Archive for August, 1993


Posted: August 31, 1993 in Poetry
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Take 200

Posted: August 31, 1993 in Poetry
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and when
I fall in love
with you
it is all over,
pain and
like a promise
for changing
the same
if I can beg
for the sun
and the rain

Pocket Change

Posted: August 31, 1993 in Poetry
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I can feel the sum sadness
of everything, in each object,
filled tablespoons with a hose of sadness,
the impermanence of happiness
when good is how they are now;
in moments it is gone,
I’m watching the cherished abandoned,
and the whirl of the clock is
the blur of this sadness, this change.

Pennywise as a Lover

Posted: August 30, 1993 in Poetry
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when I am away
I know that I am in love
with you,
with salts and breezes
from the ocean
that would go well
with your blonde hair,
helium balloons
for your big blue eyes,
dripping sandcastles
in the reflection of the sun
on the sealskin sand
of the tide on the beaches.

and I am the mist
that crawls in off the old pieces
of the sea that were caught
in tidepool fishing nets last night;
I come wrapping, a stole
around the necks of the cliffs,
rising up from the beach,
heads sheared off like
so many broken Michaelangelos.

I’m just plain loco, down on a funky track
slam the sick vocal, here comes the wick-wack
get back on the ska train handing you the new hype
come around to my block and learn why my name is Mike
juggling the fresh rhymes, not with the attitude
that I gotta shoot my gun just to prove I’m real rude
boy you got to get off thinking in the tunnel side
scramble you some truths now, better open real wide
put it in your pocket, hang it on a shingle
keep it like a gift you got from Kris Kringle
take it to your head now, kick it to your friends now
tell it over red wine, caviar or puppy chow
‘cause I got the new style, pushing trippy lyrics
if you go and blink, son, you’re never gonna hear it
then you get frustrated, maybe wanna throw down
I’m the big bad wolf and you’regonna blow down
like a straw building, a hut made of matches
punch your eyes with toothpicks, know you gotta catch this
thoughts coming too fast, gotta read the insert
then you try to lip sync at my fucking concert
like Milli and Vanilli, some guys are all the same
first it’s girl you know it’s true then they blame it on the rain
never mind now, my tricks will never get dull
I got a Dr. Seuss circus matineeing in my skull
a lion whip, a bong hit, my words are spouting clout
I’m the prize in Cracker Jack and once again I’m out.

on my driveway in Point Loma,
smoking 3 cigarettes,
I thought it was my cat Ferguson
cracking bird-bones at four in the morning,
but the white and grey patchy creature
was a shiny eyed opossum,
who moved off as fast as it could
back down the sidewalk
after discovering its way back to its lair
in the college leaf-lined drainpipes
was guarded by a flannel-skinned human.
insomnia can be a great thing
when the TV isn’t running any Godzilla movies
or Kung-Fu Theater;
then the silence outside, the cool air
can be heard straining to beckon
with no mouth, no gestures,
just an often overlooked phenomenon.
some will travel huge distances
to find beauty in waterfalls and vistas
that are easy to pretend that no one else has seen,
yet the early morning hours of solitude
and a token nightlighting of vapor lamps on telephone poles
is the hush of the spectacular
that not many appreciate,
right outside their heavy-lidded windows.


Posted: August 29, 1993 in Poetry
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a cat calls beneath my window
and my stomach hurts
from constipated poetry;
I’m turning into mush
from trying to lift these
literary weights and be like them,
dreaming of storefront windows
and cardboard displays…


Posted: August 27, 1993 in Poetry
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Posted: August 22, 1993 in Poetry
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you asked me once upon a time
if I could hear the speech of the sea.
I said yes and that
was where are agreement ended;
you heard eulogies, laments,
cries of change and supportive flesh,
the echoes of watery hands
drumming on cliffsides,
rolling rocks into its stomach,
a maelstrom of creative fury
controlled and unleashed
by the whim of the innocent moon.
But when I hear the ocean,
it is a purring cat, content
on lapping milky foam
on the sands of this one beach
and saying to me over and over
as it launders the shores
“hush . . . it’s alright”.

Hiding in your Linen

Posted: August 22, 1993 in Poetry
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perhaps I fall closer to perfection
because I confront the big change directly;
I think that into it’s audience eyes
and court it with depression and teasing razorblades.
you who cover it with sheets and sweaters
to make it not what it is but more
comfortable do it a disservice
and it will remember;
it will use your own linen as camoflage
to catch you unaware and unprepared.


