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Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

word harvest January 2023

Wednesday, February 1st, 2023

word harvest January 2023 . . .

2023.1.1 – New year
2023.1.3 – Who Who Who Whoo
2023.1.6 – Dark yesterday
2023.1.8 – Skunk in grass
2023.1.10 – I’m about 4 papers short of a joint
2023.1.11 – Time doesn’t just go slow
2023.1.18 – She sez
2023.1.22 – Coming, going
2022.1.22 – As above, soil below
2023.1.25 – Slow Talkin’ Blues
2023.1.31 – Broken bridges

(Slow Talkin’ Blues rewritten from 6 years ago)

~ ~ ~

New year
old sin
new stain

~ ~ ~

Who Who Who Whooo
how the flux do I know, owl
I’m only human

My knot
is I know not
what I know not

In this dance
of want and need
I pray for the prey

My ennui’s not on you

~ ~ ~

Dark yesterday
tomorrow maybe more so
but oh today’s sun

~ ~ ~

Skunk in grass
low profile
going fast

~ ~ ~

I’m about 4 papers short of a joint
with a pound of oregano on hand
a bleeding heart gone bland
on a path with no point
dreaming of a black hash bash
opiated to annoint
the brash

I’d be going the wrong way
if this were a path

~ ~ ~

Time doesn’t just go slow
when she’s gone
it don’t go

~ ~ ~

Coming, going
crawling the mundane
looking for clues

~ ~ ~

As above, soil below
where the moist sins of night
hover in dark light

~ ~ ~

Slow Talkin’ Blues

Yes I talk to myself, I answer too
chatter and answer two sides of one fool
I don’t understand why I do what I do

Moon up high covers cold cold ground
cold orb up sky casts no warmth down
little light when absence abounds

Folk yak at me with words of no life
go flapping their id, make whole buncha strife
so I gotta ask why you spout such tripe?

You got a mouth even your mom won’t kiss
your crap smothers all kinds of bliss
why you muck around like this?

Gotta say things ain’t quite right
too many stray in lack of light
yet say go way, tend my own blight

If I don’t talk won’t be no sound
in this endless ambling nowhere town
but when I do they call me a clown

The devil’s tongue packs a wicked wit
while an angel’s wings don’t always fit
some further heaven, some feather pit

Which I am I in this tag of it?
stain on shoe, or pile of shit?

~ ~ ~

Broken bridges
and abundant boulders
along the way

but oh, such strawberries

~ ~ ~


Smith in The Digital Museum of Modern Art

Thursday, January 26th, 2023

Rediscovered 19-yr-old post of my art and poems, partially interactive, on The Digital Museum of Modern Art.

Home page has 6 links:

Poem Cycle – shows a poem with several words high-lighted . . . click and it takes you to same word in different poem with more word-clicks available . . . no idea how many poems involved.

Babblefish Fragments – link no longer works, can’t remember what it did.

Ragnarok ‘n Roll Poem Rock – links to 3 Peter Ball / Smith songs: Teddy Bear, Nipple FX, Sold American . . . with lyrics and art.

17 Poems Bush 666 – red, white, and blue fonted poems for Corporate Amerika and the CheneyBush Beast.

Steve Smith Bio – A Life Spent Tap Dancing On The Edge.

Curator’s Statement – by W. Logan Fry


20 year-old post of Smith poems on Deep Cleveland

Sunday, January 22nd, 2023

A 20 year-old post of Smith poems on Deep Cleveland . . . thanks to Mark Kuhar.

Can’t remember when or how Mark & I first crossed paths.

It was after my 2005 Deep Cleveland reading that Lady and I took up.

Night Fragment – 1968
Zen Over Zero – 1974
Cannibal Saliva – 1975
Myth Amerika – 1972
Promise Land – 1995
Smith 2003 – 2003


back when I was almost cool

Monday, January 16th, 2023
back when I was almost cool —

“Agent of Chaos That would be Steven B. Smith, the man behind Cleveland’s cult classic journal ArtCrimes, a limited edition lit/art publication that emerged during the mid eighties. Now you can order up your own at Steven’s agentofchaos website, launching literary outrageousness, entertaining criticism, art slide show, plus 900 pages of collage, mixed media, photography, guest artists and everything your mother warned you about. He has consistently refused to be conditioned by the public, and it’s a good thing; we love his contagion of undiluted underground art / lit / philosophy / abuse.” – – – – – – Cool 09.10-09.17 2003- Tisha Nemeth, senior editor


poems per year past 58 years

Wednesday, January 4th, 2023

Poems per year past 58 years.

