Thursday, March 31, 2005


i've just realized in these last minutes of thursday that my birthday is one week away. how did it roll around so rapidly? yikes.

flight patterns...

less spectacular migration today. the sun is low now and they're still going. fewer though. can't expect every day to be as beautiful and surreal as yesterday. only so many butterflies in the world. maybe i was hoping for a miss-nelson-is-missing moment. no such luck.

chocolate roan head tossing in a high field. black-maned. mincing on glossy bent grass. native. and the taller trans-atlantics have another tack. they but rattle under a shearing wind. tip and right. tip and right.

lupines all over. legumous odor rising up. vaguely grape. ink and hard candy.

this one day had so many in it. not even through too.

s.b. leaves tonight for new mexico again. afeared of flight. our last experience with planes was turbulent. he vowed never again. he didn't set foot into the lepidopterous cloud yesterday.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

painted ladies...

i haven't a yardstick for the amount of strange today.

tens of thousands of orange butterflies came just when i was feeling low. an arc above the roof peak. had there been an invisible updraft and sparks. or dead leaves. a soft swell that collapsed. sustained though. aloft. i stationary. they stationless. constant flux. right down to the grass tops. north. northeast. lambent.

then i had to leave. a type of rescuing we've not had to perform for some years. a long wait in a cold place. i counted bricks for over four hours. not compulsive mind. boredom. i began to wonder why lintels are lain that way. what makes a door. how we can pass back to the ride without crying. only just. a drop of wet wobbles open on dust. this is how a free day passes then.

driving home after sunset. orion to one side. cassiopeia was someone's proud mother. chains make flint in the dark.


robert creeley has died. i'm sad to hear it. wish i'd had the chance to meet him.

little musical farewell. elliot smith--because.

Tuesday, March 29, 2005

wagons ho!

sister: hey, the such-and-such gorilla foundation is looking for people. people with stationwagons.
me: oh yeah?
sister: yeah. you get to haul stuff.
me:do i get to haul gorillas in my stationwagon?
me:then forget about it.

my sister loooooves gorillas. i have a stationwagon. she keeps trying to find creative ways to wheedle it away for zoological purposes. i will never allow a marmoset in there (smelly!) but i wouldn't object to a gorilla. that at least would be interesting. of course, i've never smelled a gorilla. maybe i should check into that before i jump on board. hmm. nobody's going to let me drive their gorilla anywhere anyway. dagnabbit.

now listening to: dolly parton-- jolene.

for some reason lola took it into her head that she's a lap dog. 60 pounds of lap dog. she bounded into my lap last night and snuffled into my blankets. kissed my face. she doesn't normally behave like that. i don't know what has gotten into her. but it was really cute. also a little painful.

my ma told me she's going to ride a paddleboat down the mississip'. what?! and she means it, too. i better get making her some tattered short pants.

now playing: johnny cash-- i've been everywhere.


cross the deserts bare, man! i've been everywhere!

Thursday, March 24, 2005


just now i was rummaging in the shed. discovered another brownie! a brownie holiday this time. it's in much better condition than the baby brownie special. man oh man. so cool. so many interesting things in the shed of my forebears. it would seem from the number of cameras i'm digging up that my grandparents had a passion for photography. but i don't think that is the case. they had a passion for gathering. they must have passed it down. in any case, i have now a chronology of their capturing devices. i know now that they liked kodak a good deal. also, there's a bell and howell for motion picture needs. i haven't the faintest idea how it operates but i expect i'll find out.

now listening: high upon-- hidden cameras.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

the creature thus be born!!!

s.b.'s spirit journey formation anniversary! happy birthday, s.b.!

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

egg on my face...

i was looking through the i like archives and ran across mention of the movie the wickerman. and then i saw that the sister had borrowed my copy. we started discussing this and that. i had always thought that ingrid pitt played willow. but no. it was britt ekland. and actually some naked bits were not even her naked bits. wellidy. you learn something new every day. thank you, imdb.

tonight on our walk it appeared as though a(n) (unidentified) star was racing across the sky at rapid speeds. but it couldn't have been. then it seemed to rush in softened chevrons. but no. and we finally figured it was an optical illusion. the giant remainders of stormcloud were racing. the star not so much. but it was a beautiful illusion.

i picked lilacs. my lilacs? mine now. (ha!) and i have enough green wick spur to make my own shrub. and i will, too. they're an old fashioned variety. very briary stand and dense. dark flowers. cold. fragrant.

good night.