Posted: August 20, 1993 in Poetry
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how do you
express the depths
of your heart?
as a black hidden lake
far underground
that I paddle around on
catching blind white fish
in the luminosity of my eyes
and croaking to my precious self.

Drive to Suicide

Posted: August 16, 1993 in Poetry
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why do I have to walk around
with the anvil of potential suicide
balanced on my head?

some people ask themselves
why aren’t I normal? or
why aren’t I like the rest of them?
well, this is not normal.
the human being would not have evolved
as far as it has if it had a normal drive to suicide.

I honestly think about it most all of the time
and once in a while
it is more than a shadow;
isometimes the whole damn monster
comes out of the closet
and crouches, towering over me, whispering
about the unseen benefits of suicide.

how many years will I stick around,
waiting for things to get “better”,
always listening with half an ear
to the crack of the closet door?

Hardship Friendship

Posted: August 16, 1993 in Poetry
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As you go
I don’t know
where we stand
or how close you feel
to what I feel for you.
Sometimes this stands me still
wherever I am,
especially playing the piano.
I will suddenly think of you
and your mind,
then I wonder if I’m ever going to see you again.
If I’ll be able to touch your face,
hold your hand,
and be able to tell you I love you with my eyes.
I wonder how cold time can be
to the single struggles of a sometimes hardship friendship…

Thee First-Born

Posted: August 16, 1993 in Poetry
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Twisted is thee way to what you seek.
Labyrinthine; swathed in thee shrouds of the Dead.
Thee sparks and shrapnel ov conflicting Faiths
Burns holes in thee very fabrick ov thee World.
What was undone has done again.
Thee Trees have spoken ov their Fear.
Shackles lay empty but intact
On a cold Stone floor, in thee Darkness.
Thee depths ov Silence murmur:
Thee sound heard in dry riverbeds
When it is raining in the nearby hills.
Take heed ov thee Guidance of the Divine;
Take steel to clothe and to cleanse;
Take care that your deeds suit your words.
Yea, even as your thoughts are actions.
Thee olde First-Born comes as Fire,
With tentacled flames ov despair.


Posted: August 8, 1993 in Writing
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Leopold sat on the steps of the 3 story apartment building with a paper bag between his knees. He was wearing a torn red flannel shirt that draped over it, so it was a little bit hidden. It looked like there was a sandwich in it. I sat across the street on my fire escape in the hot shade with a sketchbook and drew him.
“Leopold!” yelled a woman from inside the apartment building. He didn’t answer. She screamed again and he didn’t even react. I squinted through the shimmers of the sunlight cracking the pavement and decided that Leopold was drunk. I drew some lines around his eyes and turned his mouth down at one corner. That made the drawing look more like Leopold. Maybe I could sell it for a few bucks to his old lady to get a bottle of 7-Up.
Two other tenants walked up to Leopold. They had come back from the corner store. One of them, a fat Mexican man everyone called Tio Ramon shoved a bottle of wine in Leopold’s hand and told him to drink up.
“You’ll get better!” he guffawed, then tore the wine out of Leopold’s hand and drank some, red liquid spilling down his chin and making dark spots on the cement. Leopold didn’t move much; once he looked up at the other man whom I didn’t recognize for a moment, then went back to staring at some point on my apartment building.
The man I didn’t know leaned on his cane. It was a black lacquered cane with about the last six inches of it painted white and it looked like his prize possession – he leaned down with his other hand and patted Leopold gently on the head, then turned and started walking into the courtyard. Tio Ramon shouted some filthy Spanish into Leopold’s ear and walked after him.
Leopold sat there, quite nicely for another fifteen minutes, then, as I was drawing the trash cans to the right of the steps, he got up very slowly. I glanced over the top of my sketchbook and watched him pick up his paper bag carefully by the bottom and walk around the corner down the alley towards Giuseppi’s, which started serving cheap keg beer about this time.
I finished the trash cans and thought about putting a cat in by Leopold’s feet to make him look a little less sad when I heard a single gunshot tear around the corner and sing Hallelujah to the rest of San Diego.

Untitled Poem #169

Posted: August 7, 1993 in Poetry
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we write poems when our tongues tie
together in my mouth, behind your lips;
unspoken words like unnoticed snow
in the shade of a tree in the high mountains.


