31 August 2014

rose of sharon

of the 3 saplings I brought from Elyria this is the only survivor in the hard clay of my back yard.  & this summer has seen its most ample flowering.

30 August 2014

Hollywood heaven

every once in a while I see something that brings so many of my personal touchstones together that I'm overwhelmd.  that happend tonite.

I saw a half hour tv show from Xmas week of 1955. the series was "Screen Directors Playhouse." it lastd but one season.  however it's become legendary because it brought to its 35 episodes such prominent Hollywood directors as John Ford & Frank Borzage   Ida Lupino & Fred Zinnemann.

the episode I just watchd was "The Silent Partner."  directing was George Marshall who helmd such big screen classics as "Destry Rides Again" & "The Blue Dahlia."

the reason I wantd to see it was simple. it brought together one of film's greatest stars Buster Keaton with my Everyman -- Percy Helton.  but I had no idea going into it that there wd be surprises.

it opens with the Pantages Theater on Oscar nite.  altho I now find the Academy Awards beyond silly when I was young they were important to me.  & when I first began watching them on tv they were broadcast from the Pantages. we see the crowd & then suddenly there's my old friend George Fisher interviewing stars.  George's moment of Hollywood history is the subject of a poem of mine in The Arrow That is Hollywood Pierces the Soul That is Me.

George interviews Joe E. Brown who I once saw in summer stock. Keaton is a sort of bystander who then walks to a nearby bar calld Barney's. I suspect it'd be in the location of the Frolic in reality. Barney is Percy Helton -- star of my Percy & Bess. also in the bar is another silent screen great -- Zasu Pitts.

the story gets predictable but before the adventure is over we see Keaton in a comedy routine briefly opposite another beloved performer I've written abt -- Snub Pollard.

throw in Evelyn Ankers & Jack Kruschen & Hank Mann & a young Jack Elam -- even a cameo by Bob Hope -- & for me it became a major event. altho not a great piece of filmmaking it brought together both my past & Hollywood's in such a poignant way.  seeing those particular favorites of mine intersect was magic.  I'm so up I may have to do a little dance before I calm down.

27 August 2014

Lois Viscoli (1928-2014)

every city has its local legends.  Lois was one in Santa Fe. over the years I saw her more on stage than off.  so she really wasn't a friend.  but she was a colorful thread in the tapestry of our town.

I don't know much abt her early acting career which apparently included Broadway. in more recent times she was well known for having playd Alice B. Toklas in a 2-woman show. apparently it was a hit at Cherry Grove Community House on Fire Island.

Lois lived in a lovely house across the street from the onetime residence of Witter Bynner.  I'm sure her close friends have many stories.

24 August 2014

Michael Pace (1949-2014)

I've written often of my love for the singing group Gotham who were the kings of the cabaret scene of the '70s.

Gary Herb died first.  then my friend David McDaniel. & now the last of that sublime trio -- Michael Pace.

"Morning After Nite-blooming Cereus"

photograph by Jim Hinchee (Twin Lakes: 1980)

22 August 2014

today's "hike"

by the time we got to Valles Caldera it was too rainy to hike. luckily they also provide a shuttle tour. & the preserve is so vast that that took 2 hours.

& then we went to Los Alamos for a major lunch at Blue Window.

18 August 2014

still thinking

abt classmates who are dead. from high school at least 80 are gone.

17 August 2014

e-mail from a boyhood friend

"I remember your mom was the fastest walker in the city of Elyria." 

Kirk Nevins 

16 August 2014


today I learnd that a classmate from junior high & high school killd himself some years ago.

this is the football team from Eastern Heights.  he's one of the boys:

in high school he was in the band & actd in plays. altho we were friends we weren't particularly close. I did roam thru my old yearbooks & found us together in several group pictures.

he hasn't been in my thinking in years but tonite he has become central. 

14 August 2014

my littlest book

since 2001 this glorious project has been scattering poetry around the world. Poems-For-All is the brilliant work of Richard Hansen of San Diego.

today he sent me copies of Nijinsky's Underwear.  I'm completely thrilld to join all the splendid poets whose work Richard has been distributing.


watching live coverage of the police over reaction last nite brought back memories of that day on the Commons at Kent State.

so sad.

& after all these days since the murder of Michael Brown not one electd official -- city or state -- is showing any leadership.

13 August 2014

coming soon

here's a teaser for the forthcoming doc on Michael Alago:

& here I am with Michael at The Abbey:

& this is a poem I wrote for him last year:


smelling a chair
slipping on his jockstrap
tasting cake he made &
left in the freezer months ago

I try
to remember desire
but there is no fire

I pour a cup of tea
from a machine
that only makes singles

12 August 2014

feeling old

there was a time when I got scads of magazines in the mail. now it's down to abt 3.  this morning I was looking at one. it features inteviews with "stars" I've never heard of & ads for clothes I wdn't wear in a nitemare.

11 August 2014

Robin Williams (1951-2014)

what was

Tom Mahl sent me this picture he took of the destruction of 429 Winckles.  I knew it was coming but it still hurts.

& the cutting down of the glorious magnolia I brought as a Mothers Day gift all those years ago was particularly painful.

10 August 2014


some edam. some provolone. 

turkey sauage.

Molly's squash baked with butter & spices.

a flour tortilla.

08 August 2014

I'm back

the problem was a failure of my video card.  apparently that is not uncommon. so Apple replaced it for free.

01 August 2014

as my computer dies

been depressd all day. then this.

I was online when the screen went white. turnd off computer. screen still white. turnd off power source & waitd a while. when I turnd it back on everything returnd. BUT I was on all of a minute when everything disappeard again.

will see what happens in the morning. but if I have to take it in the shop I may be absent for a while. one can have an online presence via ipad. but it can be challenging.