Friday, October 31, 2008

Not That One, This One

Steven, the LVN, gave me a long explanation which I
immediately forgot of why I have the
cough I have and not some other
cough and why the cough
medicine I'm taking is the
right one for it. He knows because recently he
had the very same condition. I realize I have a
bad attitude but I really don't care why, I just want
some relief; I'm grateful though for the
attention. Today is Hallowe'en and we had
costumes up the ying-yang, some quite
attractive - my favorite is the girl from
"Rocky Horror" with her little apron. I myself
did not wear a costume, I never do, and neither did
Steven. We agreed it's hard enough just trying
to be who we are without having to pretend to be
somebody else.

Friday, October 17, 2008


It's not even Hallowe'en yet but this is a
Christmas cookie and boy, is it good! I went back and
got another, they're sitting out
on a plate at the front desk, sheltered with plastic from
flies. Anise I guess is what
gives them the Christmas flavor, though anise when I taste it
by the road tastes nothing like Christmas, separated
from the rest of the cookie as it is. First
Christmas cookies and then
jack-o-lanterns and pumpkin pie and
turkey and then a whole month of nothing but
buy! Buy! Buy! and you know
Christmas is, yes indeed it is, on the way. Then I want to go back to
Detroit where not so very many years ago I watched
an electric train go round and round and a sort of fairy princess in a
tutu spin on a toe in a shop window in the cold where
nobody had any
money but
I could hear real Detroit jazz all weekend and hear my
daughter sing too. And ride there and back on the bus with
another daughter and be cited for contempt for trying to
defend one of them from dope charges. It was
lovely to hear but I think it was her father, not me, she
wanted to sing to, and he was daughter-deaf. Actually
he was wife-deaf too; why do women
want to sing to the deaf? Maybe we
just want to find out
about Detroit. That
jazz went 96 hours, the
saxophonist having traveled all the way from
Jackson just to play all weekend, and we
lucky ones got to hear. Years later the
long walks on icy cold sidewalks
came back to me when I heard
the poet Dumisani pronounce
"Detroit" in French. I can
even remember the
name of the club -
The Unstabled -
where we sat
numb but all ears
and were blessed.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008


No sky but for that reflected in the windows
of the apartment house across the way. A wall, a
low block brick-topped wall holds back the hill with its trees and
sometimes deer. Below, macadam and a storage shed, white with
red-brown posts. Someone just tacked a notice to
one of the posts; I will never know what it says, though - this view is
the part of the yard that I can't reach on foot, not without going out
front door, which I am not supposed to do. On the wall, some
red and white crates and a blue tarp. Bright sun splashes the
shed and the posted notice. I, inside looking out, look mainly at the
windows full of reflected sky, and I think about Plato's cave. What's
going on in the world? You'd never know from looking at this view,
nor, I suppose, can I know from reading the paper, that's
the shadows. I think I'd like to go to
China where everything is
upside down, and from there think about here, where everything
seen from there would seem upside down. Find out how hard it is
just to get a little

Ramble At 5 AM

If you allow with me
those u-turns at the exit signs to be mere
bends in the road, then you can walk with me an
unending corridor; except for being indoors it's the
perfect walk, starting when you feel like moving
and ending right about when you
get tired.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Go Up (cinquain)

Go up
the hill first, then
coming back will be so
easy you'll thank and thank

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Defining After Midnight

The placebo effect is the
effectiveness of anything you
don't believe in - Einstein's
horseshoe, for instance.
Bierce's appendix
cannot be removed with
Occam's razor. Mulltiply, beyond
the mother of invention,
only non-
entities. Possession
is nine points
of even Newton's
law. I will own to being a
scofflaw, scoff even at Plato's
Republic; intellectuals and liars
rule. Poets, I guess, were the old Greeks'

The Air Is Almost Still

The air is almost still
and whispers of rain. Not a single cigarette butt on the
leaf-spangled tarmac tonight where I
walk in the near dark, happy at one with the air and with the
hill that falls to our brick-topped block wall, bringing
leaves and sometimes deer who consume our
impatiens. I want the gardener to spray them (the flowers, not
the deer) with maybe pepper sauce or something deer are
known to abhor. Meanwhile my breath is deepening, my
chest healing in the cool and there is a sense that this is
the same October I have dwelt in now for 86 autumns, the
same October that will always return and remind
someone of me, as it
reminds me of Skye and makes me thankful that the
wheelchair-bound clown who used to call everyone Ruth
has gone, whether to a hospital or to something closer to
home I do not know. I hope he has gone somewhere where he
will not be able to bother people with his ruthless trys at
joking, unknowing as he is of course of my Ruth but
keen to notice that his repetition of the name
bothered me. Still in this October cool, thinking of
my Ruth Skye, that joker seems no more
than another leaf, blown here by some wind
that now has blown again, taking him off
probably to visit Peter and Wendy; I think Tinkerbell
could carry him to seasonless
slumber far, far away, leaving us without
ribbons or wish for ribbons, palms open to catch the
cool October breeze.