Posted: August 7, 1993 in Poetry

Voy a mi casa a solas
porque necesito escribir poesia de tu
y pensar que si mi amor esta quebrada.
No es posible a pensar sin pensando de sus ojos
y que los miran en miyos.
No se que todavia estamos luchando.
Qure dire a ayudarte?
Tengo un gran pasion
a ver sus ojos lleno de amor por mi.
Ne se como vuelva al tiempo
cuando seramos alegres.

Tanya After Six Months

Posted: August 7, 1993 in Poetry
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poor Tanya.
still nothing goes the way you plan it.
call me again from Fresno.
warn me that you’re returning
and that you don’t want to see me,
talk to me, hear from me
be cause I called your ex-boyfriend
[my friend]
after we fucked drunk
and I felt badly.
what were you using me for?
when were you going to tell him?
I’ve watched you use him for 3 years.
after you could no longer use each other
(he got tired of you like he was going to)
and you came to Santa Barbara
to get even by screwing a close friend of his,
I messed up your plan, didn’t I.
you were going to keep it as a nasty souvenier;
something to cherish as a little secret
and maybe mention in passing
just in case he was doing the same thing
to guard against you.

Rumble’s Cavern

Posted: August 1, 1993 in Writing
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After one great adventure, Rumble the good-natured half-Ogre decided to leave the life of a mercenary and become a businessOgre. He had enjoyed swinging his oversized weapons to save the kidnapped daughter of a Duke, but he was really in search of something else. And he hadn’t found it sliding down secret traps into spike-filled pits.
Upon presentation of the stolen princess or whatever she was, everyone had been awarded riches and presents. Even Rumble, as he admitted himself, who had been the butt of many insensitive Ogre or “half-breed” jokes all of his life out of fear of his size, strength and heritage, was awarded the same as his other companions. As his friends decided to pursue adventure and danger and riches, Rumble invested his money elsewhere. The big city he had come to was a far call from the small port of Nazbo back in Orcland where he had originally set sail for adventure. This menagerie was teeming with all sorts of humans and demi-humans with half-Orcs the most populous of the humanoid peoples. His half-Ogre bulk made it difficult for Rumble to get about without attracting stares, so he quickly went about his business and signed up to crew a ship leaving for home.
While in the bustling city of Chigoca, Rumble sought out a Sage of no little repute, who had a great knowledge of unusual things and was reputed to have the ability to blow smoke rings in different colors. Rumble was fond of smoking tobacco, a habit he had picked up during a week-long stay with the Halflings who had rescued him from being lost in Lurkwood, but had never been able to blow a smoke ring. Rumble had tarried with the Hobbits for a week, performing voluntary labors in thanks for his timely rescue from a spider of extraordinary size who had caught him in a well spun lasso of silk. Cutting him free in the nick of time were a pair of Halfling woodspeople, Nicholas and Anatina Merryfoot, who proceeded to help Rumble dispatch the bloated purple arachnid and then lead him out of the forest to their secluded and hedge-encircled town. After a week’s visit, Rumble was fondly attached to his small friends, and in bidding each other farewell, Rumble left his rescuers with a bone totem of his father’s which would be significant in bargaining with the local Ogre Stonethrower Union, and Nick and Tina gave him a furred tobacco pouch and a feathered oak and brier pipe, carved with big people dancing with little people, tailored to his respectable size. Rumble also recieved a half-pound of fresh tobacco and enough seed to grow his own patch. After this strange and happily-ending encounter, Rumble made his way by foot to Barrelton, and then sat smoking on the edge of a raft with his large feet in the water until he reached Walpurgis, where he walked to Nazbo and thence sailed into a short career adventuring.
After the rescuing-the-Duchess business, Rumble found himself running out of tobacco. The Halflings had an undiscovered luxury in a long cut and unique cavendish tobacco; the coarse and unrefined burleys that were available in Chigoca were not to Rumble’s liking. He quickly learned that the Halflings’ cavendish was much more potent and mellow, whereas the port’s tobacco was almost uncivilized. Wherever he went and smoked, soon a few dignified people would overcome their racist disgust and inquire about the beautiful aroma that arose from his pipe. Rumble was always as friendly as he could be; after all, his purse had been stolen or cut four times in the city, and would let his audience pass his pipe around and try some of the Halfling blend. Many offered to purchase his tobacco, but Rumble always declined; after his adventuring, he was well-off anyways and didn’t want to sell any of his gifts from his friends Nicholas and Anatina.
Inquiring at the door of a large basalt tower in the midst of a well-kept garden, Rumble was ushered into a small antechamber to await the arrival of the Sage. After a few minutes, he arrived in person. Balding, yet with a full grey beard, the Sage was dressed in flowing grey and white robes and carried a tablet of fine paper, an inkwell, and a white-plumed quill.
“I have yet to actually meet a half-Ogre,” the Sage said affably, sticking out his hand, “I hear that you require my services, and I decided to put off some of my studies in order to hear about your concerns.” Rumble hastily rose and bowed uncomfortably, then gingerly shook the old Sage’s hand.
“Thank you, your majesty,” Rumble didn’t know how to address a person of such magnitude.
“Oh, bosh!” said the Sage good-naturedly, “I saw you admiring my gardens and you looked intriguing. Being a Sage pays well but can be extremely dull. What can I help you with?”
