Some Bug Poetry – what if the dynamo was fueled by our dislike of bugs?

remember when we were rodentwise in tree hides and covered with creep-crawlers, spider bites in the night, ants mites and flies – growing conscious of our parasites we made hands that grasp to pluck bugs from our bodies, made fire to smoke them out, pottery to keep food stores, made enclosures and cities and sterile spaces to sequester ourselves from what tinyness moves – in the end we make virtual space, digitally safe from bug-bug-bugs – bit and bytes, Mondrian primaries, black lines, purest clean white.


So the clock turned back last night. Instead of 10 o’clock it’s 9 o’clock. This is the way life should be – out late last night, drunken midnight artistry, then up early and at the farmer’s market where they were setting up all bleary eyed and I bought flowers, good Julian apples and the last of the summer’s heirloom tomatoes. Then motoring over to Whole Foods for juice and garlic-apple jam for our day-old Bread and Cie epi. Then to Carpe Diem that great little café down first for some fresh coffee to bring home and mix with cream. Ah fallback day! We should do this every week, lose an hour somewhere on a lazy-day Wednesday which would push people to get more things done anyway – I’m gonna lose that hour! – and allow us to practice this gaining-time ritual every week.

All these time issues. I understand seconds – beatwise counting of an average heartbeat, beat beat. But where did the base-60 second and minute concept come from, and 24? I could understand 16, being a power of 2, and I could understand 32 or 64, but 60, 60, and then 24? It only makes sense of you consider the number of seconds in a day, 86,400. 50 and 50 don’t go into 86,400 evenly, nor do 100 and 100 – they both leave funny numbers with remainders. 60 and 60 though leave exactly 24 when put into 86,400 – and there we have it, the origin of those arbitrary measures, the minute and the hour, between our two absolutes, the time it takes for the sun god to circumnavigate the globisphere and the rhythmic thumping of our human hearts.


I’ve become something of a foodie this year. Last year’s ever-healthy diet has been softened a bit by occasional indulgences – dollops of cream in sauces, irregular desserts, lots more meat, and I’m actually eating pork. Next week I’ll have my annual physical where we’ll decide if this new diet will scan long-term. It’s certainly working weight-wise as I’m hovering around 160, pretty close to my ideal fighting weight.

Contributions to this trend? 1) A general lessening of 2004’s oh-my-god-I’m-getting-old panic. 2) All the Paris reading, Hemmingway to Kerouac to Stein and especially Henry Miller. 3) Foodie blogs like Clotilde’s 4) That fat bastard Emeril. 5) A shift towards the ideal of living in the now, mindfully, with the spirit of joie de vivre. The happy, mindful boy existing in the nowity certainly is allowed to eat a plate of pork sausages, especially when he had salad for lunch and a protein smoothie for breakfast.

Poetry Scrap

A little poetics this morning about my Grandmother, Inez – this is a lot of just silly poetry scraps blown sideways through horn like jazzman –

I was a bank account where / she deposited oodles of chinatown cloth / bagfulls of cash acruing / towards my future archaeology.

hard for me to imagine cash shoveled aside (me ways side) / in this truistic trusty way / I’d have bought pearly hong king necklaces and Segovia wine, pastries from Victoria, sat at Trieste all afternoon chatting nonsense with the old poetmen of the Beach –

((so the next part talks about each dollar))

each dollar was mana
inspiration and liberation in the form of
legos and games and transformers,
cubicons for the dynamo.

made me, mijo a lesson plan
in humanity, give-a lot man /
never poor, never rich in
anything but love and joy.

Poetry Scrap

Rain Poem

is like pagan acupuncture with aqueous needlepoints; more though, is the sense of confusion, clearly visible when stepping through the threshold of a warm cafe; drop umbrella, shake off backpack and outercoat, waterdrops everywhere, wet wool smell, all the patrons look at you from warm, dry table-states; you take the last table, sit, breathe, look out : a hurried walker under her and his layered defenses, windblown, alone, disheveled, nat nat natted by those icy needles. In though, You’re warm, content.

Cellular Automata

I’ve never really thought about my whiskers growing before, but when you think about it they’re there, all day pushing up out of your face, like leaves of grass, growing out of your body – mindless, idiot protein strands pushing out of your skin.

Growing Up – Epiphanies

The dandelion wine!

Then there was the summer that I decided to make Dandelion Wine. It must have been 1997 because I had broken up with Amy but hadn’t gone to Europe yet. I was 20 and a babe in my own skin – I wouldn’t for example stand on the trail and enjoy the tremendous view out of fear of being seen by the people living along third. I was afraid of their eyes. But there I was walking amid all that beauty and the urge hit me to create something out all this wildness. And I’d read somewhere on the web about dandelion wine. That did it – I had to make some. I hadn’t yet reached the point where I could try a poem about that pampas laden springtime trail, or a short story or a painting. I didn’t try writing poetry until the next year and stories would have to wait a little while longer. But I had to make something and wine was it.

The problem was my mom – she had that devil’s instinct to shut down anything that anyone was doing creatively with a cold What are you doing that for, frowny faced and all, that classic female interrogation and wrongheaded desire for sense and sensibility. Making wine was definitely not sensible and so there was no way I was going to be able to use the oven to dry the dandelion leaves and make the wine. So I had to try something else, and I found a recipe for plum wine. There were lots of problems with my interpretation of the recipe – the plums, for example, are meant to be ripe and thus extremely juicy and sugarladen. I picked them too soon, but that wasn’t my worst mistake. I misread the instructions for making an airlock and sealed my wine tight. One night I was up in my bunk bed dreaming of dad or elementary school or Lindsay when Bam! Two liters of fermenting plum wine, all over the closet. Took years to clean it all up. Most of my grandmother’s stuff in there was ruined, as was a lot of my clothes. My must-reeking clothes.

The thing with the plum wine was, I gave up and never tried it again. I was born a give-upper and have fought hard against it but still haven’t totally cured myself. In those days if I had been shitting and I would happen to shit on the seat I would, instead of yelling for help or cleaning it up, sit there in my own fecal matter and brood. I was an idiot, one step worse than the kid who won’t shit or get off the pot. I was shit and sit in it. In hindsight the proper behavior would have been to wipe it all over the walls, to make an art of sorts. That or throw it at someone. If I could change one thing about my childhood, I’d have gotten in more fights. I could have used the scars. If I could change another thing, I’d have cleaned up that wine and told my mom to shut it and made a big batch of Dandelion Wine.