Monday, March 21, 2005

'cause i like you...

dandy warhols just now:

you got a great car/yeah, what's wrong with it today?...

so whatta ya do?/oh yeah, i wait tables, too...

etc. etc.

somehow it seems the right moment to hear this.

make and model...

the transmission may be repaired soon. what joy. public transportation here leaves something to be desired. it can take several hours to go a very short distance and another several for the return. wasted time in transit. so i'm pleased about the auto forecast.

today s.b. noted that "leganza" is a silly name for a car. the daewoo leganza. ensuing conversation about car names. he suggested the mazda naked mole rat. it's as euphonious as many others. i say why not.

the name that causes me the must puzzlement: probe. it's an unfortunate name. and unpleasant on so many levels.

listening to malkmus' pink india. an impotent tea bag spaz...

in other news...

today a note from my dearest female friend. pennsylvania. children. what happens if i blink. i blinked. i blunk. but there is this telepathy. and from across a continent we suddenly relay. now all i can think is what to send? dachshunds and letters. music. a flipbook. tiny stitched signatures.

a note. an equinox. a sun that sustains in place of rising.


Sunday, March 20, 2005

the aweful german language (according to twain)...

every noun has a gender, and there is no sense or system in the distribution; so the gender of each must be learned separately and by heart. there is no other way. to do this one has to have a memory like a memorandum-book. in german, a lady has no sex, while a turnip has. think what overwrought reverence that shows for the turnip, and what callous disrespect for the girl. see how it looks in print-- i translate this from a conversation in one of the best of the german sunday-school books:

"gretchen: willhelm, where is the turnip?"
"wilhelm: she has gone to the kitchen."
"gretchen: where is the accomplished and beautiful english maiden?"
"willhelm: it has gone to the opera."...
--mark twain

i had basic german in school. i've been trying to improve. it goes something like this:

der der der der der. der? der! gah! gaaaaah! die die die die die!

spanish is much easier in respect to gender. occasional hiccups like la mano. i'm okay with it.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

this smarch weather...

it's raining. which means the weekend is confined mostly to indoor activity. i felt ambitious and pulled books from shelves. many books. many shelves. i thought i could reorganize for efficiency. but now that the books are in teetering stacks i'm not so positive.

made soup of the vegetable and barley variety. looks like dungeon porridge. tastes pretty good.

hyacinths are beginning to bloom. pink. white.

a pair of pigeons has returned. i think they are trying to set up housekeeping here. hmm. hopefully this will not be a repeat of last year. my car can do without the fondant layers of pigeon effluent. i do like pigeons a lot though.

cut my finger on the schwinn. plastic part. humiliating part. why so clumsy? dunno. i've bandaged with white glue. probably unsanitary but keeps the cut from snagging.

tomorrow when i'm feeling less overwhelmed by books i'll mention mark twain and his views on a certain language. because it's funny. and i'm frustrated.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


one hour in sunshine with a friend is really too short. you get to exchange hellos and settle and then it's time to go again. and the telephone is not enough. i really am not a fan of the telephone where any bit of meaningful conversation is concerned. it doesn't cut it. if you can't look at the other face something is lost. significant. so one hour is better than three on the phone i suppose. but one hour is still too stingy. next time more. or else!

new pilot pens! hooray! and they're refillable. mmmm.

the banana cache has been replenished. green bananas. tomorrow they'll be yellow bananas. that fast. they don't waste time.

i've decided the scissor-lift is a thing of beauty. maybe only because they are uncommon here. if i saw them more they would be less impressive. what is the average weight of a construction worker? the scissor-lift doesn't give a shit. it just shrugs its shoulders and men hop to the roof. the men look like the scissor-lift. somewhere else they have scaffolds instead. bamboo. they have hoists, too. simple machines. the bamboo is saddled to a highrise. the men can climb. the men look more like scaffolds and hoists.

if we are looking at ruble* notes i am thinking 1910 but over your shoulder i'm thinking scissor-lift. i'm thinking ringed-finger. i'm thinking new glasses. i'm thinking thing in my hair. (i was under a tree. that's how it got to be there) spastic yellow bird. bumblebee. firearms. snort laugh. drags feet. talks from habit. in pairs. walks on heels. roof tiles. dark window. dark window. and opposite dark window. i'm thinking it's very noisy even though the sounds aren't loud. that is why an hour is just too small. i spend 50 of those minutes percolating because i can't do otherwise. after the initial i'm filtered and a ruble note is a ruble note and everything else is in that ruble note. in a word: focus.

*that's a stab. what denomination?

what would i do in the city? i would never stop percolating. that's what. and it mayn't be bad.

