Monday, March 31, 2008

you can take the boy out of the cinema
but you can't take the cinema out of the boy

kicking it old skool

from left to right: leia, me, tom & miles

newest member of the group
leia farrell

miles and soliel.

what's a trip is that i learned miles, now a professional actor, portrayed for years the lucha libra hero extraordinaire el tigre diablo during the intermission stage shows at the trash film orgy. i had no idea it was miles on stage. he was fucking hilarious.

here's an article about the trash film orgy and a pic of miles in el tigre diablo drag.

tom wolfe reading as rev. reacharound

catalin and tom

saturday before last several of my old poet friends got together for the first time in close to 17 years. thanks to the tireless efforts of catalin who managed to track at least half the group down. what is amazing is not the passage of time but the fact that the time whizzed by so quickly. nearly all of us now are parents and what dropped my jaw is that one old friend, tom wolfe, is the father now of a 19 year-old. tom was 19 when i met him!

we called ourselves the beatrice collective because we were young and ambitious and because i think there is beauty in dante's love's name. we met at the jc american river college where poets such as geoffrey nutter and ric cole were in the periphery of our group. i don't know what happened to cole, i remember him vividly as a talented writer and i've googled his name but come up with nothing. i'd love if he self-googled his name and came upon this blog. nutter i don't remember tho our paths must've crossed paths at least a couple of times.

this is the roster of the collective. i name them because i think names are important, that friendships our important, and the fact that cat was unable to find a few.

mike newland

soliel paz tranquilli


richard lopez

bill leyva

tom [t.e.] wolfe

shauna hubert

tom balfour

chene watson

miles miniaci [nee minnies]

i think that's it. tho my memory ain't what it used to be. so if i left someone out i'm sure i'll get the what-for.

anyway, we had a lovely, long evening. i didn't get home till 3:30 a.m. what is astonishing is how the passage of the years vanished. all of us are now in our late 30s, early 40s, and we picked up right where we left off.

i suppose i posted that piece of poem by duncan mcnaughton yesterday because when i was re-reading his book bounce [first intensity press; 2007] yesterday it resonated with me how important our relationships are. mcnaughton places great importance on friendships and often his poems and his books are dedicated to a score of friends who without them the poems wouldn't have been written.

i'll post a few more pics in a different post. blogger isn't cooperating with my lay-out right now. i wish i had photos of us back then, but when you are young and poor and living before the digital age, the idea of taking photographs didn't occur, i think. tho i think there is a videotape or two of us doing readings. god knows what happened the tapes. i don't.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

Look -- all I've ever heard about heaven
from religion or metaphysics:
bullshit. My heart knows its heaven: it knows
the one heaven I shall be given, for grace,
will have been the companionship of my
friends, on earth: real blood, imaginal blood,
straight ahead, existential, immediate,
momently able, sensual, profane,
to move.

from 'Toshiba Island Eclogue' by duncan mcnaughton

Friday, March 28, 2008

on right diction

sometimes the right words take a vacation

Thursday, March 27, 2008

in a recent post mark young wonders what shapes our belief systems. do they arise from examples that surround us from an early age. are they influenced more by what we read, see and hear. do they develop from an organic source, in other words, are we born with a predisposition toward a set of beliefs and thinking that is later subtracted to and augmented thru out the course of our lives but the fundamentals remain the same.

recently i was thinking about the differences between my very good friend b. and my brothers and me. while they are pretty conservative i went quite the opposite way. i can't recall any political or philosophical belief systems from my parents. i do remember accompanying my father as he cast his vote in a labor union election. the scene was out of a 1930s movie: thick cigarette smoke stagnated the air as men in work clothes stood in groups arguing this and that. i asked my old man who he voted for. he answered, i always vote for the underdog.

yet, i can't say how or where my way of thinking originated. surely i am influenced by my parents, friends and relatives as i grew up. i was witness to actions and situations that i found unconscionable from an early age, and i suppose part of my thinking is influenced by that. but why did i find them so awful in the first place?

so much for the renaissance where intellects sought a grand unifying principle. the world, our realities, and the universe is much to complex for one grand scheme. so can opposing belief systems both be true? is this a naive query?

