Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Aenean risus diam, condimentum eu tempor sit amet, pulvinar mattis nisl. Phasellus quis rhoncus tortor. Cras nisi sapien, imperdiet vitae nulla suscipit, rutrum lobortis mi. Morbi vel posuere risus. 

Vestibulum ante ipsum primis in faucibus orci luctus et ultrices posuere cubilia Curae; Etiam pulvinar lectus et fringilla accumsan. Praesent libero est, placerat id rutrum eget, porttitor quis tellus. Proin sit amet consectetur nunc, eu tincidunt eros.

Vivamus vulputate risus mauris, vitae placerat leo ullamcorper eget. Ut dapibus purus ac tristique tincidunt. Sed semper id dui a molestie. Vestibulum tincidunt tortor id magna cursus luctus. Praesent ut tellus a purus viverra vehicula a at est. Etiam eget sem ex. Ut a dapibus nisl. Aliquam pretium tincidunt leo, vitae pulvinar massa pharetra quis. Aenean ut maximus ipsum. Nulla dolor nisl, commodo vel purus ut, commodo tristique purus. Mauris gravida placerat risus, sed consectetur neque.

Pellentesque condimentum dignissim lorem, eget suscipit enim molestie non. Interdum et malesuada fames ac ante ipsum primis in faucibus. Integer vestibulum id odio in fringilla. Pellentesque semper justo quis volutpat vulputate. Aenean sodales, massa nec placerat pharetra, sapien est tristique quam, sed accumsan odio augue sit amet ante. Maecenas ut viverra purus. Sed non dolor tempor erat pharetra consectetur. Fusce non varius neque, eu maximus tortor. Curabitur dui libero, tristique in ligula a, tristique sollicitudin tortor. Suspendisse at dui dolor. Quisque interdum vitae tortor eu laoreet. Nam convallis, mauris sed tristique rhoncus, lectus massa convallis est, sed laoreet erat quam in ipsum. Aenean vel sapien finibus, faucibus metus nec, feugiat tortor. Morbi vel lacus neque. Etiam sagittis convallis mattis. Integer vel tellus vel erat imperdiet ultricies. Donec felis purus, semper in congue vitae, ultrices sed tellus. Phasellus sit amet dui eget purus maximus interdum ac feugiat libero. Nullam egestas pulvinar fermentum.Vestibulum at arcu neque. Nunc at tellus ultrices, lobortis quam at, malesuada felis. Pellentesque lobortis finibus vehicula. Donec porttitor augue at leo venenatis scelerisque. Sed consequat fringilla lacinia. Nulla quis sem at risus volutpat gravida. Quisque ornare nibh vitae eleifend venenatis. Nulla imperdiet mattis risus. Sed lacinia ligula id rutrum egestas. Ut vel neque tincidunt, fringilla nisi vitae, porttitor justo. Integer quis nibh non turpis fermentum tincidunt eget eu purus. Morbi vitae suscipit ligula, id scelerisque dolor. Donec auctor dui a elementum convallis. Mauris nunc purus, malesuada et justo vitae, ornare pretium leo. Ut finibus non urna quis maximus. Sed tristique interdum dictum. Sed nec varius massa, at laoreet nunc. Nunc congue est imperdiet metus malesuada tincidunt id eu purus. Proin mollis faucibus arcu, ac cursus urna pellentesque eget. Pellentesque purus eros, laoreet id fringilla in, bibendum eget leo. Aenean sit amet purus elementum, tincidunt felis et, lacinia lectus. Nulla facilisi. Pellentesque quis sem vehicula, efficitur dui a, dapibus ex.

Friday, April 3, 2015


this machine dreams that blues and whites are grey
reds become brown filtering desire through lines of code

she looked at me across the counter, a white plate in her hand
a blue stripe around the circumference of heaven

the fallen called out from the shade, through the holes
of an old coat, their song a switchblade in the wind

this reverie is more blurred than usual, but it gave me hope
light extended even into the night where my innocence wandered off

the next morning the sky was gold but the motel window gave it grit
and the power lines defied the horizon with their potential

on the bus homeward, the city’s staccato sirens giving way at last
to the highway’s hum, i found her message and anointed it with tears


The Last Sunset

Machine Dreams


the eye of the world opened and brought with it hell
the whipping winds of the pilgrim’s descent
lovers untouching pits of tar black cities with iron gates
an icy core where escape kept you trapped feasting ravenous
a demon of despair no princes no darkness
just enough gloom to see beyond your fate
a small break in the hurricane to hear your guide whisper

this is not where we find her go further
traverse the emptiness of these souls they are not here
for penance or the miasma of iniquity they have
fallen through the ground and paid the ferryman
to enter these barrens lands of wind and shadow
because there is no light there is no sound
there is only the echo of life in their cries
their thousand lamentations but a sigh

