November 18, 2009

we are soft and squishy

My initial fling with Livebrush, the latest fad of design tooling.

Night treading, feet with soft cat fur on them underfoot in the dark after the fire has gone out.

Tonite is rain and wet paws squeak on the glass; tea water in a steel kettle sings for my cup, write the note over three times.

Shadow of my hair.
Sea water from the northwest of France to flush the senses. Or sinuses.

November 15, 2009

impure dancing

I came across a puzzling post the other day and instead of haranguing the poor people innocently posting their latest random thoughts, thought I would burden my non-existent audience here instead: I read this & wondered if academics tend toward ruining everything for everyone eventually:

Trained Writer #1: "I love poetry, but don't like hearing people read it."
TW #2:"Most poets should NOT read their poetry out loud. There are, however, some brilliant exceptions."
TW #3: "Be careful. I've sat through some bad poetry read badly, but people do have to have some kind of outlet for their efforts, no matter how humble. Consider that we have to listen to ads, see ads, hear pontificating politicians, talk radio, school and university administrators pretending to care about learning . . . , so a little bad poetry from an ordinary person is only a very minor difficulty."

TW #1, explaining their initial shared observation: "I get it. I don't mind hearing Maya Angelou, but for the most part, I like to read it and take the time to let it soak in. When someone is reading it, I can't seem to get the whole picture, and I definitely don't hear every word."

TW #2, defending their first comment: "I very much affirm what you're saying here. I'm pretty much referring to the pros here. I've heard so many singsong renditions of otherwise fine poetry, and it makes me cringe. Listening to some poets read their work, including a few around here, is a delight. But I do think that reading poetry is a different art than writing poetry, and some professional poets do not excel at both."

It puzzles me as to why the first "poets" with a small "p" was supposed to indicate Professional Poets with a capital "P" as if there were no other kind?

When we speak of artists we mean all artists - whether one is able to earn a living doing so is immaterial, we only mean someone producing art.
What are the un-poets supposed to do - are they even allowed to read their work aloud? What about Poets Who Are Published Yet Do Not Earn A Living From Their Poetry Yet (PAPY NAPY's)? A poet - small "p" - is someone producing poetry, that is all. Art and poetry are created to be shared - mostly and eventually, at least,- who cares how? It's nice to do it in a way that earns a living but that's not always why it is created.
And to return to the initial discovery: poetry is just read; sometimes aloud (less than half the time by the writer), and sometimes there's much pleasure and perhaps more understanding in relishing each dropped word on a page, in one's head, alone and quiet with the writer, just she and you and her words.

November 14, 2009

firesong cat-tears

Listening to Johnny Cash sing "The Ballad of Ira Hayes" holding kitty in the rocking chair in front of the fire, for some reason she always senses silent tears, twice she looks up:"Mom why are there tears?" don't worry kitty we cry over any & everything, always have, always will. I didn't know (or forgot) that "Ira Hayes appeared in the 1949 John Wayne film, Sands of Iwo Jima, along with fellow flag raisers John Bradley and Rene Gagnon. All three men played themselves in the movie. Wayne hands the flag to be raised to the three men. (The actual flag that was raised on Mount Suribachi is used in the film.)
'The Ballad of Ira Hayes,' is by Peter LaFarge. Covers of this song were done by Johnny Cash, Kris Kristofferson, Smiley Bates, Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, Kinky Friedman, Tom Russell, Hazel Dickens, Patrick Sky, and Townes Van Zandt."

Ira Hayes,
Ira Hayes

Call him drunken Ira Hayes
He won't answer anymore
Not the whiskey drinkin' Indian
Nor the Marine that went to war

Gather round me people there's a story I would tell
About a brave young Indian you should remember well
From the land of the Pima Indian
A proud and noble band
Who farmed the Phoenix valley in Arizona land

Down the ditches for a thousand years
The water grew Ira's peoples' crops
'Till the white man stole the water rights
And the sparklin' water stopped

Now Ira's folks were hungry
And their land grew crops of weeds
When war came, Ira volunteered
And forgot the white man's greed


There they battled up Iwo Jima's hill,
Two hundred and fifty men
But only twenty-seven lived to walk back down again

And when the fight was over
And when Old Glory raised
Among the men who held it high
Was the Indian, Ira Hayes


Ira returned a hero
Celebrated through the land
He was wined and speeched and honored; Everybody shook his hand

But he was just a Pima Indian
No water, no crops, no chance
At home nobody cared what Ira'd done
And when did the Indians dance


Then Ira started drinkin' hard;
Jail was often his home
They'd let him raise the flag and lower it
like you'd throw a dog a bone!

He died drunk one mornin'
Alone in the land he fought to save
Two inches of water in a lonely ditch
Was a grave for Ira Hayes


Yeah, call him drunken Ira Hayes
But his land is just as dry
And his ghost is lyin' thirsty
In the ditch where Ira died

lyrics from

The rate of people losing their jobs is the worst that it's been in 60 years.