27 February 2006 

He built four houses
to keep his life.
Three got away
before he was old.

He wonders now
rocking his chair
should he have built
a boat

dipping, dipping
and sitting so.

Van Gogh could see
twenty-seven varieties
of black
in cap-

I knew a clean man
but he was not for me.
Now I sew green aprons
over covered seats. He

wades the muddy water fishing,
falls in, dries his last pay-check
in the sun, smooths it out
in Leaves of Grass. He's
the one for me.

O my floating life
Do not save love
for things
Throw things
to the flood

by the flood
Leave the new unbought-
all one in the end-

Lorine Niedecker

21 February 2006 

why i love faulkner

the sharp and brittle crack and clatter of its weathered and ungreased wood and metal is slow and terrific: a series of dry sluggish reports carrying for half a mile across the hot still pinewiney silence of the august afternoon. though the mules plod in a steady and unflagging hypnosis, the vehicle does not seem to progress. it seems to hang suspended in the middle distance forever and forever, so infinitesmal is its progress, like a shabby bead upon the mild red string of road. so much is this so that in the watching of it the eye loses it as sight and sense drowsily merge and blend, like the road itself, with all the peaceful and monotonous changes between darkness and day, like already measured thread being rewound onto a spool. so that at last, as though out of some trivial and unimportant region beyond even distance, the sound of it seems to come slow and terrific and without meaning, as though it were a ghost travelling a half mile ahead of its own shape. 'that far within my hearing before my seeing,' lena thinks. she thinks of herself as already moving, riding again, thinking then it will be as if i were riding for a half mile before i even got into the wagon, before the wagon even got to where i was waiting, and that when the wagon is empty of me again it will go on for a half mile with me still in it she waits, not even watching the wagon now, while thinking goes idle and swift and smooth, filled with nameless kind faces and voices: lucas burch? you say you tried in pocahontas? this road? it goes to springvale. you wait here. there will be a wagon passing soon that will take you as far as it goes thinking, 'and if he is going all the way to jefferson, i will be riding within the hearing of lucas burch before his seeing. he will hear the wagon, but he won't know. so there will be one within his hearing before his seeing. and then he will see me and he will be excited. and so there will be two within his seeing before his remembering.'

william faulkner, light in august

listen to how the unrefined plain language becomes beautiful with its repetition and longing to communicate something beyond what it is capable of. you can especially hear this at the end.


spacialk, dreaming of a better life


I went to the worst of bars

hoping to get


but all I could do was to

get drunk


worse, the bar patrons even

ended up

liking me.

there I was trying to get

pushed over the dark


and I ended up with

free drinks

while somewhere else

some poor

son-of-a-bitch was in a hospital


tubes sticking out all over


as he fought like hell

to live.

nobody would help me

die as

the drinks kept


as the next day

waited for me

with its steel clamps,

its stinking


its incogitant


death doesn't always

come running

when you call


not even if you

call it

from a shining


or from an ocean liner

or from the best bar

on earth (or the


such impertinence

only makes the gods

hesitate and


ask me: I'm


charles bukowski, the suicide kid

17 February 2006 

a frigid wind was blowing in off lake erie, and even as he felt it rush against his face, he couldn't tell if the wind was real or something he had imagined. he didn't know what month it was, what year. he couldn't remember his name. bricks and cobblestones, his breath gusting into the air in front of him, and the three legged dog limping around the corner and vanishing from sight. it was a picture of his own death, he later realized, a picture of a soul in ruins, and long after he had pulled himself together and moved on, a part of him was still there, standing on that empty street in sandusky, ohio, gasping for breath as his existence dribbled out of him.

paul auster, the book of illusions


this blog was an accident of mouse clicks. but it's pretty so i'll keep it around.

13 February 2006 

francesco clemente, grisaille self portrait, 1998