Total Pageviews

Sunday, December 23, 2012

standing where it is

  The house is still there. A bit worn, tired, and in need of some repairs. But it is still a warm shelter, it is clean, it is useful. More than forty years old, still solid, built to withstand tornado wind, maybe, it has not been tested. High winds only bring tree limbs to rest on the roof, erosion has washed away much of the brown dirt hugging the foundation. Each year, more is added for wind to whisk away in the dry times. Yet it is a good house, built with love by the original owners. There was attention to detail like positing the homestead due north, in winter, where the sun will rise to warm the children's bedrooms to ease the chill of the night.

  The fireplace in the dining room is large, not so large as one can step into but large to warm the home, and by the way, it is central with all air flowing toward the bedrooms of the H shaped home. The second owners were not as kind, they replaced items with those of less quality. They covered the wallpaper with paint, and the wood floors with carpet, wall to wall. The tile in the bathrooms were the seventies pink and grey, but the finest tile, with pieces specially made to fit the corners and edges. Now, they are cut, and the cut tiles around the tub show they were not even sanded. The towel rack is slightly tilted. The linoleum in the kitchen has burn marks, made probably by the ash of cigarettes hanging from someones lip, lots of cigarettes. There were fire alarms in every room, unnoticeable battery operated discs that would blare when the oven was lit. Reminders that someone smoked, or that the house was heated with wood. The black on the walls would attest to that, and the film on the windows too. Ash in the kitchen cabinet or is it simply years accumulation of dirt, either or both.

  When dreaming about how to spend the lottery money we will win, when we play the lottery someday, the little instances of loving care this home needs, grows to the wish list of true dreamers, indoor swimming pool, sauna, whirlpool,  windows, walk in closets and on and on. But mostly it is the wish to pay respect to a thing that most persons would say is not alive, this house, this home, the place that hugs us to sleep at night, and warms us awake in the morning. The place we take for granted, until, adversity puts it in jeopardy, this place that has been good to us for so long, and when we have to leave, we would like to pass it along, in better shape from when we got it. But that too is probably just the stuff that the dreamers of winning the lottery dream. We will just leave it, standing where it is, and if we are smart, we will not look back.

1915 - 2012

  Some cites on Google say the unemployment rate in the United States in 1915 was seven percent, others nine, and one stated that ten and a half percent in Chicago were unemployed.

  In those days sanitation was not as clean as today, the streets were filled with horses, their waste and flies. We often think of the romance of the horse and buggy days but seldom reflect on the urine and feces flowing freely through the streets, where people stepped and women dragged their skirts. Except for the wealthy elite, most had one coat which was passed on down to younger siblings or from parents to children. Cleaning a coat in 1915 novel. Rugs were hung on the line and beaten to remove loose sediment. Milk was unpasteurized, not necessarily a bad thing, but an easy breeding ground for every thing. Refrigeration was a chunk of ice chopped at your doorstep by the man who rode around town in his wagon. Lye was the soap of choice or the only choice. Clothes were ironed with a heated piece of cast iron placed on the same wood burning stove that prepared food.

  It is 1915, the streets are filthy, people are hungry and out of work. Worry is mounting, how to feed the family, each day eating less and less. Sleepless nights further weaken the populace. War breaks out, men are leaving their families to die on foreign soil. Some service men never left fifty miles from home, die and are buried thousands of miles from their family.

  Still unemployment is high, people are becoming weaker, the nation as a wave of humanity is flowing to the abyss, around the corner the influenza epidemic which will erase the millions of specs of the foam of the wave. And nothing will stop it. Fatigue, filth, hunger, fear, and want will meet on the battlefield and win the skirmish with man/and wo-man. A cough shared in the same room, a hand shake, a kiss, a piece of paper passed from one to another and an epidemic is born to run its course. Mass graves, mass mourning and a major event is recorded for the future.

  And here it is 2012 on the doorstep of 2013. Unemployment is high, Super Storm Sandy made sanitation in many states a challenge, people are hungry, they are afraid, they are homeless, living in the streets, sharing the dirt with their neighbor. Clean water no longer flowing from pipes, heat again from burning wood, carcasses floating down main street a main stream on the doorstep of history repeating, it is different, yet, it is the same. Will we be prepared, will we be ready, will we care, or will they.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

  The most popular posts on this blog was not written by me, they were written by my father and his friend, way back in the nineteen-forties. The letters written to my mother during world war two. They are about a man alone in a foreign country. He followed the rules and wrote covert letters. All that he could not say because the letters were censored and for fear of punishment lest he say something he should not have. He writes about the weather, the mud, the rain. The constant rain of war. He does not speak of the perils or the fear. Simple notes that give one an impression of a new father fighting in war. He chose to volunteer because all his friends were drafted and he felt he had to go to help them all win the war.

  He was not especially tough or arrogant. He came from adversity and made good for himself. He was not rich, but learned the value of reading and thinking for himself.

  While in Europe on holiday, (joke) he learned about the peoples of the countries he visited. His letters more present his appreciation of the local populace and their battle to survive during war, that the hardships the military faced. He immediately warmed to them all and felt a little more at peace while fighting, because of the kindness the 'locals' afforded him.

  There is no description of anything much except for Uncle Franks letter warning him, when he got closer to combat, to not go into any buildings for shelter but to dig his fox hole. That recollection was vivid, that was the only time you could get a tinge of caution from his words.

  Most of the letters are about the cold or the wet and the request for socks and cigarettes. Smoking was a big deal in those days. Watch any of the old movies showing everyone with cigarettes in their mouths or the poise of offering a cigarette from a case to another, the match or lighter the focus of the camera, and the ballet of the parties meeting. Prelude to romance. But during the war it was the only escape, the first drag, the fade from reality. Cigarettes seem to be more important than food, or food so available and cigarettes less so.

  On the other hand, Tony's (Nunzio) letters were written stateside. His vision so poor it is a surprise he was ever accepted into service. He was stationed in all the places everyone wishes for military service. Colorado and California. He was more worrying about all his friends, he was at home concentrating on the plight of all his friends. You can see the measure of comfort he had compared to being in a combat zone. You can also feel his disappointment that he is not out there with his friends.

  With both writers, it is evident how homesick they are, how much they miss the familiar. And how strange it is for them , as little boys, it is to be away from home. Fighting or working to support the fighters more a secondary sense. With Tony you can feel his commitment to the safety of folding the parachutes in the proper way. That he was in a personal relationship with whomever got that particular chute. How important it was for him to do it right, his total sense of responsibility, an honourable man.

  With my father, you can sense how much he did not want to be there. He did not say so in so many words but like someone having to do something distasteful, like swallowing Castor oil. He had to do it, and did not want to. And it just kept dragging on, soon he would be home, soon the conflict would be over and month after month, wishing or writing, it has to end soon.

  Seeing the Follies in Paris, was probably his favorite. He loved to go to clubs and listen to the music. I am not sure if he also enjoyed the girls, my recollection of him was a prude.

  Around the world his and Tony's letters are being read. Seventy year old notes home. It is a compliment to my effort to see the words of faded pencils and the persistence of putting them all on the web, instead of trying to get a book published and making millions of dollars. (chuckle.) It was years ago I began with the first letter my dad wrote. It was the gotta do it inspiration. The idea that my mother saved them all those years, and my sister sent them to me after my mother died. Along with boxes of other papers to sort through. The stuff  to discern whether of not to throw it out. The letters sat for two years before I even opened one. And then I read another and then another and then another and then realized it had an impact on me. Not the conscious kind of slap in the face but the visceral touch, even though his letters didn't say much. They touched something that sparked the need to share the information. And now I have been proven right. The most popular items on this site were not written by me. And yet, it makes me feel good, that perhaps they are doing some good somewhere in this world.  For those of us who will never see combat and for those close to the front lines these notes seem as real as if they are happening today.

  So I am not the great writer I had hoped  to be, and I have found something that is touching all of us, where ever we are. Happy New Year.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Insurance in the land of the free

   The homeowner and auto insurance is carried by the same provider. We have been doing business with them for more than twenty five-years. They are not the inexpensive providers you hear advertised on tv. They are not the sort of organization that argues with every claim, instead they pay promptly  and courtesly. Like when the roof was damaged with hail from a tornado, there were no problems about the claim and the payment was made right away, and we got the roof fixed.

