Thursday, June 08, 2006

Sine Wave Part I Ends; No More Posts Until July Unless You Want Me.


The child is not the father to the man,
only an impressionable embryo.

Casualties ooze between my fingers
like congealed blood, unredeemable:

The little deaths of growing older:
the genuine smile now forced,

The honest glance engineered,
the green hope dissembled.

Is adulthood a capitulation,
a choice, or a deterioration?

I only know that the inevitable
losses we collect by living

Are best accepted and transformed
into a volume of forgiveness

Equal to the innocence displaced.

(Published in Solitary Harvest)
Amazingly, their archives are still available, just click on the link above. They feature two poets by name: myself and Marc Awodey. In the early days of the net he was prominent so I was happy to follow him and try to get published in the magazines in which he had appeared. I was not his fan neither but neither did I dislike his poetry; I took him for a trailblazer in polling art's worth: Did editors consider my poems worthy of publication? I considered him a somebody and I wanted to be one, too.

This was an important phase to me. I should never denigrate the encouragement early e-zines afforded me as a poet. I wonder where Marc is now, and whether I shall disappear as he did, and another writer and friend, Alan Kaufman (he went on to the paying media).
I'll give you a hint about today's piece, which signals a return to normal mood. It's not about "Time heals all wounds." It's about spiritual work, keeping current with the past, going to your brother before you go to the altar with an offering for some unknowable god as an excuse not to face your human burden.

Habits that help sustain sanity, in other words.
As the title of my post states, I will not post again until July. I know many of you are going on vacation, life goes on, etc.
Nevertheless, and I'm not pulling an Oral Roberts here, I need to know if enough people benefit from this blog that I should continue writing. If 10% of those on my mailing list respond, I will continue. If not, I have better things to do with my time. I don't mean this as sour grapes but as a simple calculation of the best investment of my limited talent in the lottery of human need.

Until July (if you wish),


  1. Yup, Solitary Harvest is still out there. (
    This poem was actually entitled: Inevitable Losses.


    Cyber-nerd: Jarod Anderson

  2. I vote you carry on. You are a clever writer. I think you could do more. Meanwhile, this gives you a place to play to a limited and appreciative audience who, speaking for herself, would miss the updates. Awaiting July...

  3. Do what you gotta do... I found that I have been writing more since I started blogging. :-)

  4. Thanks, Guys.

    Yeah, in a re-post I noticed the link was still there, Jarod. I was being lazy.

    Glad Vicki wants me to go on as one small distraction from appellate court life; every little bit helps. Glad to oblige.

    And Cynthia, if blogging means I'll write more, I'll go on even if nobody cares. It does keep me in practice, though since it consists almost entirely of "first drafts," I'm permanently dissatisfied with the usual result. But anything to keep me writing--I'm trying to be a writer, with the hope I may eventually earn a living from it.

    I have the talent, I think, but it's the marketing and networking that really count.

    Thanks again,

    Dr. Chaffin

  5. you need to put a stat counter (free) on your blog- that way you can not only tell how many readers you have but where they come from.

    Keep blogging-

    I believe Marc is still alive and well in Vermont. We corresponded a while bak about his tiny books.

    I would mis you if you weren't here.


  6. yea,,, my problem too is the networking and marketing.

    If I say so myself, I am a talented writer. LOL

    Good luck. Cyn

  7. Anonymous3:10 PM PDT

    Hey Shann. Long time. I still think of you when it's time for SXSW.

    Greetings from Big D, CE, home of the soon to be World Champion Dallas Mavericks, led by a 7' German David Hasselhoff fan.

    Life is very strange.


  8. Anonymous8:45 AM PDT


    I'm still straddling two houses... art, such as it is, has taken a back seat...will respond to your email at some point in the future.

    take care

  9. Dear Norm,

    "Life is what happens while we're busy making other plans."

    I always attribute that to John Lennon but Kathleen's not sure.

    Me, I'm still straddling depression, and now Kathleen's gone down, too (she's a recurrent unipolar). But we'll get through this, we always do.

    Still, it's rare that one of us goes down unless the other remains up. All backwash from Mexico, I expect.

    Teresa White is being hospitalized for mania today.

    Stay in touch; everyone's gotta take care of business.


  10. Hi CE,

    I agree with Shann, a stat tracker can be a real ego booster/stabilizer. Dear Tobacco uses eXTReMe Tracking ( but there are tons out there to choose from. I like this one for it's discreet button.

    As for writing, your works are powerful and will continue to touch people far into the future. The beauty of the internet is you never know how/why people will benefit from your work. With google and curiosity you could have a visitor in 3 years that would benefit from the post you will write tomorrow. Or the next day. Or the next month. It's a subtle gift to be able to write like you do, and a subtle reward you'll have to trust in. Keep writing :-)


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