perhaps it is. i've long been in love with whitman's line, 'i contradict myself? very well i contradict myself' since we are all host to competing thoughts and actions and feelings within our own minds and bodies. the man who smokes is also a man who truly wishes for a long, healthy life. and why not. who is right. who is wrong.

as i get older i become more passionate in my belief that life in all its multi-foliate forms is unique and irreplaceable. e.g. that if your government orders you to war, you have a fundamental right to say no since what is at stake is our very being, yours, mine, theirs, all different and the same. that i try to practice loving-kindness not because it sounds cool and hippie-ish and liberal but because the practice of acceptance and love is much harder to do than the works of hate and bigotry. the products of loving-kindness are infinite and generating while the opposite is a portal to the dark ages.

i didn't mean to get on a rant. i have been wondering how i came to think in this way. certainly i didn't learn about loving-kindness from my parents or friends as i grew up. and yet, those thoughts have always been with me. and yet, that evening with my father as he voted in a union election stays with me. when i first read portrait of an artist as a young man by joyce i identified with the opening scenes where young stephen daedelus telescopes from the universe right down dublin ireland. because ever since i was a child, much longer before i read joyce, i've always considered myself a citizen of the world. i suppose maybe i think the way i do because i find that there is a weave to the world, where we are all woven together, and not as roethke put it in one of his metaphysical poems that he sees, 'the separateness of things'. we are all simultaneously separate and the same, woven together like whitman's large, intimate visions that can't be contradicted out of existence by wishful thinking.

it's the small things that make us happy, i suppose. well, this does it for me: wire in the blood is set to kick off a new season. i saw a promo on bbcamerica that the new season begins this sunday night, but no schedule is listed on their website. i'll be waiting, and watching just the same. if you don't know the show, do see it, because it is one of the best crime shows ever broadcast on tv.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

from crumpled notes

old photos of the self / how does one get so round & grey

* * *

saw a black cat today / fresh ink

* * *

what is strange is that i can't find anything / strange

* * *

opened the newspaper to a sex scandal / we are shocked?

* * *

all the beauties of the world / remind me

* * *

odi et amo / indeed

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

corporate magazines still suck

i'm a fiend for pop music. i'll die loving it. but lately pop music is all about the bling and posing which in turn is all tuned by corporate interests to sell. there is terrific music out there now, bands such as arcade fire, death cab for cutie for example fill me with hope. but you are not gonna find many of their tunes on mtv and vh1 because those supposedly music stations no longer play music videos.

the same for their awards shows, or any awards show, they are so orchestrated and bland that they are better for putting you to sleep than a couple of hits of valium. but in 1992 change was in the air. at least i felt it. finally there was a democrat heading for the white house and hope for the better seemed possible after coming of age during the long dark years of the reagan era.

below is what i consider the best performance in the history of the mtv music awards, or any awards show, by a band: nirvana in 1992 performing 'lithium'. when was the last time you saw stage diving during a commercial event on national tv, or the fact that kurt cobain begins the set by playing and singing the first bars of 'rape me', or krist n. pummeling himself by throwing his bass into the air and having it land right on his noggin that it nearly knocked him out. it is an extreme and extremely moving performance. it was i think the expression of anger and of hope for what was then the start of a new era.

Monday, March 24, 2008

wish for a classical epitaph

was the
poet richard lopez

tried to
be like the

behold he
was one cool


Sunday, March 23, 2008

from the dept. of all that is good and holy

please do check out this exhibit of the work of joseph cornell

Thursday, March 20, 2008


you can still get pdf copies of hallucinating california by richard lopez and jonathan hayes [windowpane press; 2008] by clicking the link here.

below are two sorta classic drive-in intermission ads. i remember them both very well as they played at nearly all the drive-ins in sac during the 1970s even tho both date from the '50s. there were also locally made adverts that i'd love to see again. one was a live feature that had people dancing to go the snack bar where you can get pizza with 'mushy-roomy-room sauce'. now doesn't that whet yr whistle? that line became a signature phrase in my family. anna and i will repeat it to each other time and again and it never fails, at least for me, to lift my spirits. at any rate, anyone who went to the drive-ins fairly regularly in sac during that time will probably know that advert very well.