  For the autos it is an interesting dilemma, one was bought used in nineteen ninety seven for thirty thousand dollars and paid for in installments with interest. That car now, looks good, the paint still shines. It was a lemon, a very expensive lemon, with repairs each year at about a minimum of another thousand dollars. We kept fixing it because a thousand is cheaper than buying a new one, and we are surprised each year but the new problem, something we never heard of before, or since. So we keep fixing it.  We carry collision on it, which means they will replace the car with with the same thing or an equivalent of the same value. The car is now worth on the blue book listing at about three thousand dollars. Collision insurance fees go up each year even though the price of the car goes down each year. We debate dropping collision, but if someone hits us and totals the car then we would have to pay for the collision repairs. And usually when an accident happens it is when one can least afford it. So each year we complain or try to get the rate reduced, instead we keep raising the deductible, our out of pocket expense before the insurance company will begin paying. We want to keep the car till it dies completely. A new car is an expense we do not want to incur if we can help it.

  The other car, truck really, used to cart hay, seed, equipment and anything we need to maintain the farm. It was bought six months after the other car we have. The price was about sixteen thousand dollars, and has not been an expense since we got it. We have only had maintenance charges, oil change, tune up, tires, and air conditioning refills. Both machines have more than a hundred  thousand miles, the truck is closer to a hundred fifty thousand.

  The only other insurance we have is health insurance.  We got the changes in policy for twenty thirteen, and it is one confusing document, actually three confusing or incomplete documents requiring a phone call to the provider for clarification.

  Of course, we get the voice that offers to assist or redirect the call to a real human, but that does not happen immediately, we get the next voice that informs us that we know that we can go to the company web site to get all our questions answered.
The the next voice, after listening to some static melodies, tells us that our call is important to them. Reminds me of the phone call we got from Mitt Romney, the intro voice tells us that Mitt is contacting us with some very important information, then a recording of Mitts voice is heard. If it is such important information he wants us to have, he should have called us himself, or gotten a real person to make the call. How do we know, it was really from him, how do we know he is real. But I digress, this discussion is about insurance in a free country.

  The new changes talk about who the insurance company wants us to do business with. The insurance company is telling us that they have preferred providers and non preferred providers and the price for prescriptions differs accordingly. If we do not do business with the companies they want us to use, they prescription we get filled. Here is where it gets tricky. They sort the various drugs or medications into tiers, and they further sort the tiers into generic or non generic or brand names. The co-pay for the generic drugs is less than for the brand names, and the co-pay is further sorted into tiers. Tier one drugs have the lowest co-pay, all the way up to tier five, which is exactly thirty three percent of the cost of the drug. But ninety day supplies are cheaper than thirty one day supplies.  Now if you think you got that all sorted, it is further, still, changed, because there are some drugs that must have prior authorization before the company will pay any part of the prescription charge. And there  are some drugs that are not on the list in the printed documents received, so either the website must be visited or a phone call to listed to all those voices and static music, and it is an important call to them so we must hold on until they are finished with us.

 Now this is just an explanation of the drug part of the insurance. Anyone in need of medical insurance, especially some who have chronic illness or 'conditions', are in less than optimal operating order and must then have someone read all the info and explain it so they can understand it, or call or visit the company website and have it explained to them before they can explain it to the insured.

  Then, of course there are the other rules the insurance provider has set down. Such as which procedures they will pay for, and where they are done, and for some, who will provide their medical care is also dictated.

  So, in summary, it use to be that the patient and the patients health provider  decided the course of treatment, then the government stepped in and decided which health care providers would provide which care, and now it is the insurance companies which tell us, what treatments and treatment providers are right for us. They also tell the treatment providers exactly how much they will pay them for any service, no matter what the provider wants to charge. Doctors can no longer prescribe over the phone for a patient, they must see the patient before any service is provided. Hey doc, I think I have pneumonia and out to be admitted to the hospital, can you please make those arrangements? No, you either make an appointment to see me at my convenience or go to the emergency room. 

  Now, besides these dilemma, the doctor shortage is also adding to the difficulties of getting medical care. The AMA controls the amount of doctors graduated each year, to keep their income at high levels and demand at equally high levels. Good for job security except if all the patients die waiting to see the doctor.

Friday, November 30, 2012


 Well this is the beginning of the 'dying time'. Already we have heard of one death and await the notice of the other two, since they usually occur in threes. The mood is sombre. It is also a good thing that it is the time of celebration. Guess the founding fathers, tsk tsk, thought of everything. Keep people celebrating so they can weather the storm. In the darkness of winter, find a good excuse to celebrate. If it rains celebrate, if it does not rain celebrate.

  Someone suggested a special thank you for care givers. Thank you to all of you who care for someone. You make their lives less lonely and give them reason to smile. Since they are unable to make it on their own, they feel that they are burdens, the less you make them feel as though they are the weight of the world the more they will be able to feel good about themselves. Yes, we know it is a tireless endeavor but it gives the community a sense of oneness. It connects us all by the care we share.

  Death may not be really a finality, it may just be that they no longer are able to speak to us. They may be here watching and have no voice. That would be a kicker. That would be total helplessness, being here with us unable to effect any change.  Maybe that is why they call it hell.

  We all think about death, our own. It is the end of the body, we have not idea what happens to the mind. Religions make up their own ideas as to what will happen, like the virgins who will service the warriors of Islam. That is a really good sales pitch for young men at puberity. It gives their mind something to distract them while they blow up somebody else. Like the crusades of old, there are promises of rewards. And sex is a good control mechanism.

  And now that we have introduced the idea of the end of the life of the body, lets get on to the reality of living. Quality control,you might call it. Even if you are just blowing your nose, do it the best you can. Living life to the fullest is merely doing your best, being your best. It does not have to break sales records, or world records, only the few get that honor. It is just being able to live with yourself. Even at your laziest, do it the best. Don't do it half hearted. Then there will be no regrets. The if only tyranny of life. if only I made the bed, I'd be able to go to sleep now instead of having to sleep on the mattress or stay up longer and have to throw the sheets on the bed.

  Now is the only chance you get to make yourself happy, there is only right now. this very instant, there is no past there is no future. There is only right now, so don't waste it on pettiness, make it bestness.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Dear Diary, 11.25.12

Dear Diary,

    The year is almost over, another month and it will be twentythirteen. I wonder how difficult it will be for all those people who are supersticious about the number thirteen.

Well, we have the man who will be president for the next four years. Will the congress work with him to make some positive changes to put people to work. If history repeats itself, the government will order some public works projects to repair some infrastructure. The Super Sandy storm created some jobs. The east will be busy repairing the damage. The trees, if we are lucky, will be replanted. They are so important to add some beauty to the crowded streets.

When there was the ice storm in Springfield Missouri and many of the trees froze and broke and uprooted, they removed them. The view became sky and houses and streets, and cars, that was it.

We had a very nice thanksgiving, even though I made a mistake and let the turkey defrost too early. I had to cook the turkey on monday and had to make do with sliced turkey on thursday. The apple pie came out great.

Celebrations are so important, especially before the winter doldrums. We can look back on the fun we had, while we wait for the sun to return.

Thanksgiving is my most important holiday. It gives us the opportunity to truly look at our lives and acknowledge all of our successes. It is the time when we reflect upon our choices. Choices are the things we have to live with. If we make a mistake and choose the wrong thing how do we correct or accept the consequences.

I am one of those persons who learns from my mistakes. Most of the time I choose the wrong thing and then have to make the most or best of it. It is like choosing to go left or right. Left is filled with dilemas and right is the smoothe road. I always choose left, it looks right to me. Funny how I always do that, maybe it is because I am left hand dominant. Left to me, is always right.

We celebrated that we are all safe. No longer do we take that for granted. The danger that is ever present has us on guard.

Things will become more difficult. There are too many people in the world , unemployed or underemployed.

The problem is the boom bust economy. There are only so many cars a person can buy, or homes, or toys, or things. Charity does not really work. People would prefer to earn their own. Some persons think it is owed to them, those are the ones who are what one might call lazy. They expect everything to be handed to them. Those are some of the residents of the many prisons. Jail is a better word to use. It is the place where society puts all those individuals they neither have the time the resources or interest in adapting or converting to society's rules.

