I shall not seek Thee —in a stiff collar of white or colorless turbine. Or, robes of wool…covering skin dark or light over bones disguised in cloaks of Yellow, Orange, Brown, and lest not we forget Cremora White!
—You have no need to convince me of the fig leaf on my soul! I have acknowledged its presence. I will find its place in the empty void.
I shall find You —by going forward and leaving me alone.
I never know where you are —In the Alps, Himalayas’, Europe, or in the mountains of New Hampshire? I miss you, your stories, and the personal footnotes of the un-condensed adventures;how you accepted them, good or bad, and passed through them. So quiet and shy in your beautiful observations —yet bold and independent in your actions.
I hope you are well, happy, and peaceful in India; a beautiful country made more beautiful —welcoming your presence.
The clear Vodka bottle stood full, unopened on the top of the refrigerator. It has been there for hours, turning into days, weeks, and months. Every time I opened the refrigerator door— I would looked at it, and sing “Choices.” (Written by Billy Yates and Mike Curtis made popular by George Jones), and I would go about my routine day. But, eventually— one evening I took the bottle down and placed it on the counter. I found a clean mason jar and placed a few cubes of ice into it—poured from the bottle two mason jar fingers—staring out the kitchen window, I saw the full moon looking like a lost silver dollar—I raised my glass.
Songs are hidden in the words we speak. —sometimes in harmony
with the background hum of those we did not
know or ever meet.
Our melody can sometimes be disheartening
as well as our belly aching, vomiting
between the screeching cacophonous dominant notes
we may have perceived.
My music repetitively keeps playing yesterday’s Rock & Roll songs,
Rhythm & Blues songs, gospel’s black and white songs
—they are all fine—
But, go to the window and lift the shade
and hum them—
as you look at the sun and the future of rain.
Sing off-key if you must —loud and unalarmed.
Sing the songs that are hidden in the conscience that spoke without a word-
putting you in music unharmed.
Hum the song for unity in freedom
that has morally and musically given us;
without disrespect to life in the words
or thoughts written in our songs.
Or, what we sing.
The Banjo Player
I was talking to an old banjo player, pushing a 103 yrs old the other day. I asked him how his band was doing. “Well,” he said, wiping his face with one hand. “It’s over. There were four of us. One is dead, which left three of us unable to play his part and ours at the same time. Besides that, one is as Cuckoo as a broken string. The other young fella, in his late eighties, besides losing his hair has also, seemingly, lost the beat. Towards the end, we realized we were all playing different tunes insisting the other guy was messing up… and looking at each other with the stare of “each of us had better catch-up”. And, what was worst, when we were all on the same song, forgetting the words, we would automatically pick people out in the audience and break out into “Happy Birthday, to You…”.
We still keep in touch…”’
There was a moment of silence, thinking he was reminiscing when he suddenly blurted out, “Now where was I? Oh ya! That was quite a box of good cigars”, sitting back in his chair with a great big smile.
I’m not getting around doing much reading lately. Listening to my own head and writing notes into drafts, into outlines, revised again and again trying to avoid the trash; has been taking the days. But, I continue my short walks through the woods outside my “cave” and enjoy autumn swooshing summer away in grand fashion; as the days get shorter and the nights get longer, she prepares for a great sleep over, getting completely naked for winter.
Walking Rye Beach mid-morning, I got lucky. Swept against the rocks, by its fierce ocean parents, I kicked up in shallow sand, a whole, still intact, not easy to find on Rye’s rocky coast a half of a clam shell. Yup! I got lucky. Cause’ just up the street to Hampton Beach, they cost a pretty penny. I slipped it into my pocket.
When I got home, I brushed, with my fingers, any sand that would remind it, other than where it came from… other than where it is.
I did the same with the pocket I carried it. Turning it inside out and shaking everything free, every tidal grain of beach sand. Knowing I wouldn’t get it all.
I placed it on a table, on my porch. I heard, without ears, spirits, east, west, south, and north… applauding me for a gift well received.
Anyway, it sits on a small iron table next to my chair. And, once in a while, having my morning cigarette and coffee, or, my evening cigarette and tea, I often wonder where you went? Were you boiled, fried, or, slithered down someone’s or something’s throat? Or maybe, your shell was cast away with a porpoise’s kiss and lives as a child of Poseidon, dancing your life away to the contemporary bands of Atlantis.
I think of you… leaving this shell for me and my cigarette, whether through sacrifice or a beloved life. I still keep this gift, left for me— to find.