Thursday, November 30, 2006

Words for music

today i'll begin a series of blogs that are intended to be lyrical poems that accompany some new musical ideas i'm exploring for an album. my normal process is to record an album every year or 2, a combination of studio and home recordings, as well as composed and improvised music.

there are some poems, and certainly momentum from these writings and the previous HumbleServant project that can be accessed, but now my intention is set to bring out ideas that fit, due to patterns of rythum and flow of images, within a musical framework. here's the first one:

"take my name"

dawn expression out along the walking tree
our beginnings heading toward some open cabin
enter into me
take my name into the chambers of your heart
take my name to silence, to delivery
take my name to where the resting carves a fire
carves a fire
pales the wind
blackens summer fall and winter to your spring

filling open shadow southland loneliness
bellies full, a green vernada, take this drinking water to her
falling into sky
take my name into your mesa, your continuance
take my name along a road where dangers pale
take my name applying pressure to the wound
to the wound
blood is drying
even temper holding pressure to the mending

sewing villages along a sleeve of oracle
dreams to waken, waken dreaming from your stones
from your dreaming stones
take my name into your patient, waiting hands
take my name because no other ever will
take my name like silence, drink it down like water
down like water
throat and belly
while we stand together on the shore of plenty

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Ellipse carnivore vacates red room

dallo vinta mesa pelo un fragamente tualla mis entromistas ella vacacione mentana o besia les maises en versailles plie trois vilages bon fresciente how do molenes pick up yo viscientias by way of trains diciendo graves melon twisted around balerinos travail beniche saragossa manuscript jerry garcia pelicula dormitory hoodlum drinking television grupas by an engineered diametric zuzubean philanthropic misdemeanor volvo transitions californicated louse merchant delicatly leg-long earstwhile nickle bag flea heart peach comma go hop no dog a i me um kip trillium dolittle famish balance gobbly alintouicvermaloo beg now to zip up all my top big fun tug alms by drumming celophane nukes

Monday, November 27, 2006

Tell me now what I know tomorrow

pain in my left ribcage congratulating thin crackers broken over compost

vanity corkscrew laughing holiday vroom vroom get your tickets while they're hot

fathers coming at us from all directions through a veil of tears

clay taking form in your hands

tipping my bloody tongue backward, shadow quenched

helen's winter valise destined for magdalene's garden radishes

now tunes my guitar for tomorrow

floral surf riding wind, wing, danger hugging you, seal-bark jarring my child

visitors circle, mild halo in lunar crown

your mother's fingers folded across a table of glass

build some version of fire

make love your cowl and sheet

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


this is the religion that kills me sometimes, takes me out of the moment, out of my body and into my head where all of the kings are doing battle with each other while their fields wither in neglect.

forgiveness is the antithesis. this morning i realized i was half-asking someone i love for some kind of forgiveness for something i wasn't quite sure why i was uncomfortable with prior to either getting clear about what my issue was or practicing forgiveness with myself.

holidays bring up my emotional history. for many years i would get asthma attacks on thanksgiving and christmas days. this has subsided to some degree, but archeological remnants of my being an imperfect human will no doubt keep me on my toes, challenge my awareness and compassion in various ways for the next month or so.

for now, in this moment, i recognize that its important for me to pay close attention if i begin to feel like i'm not giving enough, or being absolutely fabulous, especially as a lover or partner. those feelings can lead to conversations that have proven to be deeply healing. that requires a pause, a journey into myself, trusting that will be ok, that its an act of love, not of weakness, to take a moment of reflection, and then a sharing of that trust with my partner.

