poem 10 2017

April 10, 2017 § 1 Comment

pieces of silver

on this day
of let my people go during the
season of beginnings and renewal
freedom comes to mind as if everyone
has the heart of it
the art for it
it is not for the feint
are you

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poem 9 2017

April 9, 2017 § 1 Comment

•○■§○●○•

responsible for
knowing why this night,

ha lila hazeh

is different from all others
shebicholhalaylot

we prepare the food—another
language—

that tells the story
of a people

pussies and pollys ho!

January 1, 2017 § 4 Comments

The year ends and begins I want to say in the same (and already not exactly the same place). And or with the faces of Janus and with a sense of dread if I’m honest as if already I’ve given it all over to the forces at play. As if the forces of recalibration, the equal and opposite aren’t built in. As if I’ve forgotten the push and pull of breathing. And underway now, the dread eases, on the way facing forward a wind at my back.
Buoyed in part by finishing in good measure what I’d started:
5 books in a series begun two years ago, exploring the vagaries, the moods and nuances of SELF: Who am I. What do I want. How do I know.
(Footing; self; name; place; hole in the grid).
And the projects along the way which include a few indices and lexicons yet to be pulled together
(RUST; index;)
And in part by a sense of next year’s work, the personal and public aspects, personal and public responsibilities, overlapping. The keen understanding of the need to protect our language, our vocabulary, our how do we know from the insidious force of not knowing rather than the ebb and flow, equal and opposite forces of unknowing already built in to how we come to know.

So under the rubric of syntactical drift, and the play of snigow (otherwise intended to have been mobius (<–you see the upside down and backwards of it, yes?) and working with lists of words already in play and words not yet brought into play I will go forward in mirth and good cheer, with hope, and my pollyanna in pigtails and ribbons on the one hand &, nasty pussy full of hiss and vinegar claws at the ready on the other.

Yes and all that said, in truth, I go forward with hope and equanimity in equal measure to my horror and fear.
And by all I hold sacred as I’ve said at least once before, if I’m going down I’m going down standing up, by Art! And yakking my head off.
On the mark. At the line. Pussy and Polly,  Pussies and Pollys ho!

New Comers

July 7, 2014 § 3 Comments

It was not an innocent conversation.
He is younger, I am a woman. I have lived in the neighborhood more than twenty years; the oldest of the newcomers. He is the newest, and wanting bad, to put his stink on his place, a second home in the country.
It is more or less than a neighborhood beef.
It was civil. Metered. He owns and manages his own business, clearly sees himself as a good communicator, but he doesn’t attend to the nuances. Nuance is my metier, was my profession, is my passion, pricks my curiosity feeds me lures me seduces me, is my drug of choice and I get it and savor it wherever and whenever I can.
Ironically my argument brooked no nuance whatever, needed none. What he had done was wrong. And I’ve come to learn in that instance once said, little else needs saying. Wrong is wrong. But, it still is a matter of opinion. A matter of culture. Of values. Of bearing. Of citizenship. Of how do you know. How do I know. Eeny meeny miny moe. Same neighborhood. Different world.

He said he had the right to have an open campfire on his property.
No question. I said. And lawful. Warming or cooking fires are.
But not the whole story. It is a hot dry July in the middle of one of the worst droughts on record, fire danger is EXTREME, water is scarce, and his property is under Redwood and low hanging Bay trees in the middle of a populated neighborhood. And the afternoon wind was still blowing. Sparks were flying. And one of the neighbors, scared, called the fire department. We all were worried.
In full regalia they came, and left. He is within his rights to have a cooking or a warming fire on his property.
No question.
But, had we asked them, if having a fire under these conditions was prudent, or a reasonable risk, they would have said no. He agreed. But thought it was his right to take this risk. We all take risks he said.
No doubt.

But, personal risks which implicate others are no longer personal. Behaviors which can inflict harm on others are inherently a public matter; the rights and good of the many instead of the rights and pleasures of one. The very building blocks of community. Of civility. Of respect.
I said his having a fire was wrong.
He said he had the right.
I said, given the conditions it was wrong, and disrespectful.
He wondered if there was anything he could do to allay my fears.
I said, wait for the rains.
He smiled.
He thought I was taking it too personally. He’d never had a fire get out of control. And he, wanting to be honest said it was likely he would continue to have campfires any time he wanted.
As I expected.

Not an innocent conversation. It is the changing of the guard. A young man unto himself, proud of the sovereignty he has a right to. Me, elder at the outpost, responsible now to the good of the many and the differences between right and wrong.

 

 

.

 

april 29

April 30, 2011 § Leave a comment

karmic debt

appreciating the longer view these days, now that I can
see the damn thing age has some benefits after all brings me
to you young dude&dudettes who think health care for all and social
security is robbing you blind, who do you think is going to pay
for the health care your parents need, never mind, your kids and
by the way, you can forget about retiring altogether if you ever
get a job since of course no one will be,

and breathe deep, hell is full of socialists

april 14

April 15, 2011 § Leave a comment

telling stories

& when it’s
his turn he
tells about
playing ping-
pong
with
not
just
any
old
Fidel
&
has a picture—

you know that one or
maybe you don’t which
Castro hated, shirt off,
& a bit too flabby—

to boot

.

theirs

April 8, 2011 § Leave a comment

uterus
sexual innocent ignorant freedom autonomy fertile choices autonomy womb woman choices decisions choices autonomy freedom as if yours
as if in common

u ter us, a part of our bodies in the public domain, as if in common, as if shared, as if once operational it belongs to not just you, to one person, to one woman but to the community, not just to you, but to a people, as if our own uterus ties each one of us, ties you and me to them, to a nation, to The People, and they, even the grandmothers, think we enter into partnership and a claim is staked with your body, with our bodies, as if a marker, as if booty, as if redeemable to the highest bidder,
and you are no longer unto yourself
never have been, never will be,
you thought you would be, at some point old enough to choose, to act, to enjoy, to be a woman to be free to choose to act to enjoy to be woman but there is no such thing
as autonomy
first a girl, their girl, and then a woman, somebody’s woman, obligated as if without choice, held hostage to a point of view, that to be woman is to use your uterus to their advantage, and the choice is theirs, make no mistake it is never just yours

from Theirs, His & Mine 1997

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