But many of those in jail are the product of the war on drugs. Drugs is money in somebody elses hands. If drugs like pot were legal there would be other accepted wealthy individuals in society. Now those drug lords are persona non grata and they live below the edges of 'the right' people.

But that is another industry which would see layoffs. Prison guards abound. And what would those persons in prison for drug offenses do when they got out. There are no jobs for about twenty million, that would add about another million with out jobs.

But we all know what will happen. There will be a war, somewhere, where all those unemployed persons can go to get shot, and either get buried or move on to veterans hospitals, another industry which will employ.

The population growth must be delt with, all those mouths to feed. And the greedy don't give a dam. They only know that they want it all. So in the new millenium we are still the same. It will take generations to adapt to a better way of living. Johann Guttenberg made things better, so did the computer, and Bill Gates with Microsofts software. Now all we have to do is bring the poorest of us, up to the standards of being alive, instead of trying to survive.

I am grateful that I have the opportunity to think, about these things and others, I wish I had some answers to make things better. I hope I am not one of the individuals that make things worse.

Yours truly.


Sunday, October 14, 2012

It is summer in autumn or is it spring
there is a second blooming for the flowers
they think it is spring, they have finally had a long drink

The leaves that have not fallen from the drought
are red orange brown yellow and green with patches of red

It is autumn at the top of the garden
the trees are acting as they should
pumpkins have appeared at the stores
with the mums they bring cheer

Ladybugs(beetles) hug the windows
waiting for a chance to come in
to rest to go dormant
to wait for the next spring

The flutter of their wings make them easy to spot
as they approach their landing
close to the warmth

Chimes hum with the breeze that rustles the leaves
an echo of ommmmmmmm
singing praise to the puffy white clouds
the tufts of cotton sitting in the sea of blue
the palest of blue
a soft fabric of sky
giving smile to the eye

All is peaceful and calm
save for the rustling of the leaves
and again behind is the tic of the clock
the reminder of time
the time that was not there
before the sound touched the ear
only the chime, the leaves rustling
and a single bird chirping near

The branches of the trees are waving
farewell adieu
hugging the sun
which will soon disappear

A sunday in autumn
peaceful and calm
a sun day with the leaves
to soon disappear

happy sun day
happy cheer
a peaceful calm day
over here
I hope it is the same
over there.

Autumn from the porch

Saturday, October 6, 2012

A ride in the country

   Sprinkles of rain greened the fields, showing signs of spring in September. Along with the sprouting hay seen from the road, were cows, new herds to graze the land. Just as the green popped so too was cattle of every color. Further along the road where the fields faded into brush and trees the road forks over a stone bridge that traverses a still dry creekbed. Here the road has been gravelled. With each passing vehicle the white dust brushes up and kisses the trees. Almost the snow scene of winter except for the leaves on decideous trees, and the patches of goldenrod glistening in the sun. It feels as though it is the beginning of spring, rather than the entry into autumn.

The dry summer slowly fades from memory until the sight of a dry pond that is being excavated to a larger size in the hopes  of hitting an underground spring or a large enough size  that will sustain a small herd through tougher times and not go dry.

There is little to no industry here, mostly small scale farming and a few of the chicken barn operations, Tyson signs warn of the scent of excrement, large metal buildings usually four but as many as twelve in one confined area, where the lights can be seen on through the night and the stench waifs the air for miles.

Further into the road is less rural, somewhat primative, dust covered mailboxes mark the site where cars turn off to a pathway to a homesite, buried deep within the woods. Even here though are the familiar signs of civilization, beer cans and the paper debris from a meal provided by the golden arches.

There is a stone and wood log home with blue barrel halves filled with earth and plants blooming, herbs spices vegetables and flowers, an oasis of activity all neatly tended.  A place someone calls home hidden with the trees kissed by nature and hugged by homeowners who are happy to be here.

Monday, September 3, 2012

   Pulled a dead deer out of the pond, today. It probably died last night. There were hundreds of flies on its back, its eyes were bulging, mouth open with tongue sticking out. Had to walk knee deep into the pond to tie a rope around its neck. It looked at me with one eye. It was floating. Attached the rope behind the truck and slowly pulled the dead carcass up the ledge that surrounds the pond on one side. When the deer was near the wood side I cut the rope. It was now turned over. The part of the animal that was in the water was pinkish, not the light brown of the deers coat. It was a bit swollen, didn't look swollen when it was in the pond but now it looked chubby. There was a white foam around the lips. it must be expelling gas because although there were no visible wounds the odor was that of decay. It is now on the edge of the woods waiting for all the carrion and critters to come to feast. At least it is out of the pond and the fish have a moment of ease.

Saturday, August 25, 2012


common man becomes uncommon
the world at his feet
the knowledge of generations
generations of knowledge
every where
every thing
and life has been forever changed

little bits of yesterday
lots of tomorrow

 the all seeing eye
gave us the tool
GOogle gave us the opportunity
go where we choose
to use our minds
to expand our horizons

to give ourselves a glimpse
of greatness
of struggle
of weakness
of glory
of all the challenges

and our hearts are bigger
our minds richer
and our spirits enlightened

one algorithm
changed the planet
the rapier
to eradicate ignorance
to wipe out fear

and the fearful
with the ignorant
fight the knowledge of change
or the change of knowledge
and try forever to bury us
in the desert of despair
the emptiness
of control through

Without the song of the spirit

the land of gOOgle

is no mans land

and noMAN is lost in the desert
if ignorance and want
living with fear and greed

without the algorithm of
we are adrift in a sea
aboard a ship
with no rudder
with no oars
with no direction
with no where to call home



Tuesday, August 21, 2012


Leaves clap with the breeze
A chime resonates
ears vibrate
message to brain

birds hop through leaves
travel to parched dry lawn

hot summer day
a hushed melody
heat sings into night

Distant pond shrinks
cowering from heat
shoreline reaching,stretching
fish hurry to cooling depths.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

ticks slow

I did not die today
I don't know why

maybe tomorrow
when then I will
I shall
until then

Live I will
and go on
with life
as does one
awaiting to die

There is much to be done
in the meanwhile
papers to sort
to put ones life in order
not to leave the mess for others

In doing so
it is difficult
as the proccess begins
there is courage and purpose
get the job done
sort through
put things in order
discard the irrelevant

And then
one old magazine discarded
old bills discarded
old note reminder to buy milk discard
birthday card from him, ah, a sweet memory
put it on the side, to discard after

papers to keeo, medical bills paid
medical records of tests results
bank statements keep
another card, ah, she is such a good friend
we have been through much hardship together
it is feels good to know we have a friendship
that has lasted the years, her children are
grown with children of their own
odd to think she, a granny

The time it does fly
her card is like a hug
felt from all the miles by

Names addresses and phone numbers
those we knew, before they died
why keep those
I often wonder why
and then I remember
so i won't forget
when i want to remember their names
and i can't recall
I have a place to check
because I want to remember
who they are
that were in my life
all the years that so quickly went by

When living
at times
the clock ticks slow
and we wait for the time to go
till the time we want for the clock
to stay still, a moment longer
stop, stop
let this moment last longer

The time that passes
we judge and vote
to let it go
to keep it close
the time of our life
Oh, where did it go.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012


   When it is time to move on the past moves to the present
Packing one box of memories brings forth yesterday
The gift you got when you got engaged, one of which got broken
The gift from a parent
The gift you inherited
The thing you bought when you went on vacation that time
The time you really enjoyed yourself with the person no longer alive

You are still in the room with the box and wrapping paper, only one shelf's worth of memories are safely packed in the box
And already there is a melancholy of fatigue

All the time travel to all those places with all those people whom you knew who are no longer here

And the things that have collected dust, that you haven't looked at in months that you never use, that you will have no room for in the new place,
And yet, it is difficult to part with those links to the memories of who you were
Before you are who you are
And you should part with them
But maybe you don't want to
You are not ready to let them go
Those ghosts of yesterday that make you feel the feelings you felt then
That you do not feel now

The feelings of youth
The feelings of newness
The feelings of discovery
The feelings of playing

And the box is half full and the fatigue has slowed you down
You look at the cabinet and the shelves yet un packed
And the mind flashes to the closets waiting with their things to go

And it is time to sit and rest
The rest of life is still going on
And it is time to close  the past
To prepare a meal of the present.

