78 RPM Saturday Night

Three new short pieces up over at SoundCloud with The Variable Trio. “Little Richard” and “Easy on the Blues” were attempts to recreate the shellac 78 sound, using aged vocals recorded open microphone into a portable recorder on tape cassettes then playing them back through a boombox into GarageBand, using the laptop open microphone and the “telephone vocal” setting with increased reverb. “Coffee House Scramble” was recorded using six tracks of GarageBand settings (Wide Wide Wah, Spring Theory, Alien Waves, Echolalia, Old School Punk, and Swampland), using the Fender Telecaster played unplugged acoustically into the laptop open microphone, and adding tracks of Yamaha Bass, hand claps and thigh slaps and slides, and acoustic piano.

Two Hep Cats and Plans for the Day

Two Hep Cats Plan Their Day

Near a Country Sea at Night

Near a Country Sea at Night.


Poem for Ones Who Know One When They See One

What W. H. Auden said
“In Memory of W. B. Yeats,”
not modified in the “guts”
or on the blog:
“For poetry makes nothing happen: it survives”
so there it is,
no one need worry.

“Encore! Encore! More! More!”
OK, ok, settle down;
this is no time for pathos, but,
“Wild nights – Wild Nights!”
Emily Dickinson reasoned,
racked with want on the windy,
open sea of her dainty,

daunting room of gloom,
and who knew better even
than the audible Auden
how poetry makes nothing
happen, again and again,
like seizures,
and so I give you this, this wildcalm night:

Poem for Ones
Who Know One
They See One:

Poem for Ones

New Cat, Mew Cat

New CatHave you seen the new cat?
How could I miss?

Big cat.
And fast.

The new cat changes a lot.
Big house, zero lot.

So comes here.
Our lives will never be the same.

They never were the same.
What were we doing?

Waiting for what?

It’s what we do.
How does the new cat change that?

The new cat does not appear to wait.
What are we doing if not waiting?

Wait not, want not.
Want not, think not.

Think not, wake not.
Wake not, watch not.

Watch not, pine not.
Pine not, itch not.

Itch not, cat not.
Cat not, can’t not.

I am a cat.
That I know.

The new cat changes
not that cat.

New Cat Happy Cat

Privacy Poem

Where do we get this notion
of privacy?
Is privacy a value,
or is privacy a virtue?

If privacy is a value,
it’s simply a worth
we want, and what we want
is not always what is good
for us:
we want alcohol,
tobacco, and firearms;
fast cars with sound
so loud we need
instant accesses
to tête-à-tête boxes
where we spy
on our bosses.

But is privacy a virtue,
like love, patience, for
joy of living, or courage
to befriend?

Abuse of surveillance
does not make a virtue
of privacy,
just as, as Ivan Illich
is not the same as

But getting back
to privacy:
we want to be seen
and heard at the party
but not in the morning
when the porcelain white
face throws up
its image in the little pond.

The poet wants to be read:
“Read me! Read me!”
But the words seem so
no way to enter
the text.
“I’m in here!”
the poet exclaims,
as if from the depths
of some Xanadu privy,
and when we hear
the roller of big cigars,
his call a private scream
behind a rude screen,
we know the poem
is finished
and about
to go

In public the words squirm
for privacy, wriggling
across the page
for a clear margin.


Little Lady Bug