After So Long

after so long,
     weeks since any poem,
     hardly need to say it
jobs inhabit your life

like gut microbes

1:25 am
men stoke the fire pit
    by the poison shed
and the half-mowed field's
burrows and dry stalks;
    
laugh
into the heat,
               shift, 
a nervous dance
    under useless stars.
 
look:
    nothing 
         in my 
         soft palms

but

letters drop
onto the field
        
       tetris
blocks 

fill the gaps:
       
plunk
plunk
plunk
       plunk

Reminder

Reminding to…
get simple, BIG;
yes i know it’s
complicated, baroque
vibrating feathers micro
advanced patterns
layers upon layers,
realisms, circuitry,
more than a magical
three-ring cake. But
beginning with what
I see. And then
you can lead me
anywhere

White

very quickly, before the darks
move north, and reds tumble
a soft skull white breaks

open

over hills and powder
stains violet the leaves
not there. words to cross

and uncross still flow
out of mouths on the
screen when the lights

of passing cars bubble up
behind the hero turning
left on Vine

Day in the city

Drove a friend to SF; coasting
over 101, we exchanged
memories of the sixties

she questioning privilege,
demonstrating for ethnic studies
holed up in the I-Hotel until
Hongisto’s minions “escorted” her out
into the flash-bulb popping,
chanting crowd.

Me running away from a too
tradition-bound home
experimenting, exploding
my head, walking and walking
for hours in the small-town
night giddy with stars and new
things I thought were new but
existed before my time, or anyone’s
time, indifferent but gorgeous
nature.

I thought she was brave; she thought
me brave; every path more conflicted
more stumbling than one could then
imagine. Nothing noble, it turns
out in either path. Just stuff
young people do when caught
up in social movements, social
experiments, some good
and some bad resulting

well, we’re still trying
to figure that out

After the appt. with the doc
we had lunch, then walked
around the Haight, the store-
keepers mimicking our
vague memories; Hendricks re-
painted on the walls; post-
nouveau lettering on concert
posters; hookas for sale
in the storefronts. Some left-
over characters from the 60s
and 70s panhandling
on the sidewalk, keeping up
the general aesthetic.

Slow day

WordPress now has a “reblog” function
for Chrissake. For those slow weeks
I guess. Today was slow. The best
two things that happened were 1) instant
messaging with M., who is somewhere
sunny, until he returns to this misty
vale (by the slough), and 2) the soup
I cooked today, vegetable soup. Every-
thing else was, well, slow. Seemingly
inconsequential.

I’m using the shift-return to create
line breaks for poetry. Because why
write in utter prose when you can write
at least a semi-poetic line. Or at least
attempt it.

This week I watched two documentaries:
“City Dreams” (about 5 women artists in NY)
which was decent, but maybe not long
enough; and before that, I saw “The Parking
Lot Movie,” which was great. Who would’ve
thought that a documentary about a bunch
of dudes working as parking lot attendants
would be even slightly interesting? But
it was.

What else? I wondered about Richard Aoki
and the Black Panthers, and thought
about the sixties and the Strawberry
Statement
. Two of my friends have
cancer, and that thought is hard
to shake. I could’ve painted today,
but didn’t. Instead, at around 11 p.m.
I started writing this.