2012 Olympics

  It has been a few days since the close of the London Olympics. An we are  still disappointed by the performance NBC did not do. Once every four years hundreds of nations join together to give their young people the opportunity for an international competition. This is a chance for all the peoples who are represented at the games, to share pride, anticipation, and joy. That they all contribute their time and dollars to 'play' the games.

  England and all her people, as China four years ago, made the effort to show the world a good time, and that they did. What of it we saw.

  NBC could have shown us the people, they could have shown us the other medal winners from the countries who only sent a few athletes, and the countries that won their first ever Olympic medals, but instead they opted to show us Mary, Bob and other NBC staff, as if we have not seen enough of them.

   Then, there was the lack of information, like with the Equestrian competition. They once in a while told us that a horse was gelded but not where it came from, Arabia, England and so forth. How high they jumped, is that the way it always was, how about some history?

   NBC really went on the cheap, instead of showing us an international event they chose to stay with the home time, the English and the Chinese, DUH! there were more countries competing. And the opening ceremony was washed over, and the closing ceremony was shown from the blimp with the lights in the stadium the star attraction. What a waste of energy. England should especially be annoyed with NBC, all the volunteers who dedicated themselves to putting on a good show, that we never saw. Even the diving stunk.

  Even their writers are tired, with dumb dialog stating nothing to give perspective or history or charm or interest to the games. We saw lots of parents of the American athletes, who cares. We came to see the Olympics, when will they show us the Olympics. If this was the ancient games at Greece or Rome, they, NBC would have been fed to the lions, instead, they will get to do the winter Olympics and Rio.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

olympics 2012

Oh NBC, there is a whole world out there
and yet you choose not to show us
There are other stars
other winners
other people
yet you care not for geography
your writers are tired
they keep telling the same story
and we hear and see no more
tis a pity
such a waste
thousands of people
and all you show us is nbc.

Saturday, August 4, 2012


     The 2012 London Olympic match of Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova. Another reminder of the inequality.

      A technician who excels is a pleasure to watch, to dream we are the star. We are in the competition using all our wits to win the day. We make believe we are in the thick of it, that we have prepared, invested the time it takes to be the best. We make believe we had the resources, the team to back us up, the strength of will to persist through the physical test, that our commitment is equal and surpassing the opponent.

     We dream about being the star, internationally renowned, recognized instantly. The thoughts of the days, shining brightly, working towards a goal that is achievable, being the best.

      And once every four years we imagine that it is us with the camera following. And we enter the arena, ready to battle. The past four years we have prepared, spent the time to hone our skill to meet the challenge.

      We are on foreign soil, representing our nation, one of the few,' the chosen, the proud '. We are anxious. The years spent fine tuning the focus, devotion, poise, strength, skill, polish. All of it, we have everything to be the greatest in the world. And we enter the arena.

      And when we win, they bow to us, they salute us, they honor us, rewards, recognition, accolades, every gift imaginable has been laid at our feet. We have earned our place at the top of the ladder, the head of the table, first in line. And no one can take that away from us, 'we are the champions', at fifteen at sixteen at thiry one, we won, and representing the country, all the people, everyone. We have made it a success for every person in our nation, big and small short and tall, mothers fathers, sisters brothers, good guy bad guy, each and every one of them. We did it for them, and we did it for ourselves. We were driven, we were pushes, we were there, and we won.

     And everybody is happy, everybody on our team, everybody that rooted for us feels sooo good, and we did that, we worked so hard for so long to make so many feel so good.

     And our manners don't matter, they did not and do not care, that we are out of control in our social skills. They make excuses for how we act. They overlook that we are rude crude selfish and ill mannered. They let us get away with everything because we are their only chance at winning and they want to feel to know what it feels like to win. The 'common man' wants to know what it is like to be a star and if they root for us, and we win, they get a little glimpse at what it is like to reach the top, and it makes the rest of their day tolerable.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

It is the middle of the night
a time of quiet
when all are asleep
the place of repose
the place of replenish
the body working to repair and rebuild.

The moon light the sky
The air still, filled with the remnants of the heat of the day
All is quiet

Stillness echoes the tick
 the sound of the  clock marking the passage of time, it bounces off the walls singing the chorus, time, time, timmme
 the clack of the keyboard the base backup softening the echo  to a hum.

The cats are returned from the prowl, they have finished eating their fill for the fuel they need to keep them too in a place called sleep. They are resting, grooming each other, purring the pleasures of comfort, the security of indoors, each other, and the leather love seat where they found their favorite groove of repose.

The kitten  we call boots, still uncontrollable with his aggression, still learning his feline ways has just disturbed the peace.
He begins to jump and play at the game of attack, he rises straight up in the air like a Mexican jumping bean or a kid on a trampoline.
Gus, the elder of the two, wants no part of of the game, strolls away from the center of the stage and finds another resting spot, away from the bouncing baby kitten.

The August moon sits high, it lights the landscape, with soft shadows of dusk, the eyes can see afar and the night seems like day, letting the eyes view the hidden time, the hour of night when the creatures of the hour share the horizon as their domain, and no one interrupts. It is their arena, and they are free to roam to travel their territory to do whatever it is that they do. And there are no eyes on them, it is their tennis court, their hour on the field, their place and hour, and the moon lights the path and maybe changes their manner, on this moonlit night.

The stillness marks the surroundings, the fireplace more noticeable, it appears larger, more massive, closer. The fan overhead rolls with a silent whirr as the reflection of light spins with the shadows. The reflection of paddles softly wave images rolling in a circle on the ceiling.  The dancers are twice the measure they are reflecting the maidens tip toe with the sheer fabric anchored in their fingers, the ballet of the maidens of the fan waltzing in the night, they fill the roof of the room bringing the ceiling closer, beckoning, inviting the mind, to join with its steps in time.

Now the walls are calling.  Each painting animates, awake in the stillness, yawn, stretch, alive.

Can you hear the sound of the river by the cabin in the woods as it rushes to its destination down into the valley.  It is flowing at its pace with its partner, gravity, travelling, a journey. They have little notice of the scenery their interest only in the going, they, always together, must keep going.

Heard by the trees, those, the constant spectators, is the ripple and splash, ripple and splash, as they look to the snow capped mountain away in the distant memory of the rivers past its star of the start .  It could be day or night, there are clouds masking the time, anytime, day or night . If there is smoke coming from the cabin's chimney it is hidden by the rooms dim light, and I can not recall if there is a  fire or not. I shall wait for daylight.  There is too much magic to turn on the overhead lamp.

The queen, an African, reigning on leather with a background in earth tones holds court at another wall.  She is her alert usual self. She  reigns with no opinion, neither happy nor sad, regal in posture, elegant and noble.

Sitting below the queen, two small landscapes, with fir tree focal points, stars,  separate from the group, alone in their sphere. It is  always winter in these scenes, cold, even though there is no snow, always a chill.

Near the cabin in the woods is a chrysanthemum. A painting larger than the others, with the center of the mum filling the painting. A brownish beige with white reflections of petals.Look again at the shadows from the fan.  It is the only painting in the house that the housekeeper remarks about. She  crooks her neck and looks at it. First standing in one spot, then another. She comments about her eyes always seeing it in a different way. It seems to be growing on her.  She is not sure why.

An abstract pony rides alone on another wall. The neck stretches upward  raising the head with strong muscle, a stance that evokes ancient memories of wild mustangs free to roam, standing at the mountaintop, silhouettes  against the sky and the air and the ground.

There is a chalk of fruit in burnt oranges on a table that is anyones. It is near the larger still life, a classic of flowers in vase with splash of pink that brighten the panelling. Nestled between them  two abstracts of sombre colors, pictures that you stare at, not knowing why and what one is thinking, the out of mind experiences, the trips to other galaxies, comfortable besides the  bowl that has holes in it. Little craters of netting or a netting of craters, it would not be good to hold food, definitely a no to liquid, it would be lost forever. Would we have to use the brass door nob besides it. It was a gift, years ago, presented by a scant acquaintance. It is an official bank door knob from Wall Street. A large triangle with the door knob at the center. It is on the wall now to remind us to keep opening doors instead of closing them. It did not work rather well as a paperweight.