in this moment i accept the grace and forgiveness of these words, take them into my heart and share them with you. thank you for being willing to hear them, to hear me. i accept the grace and gift of you in my life.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Anger lamp tremor

your voicemail

typical shit

whatever you want to hear you hear

you will not hear from me

let silence be my voice

deep in the earth something shifts

7 miles deep

i'm shaking on my hands and knees

in gratitude

lava raging through caverns of iron

hot as hell

i'm standing at the window

in silent prayer

a volcano stands on its head

taking deep breaths of compassion

i'm looking at my fingertips

allowing this moment into my heart

Monday, November 20, 2006

Surrounded by loving hands

in dreams i process my fears, take them for a walk and stand beside them watching tidal surges, snow melt, partridges falling in and out of pear trees, tamping ball and powder into cannon on front line of civil war, tasting seventeen varieties of sauterne, build a tepee out of burnt wood covered in moss with red silk at its heart, mound leaves around base of fruit trees, knit a sweater on bones of a fawn, divide my belongings with them, make plans for springtime vacations, holy mother of god leaning into the wind with her back aligned with mine, villages piling their dead along ridges of clay, telecaster rock star bucket standing elf on sidewalk full of shoppers mirroring his absence with howling notes to weave malachite wishes through leggy heaven, nine jackets reeling in a ghostly room, eight lances plowing henry's field, dutch oven masterpiece theater balanced on top of ballerina's head, goya painting his last stroke prior to sunday's bread and wine, how this knack for calling down gulls for scraps of garbage pales in comparison to my wounded pride, its a logjam teacup bursting into white absence, laughing at holes pilfered through firewood applesauce, dusty relish overnight devouring my helm, my bow, my beam and tiller, taking on water to wash us away, merciful, dutiful, magical, grateful in a thousand directions, in light, darkness, trembling and rest.

Friday, November 17, 2006

"The days and nights begin to drift into each other...

like the islands in the rain or a child inside her mother
something so alive, and rich as polished jewels of an angel's tears..."

from the song "temple sisters" 1987

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Axillary milk

dreamtime mother, please follow my heart-line
please turn my head toward your nurturing
please enter this sacred room and hold me close
bend your arm beneath my head
comfort and joy
find that place where love flows between us
embrace this moment
merge with me
tell each star and that sliver of moon
with the bird flying toward it on my morning walk
that we are perfected in love
as human and spirit
as darkness and glow
please take my chilly hands in your hand
look deeply into my eyes and smile
remind me that winter provides a sweetness all its own
empty your cup into my throat
please find the line down my body
that once was your line
let them fuse together in peace, in freedom
i am your child, a child of god
born into this world to fall down on my knees
gripping the great wet shaggy mane of rain in my hands
watching fish fight their way upstream to the bears who eat them
latching their eggs in sand
dawning light, courage to die
oh mother of night, in gratitude i pray

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

No secrets

you said it
i said it
you heard it
i heard it
we discussed it
we accepted it
my life
your life
your truth
my truth
something new
everything new
take this in
set this aside
make this choice
make this distinction
open this door
close this door
i care
you care
you give to me
i give to you
this is important to me
this is important to you

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Facilitation and mixing

tonight virginia and i have been invited to provide the dance mix and facilitation for turtle dance. such a sweet honor, and it was really fun putting together the music. i have been sketching and making small refinements to a mix since june when scot had mentioned this opportunity may come up sometime. but the real magic was sitting down with virginia and having the experience of working collaboratively on something so personal - for both of us. her experience - my collection - our humor, intuition and mutual respect all came shining through in the process. this will be my first adventure into being the dj - and virginia will be facilitating, creating the gateway into the dance. come and join us!

Monday, November 13, 2006

Work that muscle of kindness

it was an emotional weekend, the november deep darkening pulling further toward the center, a tide of glistening blueblack with sparks of light, refractions, a tour beyond stored initiations, examination of creative flow, masking off distinct regions of adventure for core vintage dreamtime, telling of fears, spilling wine into delicate whorls around the mouth of her garden, the mother of winter, a sweat abrasion on my left knee pelting sleet broken glass commentary, valuable lessons handled in tender ways with woolen mittens, negative space embraced as tiny rivers or immense tulips float together singing "i am so much in this perfect moment, exactly who i am, giving everything i have", its all for the best, the best efforts telling themselves over and over to be at peace with this world, with this ever-growing love of singular beauty, unprecedented kindness, laugh out loud then, make that sound in your throat then, sing your song then, be still then, work together with complete joy, no struggle to control, anchors of respect in harbor of calm, sharp insightful wise intelligent discernment making the list, checking it twice, dancing along, peering into the other, mirror of venus across the face of the sun, to the dark unknown, leap silently, land softly, cry openly, fly in winter sky, my loving heart, my loving heart, my kind and loving heart.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Richard Kehl's 70th Birthday Celebration

one of my most influential teachers in keeping an open mind, an open heart, and having courage to explore visual poetry is having a rare exhibition of his work this weekend. i encourage you to go if at all possible. here are some details from seattle art blog:

"Celebrate the 70th birthday honoring the life and art of longtime University of Washington art professor Richard Kehl at the Seattle Asian Art Museum on November 10 from 7-10pm and November 11 from 12-8pm with a special show, "The Innocent Eye." Kehl urges everyone “to view the fabric of life with an “innocent eye,” free of the labels and value judgments imposed from the outside. Martha Kingsbury, Professor of Art History at the University of Washington says of Kehl's work, "As a historian of 19th and 20th century art, I have always had a strong liking for Kehl’s work in itself, and also a great delight in how it carries forward the radical innovations of early 20th century modernism.”

i also love richey's books, some of which are words without images (books of quotations) and some of which are images without words ("the feminine", the masculine", "put on a happy face"). i've given them as gifts to friends and family with wonderful responses.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Real life

gratitude and acceptance are closely related but certainly not the same for me. gratitude i can practice more comfortably, it flows out from my heart toward everything in my life, its universal, its inclusive of struggle and challenges. but acceptance can be uncomfortable, it can be sticky, it can be scary, it can require me to look in the mirror and see the face of my past without judging myself, to recognize who i am not who i wish i was, and then to extend that out to all people and situations in my life.

for the last 2 months i have been practicing bringing my courage, trust, gratitude and acceptance into an ever-deepening connection with virginia. its real life every day, and sometimes that is painful. comfort answers the pain, compassion answers the fear, and there is always plenty of time and space for me to take that walk through the valley of my own shadow, my own mortality, to recognize who i am and what i am bringing to the table.

i remember often a therapist i worked with saying to me "don't make an enemy of relationships", it helps me stay in my feelings, ground in the moment, really listen, really see the person i am with. so this is what i am celebrating today, for myself, for my lover and friend, for all my relations, for you and the whole world. real life is beautiful.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Octillion collapse

the morning king and evening queen measure out verses

calibrate remembrance

vanquish longitudinal distraction

have tea in focused bed

sup and polish wide open floors

in order to relish a curve plated in silver light

working toward common application of healing balm to wounds unexchanged

telecast different welding hulls on ships launched when tidal surges broke through glassy harbor

evacuate delicate branches around heliotrope diamond-catchers masking reversal

splash phantom roles into baseball trading card volume

where peaches tint sullen roadsides

where telescopes brim over with tears

where pallidromes expound figurative dervishes

where vast blue eyes reach deep into green pools

the morning king and evening queen believe their garden stands in god's grace

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Loose ends, a new lake

in the story of jack and the beanstalk, at least as i remember it and tell it, well actually its been awhile but i took a stab at it last night, there were a few details that the ending left unanswered that concerned me.

like what about the giant's wife, when jack cut the beanstalk and the giant fell to his death, what about his wife back up in the sky, who ever gave her the news, who consoled her, was she able to have closure by visiting the body, was she left alone for the rest of time or were there other eligible giants for her to consider connecting with?

and when the giant hit the ground, did it make a huge dent that later filled with water, and if so, which lake is that and what would it be like to swim in it?

virginia asked a few great questions as well, during my telling of the story, like "isn't that stealing?" and "was he scared?"