Sunday, March 13, 2005

everywhere a sign...

i have a collection of photos of signs. road signs. signs people scrawled and left on public bulletin boards. signs taped to restaurant windows. out of order signs. things of that nature. yesterday the sister pointed out a good one. i must remember to take my camera back to the spot because i don't have a photo of it yet. it's a sign advertising puppies. somebody typed it up in word and printed it out and posted it. the sign heading reads: pure bread rottweiler puppies.


it goes on to talk about the many desirable qualities of the rottweiler breed. people like rottweilers for protection. they scare intruders away. i have to admit that if i saw a pure bread dog of any breed i would turn heel and flee. oh yes.

people make spelling mistakes. all people. but what kills me about this particular example is that the pure bread sign was right next to another sign for pure bred yellow lab puppies. and i wonder if pure bread posted his/her sign after yellow lab and did not notice the difference. or maybe thought, "what a dope! they spelled it 'pure bred.' hah!" maybe i'm putting too much thought into it. i'd wager yes.

in other news...

one of the artichoke plants yielded a tiny artichoke. it was smaller than the palm of my hand. i steamed it. peeled the first layer of leaves. ate the rest whole. not it one bite, mind you. but whole. it was so, so very good. i wish i had another right now. artichokes are the most wonderful vegetable. and you get to eat them with your hands, people! and they're messy! but nobody stares. unless you try to eat them with cutlery. artichokes go in the cool book. yes.

today was quite cold. i stayed indoors mostly. listened to some music and typed. show me show me show me how you do that trick/ the one that makes me scream she said/ the one that makes me laugh she said/ and threw her arms around my neck....

i also worked on the schwinn for a spell. wire brushed the chain. rust you know. and rubbed oil into the saddle. found my generator light and all of the little brackets etc. will afix. will have light! hooray!

hmm. one of my favorite road signs was in new mexico. sangre de christo mountains. middle of nowhere there's a pedestrian crossing sign (several actually). someone embellished with black marker. made it a wolfman crossing. as i was taking a photo of it a man on a tractor nearly collided with me. presumably because i am not a wolfman.

there's a gollynipper (snollygoster if you like) flying around in here. it's a bit early for them. i wonder where he came from.

nighty night.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005


you're lucky that i didn't steal your pen. i might still do it. it seems to write so smoo-- (garbled), shit that was operator error. this is a letter from your pen saying he has left you for a righty (not a faker lefty). he says he's treated fine and will always miss you. off to the pocket of the strange man.... aha! he has escaped and is hidden in second to the top left drawer.

i found this threatening letter next to the monitor today when i came home. the brother is notorious for stealing pens if i leave them about. but not this one! it's the fountain pen of lesser quality and i'm very fond of it. yes. the letter was amusing. i don't think i've ever had a letter from a pen before. pen authored, i mean.

sister and i both had a free hour this afternoon. we took a walk together. at one of our favorite thrift stores i found a little olivetti lettera for $3.50. yes! it's robin's egg blue and it works wonderfully. and it was still in its original case. and i can't stop zipping and unzipping it and staring at it and touching it. and and and. there is one thing: no exclamation point. which means i can ask questions but can't be enthusiastic over the answers. hmm.

also, there was a 1960's schwinn (blue) of appropriate proportions. $7.50. i'm going with my bicycle wrench tomorrow to claim my prize. i have to remove some bits to fit it in the car.

i am pleased that approx. $10 netted me some nifty finds. hooray!

my hair has been cut. again. it grows at yeti speeds.

i bumped into my father in the post office. i showed him my olivetti. he said, "yes, i have an underwood at home. it's very much larger than that. it's quite heavy." later i mentioned to sister. she said, "yes, if you said you'd found an atomic reactor on bargain he'd say he had one lying around that he'd built." there's no surprising the man. largely because he's been here much longer than the sister and me. much longer. and when he says something happened the other day what he means is it happened 15 years prior. somehow that never ceases to make me grin.

i learned a new word: cheerwine. i like this new word. it describes cherry soda of the south. or it is cherry soda of the south. in any case, i like the sound.

well. good night.

Monday, March 07, 2005


just now the squirrel in the alley taunted me. he came to squat on the walnut bole. walnut in mouth. tail curved perfectly up behind his ears. we stared at each other. he was only about 6 feet from the ground. now if i'd had my camera that never would have happened.

this morning was the sort where nothing progresses as it should. the alarm fails. there's general panic. nothing goes smoothly. rocky (not the meat-fisted variety). i wish the day would have begun differently. then it would have played out with different rocks. fine-grained volcanic. coarse-grained plutonic. etc. etc. and i would have met a nice southern lady that knows all about maths. instead i was chased around the house by a crazed dog and an equally crazed brother avec inflatable ball. he made me breakfast. he tried to make me eat eggs. nothing doing. i'm not an egg fan. tomorrow will be better. i'm building the john muir alarm-bed. it will spill me from my cot when dawn approacheth.

i've heard rumours of a box camera somewhere in the forebears' boxes. i will find it. oh yes.

i wore flip-flops today! hooray!