The two Japanese prints have villages, walkways and rooftops nestled on a mountainside. A dense population rendition of life in Japan. It is done with fine lines, and soft hints at color. A genteel view of a community of friends and neighbors. A tranquil scene,  of a peaceful place.

Monday, July 30, 2012


   Jesus Christ!!! Does no one question that all religions worship a male as the highest power. Does there not seem to be a control issue here. Muhammad, Allah, the father, the son and the holy ghost(perhaps the ghost is bisexual).

    Here is a hospital, it has wards because it is to care for the masses not the most affluent. Bed one needs to have the christian last rites so the priest arrives with the holy book, water, sacraments and garb to denote the status of holy person. Praying in a whisper the preacher bends over the member of the flock who will soon depart for greener pastures. All the gestures are performed according to ritual.

   Bed two has a Hasidim Jew, also soon to depart. The rabbi dons the yarmulke, and takes his holy scarf from his waistline, allowing the fringe to flutter in freedom. The rabbi, another male leader of the religion opens his holy book and begins to sing and sway to the music of the soon to be departed blessing for spending life as the good book declares is appropriate.

    Bed three is the muslim, his bed must be moved to accommodate his closest relative a imam to put his rug, that was rolled up and transported under his arm, down on the hospital floor, so he can kneel facing west, and pray to allah. His relative knows it is the hour when the holy are called to give praise, it is the law, and he cannot leave the bed, his relative is paying homage in his stead.

   The three die at the same time, at the exact same hour, minute , second. Their gods having the need to recall them from the same place at the same time. And they were gone. And their holy representatives pick up their paraphernalia and depart to the same elevator to the same exit to depart the building. They tip their hats in acknowledgement of the others, and go on their own ways.

   The hospital is not a public institution, it is a hospital funded by the proceeds, tax free proceeds of the donations paid to the catholic church, an organization whose hierarchy is totally male. And these males have asserted the rule that females have rights to lead the community from any of their official titles. That the females have the right to serve is lauded, and their right to be served, denounced. Unless of course you are Mother Teresa, living under the rule of poverty in some godforsaken hole, tending the lowliest of the flock, to ensure their affinity for her religious organization.

    The females on the planet have been subjugated because of their physical position, for  the propagation of armies of the gods they serve, so their intellectual defense of the organization they have been born to is revered by rote under punishment from the opposite sex which is physically stronger, most of the time. So the females have less ability to enforce independent thought or desire, subjugation by brute force. And they bow and praise the lord.
    Ah men, the mantra indoctrinated into the females generations upon generations. The word as a religious term repeated and repeated in most christian gatherings. The female receiving no standing, she is regarded as Whooo man, warnings for other man to stay away from their personal property.

   And speaking of property, each of these male institutions have ordered whooo man, the male right to dominate their physical being. It is their attempt to control the population of their allies, in an attempt to control their enemies, and still the female, with little time left from their religious duties of paying homage to the male and his instituted laws of his instituted ruler of the realm, follows ten paces behind and bows to their laws.

   And now, in America, there is a faction of male, which believes there is no place for this institution, or rather still. believes there is a separation of the lines of living these beliefs and the law of the land that serves All the people whether or not they hide their income in declaring religious donations on the income tax forms. Allowing for the rights of a small body of individuals who do not wish to continue with the male domination indoctrination.

    Why, as yet, has no one challenged the legality of income tax deductions as discrimination against those who have not as yet, and I reinforce the as yet, formed a non traditional religion for the express purpose although not declared in the minutes of the formal meeting to describe the purpose or teachings of said institution, to funnel funds away from supporting the institution of the government of these united states of America.

   As yet, the females, have no majority of insult, there are the old school students that repeat the mantra ahhhhhhmen, with an orgasmic delight, thanking them every day, all day long and forever for their, the females right to forever praise the male, and his allowing them, the females to be seen in their, the males, presence, albeit in some groups, totally hidden from view, so they appear as black fabrics floating in the wind, and not individuals.

   Ahhhhh the religious right! Their dexterous exercise of freeedom!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

London Olympics 2012

     NBC's performance for the opening of the 2012 Olympic Games in London England was less than mediocre.
     The sound was no adequately adjusted for us viewers to hear the commentary, which was also wanting in substance. There was not a clear explaination as to what was going on. We watchers waited to try to glean an idea of what was evolving. It was not until the turf was being removed that we got the inference of the evolution of a nation/country. Tis a pity, because it is a good story. And a nation of people invested of themselves to make an acceptable appearance.

      Besides that, the camera work bounced around from site to site without weaving the story, it was all of a sudden in one place then another. It, the camera, did not attempt to put a face to some of the thousands of volunteers who gave, to make the games work. We got to see the royal family, and the stars of Britton, all the faces we already know. We never got  a glimpse of the thousands of volunteers. We never saw any of London, or the land outside the arena. They told us of the works project to rebuild a depressed area, but they never showed us what they were talking about. They brouught us to London and never  showed us anything that is London. They showed us all the bodies that filled the arena, and never the faces that went with them.

    There also was no mention of the logistics, how were the blankets illuminated, how many people volunteered, how did they feed all those people. So many interesting facts about the openning ceremony and how they made the event possible.   Worse yet, the questions were not asked. Hey, they just didn't want to spend the money, they couldn't be bothered.

     A nation extended itself to present to the world a picture of who they are and how they grew, and it was lost to the incompetence or the indifference of the broadcast network.

     And then, when the games began, they chose to spend all the time on the stars of the US Olympic team and never shared with us the other teams of  the other nations.

      A sterile show, too bad the people of London, all the money invested in presenting London to the world was/is wasted.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Still sitting in the chair waiting for winter
The suns shine is stark and oppressive
The summer is warming the skies and driving the animal life to hunt in cooler climes.

The fauna has all but disappeared
The soil a golden brown
That rises to the sky with every flicker or breeze

There is nothing to look for
No suprises in the green
No new flower budding
No weed inbetween

There is nothing to look for
Sitting here in the same chair
Waiting for winter.

Maybe it will come with avengence
Maybe it will be a regret to wish for
Maybe it will be as oppressive as the summer
Mayge it will be
me sitting in the same chair looking for winter.

There is a sadness to the time
the less to do
the less to have
the less there is

The people unemployed
The people fighting
The people hungry
The people angry
The people sad
all here with me
sitting in the same chair
waiting for winter.

Friday, July 27, 2012

The anarchist

    My great uncle Vito was an anarchist. He wasn't much taller than a kitchen chair. I always saw him in a suit and tie. His hand was always reaching into his breast pocket for one of the propaganda pamphlets he would pass out to anyone who would reach for it.
    An odd memory was of the whole family seated at the dining table at grandmas and grandpas one Sunday. My long hair fell down my forehead reaching my lip. I went to move the hair away from my mouth so I could continue with my macaroni feast. Then, my great uncle began to yell at me that I should not touch my hair at the table.

    When he saw me chewing gum he asked me if I knew that chewing gum was made of rubber.

     His wife, who was not a blood relation of mine was also strange. She and he would make the trip by train from New Jersey to Brooklyn to visit his sister, my grandmother. It was a four family home. My grandparents had one of the apartments on the first floor, my uncle and his family lived in one of the apartments on the second floor.

     My great aunt would yell from the base of the stairs on the first floor, to call my aunt on the second floor because she wanted my aunt to wash her hair. It was spring and time for her hair to be cleaned. I remember being in the bathroom when the hair was being washed, the water was almost black. I felt bad for my aunt, that she had to do such a terrible thing, to touch such filthy hair. She wasn't even related to my great aunt except by marriage on her husbands side, and she was not a blood relation to him either.

      When my great aunt and uncle would arrive, all the kids would run and hide and avoid both of them like the plague. There was nothing gentle or kind or nice about either of them and we did not bring out any of the best of either of them.