with this wisdom, you took your first step beyond
the umbral plains towards the summit of your desire
crossed the verdancy that cast back the empty
that part only before you hands shoved forward
a heart lusting after its own ideal, dripping
with the will to do what the shadows fear
their thin chants faded with each step
and the quiet voice of the forest took up the tune


voltage, amperage, ohms, watts, dead men and stardust 
push their way through the remains of world-smashers
those vishnus of the void that once burned the air 
cigarettes of the heavens whose exhalations unfurled masses of death 
and then life upon the roiling red surface of the world

even after armageddon, the sea was red at rest
it carried stagnation and its waves could only dream of greater crests 
reaching, reaching, reaching for the moon
aspirations lunar but gravity pulling harder 
towards hot nickel and iron spinning within a gold and granite cage 

this blue sea, this new sea, covers its depths with cool serenity 
fills its widths with giant-songs that travel miles before they fade 
peoples its darkness with blind monsters lighting their own way 
without the resistance of men forcing teslas through 
circuits that cannot bear the mad genius of the universe 

and thus release light


a swath of blasted dunes stretches the horizon
returns only a mirror of half-forgotten dreams
a beat that brings a stirring in the feet
in the lungs of the traveler before the road that was
before the awful emptiness that longs to be filled
the rhythm that may overwhelm its potential
wind dips and croons a missing melody just over the next rise
just beyond the next turn the future whispers
across the barrens where pale bones lay exposed
they augur missed steps beyond counting
centuries of treble clefs and accidentals
leading to one final phrase of joy and sorrow all at once

Friday, October 11, 2013


We spent 14 years carving Greta. A great woman, a wise woman. She has a nose of stone, bejeweled eyes, cheeks that catch the setting sun in rosy tones; lips pursed in kind silence. She carries a perpetual look of quiet understanding, of firm compassion bought with hard years, broken hearts and blistered fingers. But her soul is still intact, a sapphire so blue the ocean would jealous.

I spent months just on her hair, getting the thinning wisps just so. The other sculptors thought I was mad. 

“What are you doing?” they said. “You know how this ends.”

I took a long breath, stared at my work, and replied firmly: “This has to be right.”

I was Maestro on this project, so they shook their heads and left me to my folly. They drifted back to giving her shoulders just the right hunch; they tapered the tips of her gnarled fingers, carved the asymmetrical signs of her limp into her hips and lower back. The Authority had decided she was to be in a bike accident as a child: shattered her right femur. She was bed-ridden for a whole summer, a hot summer, a season of thin soup and dust storms. Kansas, 1932. Greta ate a lot of thin soup and watched the family farm slip beneath an ocean of destitution and dirt. The farm died, but the girl lived. She moved to California and picked oranges alongside the Okies and Arkies. She learned to read with week-old newspapers by campfire-light. She kept her hair short and her teeth clean.

Big moves, a pair of wars and a pair of kids later later, she visited Atlanta for the first time with her husband, Gene. They flew from Buffalo: such an extravagance! But Gene’s work was paying; there was a grand opening for new plant in Macon. Greta had fried chicken and waffles for the first time. The waitress was Black and Greta stared. As she kept staring, the waitress’s wide, Southern smile thinned; she would scurry from the table after she topped off the water glasses; her voice became a thin squeak, when she talked at all.

Eventually, Gene elbowed his wife. “You’re being rude, honey.” His voice was Sinatra-smooth. The first time they met, the Authority had him crooning behind a CBS microphone at a hop in Hollywood. The next day, bombs fell and the Arizona kissed the bottom of Pearl Harbor. Greta kissed her man and give him a nod and a smile.

When the waitress returned, Greta pulled gently at the lace cuff of her uniform, using her forefinger and middle finger. She leaned in close: “I’m sorry to stare, dear. But you have the brightest smile. Your teeth are so bright! My daddy used to tell me: ‘Your smile is the best tool you’ve got, girl. And every tool is a weapon if you hold it right.’” That waitress became my god-mother. Camille Parks wrote Greta long letters of trials and tribulations: sit-ins and marches, speeches and fire hoses. Greta bailed her out of jail twice, and finally convinced her to move up north to the white snow banks of the Finger Lakes. I remember having coffee and cheesecake on Camille’s back porch and watching a warm wind blow the trees, late one July afternoon. 

That was the July before the Authority had Greta lose all of her hair, and one half of her chest and most of her soul to the rapaciousness of her own body. The July before she went into the dark, a knowing smile the last thing to contort her lips rather than the grimaces of pain that reached through the hydrocodone.

So, yes, the other sculptors took long weeks to discover the wrinkles around Greta’s eyes in the stone we used. Master clothiers draped her in the simple white sweater and pink slacks she favored. And I took many months to bring my grandmother’s hair back: thin, wispy and white, curled absently close, the last vestiges of goodness and hope.

We spent 14 years carving Greta, and now I visit her in the White Garden every day. She stands with perfect hair and among the million billion souls lost to the dark, the memories we carve in order to conjure to a shade of their brilliance. Sometimes, Camille comes. We have coffee and cheesecake and don’t say a word.