“Well, your holiness,” started Rumble, “I would like to know more about smoking a pipe and growing tobacco.” The Sage lifted a grey eyebrow, and several blue twinkles escaped and dropped on to the rich carpet.
“Yes,” said the Sage, “I smoke a pipe upon occasion. Go on.” Rumble proceeded to tell him the story of how he was lost in Lurkwood and saved by the Merryfeet and came to smoke a pipe through the Halflings of Orcland. “And I haven’t been able to find any other tobacco quite as pleasent to enjoy in my pipe,” finished Rumble lamely.
“But you stated that you had seeds to grow your own tobacco,” reminded the Sage.
“But I’m frightened to plant them,” said Rumble, “I’ve never farmed before – all I’ve been told I’m good at is fighting.”
“Ah, now that,” intoned the Sage, “is complete nonsense. I can tell you many tricks about farming and the tending of plant life and will be happy to do so. But first I ask a favor of you, Mister Rumble.”
“You can just call me Rumble,” the half-Ogre said shyly, “I’ll give you all the money I have if you want.”
“No, no, my boy!” laughed the Sage, “No, nothing like that. I have enjoyed just listening to you and studying a half-Ogre up close. And I must say that you are much more pleasent to speak with than most of my snobbishly rich clients anyhow.
“No, the favor I ask for is a bowl of this Halfling cavendish that you have made my mouth water with in your descriptions.” Rumble was taken by surprise; he hadn’t been expecting this, but he knew he should have been. After all, the Sage had said that he smoked a pipe now and then.
“Of course, your lordship,” said Rumble, hesitantly bringing out the last of his tobacco.
“Stop with that ‘lordship, holiness, majesty’ crap, Rumble,” laughed the Sage again, losing a few more twinkles which flew about his head for a few seconds, “I only yesterday entertained a man who offered me a good sum of money to find out where a certain half-Ogre obtained his wondrous tobacco. I can only assume he meant you. Of course, I don’t do detective work like that and refused him; you paying me a visit is just another humorous coincidence that I’m sure I will fondly recall in the years to come. Now, pass me that golden Hobbit cavendish!”
Rumble peered into his tobacco pouch, which was more like a normal man’s satchel, and sighed. His last bowl. But if the Sage would tell him how to grow what he had, then he could be happy, and live a peaceful life as a tobacco farmer. He passed the bag carefully to the Sage, who looked into it and then at Rumble.
“Judging by the size of your pipe, this is your last bowl, son,” said the Sage slowly, “I won’t take your last bit of tobacco.”
“No, please, go ahead,” said the half-Ogre, “I’d just like to learn to grow the seeds as best as I can so that I can have my own Halfling cavendish to smoke and share with other pipe smokers.”
Looking out from under his craggy brows, the Sage looked quizzically at Rumble, and then deftly packed himself a small bowl of Halfling tobacco in a long-stemmed platinum pipe that he had shaken out of his voluminous sleeve.
“Thank you very much, Sir Rumble,” said the Sage gratefully, firing his pipe with a aimless wave of his hand. Handing the pouch back to Rumble, who found he had most of his last bowl remaining, the Sage sat back in his high-backed armchair and puffed.
The Sage raised an eyebrow, then the other one came up to meet it. He readjusted himself a little lower in his armchair. He put his feet on the coffee table. His eyes shot little fireworks of blue surprised twinkles that lazily fell like feathers into the valley of his white robes between his legs and stayed there, dancing little jigs. The Sage smoked in silence for ten minutes; Rumble patiently waited, though his back was beginning to hurt from sitting straight up for so long. Then the Sage knocked his pipe out on the sole of his shoe and conjured up a little whisk broom and dustpan to clean it up.
“This is amazing. I have smoked everything available on this continent and three or four imported aromatics, not to mention my share of fascinating substances and magickal reagents, and nothing is as purely enjoyable as this Halfling stuff,” he whistled, “You’re wishing to grow this stuff?”
“Yes,” answered Rumble simply.
“Well then, Rumble,” said the Sage as he stood up, swirling his robes around him as Sages do, “Let us take a walk in my garden and discuss the nurturing and growing of plants. Especially tobacco plants.”
For a week, Rumble and the Sage researched and spoke and talked. Rumble tried many of the special tobaccos that the Sage had tried and agreed that the Halfling cavendish was by far the mellowest and most relaxing. They discovered that tobacco was unusually resistant to duplication spells and other magicks of that sort, and on the sixth day, the Sage called upon the Grand Druid of Wolvesbane Forest through his magickal apparatus, and spoke at length with him. The Grand Druid also sampled a small amount of the Halfling tobacco, and proclaimed it another miracle of Nature. After the week was up, the Sage came to Rumble and spoke of an answer.
“Between the Druid and I, we have researched many ways to insure your tobacco crop,” started the Sage.”I have placed a short piece of advice on each of the pages of this book…”
“But I can’t read!” stammered Rumble.
“Don’t worry; they’ll speak to you,” replied the Sage testily, “Anyways, there is your research. And there will be no cost for you to pay except for the generosity which you have already demonstrated.” Rumble stood waiting.
“Of course, Rumble,” said the Sage gently, “You know how I love my gardens.”
Picking five seeds out of the secret pocket of his now empty tobacco bag, he handed them to the Sage and shook his hand gingerly again.
“Thank you very much!” Rumble said as he turned and made his way out of the lush gardens, through the stony gates and to the wharf to find passage back to Orcland.