      He was the only one of my grandmothers four brothers that I knew, and I did not like him at all. He was a dictator, a little guy who wielded power within the family, just because the let him. Maybe it was a mark of respect or the weakness of those under the control of another. I was too young to really get a grasp of the hierarchy of the family. He was just a guy I did not like. Not because I did not fully understand his demeanor but because he showed no kindness to anyone in the family. He denied us all a good time. And he is not missed.
The woman standing in the queue at the checkout counter was all in a huff about the delay. The woman behind the counter turned to her and remarked, "What are you getting so upset about? You're gonna die anyway."

what is it.
what do you mean/
what do you want
what can i do

will you help me
will you see me\

will you be there for me
what can i say

time is drifting by
the clock is ticking

and all there is
is right now
this instant
this time
this place
this circumstance
this event
this life
this is now

now is all we have
it is all there is
and yet
we plan for tomorrow
we relish tomorrow
we live for tomorrow

and tomorrow never comes
there is only right now

peace is the only place to be
it is the only time of harmony
it keeps us safe
it gives the body what it needs

like the monks in Tibet
peace harmony tranquility
one with the self
one with the earth

calm quiet peace of mind
with everything spinning around us
we stay still within the self
know thyself
know how to create harmony with in the self
and the self will provide

there is nothing needed
once the self is satisfied
to satisfy the self
one must study what gives quiet to the psyche

can you see the place inside
the place that controls the calmness
the place of peace
the harmony of spirit

can you live with yourself
do you know yourself
there is no one else
without the self in harmony

never mind what anyone else says or does
pay attention to yourself
pay heed to the signals
know who you are
and what is necessary for your well being
with out
and with in
give yourself the best there is
and the best will be yours
the best of times
is the time of peace and harmony
within the self

if you are calm and quiet and at peace with yourself
then you have achieved the pinnacle of perfection
then you know who you are
then you have unlocked all the doors to success
the wealth of oneness with the self
knowing who you are and what you need to be
one with the universe
and the universe will be one with you

give yourself the opportunity to enjoy the freedom
of the wisdom of knowing the self

meet the self so you can live with the self

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Say something funny
almost fun
nothing to laugh about
just something light
a mirror reflection of us
the same stuff we see every day

the life that laughs
the honey of the pot
the laugh to gether
the laugh alone

was once upon a time funny stuff
the things kids laugh at
the silly giddy stuff
that the giggles spread about
the giggles with finger in front of the face
holding in the giggles that laugh through the fingers

the youthful happiness of the young
giggle giggle
right left left right
satin curtains
velvet chairs

the colors of the past
the memories of yesterday
that is what makes us as we are today
the giggle of frogs
the jokes of worms
the laughs of toads

striped shirts
polo before polo

dungarees before jeans
saddle shoes and poodles on skirts
bobbie socks and heavy sweaters

the era of the past
the oppression of the future
the giggle of the present

what do we laugh at
the art of the thinker
the words of the mind
painted a splendid picture

dim lights and boogie music
jazz on the piano
disco on the floor
boogie nights
and jazzy midnights

streams and seaside
the foam of the oceans surf
sand and seashells
washing ashore
remnants of the past
memories of the future
home away from home
away from home at home

sand, sea, seagulls
jonathan livingston
a dream
drifting forward into today
a sweet swift of sentiment
gathering dust in the eye
a teardrop
laughing to tears
tears to laughter
just a joke for today
a giggle a sigh
a laugh in the eye
a twinkle of laughter
a smile
a giggle
another giggle
a laugh
a smile
a twinkle in the eye
a giggle
a smile
let me out
let me laugh
let me smile
let me sit here a while
with a feeling of satisfaction
a smile on the face
a twinkle in the eye
a glad tiding of good bye
only nonsense
just a joke
a poke in the rib
a laugh and a sigh
a giggle and goodbye.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

I am sitting here
   in a chair
waiting for winter

I am sitting in the chair
  that I sat in while
waiting for summer

The days are longer
the nights are shorter
than they were when I was waiting for summer

Like 'waiting for my ship to come in'
i am waiting
for the alignment of the stars
to make it my time

to get out of the chair
that I am sitting in

waiting for winter

Friday, July 20, 2012




   We are all creatures of habit. We like the status quo. We want things to remain the same, if we are successful. If, we are having bad luck,we wish instantly for change, for things to no longer be as they are. If we are having a run of good luck then we are very happy and credit our success to our knowledge and wisdom. If though, things are not going our way, we blame the forces of nature and everything else except ourselves.

  As children, we wish for adulthood to approach rapidly, we want the power of independence to wave it's wand and grant us the wonders of doing it ourselves, making our own way and achieving overnight all the things it takes years to reach. Youth has its advantage, we see adults as static beings, never changing, always as they were, and will be. We do not realize that adults take years to reach maturity. Days to us are lifetimes, night is the longest days the shortest.

  Change happens with or without our permission. We grow taller, then we fill out, then we begin to see some wrinkles appear, the hair thins or turns grey. We long to keep our youth, we want our bodies to stay in peak performance. We enjoy the use of all our faculties at their very best, one hundred percent. It is wonderful, we are healthy, full of vitality and celebrate life. We run we play we live life to the fullest. All is well, we are happy. There is nothing we cannot do.
  There is no limit to our happiness, the sky is blue, the sun shines, we work, we play, we enjoy learning, and growing, and working. We extend ourselves and meet new people. Our world includes strangers, it is no longer simply the family unit, we are branching out. We travel past the corner of our street. We venture into new neighborhoods, we learn about other cultures, we see new things. Our minds expand to include new countries, we travel beyond the boundries of our countries. We explore.

  And then suddenly, as if overnight, our brains are full, or our bodies overworked, and we can not take it all in. We can not add one more thing to our already full lives. We trip over the experience of discord. Everything is no longer going our way, we trip, we fall, we meet disagreement, and disharmony. And we can no longer cope. It is not all going our way. It is not smooth sailing, it is the perfect storm on the sea of change. We begin to cease to win. Our brains no longer grasp things as swiftly, we drop the ball, we hit the brick wall. And we can not cope. We can not function in disharmony. It begins to take it's toll, the price, the body begins to break down, the muscles sag, the eyes dim.

 We begin to be less happy, we are winning less, we are achieving less, it is taking us longer to do the job, it is less fun, it is more work, it becomes difficult.
And we grow more unhappy, we do not relish failure as we do success. Winning is everything.

  And as the time passes, the mind accumulates more and more memories, more data, more information, more memories, and the body becomes weary. And we remember the yesterdays of youth and we are dissatisfied with the present state of affairs, we want the yesterday to be the present. We want the power of the youthful stature to be with us a little longer, so we can play a little longer, we can succeed a little longer. But, alas, it is tomorrow, and we have to live with the memory of yesterday in the body of today knowing that tomorrow will be the less and less of the yesterday. The person whom we were will drift away and all we shall have is the dream of yesterday.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Dear Diary, 7.19.12

   Today is a glum kind of day. One that has little physical or mental activity. The heat is cooking everything inside and out. The little left that is green has turned under to reach the ground from whence it came. The little wildlife left is scrounging the dirt coming closer to the house. The bugs and mice are beginning to come inside in search of food. The cats stand a vigilant watch. The birds have moved north in search of seed. The hum of the a/c is now a drone the buzzes continually singing the song, "wait til the bill comes in baby", then the diet will be for the birds. Right now, the whirr of the forced air seems to be the gerbel running the wheel going no where. The thermostadt is low enough to produce a sweat if there is any exertion. The dust is being pulled through the walls placing a light silt on the furniture, changing the brown to white. I'll let is stay awhile, looks like new. The air is filled with the fine mist of earth that has nothing to cling to. Pictures of the dust bowl come to mind. The house was painted on the outside last year, hope it will stop a bit of the land from moving within.

   It is a listless yoke possessing the town, little but essential traffic, not even a visit to the old watering hole can get us out. The heat sways the air. Somewhere there is activity, somewhere it is cooler than here, somewhere, someone, some ones are busy with the activity of life. The nonsense of everyday chores, not here.

   Much to do, so much to do. Just sitting here thinking about the air. The inside of my nose is so dry it feels like it is outside. Yesterday a bug tried to get to the last of the moisture in my nostril. Then  the giant claw swatted the critter into oblivion.