i post these because i'm a geek who loves still the drive-in experience. or because of my love of drive-in theaters i'm a geek. whatever. i think we all possess a few items from our past, our childhoods, that immediately lower our blood pressure when we see, read or hear them. and that's it for me regarding these shorts. i simply love them. they are the detritus of a vanished era.


une dialogue hay[na]ku

you got
a small press?

i've got
a few poems

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

mnemonic hay[na]ku

what i
thought to say

before going to bed i realize i've become a piss-poor correspondent. that perhaps the poets and poet/friends in this world and the ether, which is simply part of this world, don't know that i think of them often. and that life is brief and sometimes ecstatic as it is also slow and calm. and death is always just a bit away from us.

and if the above doesn't make any sense i'll simply say that i suppose i'll never have time enough to say all that i think and mean at the time i most want to say it. if that makes me sound rather hippie-ish, okay. i do believe all you need is love.

i think. and so tonight i read this from geof huth:

No person is ever complete. We are always in the process of being created.

no matter our age and station in life, i add. which perhaps explains why after 20 years i'm interested in tattooing again. that subject is fit for another post. for this rant i'll end by again quoting john, paul, george and ringo: 'in the end the love you take / is equal to the love you make'.

i hope that's right.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

in a recent interview former lush member miki berenyi says this about an online campaign by her fans to get her back to making music:

Not sure how enthusiastic the support would be if they realised that bringing back Miki Berenyi would deliver a 40-year-old office employee with graying hair whose still struggling to shift the weight from her last pregnancy.

well, from this 40 year old salt&pepper hair poet i say: i do i do!

Monday, March 17, 2008

from crumpled notes

as i walked home with a heavy heart this evening scores

of pubcrawlers clad in green caked the streets

no not heavy but like an overcooked piece of corned beef

as if in salute to st. paddy whatever

i walked home with the song 'lullaby of london'

in honor of today like shane macgowan i refused to brush my teeth

Friday, March 14, 2008

it is rare that a movie in production gets me all hopped up. i don't read many hollywood insider sites or newsmagazines. i prefer to learn what movie is opening soon, or what movie is being released to disc. sure i've been known to go ga ga over movies soon as i hear the rumor of pre-production. but i've been burned. i remember for a full year i'd log on to star wars websites loading up on every little detail posted about the phantom menace online. and the sites were for the most part very accurate in their stories and pics. when the movie itself opened i was the first in line. thus i remained faithful in my geekdom. and i was massively disappointed. george lucas shouldn't have bothered. the movie sucked. tho i read movie, esp. genre, websites regularly those sites usually focus on the movies as finished products, and not films not yet in existence.

but what am i saying? of course i'm a geek for movies and i do get all amped when i hear of a killer film on its way into the theaters and on disc. what i mean is that only a very few films gets me heated up as i wait for them to become finished works when i can at last recline in that pleasurable darkness of the theater and becomes absorbed by what is onscreen.

today, as a lark, i looked up cormac mccarthy's novel the road at imdb and find that the adaptation is in the midst of filming as i write this. and i'm freaking stoked. viggo mortensen is to play the role of the father while charlize theron portrays in flashbacks his wife. i'm not familiar with the director john hillcoat but mortensen is an extremely gifted and rugged actor who i think is well-cast as a man who is trying to keep himself and his child alive in a dead world.

the novel is already so cinematic that i'm curious how hillcoat will translate it to screen. good books don't always make good movies. sometimes they do. i just hope when the movie is in post-production that that the filmmaker will have achieved a film worthy of the bleak beauty of the book.

already a blogger is devoting time and resources into posting news of the production of the film. you can check it out here. she is apparently a free agent so to speak and is not affiliated with the production team and had posted photos of the movie sets recently but had been asked by the film crew to please take them down. you can find a cached portion of the blog with the photos blacked-out here. as the movie gets nearer to completion i'm sure there will be more photos leaked. as for me, i can't wait to watch the teaser trailer for the first time. and not for the first time for a particular movie will i watch it over and over again until finally the full-length trailer is released and then the film is in theaters. these processes always seem to take forever and when the time is over it seems that no time at all passed between. yes, life is just like that, it is so sudden like the duration of a piece of cinema. and i can't wait.