Sunday, March 06, 2005

combining forms...

my pregnant onion has given birth to multitudes. if i had seen the offspring alongside the parent there would be no mistaking their relation. but that's not what happened. the pot had been tipped. i righted the pot. i walked away. walked back. then i noticed hundreds of little pea-sized entities all over the leaf mold. they scared me. i thought they were some strange insects. i knelt down. picked one up. i saw the root nodes. little green tips. i recognized that they were bulblets. now i just don't know what to do with all of them.

i wanted to find the etymology of the botanical name. ornithogalum. bird something. bird something. gaulic bird? i don't know. still don't know because my dictionary of roots and combining forms doesn't know either so can't tell. the latin dictionary on-line i visited didn't seem to know either. but lots o' places were helpful in explaining the etymology of one of the common names: star of bethlehem. takes its name from the star the magi followed to the christ child. real helpful, fellas.

i purchased some red stripe and we had sandwiches for lunch. we went for a walk. i only had one stripe but i realized as the walk progressed that one stripe made me rather tipsy. marelizabethodea tipsyescens. you don't want to run afoul of her. she can't stop laughing.

it was a gorgeous day today. sunny and warm. blue sky. blossom trees. some music in the background. some music now with my tea.

springspringspringspring. tomorrow i'll be stuck indoors. how will i ever manage.

love tree...

the philodendron was repotted today. as were the avocado trees. the potting mix which i keep outdoors has been tenanted by a small irritable ant kingdom. i put my hand in the bag. i was thereafter not held in high esteem. i think the ensuing regicide didn't bolster my appeal. but the plants seem happier.

i baked a dark chocolate bundt. suddenly everyone loved me (everyone but for the ants-- they did not eat cake--they were mourning).

the father paid a visit. we read the s.f. chron together. he educated me on the pitfalls of iron reenforced concrete construction. the cat drooled on my sweater sleeve. the sun was out. i wanted to fall asleep in my lap but the cat was already there. and i think i'm too big for that anyway. we read the funnies and laughed. my father and sister and i read. not the cat.

there's a nectarine tree in blossom by the railroad tracks. the nectarines from that tree are really quite terrible. i mean they taste terrible. they do not behave in a terrible fashion. as far as i know they are ordinary fruit.

i am incredibly sleepy. and why wouldn't i be. it's past midnight.


Thursday, March 03, 2005

hello my baby, hello my darlin'...

today i popped in while s.b. practiced. debussy's first arabesque. i found myself drowsing against the wall. head lolling. almost asleep. then suddenly: was that your stomach?!?! i opened one eye: affirmative.

my belly has its own bizarre repertoire. really. it makes the strangest sounds. sometimes it is so loud i become embarrassed. i'm somewhere quiet and then this. i have to shuffle papers or tap my knuckles or look innocently at the other people on the bus as though i was not the source. when i say my stomach growls i'm not adding animal traits for dramatic effect. it does growl. ulcers. and the anemia makes me sleepy. but anyway, the worst sound she makes: eructation. i think humbert says in lolita, "there are some eructations that sound like applause." that's from memory and it's been while. cut me some slack. mine falls short of ovation. more like a series of ugly industrial valves turning. a series of compressions and decompressions. i stuff a banana in there. shut up already! 20 minutes and the aftermath is one long cranky complaint. i like to personify. i think be-ribboned tweedles in there. dee and dum. a hideous tantrum.

speaking of hideous. whoever practiced nearby has a love of scott joplin. please. please. oh please. unless you are evelyn glennie stay clear. i'm being mean. to promote tolerance and show that ragtime is alright by me here are some places which i find ragtime appropriate:

-1800's prospector camp
-the silver stope, virginia city
-an organ-grinder's grinder
-big valley
-a can-can revue
-traveling carnival
-a nickelodeon
-the ponderosa

i know jazz is in debt to it. but i envision kick-skirts when i hear it. i'm very sorry.

so, we ended the session all with bananas in hand (ecuador!) in a poster perfect salute to the banana council. and twenty minutes later...

Tuesday, March 01, 2005

how does she do it?!

brother: that compound we use in plumbing has a warning on the label. it says, "exposure to this product may cause depression." i told k. about it because we've been using it for years. he said, "oh. huh. i never noticed that."

sister: he's been too busy crying.

have i ever mentioned that i adore her? well, i do.