  It is not Friday. If it were Friday it would seem like there was an end in sight. Three minutes of rain this morning is all we got to the storm prediction. Must carry on with life. They say that every person needs, or uses, thiry gallons of water a day, for grooming and consumption. 'Must think about a way to reduce that amount, must conserve, must watch the water, must be careful, must watch the levels.' Sponge bathe, sink soak the dishes before placing them in the dishwasher, no dishwasher prewashing, soak it. vacuum the dust instead of washing it. Another drone to listen to, the vacuum injesting the dust of outside, that has been sucked inside. The outside moving inside.

  We had brown outs the day before yesterday, five blinks in a row, then five more. If the power goes, the water goes, the well pump won't work and we will have to rely on the bottled water we have for emergencies. Water to keep the toiet clear, and water to drink.

  It has been months, the heat, oppressive, intensive, scalding, beating down, day after day, the brilliant sunshine bleaching the horizon, leeching the green to a pale yellow. The cows are in trouble, less for them to eat, winter wheat. The farmers horde saved for the snow, rolling out to lay before the beasts of beef, months before their time.

  Solar panels would suck in some of the sun, wish I had some. Now all there is to do, is to think safety, and carry on with the day. Do something useful. Do something to distract. Do something.

  I will wash my face, and save the water in a bucket to throw on the floor in the basement to help keep down the dust, until the rains come.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Things and Stuff

All the things I put in the way
All the Things I have to do
All the Things

Things and stuff
             is what we're all made of
The Things with which
             we don't know  what to do
The Stuff we have to put away.

Two abstract terms
To explain, what fills my life.

Stuff the Thing in there.

Where did you put my Stuff.

How much was that Stuff.

I bought a great Thing today.

The bag was filled with Stuff.

There's more Stuff, if you want.

That Stuff is beautiful.

Where did you get that Thing.

I'll trade my Thing for that Stuff.

I found that Thing in my drawer.

I got some Stuff in my eye.

Stuff it in your ear.

I'll watch your Stuff.

Where did you get that Thing.

Some Things are more important than others.

What kind of Stuff do you do.

Where does that Stuff come from.

I'm sick of this Thing.

What are you gonna do with this Stuff.

Did you bring the Thing.

What did you do with the rest of the Stuff.

You know a lot of Stuff.

Get rid of that Thing.

Stuff and Thing
Two great words having many meanings for many people.
They join the club of meaningless Things.
A great coverup for the words we don't know, or the
truth we don't want to say.

Stuff and Things are the places I hide, locking inside;
         what I really want to say.
So people can think whatever they may.

Stuff this Thing in the circular file.

Friday, July 6, 2012

The Big Melon is Gone

Dawn, the darkness is drifting west, before the sun rises to scorch the land. Water whatever is left in the garden. Whatever the deer and the racoon have not feasted upon. The sweet peas, the green beans, the tomatoes, the flowers. The oppressive heat persists. One hundred five and counting.

There is one tomato plant that the deer haven't been able to reach, it is alone with its flowers, sitting in the pot with the bird house. Too much in the way for the face of the deer, perhaps, one tomato will grow, perhaps we will get to eat one tomato grown from the garden and not bought from the farm stand. Everything was planted early. The mild winter made it easy to work the land. We were pleased. Then the rain, gentle, yet enough to cut the hay early. All the farms were busy cutting hay, the view of the rolled bales of hay, dotting the landscape, the sign of productivity, activity and diligence. Then the sun began to warm the ground, and the rain ceased. And the heat continued into the nineties for days and days. And still no rain. The gardens were still flourishing. Flowers were crowding budding and blooming. Bright colors, reds and purples mixed with yellow and orange. And the heat continued. At dawn, out to water, before the scorch of the sun, before the bake of the day.

And then, the deer and the racoon came closer and closer, eating everything to the length of a crew cut. The gardens trimmed to the height of nine inches, enough for the plants to continue to grow. Nothing for us to pick, they beat us to it. The berries too, the birds got there first, on the morning we went to pick.

And yet, the little there is we continue to water, the few flowers that have not been eaten. One hundred five, soon we will no longer water, soon we will conserve water, soon if we are lucky it will rain. The pond is two maybe three feet lower, the fish may get too warm, they too are staying still, can't even catch a one, maybe it is too hot even to swim.

At dawn again today, out to water the little bit of flowers, the little bit of food. They even like cucumber. And oh no, the pretty big melon that we were watching grow, we thought it was hidden, out of sight. They found it, and now the big melon is gone. Maybe it was the racoon.

Thursday, July 5, 2012


Giggle is the word that makes one smile
it is  cute
better than chuckle
chuckle is the jelly candies that are red yellow green and orange
covered with coarse sugar, it is the sweet that sticks to the teeth but yet we eat.

giggle, little children, at innocence, love to giggle
it is a belly erruption that has a satisfaction without indulgence
it does not overtax
nor does it assume more than a momentary attention
we giggle with pleasure
we giggle with a smile
we giggle without reserve

it is a special condition
to giggle

it has an impish tone to it
a relief that surprises
it is like a hug throughout and within
giggle wiggle.

A giggle may be better than a laugh. Oftentimes we laugh at ones demise, but a giggle has no bitter end to it. It is a personal pleasure that costs no one anything. It is a freebee.

Giggle, can you remember the last time you giggled, that silly little erruption you enjoyed, and it lightened your spirits and perhaps lightened your weight. It reduced the heaviness that accompanies age. It makes one feel young again, and is at no ones expense.

So, giggle a little for me, and giggle a little for you, and enjoy a giggle on the house, to giggle, to smile, to giggle.

And then giggle again.
giggle a good giggle, it will let you feel young again.  

Tuesday, July 3, 2012









Sunday, June 24, 2012

Maybe next year

Today, it will hit 37.7777C, 100F in Missouri, after weeks of 90+F with scant moisture. The land is dry, flowers are wilting, the trees are dropping their leaves as the  wind begins to  pick up, blowing  the soil and moisture of the fauna. The  sunshine scorching the blackberries. The air filled with te aroma of the berries cooking on the limb, only missing the pastry for a cobbler or tart.  While pond shrinks a foot lower, the shoreline mud cracked and brittle like the shell of an egg. Soon the fish may boil. The midday siesta is appropriate. Cattle settle below the branches of a solitary tree. Crowding. crouching together squeezing into the shade. The blades of lawn fade, green to yellow to beige to brown wilting to straw, their edges curl, rolling to center. The birds and bugs are silent, resting a la nest. The closeness of the sun beating down, warming, heating, percolating the Central Plains. July will be hotter, August too. The early crop of salad greens, peas, tomato and tomato plants grew well with watering, perfect specimens for the deer, racoon and other wildlife starving from the drought emboldened by hunger lurking closer and closer to civilization. The flowers too, disappear, the plants look as though they were crewcuts, each stem chewed to the same height. leaving some to keep the plants all growing for a nibble tomorrow. The garden planted to share with wildlife is this year their platter alone, only the onion and garlic will they not eat, leaving something for us.
 Somebody ate the beets, maybe tomorrow we'll see if we can find some potatoes. The pleasure of the summer of fresh vegeatables a maybe for next year. This year is simply the memory of the effort put forth to feed us all, and they all went to the table first.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

one night

I do some of my best writing at night. When the lights are out and the eyes are closed. Some of the best writing, done without paper. It is the middle of the night, that is when the brain awakens and the body crashes, when they are at odds with each other. Ah! The bones at rest while the mind travels the hills and valleys of time, past present and future all jumbled together dancing around the corners of the night trying to make sense. When the stillness has its chance to breathe, when the darkness weighs, blanketing the pallet in the softness that caresses the tree and hugs the nest. Ah! the mind unencumbered by its earthly coil winding every way, into the valleys and hills of thought, making sense and nonsense of images and words manipulating each into the tapestry of the day, real and unreal melded together. And then the mind turns the image asunder as it approaches slumber, and the thoughts fold together into the darkness of night.

Monday, June 11, 2012

Tennis again

  And again the pigs are grunting, and the game loses it's aura, as the champions struggle to roar like lions sounding only, like stuffed pigs.

  Is it, are they, the sign of the times, professionally unprofessional. Leaders?

If they are the best of the bunch, what does it look like at the bottom of the pile.

Will Nadal ever get pants that fit, or will doctors fix what is wrong behindhim.

Will maria hear herself.

Will the joker ever become a good sport.

If they are a reflection of us, we are in trouble.