fear and beauty: those are the two words that i think of when i read and see geof huth's life in writing. see geof's textual body here.

bloody astonishing.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

from crumpled notes

i don't tie a string around my finger to remember

i forget

* * *


carry a pen and a bit of paper

always everyday

i can't rely on my memory no more

* * *

just today i worked on a line as i went about the errands of the day
then when i wanted to write it down

i forget

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

the evening news

just cracked open a new moleskin

* * *

how it goes down

i have no ambition
but for the life
of reading & writing

Monday, March 10, 2008

goddam it feels like 10:30 pm rather than 11:30 pm. i hate daylight savings time. we don't get that hr back for 8 months. 8 long, hot, really hot, months! fuck!

but why be in a pissy mood. just read the newest fhole 15 with text poems by buck downs, greg evason, kevin thurston, among others, and kick-ass vispo by reed altemus, david-baptiste chirot and one of sean bonney's baudelaire translations, among others. a solid, great read thru out and one of the best zines period.

and i just finished watching 30 days of night and loved it, again.

also galatea resurrects #9 is live and huge. it is an essential poetry review publication.

that's it. have a good night.

Sunday, March 09, 2008

what shall we do
with all this useless beauty

--elvis costello

Friday, March 07, 2008

blade runner - the final cut

i finally watched this tonight at the crest theater, a local arthouse. i was prepared to hate it, as i hated the previous cut of the movie. instead, i loved it. after years of watching runner on tv, on video-tape and on disc, seeing the film in 35mm with surround sound was pure, visceral pleasure. since i knew the story so well the lack of narration didn't bother me. and because i intimately knew the action in the foreground i concentrated on the lushness of the score which seems improved upon and the sumptuous visuals. every inch of each frame is fleshed out. and with the added scenes, which were not necessary i think but did add increase the rich details of the frames.

however, the obvious metaphor of the unicorn was absolutely unnecessary. director scott is a talented filmmaker and he's had 2 decades now to piece together this film as he wanted it, i guess. scott did a fine job connecting the deckard's daydream of the unicorn with the origami unicorn at the end when deckard leaves the city with rachel. yet, i don't buy it. i don't think deckard is a replicant and that is why he has such a crisis of faith and is soul-sick of killing. you don't have to be the enemy to be sick of killing the enemy. the unicorn metaphor, that mythical, pure creature is simply a distraction to this viewer. the daydream itself is incongruous with the tone of the film. it would be better to leave it out, and maybe leave the metaphor for the true believers that deckard is a replicant as the wisp of a hint with the origami piece at the end.

another thing. when batty meets his maker tyrell and says, 'i want more life, fucker' it is an extraordinary scene. god here is a flawed human animal, even if he's the god of life only by making batty and other replicants like him. the line is miltonic in its power. the rebel angel returned home to clash with, and finally vanquish, his maker, even if that is met with the crude force of strength. but in the final cut batty says to tyrell, 'i want more life, father' which leeches the scene of its power. batty in every sense is not simply the prodigal son even if tyrell calls him that. he's the bastard angel who wants the knowledge and power of god himself. when god can't help him achieve that power he kills his god. batty's own power and rebellious nature is made clear when he calls tyrell 'fucker'. the scene so astonished me tonight i believe i said aloud, 'what the fuck'.

even so, the movie is a beauty to behold, esp. on the big screen. there were other connections i've not made before, such as the wounds to the right hands each of batty and deckard, as if they were mirrors of each other in the final scenes. and the penultimate scene where batty gives his famous speech, the silences due to the lack of narration give the moment much more weight, i'll grant. again, perhaps it seemed more powerful to me because i know the story so well that i could just go deep into the scene and read it as it unfolded. if i had watched the film for the first time tonight i might've been lost.

