Thank god for typing with two fingers

Thank god for typing with two fingers


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Chess & Boxing

Friendship tests can be difficult

So my brilliant neurologist friend who plans to retire next year and take up a far more intensive “study” of chess, invited me to play a game of it with him the other evening before dinner at his home.

When I was a kid, maybe as young as 10 or 11, maybe even 8 or 9, I learned the moves that chess pieces can make, that little L shaped, knight thing, the queen’s myriad powers, and the names of the pieces, rooks, bishops, pawns etc.

And I’d play with friends, whose age and capacities were pretty much the same as mine in most parts of our lives, and they also knew how the pieces could move, and couldn’t move; so we’d set up the board and go at it.

I know that in the 55 years or so since I’ve played there has been an increased interest in the game because of that cute autistic girl on TV and a few real life chess guys who were also, somehow, photogenic.

So doc and I set-up the board and it took him maybe, at most, 40 moves between us to put me away.

But I think I learned more than he did.

I learned that playing a game with peers whose knowledge of the game were reasonably well-matched to mine for the fun of seeing what might happen as we played, is a very different matter than playing an opponent who knows a kazillion strategies, defenses, and aggressive tactics for crushing you.

Doc’s and my game was a bit like Muhammad Ali, in his prime being able to beat the shit out of a 10 year old featherweight who thought he was stepping into the ring for fun, or a one-legged man lining up in the starting blocks (“block,” singular, for him) to race against Usain Bolt in a 100 yard dash.

Come to think of it, as I’ve written about in other places, my boxing and racing skills as a kid weren’t much better than my chess skills are today.

All I can say is thank god for typing with two fingers and cursing without guilt or conscience and for handling disappointments like a spoiled child,

I got all that shit mastered.

So checkmate, motherfuckers.


Tale of My New Computer

That’s it the whole damned story

So this is the first thing I’ve written on this new laptop. In fact the first time I’ve written anything on ANY laptop in years.

So, obviously I’m just fucking around learning how to make this work. I don’t edit on The Haven ’til Saturday, so I’ve got til then to learn how to do this.

Pray for me . . .especially fellow atheists, b/c we all know how great that shit works.


Late Start

A Poet’s life in the ultra-challenge zone

It’s supposed to be 95 degrees today but we’re getting a late start because the dog vomited on the upstairs carpet which of course requires the full 1000% cleaning and scrubbing treatment. And the worst of it is that all Patti’s hard work with the vacuum and the carpet-cleaning machine seems to have worked perfectly. This means that the next time the dog pukes we’ll have to follow the same rituals. I tell you, Life as an old fuck, typing away in the loft sure has its pains and agonies. Poor, poor Me!


Back to Bukowski

Models as mentors

When in doubt as a poet/writer, the one guy who can always drag me back into the proper lane is Buk, whose honesty, directness and fearlessness never falters in his writing or in his life and death. So, a re-visit, please.

Reading Bukowski This Morning

He died in 1994 but these lines of his, words, and messages are as sharp and crisp today as the day, soaked in wine and Bibi smoke, he typed them a year or two before his death.

He’d gone from shoddy, shitty skid-row apartment with a ratty couch covered in beer and other mysterious, ugly stains to a nice house in the ‘burbs.

He was fully aware of the rumors and gossip about the threat to his soul as he soaked in his own Jacuzzi or did laps in his own swimming pool.

But in his The Last Night of The Earth Poems He mixes the pain of life well-off with the pain of life down-and-out: the joy and bliss of moments both rich and poor, and through it all he shows equal measures of gratitude.

Reading Buk is always humbling yet it gives me hope and demands my respect and honor because, whatever I do, I’m simply leaving the tip after he’s picked up the tab for an unforgettable feast.

To be honest (A phrase I hate but is serviceable here) my dream is to one day write things that others can pick up, twenty-five years after I’m fuckin’ DEAD, that help somehow and nudge someone’s spirit to seek and find their voice, much as Buk has always done for me.

And whether this happens or not, that’s as close to immortality as I need to get.


I don’t mind things rhyming

But I never go out of my way to make it happen. George Harrison heard his guitar gently weeping while seeing that his floor needed sweeping. Bullshit, George. “Iambic Pentameter, that, motherfucker said the gnarly, hairy trucker.” See, its gotta come Natural- -ly.


“What Do You Write About?”

Here’s how I answer . . .

What do I write about? I hate to sound like a pandering politician, but the truth is that I write, hopefully, and when I’m doing it best, it's about you.

I make a best guess that our lives and experiences are much more alike than they are different, and that therefore our journeys through this fuckin’ mess will overlap much of the time, so that when something rises in my heart/soul/mind and I start to type, it will resonate with you and you’ll see that my story is just as much your story.

I write about what’s happened and happening to me and what will likely one day happen to you.

Human experience is universal and my job, as well or poorly as I am able to do it, is to capture that truth and speak for all, just as so many for millenniums have spoken thus for us.

We may have different faces of different colors, and different voices speaking different languages, but the trick is to seek and find the common denominators that make us humans together.

Humans.

Together.

All of us start the same naked way and we rise, only to finish more or less, likewise.

We all know this and if we forget it, from time to time, time itself will mercilessly remind us in the end, or if we’re lucky, a little before then.


I do NOT write Limericks

No I certainly do not

as they are clearly pieces of rot

in jokes it’s the pun

in poems there is none

to match all that limericks don’t got.

Thank you, thank you very much, thanks, no really, yer too kind, thank you so much!!


Questions About Poems

For Sharon Creech & Love that Dog

William Carlos Williams wrote a poem about chickens in the rain near a red wheelbarrow. (I’m not kidding, he did!)

And another poem which was just a note to his wife praising the plums he’d eaten for his lunch.

Seriously, he did this.

No shotgun blasts.

No bodies in the desert.

No angst, tears, laughing.

(Nor crying) eyes/throats/lips.

or any other body parts.

I don’t know what to tell you. We poets are odd birds. Look! A chicken by a red wheelbarrow! Look! Cold plums from the fridge.

What? You don’t get it?

We write under the moon but also, at times, in the bright, smoky morning of a world more or less on fire and we type away with two fingers and try not to think about our upcoming visit by a local rep. for a respected pest control and lawn care company to deal with our sugar-ant infestation and the itchy feeling all over our bodies.

Because...

Fuckin’ ants!

Red wheelbarrows. Cold plums. Ant God to the Rescue becomes Ant Killing Maniac of Northview Rd.

Photo by Pj Go on Unsplash