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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,
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Archive for April, 2016

today: beekeepers 1 year, sober 25 years

Thursday, April 21st, 2016


Considering I was supposed to be in the hospital right now getting ready to have the back of my neck cut open so the doc could go in and scrape protruding bone and cartilage from the inside of my spinal column before screwing two metal rods onto my spine, I’d say this was a good day.

It’s likely I’ll have to have the neck surgery in a couple months anyway after they rule out B-12 vitamin deficiency as the villain, but I’ve decided the reprieve is nice.

Today is our one-year anniversary of being beekeepers – even though our hive died off in February after nine months beekeeping, we still got the experience, plus 125 pounds of honey, which is a LOT of honey for a first year hive. Waiting for our new bees to arrive any day now. We had to burn the old hive, so there’s another $300 hive expense. Honey ain’t cheap the first year, need successive successful years to reduce the per year cost of the hardware.

Today is also my 25th year anniversary of being sober. No one believed I could be sober, nobody believed I’d live past 50, yet here I am 70 yrs old, 25 years sober.

I didn’t drink alcohol my first 20 years, drank responsibly for five years, drank like a fish for 20 years, now sober 25.

Status Report 203

Dear, I found the lost.

Your missing black nightgown is
on the floor
behind the black bike rack
in the shadows
to the left of the air conditioner
in the closet.

Shall I help you change?

– Smith, 4.21.2016




sometimes I turn off part of my brain

Wednesday, April 20th, 2016

neckbonethey were going in twixt 3rd & 4th disc

My surgeon called yesterday. My laminectomy and spinal fusion scheduled tomorrow is canceled. He checked my charts and saw I’ve been getting B-12 shots because minimum B-12 is 300 and I’m down to 90 (likely due to not eating very much meat), and the symptoms that set the neck surgery in motion are the same symptoms for low B-12. So they’ll wait to see if I get better when my B-12 is satisfactory – if not, they’ll operate right away.

Soooooo, Lady’s and my days of neck-intrusion spinal-column-scrapping metal-neck-rod-insertion worry was either unnecessary or merely practice for the real thing.

I could do without them going into my neck from the back and scraping bone and cartilage from inside my spinal column and leaving two metal rods screwed in when they exit. Be nice if B-12 were the culprit, but I don’t believe it is.

Feel lighter in my mind knowing I won’t be cut open tomorrow morning, but feel cheated too because of the fear and worry we’ve already invested, plus I believe we’ll have to go through this again in a couple months.

Status Report 202

Waiting to see if there’ll be spinal surgery.

Sometimes I turn off part of my brain
and just endure until I can think again.

– Smith, 4.20.2016

Tis 4/20 . . . The Church of the Perpetual 420 believes I should smoke marijuana today, especially at 4:20 this afternoon. Hmmmmm, next year I’ll have to set my alarm so I can honor 4:20 a.m. as well as p.m., and in the year 2420 I’ll have to smoke 24/365.

The Church of the Perpetual 420

Worship in my church
of cannabis and caffeine,
mellowing the fast.

Way before sun up,
cup of coffee and a toke
lighten dark within.

Out of grass I am
so must face this flux and flow
of slow go with gone.

O.Z. can you say
by my pipe’s first fired light
just how hale you are?

Ritual of hope:
first fill of pipe, take of toke,
mellow wing of smoke.

– Smith, 2014

redkushit’s  always 4:20 somewhere in the Universe


springs belief

Tuesday, April 19th, 2016


New leaf
springs belief
yellow blooms

– Smith, 4.19.2016




Tuesday, April 19th, 2016


Spring’s watercolor renewal:
wood buds, floods green
over winter’s pencil palimpsest
which is fading, fading, fading,

The old king is here

~ Lady


my spine’s on my mind

Monday, April 18th, 2016


Strange pre-surgery preparations . . . carried two 40-pound bags of birdseed up the stairs . . . bicycled over to West Side Market for ingredients for two large batches of soup . . . three loads laundry . . . finishing up my Holmden Hill Community Garden sign . . . gather and send next month’s batch of poems/fotos/songs to Medusa’s Kitchen . . . all stuff I won’t be allowed or want to do in a couple days when I pain pill surf after surgery.

My spine’s on my mind.

Thursday I’m undergoing a laminectomy and spinal fusion . . . they need to scrap away mutant bone and cartilage that’s pushing against my spinal cord causing slight numbness and tingling in my finger tips, throws my balance a little off, and causes me to drop things.

