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Friday, December 30, 2016

Boxcars on Walnut 



Now available on Amazon $5.38 + shipping
Coming on Kindle $.99 (soon) as well


Thursday, December 22, 2016

A Dozen Crime Stories 



Now available on audiobook!

Friday, December 02, 2016

Short Stories 

for the ages!


Wednesday, May 11, 2016

CMLL Poetry Reading 

Proud to say, I actually performed haiku, notably bilingual haiku, in the CMLL poetry reading of today, May 11, 2016.

I am painfully shy about my poetry. I do ok on the fiddle these days, and I know how to charm an audience, but when I'm reading my poetry I can hardly even look at people. I would do better at a slam event, but in this case, there were a number of very good Spanish poets, and I was actually reading a few that had my own bad Spanish in it, and it made me embarrassed. I'd have done better, perhaps, if I'd stayed on the ground I know better.

I showed the new book. Even the 2015 e pluribus, which has a map of El Paso and a monarch on the cover, is of interest to a truly bilingual crowd; the 2016 version, which has a century plant on the hope road in New Mexico, was also of interest. Unfortunately that 2016 version will be redone, because the picture didn't come out too well (I gambled on posterization and lost) and the poems are in the gutter (it's better, I suppose, to have one's poems in the gutter than one's mind)...

One of the presenters was bilingual and presented a poem that was in both Spanish and English, and was set in Las Cruces. Another wrote and translated poems in German and English. It was a good place to explore the process of including other languages and rhythms into a very brief structure. More about that later.

Friday, April 15, 2016

e pluribus haiku 2016 



my pride & joy; in time for international haiku day. About 500 of the haiku are new, and there is enough modification that each state is very different from last year. Available at Amazon by clicking the picture, or at the createspace store, which has the author's biography.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

time is flying, and i'm working furiously on the haiku. sometimes six, seven a day, which is a lot, but i've set my goals high: a thousand a year. i want this year's e pluribus to look substantially different from last year's. i don't think i can write a thousand this year; i have maybe five hundred, but only a month to go before publication in late march. but it's consuming me. i think of nothing else.

i have other projects - a tesol presentation coming, a novel in the works, music happening - yet, day in and day out, i write haiku. my head is in a given state - in this case, wisconsin - and, after a while, i get sick of it, and move to some other place where i'm low. each state has at least three new ones. some have very little else. i don't want them to look even remotely similar. it's all i care about.

curiously, i find no shortage of things to write about. the deeper i seek, the more i find; and, almost everything is geographically placed, though i can mess with where it actually happened. if i were totally accurate, i'd have hundreds in iowa and illinois, nothing in delaware, hawaii, south carolina. but i can't do that. i have to represent every state. i have to move some events over into states that are hurting.

i don't worry much about fame or publicity. there isn't time. too much else is going on; for example, my mother died. but, poetry is my escape. in my mind, i'm on some train in wisconsin.

and it's february.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

school performance 

The venue was Roscoe Wilson Elementary School, 4th grade, Ms. Goodnight's class. I'm proud to say, I read a few haiku from my book, e pluribus haiku, but better, I read my Dr. Seuss poem, Dr. Seuss Day at School (see below). Ms. Goodnight is doing a unit on using poetry and other things to express yourself. Earlier in the year, for example, my son had done a mime performance.

I was a little embarrassed calling myself a poet, and I explained that a lot of the poems in the haiku book expressed my wonderment at the wide open nature of the American lands. I'd open my pages of poetry randomly, and that's what I'd find. But one of my favorites was of the s-trestle ruins in New Mexico peeking out from under snow. I really read that one for my son, who has taken me there, and who loves that s-trestle ruins.

The Dr. Seuss poems, however, are light, they rhyme, and, as you can read below, they express more or less dryly what it's like to get four kids out the door every morning. One was the son who sat at my feet while I read, and he beamed to hear himself described as cracking ice on the streets and sidewalks, and going back home to get a toy. Yes, that was him. The Dr. Seuss lilt on the poem got everyone inspired, and they wrote poetry all day, he said. He himself wrote four or five on the way out to New Mexico, and while we were out there. They rhymed. They expressed what was going on in his life. They had a bit of Dr. Seuss in them.

I hope she liked it. If they were inspired, I'm sure she did. They had seen some orchestra people just earlier that morning. Well, I told them, I'm a musician too, and in fact, it's easier being a musician, because people respond more easily to your entertaining nature. They actually have to work to understand your poetry, and most people don't have the time for that. This leaves me free, pretty much, to describe my world in my poetry. Free, in the sense that people who get way in there, no matter what state they start in, will have to be in the mood, or they won't even bother with it.

I'm writing furiously these days. But I love the Dr. Seuss genre, and I'm not sure if anyone else is really taking up the cause. The poem expresses my joy at finding Dr. Seuss characters in the hallway of the school when I got there. This is my world. A kid on my lap (or two), and a book like Yertle the Turtle.

my favorite all-time book 



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