Monday, November 06, 2006

Changes made, changes to come

this time of year i fall into spontaneous introspection, blending conversations and activity into levels of sorting through who i have been in all the chapters of my life. there is peace within this process that has eluded me in previous darkening novembers, a recognition that not only can i live with myself, but through trusting and loving my life that trust and love can be shared with others freely. so my sense of community deepens, my familial ties become more flexible and sturdy, the morning breaks open the night into joy, each moment a beautiful package unraveling its ribbons, full of delicate, precious wonders. i drink it in, i taste and smell the earthy, living contents.

there was a beautiful sunday morning dance, i made out with the floor like crazy, leaving trails of sweat like a slug in the woods, spun around the limbs, trunks, heat and light of my fellow human beings, all of us forgiven and forgiving, all of us tasting the fruit of our living vines, gathering and collapsing, falling into, merging with and within each morsel of common dream, uncommon dream, the pardox of being with and being whole in solitude, in space with others.

several people at dance mentioned the elections tomorrow. the cycles of repression and political madness come to some turn in the highway again, will it be a sharp curve, will it be another cul de sac, how do we involve and yet detach from the process? my votes are cast, my donations made, there is a role i have that i am at peace with along that line of power. be sure to check out my links to the daily kos and huffington post if you want to be in the midst of the fervor. and vote!

Friday, November 03, 2006

I saw you

at the grocery store last night, then received an email from your mother this morning. her sense is that you are wanting to hear from me, have some kind of conversation. my understanding is that you want to work through whatever issues you have with me and then initiate communication when you are ready.

in either case, i am at peace with you and ready to talk if it is time. i trust the process we are in and have compassion for both of us. my ability to learn from looking into the painful areas of life keeps growing. that, and an attitude of humble service are the two standards of my daily spiritual practice. my gratitude for who you are, exactly where you are in your life and mine, is absolute and gets acknowledgement in my prayers.

you are a precious gift to the world.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Painted horse, voice of reason

in this field we are standing, grazing, trading glances between raindrops, those perfect sparkles dissolve along the line of your back, soaking your hide. you are telling me something that is difficult to put into words, steam is rising as morning sun ignites, i slow my breathing, perk up my ears, concentrate on the words you are saying and try to release the thoughts that crowd my mind, give my mane a shake and make an effort to respond intelligently without editing anything, information or feelings, saying perhaps more than you wanted to hear, perhaps less, but the intention is pure and somehow that comes across. it leaves open the possibility of taking this process further, into some distant field that offers room to run, to jump and kick up the turf, intensify communication through physical expression, invite in a witness, feed on new flowers, blades of grass, tell the sun to render a portrait of our keenly visceral contrasting experiential hooves, walking in each other's footsteps to facilitate a reasonable acceptance of this trail we are exploring.

last night's difficult sleep, the pain, the restlessness, all handled with kindness and attention to space, that space between words, between our fingers, or the length of my forearm and your back, space between the bed and the wall or the lamp and your pink water-bottle, all spaces honored and allowed to exist unhurried, letting the moments and spaces dance, low flying birds, dreams on branches, hip bones under the tree, placing the somnambulist face down in a field where 2 horses wait, gazes locked, for the sun to return.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

"Sons & Daughters"

(lyrics to the song written in 1990)

many nights i hold the secrets
of the movies of the weeds
watch them burn
throw the ashes to the wind
on my knees
the wild country lashes out with storms
floods the fields
the scars can't begin to count the needs
to count the needs

instead you've gone to the ocean
taken all the juice in the rain
made mistake out of adventure
but i know you'll go to run again
the high country holds you
in the snow like a grave
but no death will release you from the pain
from the pain

for we were born together
from the same mother's womb
and wherever leaves have scattered
we will walk in the moon
to meet our sons & daughters
to meet our son & daughters
to meet our sons, our sons & daughters

the high country cold and wild
is blowing through my veins
the blood has spilled, just walk away
just walk away

but the world turns in a circle
she always spins her face to the light
our days correct our stumbling
through the tempest of the night
the high country rolls and sighs
the lowlands are filled with fertile soil
on which we've come to build
we've come to build

for we were born together
from the same mother's womb
and wherever leaves have scattered
we will walk in the moon
to meet our sons & daughters
to meet our sons & daughters
to meet our sons, our sons & daughters
our sons & daughters