They’re putting two metal rods in my neck to keep it from degenerating further (and maybe even make it better) . . . this will nicely complement my metal hip and shoulder which have already set off metal detectors in courthouses, airports, and Social Security offices.

I’ll be in a hard plastic neck collar for two weeks, a flexible collar for four weeks, and who knows when I’ll be functional again.

Not looking forward to the operation, nor the recovery, nor the worry both cause Lady, but it is what it is so what you gonna do?

Tired of my body being repaired, but grateful it can be. Now if I can only find a repair shop for my mind, one for my soul.

~ ~ ~

The Simplex Things in Life

From the darkness of my third floor window
I watch the traffic light below
go from green
to two seconds of yellow
to short red
whereupon the side street light waits 2 seconds
to turn 12 second green
before 2 second yellow goes back to long red.

2 seconds later
my 16 second red turns long green again
and again and again
night and day year after year
yellow red green
green yellow red
you can bet on the color
bet on the living
bet on the dead.

It’s simple
life is complex.

– Smith, 4.18.2016



Coyote running on air

Saturday, April 16th, 2016

librarypoemsmith copy
Cuyahogoa County Public Library
30 poems 30 poets for April Is Poetry month

Yesterday was a good day – two online publishings.

Kathy Kieth at Medusa’s Kitchen posted 8 fotos, 10 poems, and 2 songs at Ms. Kieth has a sublime eye for layout, I constantly marvel how she puts the random collection I send her into coherent flow.

And my 2004 poem White Boy Blues was the Cuyahoga County Public Library’s poem-of-the-day for April Poetry Month (thank you Diane Kendig) at


I keep jerking in my mind
faulting to fault line
like that abrupt fall going to sleep
I’m Coyote running on air
on my way to the principle’s office
lost and out of gas
late to an assignment
which I’ve forgotten to finish
or even start
my wick waving pantless
knowing Foot of Doom poised in sky
coming down fast and furious
for me
for now
for real
and it’s just too late and way too short
to stop
to win
to abort
as I spot the hawk’s shadow
moving toward me fast on the ground

– Smith, 4.16.2016



you want to sniff and lick?

Friday, April 15th, 2016


Conversations with Wife 25

She holds empty egg plate out to cat.
“You want to sniff and lick?”

Sniff & Lick? I quip.
Is that a new sex shop?

“Do you believe in reincarnation?”

I did in a past life, but not anymore.

“Why not?”

If I came back I would be New-Smith
or Next-Smith, not This-Smith
so best I can do is be good here
to give Next-Smith a decent head start
but whatever’s next macht nichts now
cuz Now-Smith pays rent here.

“I brought you a cookie from my meeting
but I ate it. That’s the way it goes.”

Is the cookie going to reincarnate?

“Maybe later, in the bathroom.”

– Smith, 4.15.2016



we step in shadows of our echo

Thursday, April 14th, 2016


Re: Incarnation

We step in shadows of our echo
(of course we do)
walk a ways in awkward time
(most always)
search for savior in the shopping
(stuff, or stuff?)
prise the prize from cracker box
(you’re a winner!!!)
use spoons too long to feed ourselves
(too sort sited)
yet sight too short to feed our friends
(go to start again)
until the light alights in mind
(sound of one hand clap)
and we walk a kinder line
(game over)

– Smith, 4.14.2016


Sisyphus 101

Wednesday, April 13th, 2016


Sisyphus 101

Make sure the cat is fed
the wife kissed
the coffee made and drunk

Wipe yesterday’s dirt from the stone
and yourself
polish rock to roll

Up the hill down the hill
up the hill down
no going around

Do it, do it, do it again
learn ground
learn round, learn roll

It’s not the top you’re after
not the bottom too
but the tension twixt the two

No ever after to exhort
it’s foot to dirt, earth to earth
let’s get this baby up

– Smith, 4.13.2016



rock gotta roll

Monday, April 11th, 2016


Sisyphus Sez

Retire in dark hours after sun
rise in dark hours before sun
get up hill
rock gotta roll
though role don’t rock no more

Since mountain top can’t be got
and rock won’t stop
I’m reduced to sweat
awaiting moment rock rejects
my upward roll to god

Love process
forget recess
for unless you mend your mind
crawling dirt in spurts

Embrace pain of daily same
amidst unsane money game
of stuff to buy
and stuff to try
as rock roll up again down slides

Love the present
flux as progress
see new track in old crime time
savor gain repeating pain
both up and down the climb

– Smith, 4.10.2016



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