Tuesday, January 20, 2009

New Poem and Video

I know the columns to the right of this post are messed up and don't show until the very bottom, but this is a result of my attempt to put the book and a new picture at the top. I'm so ham-handed at amateur webmastering, I'm in a pickle with pixels.

Some folks have ordered books already, thanks.

Wasn't the inauguration speech grand? Reagan played himself, which is why Obama is more convincing: he is himself.

A first generation African-American raised by a white mother in Kansas. No wonder Jesse Jackson felt cheated. Obama wasn't one of the real "bros."

I wrote an inauguration haiku that caused a bit of a furor at a poetry board, though I thought it was crystal clear:

Listen, slaves:
There's a black man in the white house
and he is your servant.

Now I feel as if I have to explain it. Slaves = all those Americans with the whisper of slavery still in their blood. The man in the white house is, of course, the president. And whereas blacks were only in the White House as servants heretofore, now the occupant is a servant in the highest sense. Someone accused me of racism based on this poem, another said I was unqualified to write it. Some people!

Although I have little energy to blog tonight, I have been seeing a UFO nightly. I think it might be space junk orbiting lower and lower. As it sinks into the sea, it becomes a glowing white disk that casts a silver reflection on the ocean while also pulsing red and green. The local stations and Coast Guard know nothing about it. If I didn't have two other witnesses I might question my eyes.

Here's another poem from the new book, one of my favorites:

In Your Hands

The desert two-lane flashes
its white segments so quickly
you forget the asphalt discontinuities
and think the dashes connected
toward some future rendezvous
where night and morning join
in a secret sunrise of stars
that explains all the causalities
that propelled you here–
but your eyes are sucked back
to this moment, furious and finite
as a fly seizuring against a screen.

The yellow smears on your windshield
are souls you’ve hurt without knowing.
The whistle through the window
is your suspicion of yourself.
The radio plays country
because you really are that simple.

When it’s time to pull over
you are no closer to but no farther
from your goal. In a waking sleep
you imagine topiaries of exhaust
in the shapes of visionaries:
Jesus, Blake, Jules Verne.
Were they as rooted to the moment?
Or did they veer off into the underbrush?
The wheel is in your hands.

(published in Eclectica)

I'm furiously networking to promote the book, a whole new learning experience. By the end of it I should be an expert on what not to do. One tip: Don't expect your Facebook "friends" to be helpful. Here's a wonderful link to a video about how Facebook friends would look in the real world: Facebook in Reality. It's a hoot!

The editor of the re-vamped Pif called me tonight, a swell guy named Derek Alger. He'll be doing a panel on the short story at the AWP conference in Chicago.

Not much more to say but "Congratulations, America!"

Let's hope our support for Obama does not waver in this time of tough decisions and uncertain futures. I think it's in to be patriotic again. Many will remind me that it never went out, but I beg to disagree. I lived in Mexico for three years while Bush was president, and let me tell you, it was downright embarrassing.

Over and out,



  1. I am Italian, we would strongly neeed an Obama in Italy, we are dying of same-putrefying-oldness as far as those who govern us are concerned.

    Obama has one of the greatest smiles in history, I trust him.

    And I enjoyed Aretha Franklin singing for him. The second album of my life was Lady of the Soul, hers, I bought it in 1969 in a supermarket in Venice-Italy where I live.

  2. Dear Tommaso,

    So good to know that one of the points of light around the globe who read me from Italy has a name. Unfortunately Obama is not enough; our nation must buy into sacrifice and patience for the whole ball of wax to turn around; but at least our new president doesn't mince words.

    A previous president, Carter, had a great smile as well, but it was not to be trusted, more a reflex on his part.

  3. Thanks, Glenn, though someone suggested I should insert:

    and he is our servant.



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Unexpected Light

Unexpected Light
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