   Life has a way of testing strength, and will. It has a way to interfere with the usual. It disrupts normal, the life routine, it is as uncontrollable as the weather.  The test, it is the ultimate evaluation. Whether an individual prepares for a crisis is not the measure, it is whether or not the individual can withstand the pressures of the annomallies. Can one withstand the difference in the routine that disrupts the daily flow as well as the emotional strain of distress, such as, a dramatic family disruption as caused by a profound illness juggling the emotional distress along with altering routines of life. If an individual that has been in the same routine and environment is  transported into a new residence, as in the case of someone moved to assisted living or nursing care, has the problem reestablishing habits for self care, reestablishing the route the brain must take to function. Persons are comfortable with routines they have honed for years, the place where the brain has links to stored things as when needed. It is simple to find the broom, that has been in the same closet for years. Or the brush that has always been on the shelf next to the comb that was bought on vacation years ago, and then  the mind wanders to the holiday enjoyed those many years past. But now, the brush on the new shelf has no connection to the vacation long past, the mind has to reroute a link, rewire the site back into the memories. This, is not always possible, and the individual who functioned so well, who was so efficient, can no longer establish the link and therefore cannot make the connection with what to do with the brush, and has totally forgotten the holiday so long ago and so fondly revisited. The time is past, erased, no, disappeared in the furrows of the wiring of the mind and can no longer be recollected. And suddenly the spry senior has aged, withered into the shell of wrinkles and dry skin. The flicker of youth, it's glimmer of energy with the spark struck by the discoveries spent, the flames expired. And the little old person sits waiting for the mind to make a connection to the past, that has, and is stored, the lost years, missing, unremembered, the time spent, withered away like the minutes wasted. The body less agile, the strength waning, the abilities draining, gravity hanging, and the stories that warmed the wintry darkness sit in the closed book of the mind, while the old one waits, for the match to strike the spark of the past that has been carried carefully all these years, the treasured thoughts of yesterday. Together they sit, volumes gathering dust on the shelves of today, in a place with no warmth, no history,  no link, no roots. Nothing there but the whisper of the breath slowly slipping into the cloud  that drifts by. And the days pass. The images slowly disappear and the old one gets smaller and smaller as all the memories of yesterday dissolve on the air of today. The less remembered the less able, the less important. the less necessary, the less there is, then there is nomore. And the crisis passes to the next generation, not the same issues, no, new issues, their issues, their crisis of the present, as the past drifts by.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Hello Tanzania

Hello Tanzania. The stats say you are reading the post. What are you doing today. Can't figure how you found us. When I think of Africa I see dry plains of dark dirt with huts scattered close together. I see brush where herds of animals graze. I do not consider high speed internet part of the landscape. Just remembering Mr. Gates donating lots of computers, is that how you got here?

Africa, what does one do in Africa, the same as the rest of us, Food, clothing, shelter, everything necessary for health and well being. Work, a job for dollars, to pay the bills. Familly, to share the good times and the bad times.

Tanzania, I know so little about you it makes me ashamed. Of not knowing about peoples and their lives. Such a silly thought. Should I be responsible for knowing everything. Can life elsewhere exist without me knowing. The little child knows nothing exists except what is before their eyes. There is nothing else but the image before them.

I dream of far away places, the towns I will never see, the land I will never walk, the cultures I will never experience. You are out there, and yet to me you do not exist. Only what is before me do I know. What I can touch with my fingers, see with my eyes hear with my ears smell with my nose. My universe is before me.

Do you exist, are you there. where are you. In a town in a home in a safe place. In a happy place. I dream your whole existence, make your world as i want it to be, and I give to you what I want you to have, wealth, health and happiness. I dream your whole existence just because I saw a statistic that said you were here. Puff! You exist, you are now part of my world. Welcome.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

the 500

Quiet, hear the silence, the air is still, nothing moves.
Quiet, the absence of noise, still.
Quiet, not a sound to be made, the birds are at rest, the sun warm. The leaves on the trees do not move, the branch bowing to the green it holds. The soil keeps in place, the ant asleep in its nest.

A day of stillness, with the energy elsewhere, Indianapolis, the noise of the engines thiry laps to go. The crowd enmassed in the heat. The roar of the engines, the pit crews efficient. The test. The spectators waiting, watching, rooting, cheering, focused on the race, ignoring what else. The cars speed by, the excitement mounting. Two hundred miles an hour, we try to imagine, the reflexes, the eyes watching, theirs and ours. Zoom, zoom. The fastest, the most efficient, the person with the skill, with the machine the best, the luckiest. 'Man' taking a test, to be called the best, and we watch and we cheer, all the energy we share. We want them all to win, we are impressed with them all, we dream it is us behind the wheel, and we know we could not do it and we cheer them, those who can. And we wish them well. The test of the best,  the fastest, this weekend, the memorial event, the challenge, the test, . Everybody gets by,he spins out of control, circles, the car spins round, and they all miss the spinning machine. What a relief, the skill, the precision, the art. Wow that was great, nobody got hurt, fast thinking, good work, good skill, eighteen laps to go. A commercial breaks the tension, distracts the thought, stops the action.



code, maybe
code, no
gibberish, just the fingers fidgeting

there is nobody out there
we are all alone
it is just me sitting here
with my thoughts

remember those gone
remember those here

learn from their mistakes
so the mistakes you make are less painful

life, learning to live with the choices we make
life, looking back at what was
life, looking forward, dreaming what might be

life, living in the now

the sadness of memorial
the faces gone
those close, now distant
the hugs can't be made
the faces of the past
the smiles of days gone by
the people disappeared

the one's that made things better
the people who brought cheer
are they no longer here?

Are the dead really dead,
are they alive because they are still in our head.
Faces dancing, relatives prancing.

When  he is missed, just think, the face appears,
is it him or is it you, alas, he says nothing new.
Flash, a memory from the past, a face long gone by.

Memorial to him to her, to me, to yesterday
and what was to be, the reality of then and the
memory of now. The experience of the past, the way we saw it, changed to the way we want it to be.
Is that the past, or is it the present.
Living in yesterday today, putting them here, at our side. It is getting crowded, we all standing side by side.

The soldier, the sailor, the farmer, the banker the grandma, the cousin, the aunt the uncle. The pieces of our memory, that make us what we be. We needed all of them to come up to me. I would be different if it was not for....

The smile she gave me, the hug from him, the stern look, the scold, the show. We watched their lives, we watched them live, we read the history, now is it us who live, are we pieces of them gathered here, or am I me with memories in me, of who they were and what they did. The stories I tell, the tales I talk, did they happen, or did I dream them. Are you really there, do you know what it is you hear. Do we read it as it was written or do we make our own rules. Do we translate correctly, what in fact is correctly. Things happen, we see them from the corner of our eye, are we color blind or is that the color it is. Nothing is real. We make it real, only because we believe it is real. We make believe it is real.

We make the memorial, we make the memory, we make it the way we want it. no matter what it was, we make it the way we want it.

Our memorial, the faces the way we want to see them, the faces we want to see, Only those that are treasures to you and to me. The rest we never see.
The other memory, yours, not me.

Someone special, someone important, our treasures we remember, those we keep as memory. Treasures we hold, lessons we learned. Hearts, we need, hearts we break. We remember what was important, we remember what we want to give back. We give back what we want others to remember, what was important to us.

How about the bad guy. Lets memorialize the bad guy, because without them there would be no good guy.

Those we celebrate, who are they, why do we celebrate them. Some we celebrate we can not exalt without their alter ego.

But no, not today. We think about them, those we cherish, in our minds eye we love and hug them, because they make us and they made us feel better, feel good. They gave to our lives that which we needed to feel better about ourselves, to feel good about ourselves. They have given to us and we celebrate their gift. Memorial, we remember receiving something special, something only they had to give, something we are counting, that has added to our lives. We celebrate what we receive because it has made us bigger and grander.

Usually not, do we receive, on this day we celebrate we laud we count, that which we got, and not what was taken. And we hope someone remembers to give and not receive, to touch us for the better, and not take, wanting to receive. We want for all to feel better, and it is them we remember, those who have given, from whom we did receive.

To them we are grateful, to them we salute, to them we wish, some day, some one will celebrate us in memorial.