Grand Central Station, NYC 2017

Initially this little girl wanted a poem about family. As our conversation progressed it became about her sister, then was revealed that her sister IS her "mother" (legal guardian as the true mother "sort of fell apart"). I would never have guessed this young girl had to deal with such upheaval as being the survivor of a broken home, she is so well adjusted, cheerful and excited, absolutely articulate. Her sister and her boyfriend are TRULY heroic. Not only putting a fire out and rescuing the child, but giving all they can EVERYDAY, to love that child. 

They left me washed and wondering what I can do to make such a difference in someones life.

The little girl told me about how she loves to watch birds with her cat. The last thing she said, as I started to write, was that Use Somebody was her favorite song.

.........................................

A POEM FOR LOVE
.
Use Somebody
like a soft rag
to polish a stone
Use them as a target
for your cupid arrow
People are the best receptacle
grab one and hold on
gently
firmly
warmly
and let it all go
like a bucket of birds
then you and yours can sit gigglely
chasing their flight
with what it feels like
in your own heart
a flutter
and float
in flight
I tell you
there is nothing in the world
like sitting in a cuddle
with a one you love

The Death of The Good Dr. Cyd

They had a memorial for a dear old friend, Dr. Cyd, this past Friday night in Boulder. He had a problem with drinking, was 67, and had "health issues". He went outside to have a cigarette, passed out, and froze to death.

His passion was making sculpture out of found objects. Boulder has some very valuable trash. I actually knew at least four people that made a living picking trash out of dumpsters and selling it at yard sales. Cyd "dumpstered" for stuff to make beautiful pieces. I LOVED his taste and style as an artist. 

I wrote this poem on Thursday, and later that night I came home and had a very charming acCYDent.

I had the poem laying on my computer keyboard. I was hanging out with a friend and we were WAY high on pot chocolate. I wound up spilling my Corona directly onto the keyboard of my computer, so quick snatched the bottle and set it down, and AGAIN it fell, pouring beer all over my computer. 

So I quick unplugged the thing, and held it upside down wondering what to do. I grabbed a towel and flipped the computer over to at least wipe off what was on the surface, only to realize that there was no spill on the keyboard, only on the computer body. Cyd's poem save it.

I was so grateful.

Later I found it charming that his poem drank up the beer, leaving the stained paper as a sort of trashed art. 

For that reason, and others, I call this poem BEER BATTERED. 

(composed a week before the inauguration of an american disgrace)

...................................................................................

BEER BATTERED

The Good Doctor Cyd
dead and gone

Great timing
get out of the theater
before the shit show begins

Who am I kidding
the good soul who saw beauty in trash
probably ducked out to get a quick incarnation
and get back when the piles are everywhere
Walmart meets Syria

Right about when people are tired of the wars
the hate
the violence
right about when the world is ready to exhale
and start over
in a fresh wind of inspiration
you will be there
a gleaming eyed teenager
whistling a tune
When The Saints Come Marching In
making masterpieces of trash
for the healing, Good Doctor
for the healing

New York City, Christmas 2016

Christmas Day 2016, Rockefeller Center

Christmas Day 2016, Rockefeller Center

On Christmas day I went to Rockefeller Center to poem the holiday crowd. At one point I noticed a young lady with beautiful red hair standing alone looking at her phone. After about five minutes, I called to her,
"Hey, do you want a poem or what?" 
"No, No Thank You."
I said, "What, do you have an allergy?"
She said, "No I have no money."

I said, "No worries. Let's do a poem."

She said, "No, that's ok. I'm good."

I said, "Well you can at least afford me the pleasure of generosity on this day of giving."

She agreed and we had a sweet conversation about being alone on Christmas. I had recalled for her my Christmas of 2014. I was alone in Washington Heights. I didn't mind so much; I had lot's of poem related stuff to do. Still there is always an inherent sadness that leaks into an empty Christmas. So at one point that day I clicked onto Facebook and saw that I had a single solitary new fan on my page: http://bit.ly/2i39LiU

Her name was Margaret Kelly (my mom's name, who had died about 18 months before), there was no profile picture, no background picture, and the only information on the page was that she had gone to Sarah Lawrence (a school I know nothing of) and that her most recent "like" was....Angel Poems.

That just stopped me still. I stared at that screen from at least a minute.

Though the spirit of my father has been present in my creative process since the very get go, my mother NEVER was. She simply never made it into the poems...ever.
The week after that Christmas of 2014, when Margaret Kelly became my fan, my mom showed up in the poems. With sweet tears, she arrived, however briefly, into three or four poems that week. It was nice to have her there .
This sweet red headed lady said I should probably write a poem about that. So....
.
.
NOTHING IS NEVER EMPTY
.
My mom was never in the poem
not the she wasn't invited
but more that she just never was.....

Until that particular day
out of some strangers interest
found herself welling up
in the eyes of the poem

It was beautiful of her to drop in
tears that splat on the page
bringing me flowers like rain
then gone
back to the ether

That is how it is sometimes
on the occasion
out of nowhere at all
love taps your tender heart
delivering touching knowing
you are never alone

Boulder, Colorado 2012

                           Ed Lavender of CNN a waiting his poem on the Election of 2012

                           Ed Lavender of CNN a waiting his poem on the Election of 2012

 

Two days before the 2012 election, between Obama and Romney, CNN had crews on the ground in swing states fishing for peoples opinions on the election.  They stopped to get a poem from me, asking my opinion.

Here is the link to their political blog; on which my poem was posted the day before the election: 

http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2012/11/05/battleground-blog-the-view-of-a-street-poet/

 

Symbiosis Art Festival 2010

Sunrise at Symbiosis Art Festival, Yosemite, California, 2010 Photo credit: Ralph Davis

Sunrise at Symbiosis Art Festival, Yosemite, California, 2010

Photo credit: Ralph Davis

 

CONCERN FOR A FRIEND NOW FAR A WAY

 

    People of practicality toss shit and rot in a pile

grow tomatoes next spring

mix it all up and let it sit

nature never sleeps

the steady alchemy

Sun     Rain   Air

makes the mix

that feeds the soil

cause everything has a hunger

to live

to continue

in the great breathing mix

You have so enriched my life

I grow like sunflower and cane

Without such nutriment

I may wilt and wither

so warm, soft, and fresh as air

I am

with you

 

a sun so far away