Quantity is no proof of quality, but may be an indication of calling, or stubbornness.

Low output from 1964 through 2008. Things perked up when we returned in 2009 from 33 months of livng in 20 cities in 10 countries on 3 continents.

1970 is zero because I spent 10 1/2 months of it in jail for armed robbery.

Counts jump in 2005 . . . took up with Lady that September.

1964 – 2
1965 – 13
1966 – 6
1967 – 1
1968 – 2
1969 – 1
*1970 – zero
1971 – 3
1972 – 9
1973 – 4
1974 – 3
1975 – 6
*mid-1975 thru late-1985 zero
1985 – 5
1986 – 2
1987 – 4
1988 – 3
1989 – 4
1990 – 3
1991 – 1
1992 – 3
1993 – 3
1994 – 10
1995 – 8
1996 – 2
1997 – 3
*1998 – zero
*1999 – zero
2000 – 1
2001 – 3
2002 – 3
2003 – 15
2004 – 23
2005 – 55
2006 – 29
2007 – 5
2008 – 7
2009 – 22
2010 – 77
2011 – 107
2012 – 94
2013 – 125
2014 – 243
2015 – 294
2016 – 291
2017 – 284
2018 – 220
2019 – 235
2020 – 99
2021 – 244
2022 – 224


word harvest 12.2022

Monday, January 2nd, 2023

word harvest 12.2022

2022.12.1 – Sun near down
2022.12.3 – Weather’s getting more extreme
2022.12.4 – Rooster crows night away
2022.12.14 – Weighing would
2022.12.15 – I’m copal
2022.12.17 – Another fine day done
2022.12.19 – One more waiting room
2022.12.20 – A little light lurking
2022.12.21 – Moral of the story
2022.12.26 – Sitting silent in the dark
2022.12.27 – It’s a race

~ ~ ~

Sun near down
light soothing
humidity softening sound
crickets test heat
lightning bugs charge
moths cruise light bars
for mad dash of fire
I creep to sleep
lick my wounds
rewind bind
lose hounds of time
in dream mind
where Magic still abounds
like ancient burial grounds
raining rainbows in curved air
prism all around

~ ~ ~

Weather’s getting more extreme
so are people
guess which one wins

~ ~ ~

Rooster crows night away
rooster crows break of day
rooster crows

~ ~ ~

Weighing would
of could and should
with is

~ ~ ~

I’m copal
she’s frankincense
we sweet smoke rising

~ ~ ~

Another fine day done
began in beauty
no ending disaster

~ ~ ~

One more waiting room
another wait
another weight

~ ~ ~

A little light lurking
in the corner behind the plant
darkness rolling round

My life plan
was: work, hope for success
now: endure until death

Frowning world out there
I smile within
step by day by year by life

Mining the mundane

~ ~ ~

Moral of the story —
there’s beer and wine beauty
and the morning after mirror

~ ~ ~

Sitting silent in the dark
me and the missus
rocking slowly with
the clicking of the clocks
the fireplace flames dancing
the sleeping dog snoring
the black cat shadow
leading us on
into an ever more unknown
of me, my loves, and Eye

~ ~ ~

It’s a race —
I endure
reality wears me down

reality wins

~ ~ ~


November 2022 Medusa Kitchen Smith monthly feature

Sunday, December 4th, 2022

November 2022 Medusa Kitchen Smith monthly feature

“Our thanks to Smith, who is going through some major pain these days as a result of a fall he took last month, and subsequent surgery. Of course, poets are always taking the fall for one thing or another, but this was a harsh physical one that left Steven with a shitload of pain to carry. Hang in there, SBS, and keep writing it out. We’ll be rootin’ for ya. (Smith just passed the seven-year mark in Medusa postings; here’s to another seven years, then another, then another…)” – sez Kathy Kieth, publisher/editor Medusa’s Kitchen


word harvest November 2022

Friday, December 2nd, 2022

word harvest November 2022

2022.11.1 – The Entropy Express
2022.11.4 – The quiet night isn’t quiet
2022.11.10 – The pain of body
2022.11.13 – Dark in here, fog out there
2022.11.18 – Coffee down
2022.11.26 – O dead temples in the sky
2022.11.28 – There are whisperers close at hand

