Wednesday, July 30, 2014


"Now, when you awaken, remember the swan’s last
dance. Did you dance with cherubs while
you were dreaming? Did the butterfly illuminate you
when it burned with the eternal light of the rose? Did
the phoenix appear to you clearly…and did it call you
by name? Did you see the dawn rise
out of your beloved’s fingers? And did you touch the dream
by hand, or did you let the dream dream alone,
when you became aware of your absence suddenly?

Tell me how you lived your dream
in some place, and I’ll tell you who you are"
— Mahmoud Darwish, from “Now, When You Awaken, Remember” (tr. by Fady Joudah), in The Butterfly’s Burden. Copper Canyon Press, 2006 

The Sayings of Twilight Jesus

Last night Twilight fled his life.  He saw a man bent over a garbage bin. He was constantly overwhelmed on the street of sadness.
"Bazinga! I am the Willy Loman of saviors. I want to be loved, seen as glorious but the dark is always near at hand and I always seem to be whistling in it. I am not a winter person. I can tell you straight up that I am a precious stone and I am an immoveable rock. I make no promise to communicate. I write what calls me out."

Image: Gaza via Tom Clark

Tuesday, July 29, 2014


Even in solitude
You have a thousand friends

They live between the pages of your books
The frames of your films
And the notes of your songs

No one’s as pure as their art
People are art diluted

There is comfort in being alone
And you are brave, brave, brave

Find art that makes you die inside
It’s the fastest way to feel alive

— Benedict Smith, The Fastest Way to Feel Alive  

When I Started To Know

I don't envy the greatly enlightened of this world. From birth, I carry a raven an oak and sparrows, a room of Florentine frescoes and the light of the moon,  and words hidden in the sun. Twenty two winters I walked directionless sharing booze and diffuse morning light, autumn presented me with a hungry will and desert winds; spring the high freshness of its flowers and honey and summer laughter and loving skin the prayer of all things. This is the story.

Image: Thinking of Childhood, Courtesy of the Maison Europeenne de la Photographie


Monday, July 28, 2014


"What is the meaning of life? That was all — a simple question; one that tended to close in on one with years, the great revelation had never come. The great revelation perhaps never did come. Instead, there were little daily miracles, illuminations, matches struck unexpectedly in the dark."

— Virginia Woolf, To the Lighthouse

News Stays News

My weekend, full of survivors,
and the Betty Ford Botanical Gardens
and ceasefire rejections
ignoring the grief of a thousand deaths
while poets wave the cosmic peace towel.

Ruins are not fading, 
not passing away like babes in arms,
in the war.
Ah how we've not grown!
more imperfection than there is 
piles of dust
and twisted rebar.

Emily Dickinson: Tell all the truth
but tell it slant
with a fierce threat of 
...of every man be blind, 
while the moon is on the side of art,
and doubtful warzones know
freedom of spirit
in the deadly circus of violence.

After  all these battle scars 
only this to which we can return
a shout of joy that our blood, 
breaking through for a dream
recall the play of otters.
That out of nowhere
almost within reach
lovers under the wild olive trees
rooted firmly in the earth
awake smiling widely.

Image: One Last Trip to Save Zooba in Beit Hanoun, Gaza by Kristin Clark via Twitter

Sunday, July 27, 2014


"There was nowhere to go but everywhere, so just keep on rolling under the stars."

— Jack Kerouac, On the Road 


And so we came/from the day we were born /one life to another / a fragment of love/not always an angel/ climbing the stairs/ in the darkness/in the spirit of every day / here we are / in an awesome darkness/ in the black out beauty hour /an iron-fisted slaughter/a man stood alone/ no walls and no roof/ an angel’s fairy tale/I am making a bandage/a love /a voice /the way I cherish you / is how I descend from the sky/ a flesh toned surrender /the real question /I am asking you /sing me your grief

Image: Annalene Mark

Saturday, July 26, 2014


Finally there is nothing here for death to take away.

— Charles Bukowski

Love Is Roar

May your words untangle your thoughts.
May you set aside the time
to allow the moonlight
into your longings.
The moon is not wrong
and we are stuck with death.
Flame by flame,
my hand goes into yours.
That's when I know.

Image: Linda McCartney, Paul, Stella, James

Friday, July 25, 2014


"if there is light
it will find
— Charles Bukowski, The People Look Like Flowers At Last 

Heaven was Blue

[today, the gods are laughing forever after]

because a thousand blessings are failing spectacularly.
if pure bliss was enough to write about
I don't know--
the heart is a foolish child.
what crap is the soul digesting
while humming gospel music
reminding a sinner
that angels are plowing the rye 
alongside us
offering prayers of forgiveness
Death tickles as it touches
has its own ideas of what looks best
in what shades of grey.

Image: NYC with Jeff, from

Thursday, July 24, 2014


We are but shadows
moving lightly, fleetingly
over the surface.
Noticed by some, barely seen,
they look again and we’re gone.

 —Michael Boiano


The Sayings of Twilight Jesus

Twilight was walking his dog, thinking. It was a sunny day in the mountains when he was kidnapped by angels. They sat him down in a meadow and calmed him down telling him Hindu stories. What suddenly became clear to him was the destruction of the world was the world. The end of the world was already present in every detail of the world.

"Perhaps that's how it works. But I feel no evil here. I'm a passer-by preferring to go barefoot. My scar is just beneath the surface of my words. I'll laugh myself well until I feel absolute acceptance and unconditional love, like a mother's love for her newborn child. Lord, overflow me so I can walk on this polluted water. 

Image: Mary Ellen Mark