey in the bee box,
honey, honey.”

A toad in hand is worth a wait in bush.

Accent and uncles
and rumors of ice cream.

Heading home I sneeze into the sunset.

“Going back is a mile less than coming out.”
“Wonder what they do with that extra mile,
store it someplace in between?”

Smashing spoze.

– Smith, 5.27.2014

bottom foto by Lady




Babies having babies,
children raising children,
endless cradle rock.

– Smith, 5.26.2014



unfallen flowers


Flowers fold and fall,
embrace the earth, rot to not,
renew, rise to sky.

– Smith, 5.25.2014

falling flowers

Found these poison ivy lines.

Leaves of three, let it be.
Hairy vine, no friend of mine.
Berries white, danger in sight.
Longer middle stem, stay away from them.
Red leaflets in the spring, it’s a dangerous thing.
If butterflies land there, don’t put your hand there.
Side leaflets like mittens, will itch like the dickens.

For fotos of above, How to identify poison ivy.


spirit from flesh


The soft new green leaf
sprouts from the hard brown tree branch
like spirit from flesh

– Smith, 5.24.2014



lullaby in birdland


Breathe out baby, see what tomorrow brings.
May as well wait cuz can’t undo today’s sting.

Sun may shine, flowers may grow,
Or fun could pine and showers show.

Get through today, hope for tomorrow.
We walk our own way, carry own sorrow.

Daddy ain’t rich, Mom’s dead and gone,
Life’s an itch when you’re alone.

No summer stitch, just winter wrong,
But give me an inch and I’ll sing you this song:

It’s hard at times, easier others,
Walk moral line your karma to cover.

– Smith, 5.23.2014

sweet dreams



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.

– Smith, 5.22.2014