Take My Pulse

 

Take a look at my national
principle
wherever one man one woman
lie in the blessed bosom
of Django
on the pillow of harmony
humbling the single
note
the single wayfarer on the way
down the river or the road
from one end of the nation
to you.

Take a look at my table
of contents
laid out on my table
on my dinner and supper
table
on my thanksgiving table
of scribblings where I lay out my
food and drink
need and becoming
and compose what I think
take a look at my full
plate.

You may see me skewed
such a view
or any such prejudiced arrow
or treasured blue bolero
scants
what is truly a whole array
of seminal criminal feral
perfecting
a compositional hand-spreading
sympatico satisfacting heading
instead of skew I offer you
my anthem.

I will be willingly nobody
but yours
in a manner of speaking
in a manner not eloquent
but honest
mannish but submissive
without the manners of
a man of money
who no hesitation or blinking
in a manner of speaking
I will be willingly nobody
but yours.

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Silver Spectre

[A]
All I have from late last night
is a fine black and lustrous silhouette
everything that happened in the deep of heaven
now appears as empty outline.
Is this how art imitates life
or how our minds
imitate the hide and seek of the spirit?

[B]
She is the line between the lines
she strikes out at our skins
she lashes back and forth in striped
discipline.

Years ago I learned this lesson
close your eyes so that sparkle can come in
looking at the world by means of glint and shadow
filters out the dust and hum
leaving only the pure and ominous
simple sketches
drawn by she who’s deaf and dumb
but wise.

I’m not saying be a fool
I’m not fool enough for that
however use the best tool for
the task.

Lessons learned once will not suffice
neither can truth seen twice or three times
after going to the well at least one thousand
times you may start to have eyes
hard enough to see the art you
are surrounded
by and take part in without
drowning in it.

She has a name you cannot say
she is what you aren’t seeing
she comes across dusk and dawn as
a silver spectre.

 

 

[A – slow, about 80 bpm]
Am / Gm7 / Am / Gm7 /
Am / Gm7 / F#dim7 / D7 /
Am7 / Bm7 / Am7 / Bm7 /
Am7 / Bm7 / Bbdim7 / F#m7b5 /
Adim7 Em7 Bbm7 A69 FMa9 Bb7#5 Eb7 D7
Am Gm7 Am7 /
F#7 G7 Am7 Bm7 C7 // Bdim7 Am7 /// B7 ///

[B – faster, about 100 bpm]
C6 / F#dim7 / Bm7 /
A7 / D7b5 / Gdim7 /
F7 /// Cm7 Dm7 Abdim7 Am7 G7 ///
D#dim7 ///

 

 

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Tides

Not many men
know the tides
too strenuous
for bony hands
they spread themselves
across time like
men throw blankets
of fad and folly
across the undercurrents
of politics. Not many
men know the tides
of war or money
though lots of talk
covers over a dark
confusion of detail.
And most importantly
the often called frail
but overruling
tides of the women
in their lives remain
unknown to men.

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Onto Moment

 

Holding is always between
like opposing grasping hands
or upper teeth and lower teeth
hearing you talk in stereo
we concoct acounts in twos
the treachery of duplicity
is how we live our lives
desire doubles winning
equaled and balanced out
by wishing we had.
Today and in its twin
Tomorrow I am intent
upon rotating and restructuring
the system on its side so
my dialectical circuitry
is reguided by the tipping
into feeling out the outside
by how the heart grips rib
by the belly’s emptiness
by the need of the unique
vial of mercury at the center
to pour itself drip dropping
onto moment.

 

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The Future’s Nutty Gauntlet

 

I was listening to blues of Mike & Paul
Muddy & Jimmy and predecessors
I was taken aback all the way to Africa
I hollered at the sand to echolocate
the water turning into an avalanche
of low-level love from high hate.

Oh in the garden of paseo and calle
ah in the undefined stair down
from the grassy turquoise and nutty
gauntlet from lane to beach
I hummed sometimes singing
dammit it’s gonna rain hallelujah.

Sentimentally in the harvest of fruit
from bushy trees growing freely
out of my body and my neighborhood
commenced a ritual as old as the fifth wheel
and third eye marching left, right and
inhabited landing on the South Pole.

Well here I gambol in a summery fall
in a spring-like winter changing by the hour
suddenly I’m in the Mission District
in 1969 wishing like a damn fool
I could free my voice and let it out
as if my corral was being blown to hell.

When I was seventeen I knew
a girlfriend was a seasonal tease
the light dimmed and I returned
to times before where I’d not been
where I envisaged the curly grey
hair of my lost and seminal wife.

I had headphones on my head to cut off
from the dark clouds of inevitability
my love will speculate and I will cough
man serenades woman and escapes
on the strand from Montecito to Goleta
I closed my eyes and saw the future.

 

3 December 2017
wedgewood road

 

 

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Framelessly

In an ache of repeating sentiment
words dissolve into too many
syyllables suitable as liniment
without exertion meaning meanders.

Caught in a tumultuous orbit
faithful in a vagrant circuit
stargazed out of the present
without exertion trajectory is inhabited.

Tethered to the canyon’s campfire
floating like an astral tripwire
I am African Polynesian Irish
without exertion heaven is choir.

I lean I list I pitch I exhale
toward where dogs bark and jets trail
returning in dependable detail
without exertion to this same hill.

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How Does It Happen

[A]
Instantly older
in your possession
more like myself than
without you.

Then again younger
how does that happen
that you make me feel
crazy real?

[B]
Standing sitting
flat on the floor
contradictions come into focus
without keeping score.

[C]
Remember that May when we
found that artists’ cafe where we
wrote five poems a day?

How we thought it must’ve been
like living in France or Spain
in a sunny trance?

Remember that time when we
climbed to the top of the library
and we owned the whole city?

How we thought without crowds
home was nowhere surrounded by
mountains covered in clouds.

[B]
The details of life are
like glitter on the eyes
sweep it away later and find
the ground without trying.

[C]
What does my patience
do to your presence
I sense it closing in
confident.

What’s been happening
happens a lot now
not fast or slow but
permanent.

 

 

[A]
E ///
C ///
G6 / Am7 /
Gdim7 / E7 /

[B]
G9 /// C#9 / F#m7 /
A13 /// C9 / F#m7 /
A7 / Am7 / G7 /
B7 / F#m7b5 /// E ///

[C]
[3/4] C#9 // F#m7 //
D // Am // G6 Am7 Ab13
[4/4] Bm7 /// GMa9 ///

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