~ ~ ~

The Entropy Express

Thought I’d woulda coulda shoulda maybe
but then again I’m quite lazy
discipline somewhat hazy
plus there’s those who claim I’m crazy
but heck with that let’s stick with this
I’m one dark dread in search of bliss
a future nipple’s gentle kiss
instead of cyclic shit and miss
I ask sky why but there’s no answer
look inside find moral cancer
my id gazelle my ego panther
in my me a danger dancer
yet still I’m here not yet gone
not yet lost though sure ain’t won
cuz in sadness I still find fun
with magic wife my always one
add in dog and shadow cat
friends most fine and this and that
sadness being but temporal trap
before my final one hand clap
so grab your ticket get in line
for Entropy Train’s mighty crime
riding life’s lying bind
of slings and errors outrageous, unkind

~ ~ ~

The quiet night isn’t quiet
water gurgles in pipes
aquarium bubbles
fireplace clicks as heat expands
black cat purrs in lap
coyotes howl to sirens on the bridge
one clock cuckoos one bongs one chimes
all three tick my life away
freight trains below pull heavy loads
down shadow tracks in dark valleys
going not here
from not here
long lonely moans in time
as entropy blossoms full flower
bloom blood in the circle slowing

~ ~ ~

The pain of body
versus the promise of day
ever onward

~ ~ ~

Dark in here, fog out there
sez me in the living room
sez me in my mind

Any wisdom learned
leaked out long ago

I stand outside
flaunting my sins
hoping someone will notice

~ ~ ~

Coffee down
weed in
awaiting sun

Train moans
body groans
mind stones

It’s another
I don’t want to do this

Born of Holocaust and atomic bomb
death fast death slow
between yes and no and maybe

This reality
and I
are not aligned

~ ~ ~

O dead temples in the sky
hear us as we cry why
the lie

O Invisible Friend above
gentle the bite of karmic glove
and entropy’s shove

O You who seldom answer
it’s fall to winter falling
and I’ve yet to find my calling

Gimme a clue or let me through

~ ~ ~

There are whisperers close at hand
questioning this, doubting that
denying flesh and fact

We’re pretty much raisins running backwards
to some plump plum once upon a time
seeds seedless sending

Now and then, before or after
doesn’t matter
rock gotta roll up hill again

Rock gonna roll
pain gonna play
we gonna pay

And yet it’s worth it for the while
when and where we smile
along the way

What can I say?


my annual ex-christmas

Friday, November 25th, 2022

To counteract the constant Christmas songs, here’s a Ball & Smith unChristmas one from 2013, Peter Ball (1949-2015) music / recording, me word & voice, 5:28


Ex Christmas

I see Santa the red-nosed thing dear
dancing on the head of a pin
in some strip club down Lonely Lane
where never was already is

Unreined deer out in the alley
shooting crap with quantum dice
taking tokes of alfalfa doobies
awaiting a working dear’s price

O sacred Santa, o holy Tinman
now I lay me down to seek
a higher focus in the real land
once we awaken from sleep

HEY – warning light flashing over head ! ! !
such goings bring Ghost Past Behind
this is your don’t-want-to-be dread
beckoning being sorry, unkind

Grouch don’t get no good foot forward
greed can’t grasp no love at hand
mean won’t lean no one toward
higher helping plan for grand

O sacred Santa, o holy Tinman
now I lay me down to seek
higher focus in the real land
once we awaken from our sleep

Less is more, more just more mess
relax, lay back, let go, seek slack
to give is true get of success
sharing shines in giving back

So let’s sing a song of simple
then go feed a folk or few
gotta make our own example
be such be as want to do

Sacred Santa Holy Tinman
watch how I lay me down to seek
higher focus in the real land
once we waken from our sleep



Wednesday, November 23rd, 2022

Wrote first poem in 1963. Oldest poem I still have is 1964. Still have 50 between 64-75. Then mid-1975 to mid-1985 wrote none (too busy making art).

In 1985 driving non-stop from Las Vegas to Cleveland snorting massive amounts of cocaine to counteract the pain pills taken for my 2 broken wrists & 2 broken elbows, I broke my block with this.

Wall Street

Pushing through the night
Eastward to the moon
Not yet risen,
False dusk of reason dons
Its mantis mating respectability
Sans honor, self or soul.

Money talks of dawn, damns
The discarded husk of culture
And enlightens genes for green,
Without the warranty.


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