Tuesday, May 15, 2018

The dead of L.A.

(I found one of my mom's old notebooks from the eighties.  her handwriting is atrocious but I'm transcribing her poetry)


Pinched and twisted

In the dead of L.A. –

Lost and more lost, she wanders,

Not one word exchanged or offered-

Bury and buy

Again + again

He exits

Dripping gold

Silent and dripping indifference

Peripheral vision

Revealed him

Not to her. 

Sheer wonder in

Compromise .

He’s glowing rays

Of hate, death.

Could his meaning have been

Tender curiousity?

The air is cool

The sky is late

The sidewalks are covered in

Pages from desk calendars

You (we) tread over days and days

Of last year

In which something happened – something –

Lived and died –

Putting me in a bleak park –

Another lost day and dead years

And dear but dead l.a.

December 28 1989

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Hole, a poem


Guys always tell me they sold Frances Bean her first drugs
and guys always tell me they're really not that into hugs
and guys always say that poor Frances Bean was so sweet
and guys always make me feel like a raw piece of meat.

do these stories meet in the middle?
she was little,
I was little.
She has a hole and her mother does too
and so did my mom, but it just made her blue.

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Favorite Poet #2 - Stevie Smith

Stevie Smith (20 September 1902 – 7 March 1971
Died of a brain tumor

A House of Mercy

It was a house of female habitation,
Two ladies fair inhabited the house,
And they were brave. For although Fear knocked loud
Upon the door, and said he must come in,
They did not let him in.

There were also two feeble babes, two girls,
That Mrs. S. had by her husband had,
He soon left them and went away to sea,
Nor sent them money, nor came home again
Except to borrow back
Her Naval Officer's Wife's Allowance from Mrs. S.
Who gave it him at once, she thought she should.

There was also the ladies' aunt
And babes' great aunt, a Mrs Martha Hearn Clode,
And she was elderly.
These ladies put their money all together
And so we lived.

I was the younger of the feeble babes
And when I was a child my mother died
And later Great Aunt Martha Hearn Clode died
And later still my sister went away.

Now I am old I tend my mother's sister
The noble aunt who so long tended us,
Faithful and True her name is. Tranquil.
Also Sardonic. And I tend the house.

It is a house of female habitation
A house expecting strength as it is strong
A house of aristocratic mould that looks apart
When tears fall; counts despair
Derisory. Yet it has kept us well. For all its faults.
If they are faults, of sternness and reserve,
It is a Being of warmth I think; at heart
A house of mercy.

The Reason

My life is vile
I hate it so
I'll wait awhile
And then I'll go.

Why wait at all?
Hope springs alive,
Good may befall
I yet may thrive.

It is because I can't make up my mind
If God is good, impotent or unkind.

Stevie Smith Recites "Not Waving but Drowning"