but i wasn't. oh another thing. i was amused to rediscover that the los angeles of 2019, envisaged via 1982, is pretty analog and that 2 of the prominent adverts in the film, pan am and tdk, are no longer around. yet the movie is pretty prescient giving asian cultures a big share of the culture of the film to which asian cultures are indeed becoming big influences upon our lives.

this is ridley scott's masterpiece. the movie is so rich in ontological examinations and nature of being, as well as being quite a piece of violent noir, that the famous film by the wachowski bros appear to be a vain and pretentious clap-trap of braudillardean theses. which the matrix was, i think, silly and pretentious, even if it was entertaining, and it was. but if you want to examine reality and what makes us human, then runner is your film. you can set your phd dissertation to that noise.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

from an email this morning from jim mccrary, a bit from an old issue of 'rolling stock' ed. by ed and jenny dorn:

Notes regarding a lecture entitled Understanding Modern Poetry

Close your eyes and imagine
what you are hearing is
mediocre prose.

geof huth is one of the handful of poet-bloggers i've met in person. last spring when he was in sac we had dinner together and then hung out in his hotel room for a couple of hrs and i was astonished by his energy level as i am by his brilliance. the dude is a force of nature.

so good luck geof. here's to uncomplication and a very, very speedy recovery.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

let us praise famous women

2 songs by throwing muses

tanya donnelly

kristin hersh

from crumpled notes

in spite of myself sometimes i just can't help loving being alive

* * *

i had a boss once call me 'potty-mouth'

maybe because i thought i was rimbaud and refused to brush?

* * *

i work as if there is no distinction between high art and low art

* * *

there is no distinction between high art and low art

* * *

again i ask: what is art, anyway

* * *

a few of life's pleasures:


bad movies



house full of books




* * *

my favorite word is fuck

* * *

my other favorite word is not named

it exists between yes and no

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Poem by Jonathan Hayes

Lunch Break at Borders

As I walk out after being checked by loss control
and step through Bloomies and the mall
onto wet February Market Street with an hour
to score and get some dinner for this p.m. break.

Halfway down Market after Sixth Street
I see a crezoid weed hustler who hits me
with a small ten sack of grapes, but the buds are tight
so I walk back with product to the mall and Borders
and enjoy my pink grapefruit waiting for me at the
break room table, while we watch the
first season of “Weeds.”

Post gig:

A purple “puff” at home is all E.T. was saying…


Q-Bert was naturally selected out!

Monday, March 03, 2008

only shallow

in the
shadows are here

in the
air are there

in the
sunlight standing here

as we
stare is not


in the
shadows we are



in the
sunlight disappears when

stare we
are still here

aw shit. you know how you can get obsessed with something, say a certain song, and listen to it over and over again, you know, like the oingo boingo tune one post back. well, i don't know, but i've watched that video close to a dozen times now. why? beats me. tho boingo is not my favorite band i've always admired danny elfman, and the band boingo has about a cd's worth of songs that are very good.

perhaps it's something to do with that passage of time. that i saw boingo in i think 1990 at the concord pavilion. a fantastic show. and that i can't believe nearly 18 years have gone past. also, did a little research and found that that video is culled from boingo's farewell concert in 1995. you get the picture, music, time passing, etc. etc. not sadness, but surprise and puzzlement that time goes so very quickly. the only comfort i take is that nothing stays gold forever, ponyboy. everybody and everything ages. so hang on, and try to enjoy the ride.

carpefuckingdiem, bee-yotches!

* * *

okay, check this out. you probably know this already but big bridge is huge, live and fresher than luther campbell of 2livecrew. do read kevin opstedal's history of the bolinas poetry scene. it'll blow yr mind.

and there's a new concelebratory shoehorn review packed with poems and artworks.

what are you doing here? go forth and read!

Sunday, March 02, 2008

just for the hell of it

feeling a bit maudlin watching this video by oingo boingo. no longer together danny elfman is better known now as a film composer esp. his scores for the films of tim burton. boingo is not my favorite band from the 1980s, but elfman has a fine voice and his talent as a songwriter is clearly evident from this piece.

'we close our eyes' and another year has turned again. it has, it really has. holy shit.