* * * * *

Hiking north from the Keep at Gronk towards Noland, Rumble stopped at a small wooden homestead where Grizzle Road meets the north-south Madonna Road.
“Howdy, stranger!” said a man in leather overalls from the porch. He was in his early thirties and had pleasant crow’s feet at the corners of his eyes. He introduced a woman sitting next to him. “This here’s my lovely wife, Rebecca. Do we have any coffee left?” he asked her.
“I’ll go see, sugar,” she said, getting up and disappearing inside.
“Hello, sir,” said Rumble.
“My you’re a big guy,” said the man, walking down the steps towards him, “Might I ask who and, sorry about this, what you are?”
“Of course,” said Rumble, who was used to explaining his size, “My name is Rumble, and I’m part Ogre.”
“Well, now; that expains a lot. Care to have a cup of coffee?” The man walked up and shook his hand warmly. “ “Becca’s always got coffee on. My name’s Rump. I’ve opened a sort of stopping place – a general store, you see. I figure that there should be a town around here sometime soon, this being halfway between Gronk and Tadox, which is just a speck in the eye of the Maker, anyhow. Where’re you travelling to, Rumble?”
“I’m looking for a place to plant some crops,” said Rumble a little bit guardedly.
“Well, I don’t want to make you stop here, but there’s a pretty patch of land just up beyond the circle of the two roads, over yonder past those big trees you might want to look at,” Rump pointed up the road about 400 yards, “There’s a little spring right past those trees on the grassland side, and a gentle valley that gets good sun all day.” Rebecca came out with three cups of coffee and they stood in the road in the late morning, talking.
After a while, Rumble said he would go look at the land; he was tired from a long journey, and had had a bad experience in Paddywak with a gang of brigands. Rump and Rebecca were sympathetic, and they told him he could leave his belongings at the house while he traipsed around.
The trees that Rump had pointed out were huge; they were all massive oak trees with great histories enscribed in their bark and in the boles of lost limbs. The spring Rump mentions sprang from the roots of one of the great trees and bounced merrily down through the grassy slopes into one of the many small riverbeds in the mild rolling fields of the Jumpback Grasslands. Sitting down in the shade of one of the oaks, Rumble took out his tobacco pouch, which now held the book the Sage had given him. He opened it up and leafed through the pages to the section on proper land. He held the book up to the scenic view of the valley, and it exclaimed immediately: “Perfect!”