Wednesday, August 30, 2006

ee cummings

Since he was in all the grammar school literature texts due to his way with punctuation and spelling, I always thought he was a poet for children and didn't think much about his work. Until I came across this…like all great poetry, it operates in that sublime space beyond words. How can one speak of the essence of love except in such a way?

[somewhere i have never travelled]

somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously) her first rose

or if your wish be to close me,i and
my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility: whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens; only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain, has such small hands


You just know it's true...

PostSecret is a site I keep going back to. It’s updated once a week on Sundays. I feel a little voyeuristic when I read other peoples’ secrets; I just can’t seem to help myself. Some are funny, like the one above, some are really sad, and some are creepy.

PostSecret is a weblog that asks people to submit 4-by-6-inch postcards that contain anonymous secrets. The postcards are scanned and placed on the website.

In the words of the PostSecret bloggers: “Each secret can be a regret, hope, funny experience, unseen kindness, fantasy, belief, fear, betrayal, erotic desire, feeling, confession, or childhood humiliation. Reveal anything - as long as it is true and you have never shared it with anyone before".

Yea-as if anyone could resist checking it out.

Monday, August 21, 2006

Towering Above the Rest

Radiohead-Towering Above the Rest is 186 tracks spanning the length of 10 cds of rarities, live performances, promos, demos, b-sides, and other assorted hard to find tracks. Covers and collaborations range from Glen Campbell to The Posies, Carly Simon to Michael Stipe.

My kids somehow downloaded this onto their iPod, apparently the only way to get it--you can’t buy it anywhere. The originality, playfulness, and breadth of styles is, well, shocking. I just never had a clue these guys were this good. This isn't top of the pops-but way beyond-pop music as Zen. I really enjoy the latter studio albums by Radiohead, but after hearing what this band is really about, the studio albums seem narrowly focused and a bit tame—probably at the direction of their record label (Capitol) to ensure a palatable mass market 'product' and mega-million sales figures.

Now, it’s becoming clear why the record companies are so adamant about controlling downloads—their marketing and distribution model is irretrievably broken. What once appeared as breach in a dike is actually a tidal wave of musical creativity that won’t be stopped or controlled.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006


Bukowski…the uninhibited bachelor: drunk, slobby, anti-social, vulgar, utterly free, and possibly the best American poet of the 20th century. I watched a movie the other day where one of the characters said the secret words of life were ‘be present’. Bukowski was the only poet I got as a young adult (yea--so I was a bit slow when it came to such things) probably because he was so present and direct, as Bono says in the documentary ‘Bukowski: Born Into This’ he went to the bone, the marrow of the bone with his direct style.

He didn’t even start writing poetry until he recovered from a life threatening illness in his 30’s, but continued to work as a postal clerk to pay the bills. It wasn’t until he was 49 that he started writing full time. As he explained in a letter at the time, "I have one of two choices -- stay in the post office and go crazy ... or stay out here and play at writer and starve. I have decided to starve.”

Be Kind

we are always asked
to understand the other person's
no matter how
foolish or

one is asked
to view
their total error
their life-waste
especially if they are

but age is the total of
our doing.
they have aged
because they have
out of focus,
they have refused to

not their fault?

whose fault?

I am asked to hide
my viewpoint
from them
for fear of their

age is no crime

but the shame
of a deliberately

among so many


Charles Bukowski

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


Just a portion of the Spokane skyline—hey, it’s a real city! Finally, the downtown area has come back-new restaurants, lofts, condos,’s a wonderful sight. Starting with the Ron Wells/Avista project at the Steam Plan, Riverpark Square, and the fabulous remodeling job on the Davenport, downtown Spokane hasn’t had it so good in many years. With gas heading towards $5/gallon, living downtown is starting to look like a really good idea.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Tortilleria y Tienda de Leon

Finally, a tortilla factory opens in Spokane-De Leon Foods at 102 E. Francis Ave. If there’s one thing a man needs it’s fresh corn tortillas (OK, a few more things-add wine, cheese, chilies, the list). I grew up in California and it wasn’t about the burgers baby. I’ve lived in Spokane all my adult life and have felt somewhat deprived, since supermarket tortillas are either full of preservatives and taste like it or are ‘fresh’ and usually inedible. Try these freshies yourself-there is simply nothing like a warm, fresh tortilla with almost anything! The possibilities boggle the mind.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006


KYRS-the best radio station in the world or what? Well OK-how about the best radio station in Spokane. KYRS IS the best thing to happen to radio in this area since public radio was invented. Talk about eclectic-you never know what you’re going to hear. The music is all over the board, most of it, I guarantee, you’ve never heard before. That alone is reason to change channels and give it a try. It’s also a ‘community’ radio station, meaning you can have your very own show--most are quite good (understandably, there are a few exceptions). One of my favorites is "Around the World," hosted by Michael Moon Bear on Wednesdays at 2:30 p.m.(world music show) The talk portions are pretty lefty (while probably closer to the truth, kind of like the opposite of Fox News), but that’s OK as the 'mainstream media' has become pretty nauseating, so KYRS is a welcome antidote.

KYRS is one of a cluster of low-power FM stations licensed under new rules set in 1999 by the Federal Communications Commission permitting small broadcasters to run inexpensive stations. An outcry over media consolidation and more stations being owned by fewer large corporations triggered the ruling.

KYRS broadcasts over a 50 (or 100?) watt transmitter, which is minuscule compared to commercial radio. But I receive it in Newman Lake and on good days it sounds great. I was even inspired to purchase some old school fm tuners on eBay (they don’t make them like they used to) to take advantage of this wonderful cultural resource.

KYRS is the brainchild of station manager Lupito Flores, a true local hero.

Friday, August 04, 2006

Henry Gieger & MANAS

I'd like to be like him when I grow up...hah, fat chance! MANAS, a "weekly journal of independent inquiry," ceased publication on December 28, 1988, not quite 41 years after its first issue. Henry Geiger, the man who conceived the publication and wrote almost every word of each eight-page issue, died February 15, 1989, at the age of 80.

Abraham Maslow once called him "the only small 'p' philosopher America has produced in this century"' and a Canadian journalist who read MANAS for six months but had never met Geiger wrote a feature column about him entitled "Socrates Lives Again in Los Angeles."

Go to the MANAS site and read some of his stuff-it will make you happy.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006


I've always been really fond of this picture of my daughter, Kerry. It was taken a few years back. The helmet she’s wearing fits perfectly-what a sweet little Viking!