Thursday, April 30, 2009

Swine Flu?

Ah. Swine Flu. Hmmmm.

In any year, in the United States, more than 100,000 people are hospitalized with flu. And so each year more than 20,000 people, in the USA, die from the flu, or complications related to it. And we are not freaked out about that. Simply a way of life --- each year 35 to 50 million Americans get the flu.

But then, about 500,000 Americans die each year, because they wouldn't quit smoking. But you don't see a total ban on cigarettes.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Road Trip to Detroit i.


We took a trip to Detroit. I'm surprised I have not written about it. Erik was in Chicago town, and his ancestors lived in north east Indiana, in corn country. The homestead was approximately halfway on the road between Chicago and Detroit. We left in the morning, on a day that turned out to be the first warm spring day of the season. The road was easy, the road was opening before us, we drove it.

After getting into Indiana, we hit the country lanes and finally found the little town where 5 generations of Cummins' had been raised. The house was right on the single main street, unmistakable, though our photograph of it had been taken 80 years ago. I looked around me, while Erik took a few pictures. The main street in the town was about three blocks long, and it was part of the road. A few dogs wandered around, on and off the street while two kids on bycycles zigzagged up and down with not much to do.

The kids and dogs dissapeared, and it was quiet. There was a couple down the street, talking to a man in a t-shirt without sleeves. They were looking at a beat up Toyota, looking to buy a reliable car. As I watched them & smoked a cigarette, Erik asked a white-haired lady where the old Lutheran burying ground might be. She was somehow befuddled, or extremely stupid. Sometimes the elderly think you only ask them questions, when you aim to rob them. She ended up giving us vague directions to a small modern cemetary that was outside of the farmtown. Uncharitably, we cursed the old woman for wasting our time.

The useless, modern cemetary, was at the end of a long gravel road, wonderfully isolated. You could sit there, it was on a little hill, and you could see over the stubble to a long strand of trees that would soon be bursting with green. The wind came up, fluttering a few momentos stuck by the graves, and then would die away. Here was a freshly covered person, you could tell by the dark flat square of earth where no grass had grown. We debated if we should really head for Detroit.

It was only about 160 miles away, and it was not quite 2 o'clock. Let's go!

Chung Tzu's Happy

"Hello, bother!" says Chung Tzu, as he comes in. "How are you today?"

"Sad and Happy, all at the same time." I reply.


"So what could someone do about that?"

"Well, I'd say let Sad and Happy mingle together."

"Tell me, why?"

"Usually in a bit, all that is left, is Happy. Happy is the only Real Thing!"

Saturday, April 25, 2009

i came in/ i was alone

i came in
i was alone
just like you

we can
be friends
'cause of this

the moon came up

the moon came up
oh heartbreak my life

i cried because i saw the moon
the moon kept going

if you're not angry/ you can go anywhere

if you're not angry
you can go anywhere

truly not angry
then everyone will
welcome you

they'll be wanting
to meet someone
like this

some poeple waiting
all their lives

Leaving Soon

More rain, Lao Tzu comes in. I was a bit distracted, but here he is, I wanted to see him so.

"I am leaving soon, will you miss me much?" I ask, with great respect.

"I am everywhere." says Lao Tzu.

He smiles so gently at me, I know -- I know! But still, my heart could almost break!


Chung Tzu says:

Oh, no kid!
Don't you worry!
You've made some
good freinds here,
there, everywhere!

Friday, April 24, 2009

The Storm

Thunder and lightening last night, about 2 AM.




I could see the flashes of lightening through my eyelids. I listened to the storm, half awake & dreaming, for about an hour.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Danny the Celt

Danny gets a blue marker and draws all over himself, ending up looking like a Celt from the 3rd century. He has fine, long blue lines all over his body. All we gotta do is put white ashes in his hair, like some kind of Mohawk, and he'll be perfect.

Poem - For Sabine

come on in kid
and stay awhile
we've been
waiting for you

everything is ready
we'll have a good time
you wanted to be here
& we wanted you

we'll make you feel
at home

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New Band -- Braxton Hicks

I'm starting a new heavy metal band -- it will be called Braxton Hicks. The first album is already well planned out, it will be called "HEAVY LABOR". Included in the first album will be songs like, "Break the Water", "Time to Go", "Contractions", "Delivery Unit", "Effacement", "Bearing Down", "Scream if Ya Want To", and "Serious Drugs, Man". I think a certain demographic will identify with our thundering, ripping beats. The second album may be called "Awake All Night". Or, "I Can't Get No Sleep". In the second album, there will be songs like "Vampire Child", "Vomit" and "Beast Feeder". Again, certain demographics will positively know what I'm talking about. Rock on!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Poem - after the rain

after the rain
birds know what to do
juicy worms!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Poem - new me

new me
coming through
the door of
body and mind

very strong
can't be

this new
arrival how
can I

tell my
about you?

they'll like
you just as

as they

Poem - i had a dream it snowed again

i had a dream it snowed again
about 2 inches overnight

in the morning i was so surprised
to see a glittering carpet of white

i woke up and looked outside
there was no snow in sight

i realized through
here was perfect snow

unrequested in the mind
all in the mind

Thursday, April 16, 2009


the ego visits
but does not remain

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Chung Tzu Reads the Sport's Page

Chung Tzu is reading the sport's page.

"I'm a big fan of spontaneity." I say.

"Well, that isn't surprising." he replies.

Potshot Sez:

Shhhhhh! Be quite!
Listen to the wind.

Now go into the other room
and take off your left sock.

Put ice cubes in it
and watch how the water drips!

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Poem - woke up at 3 am

woke up at 3 am
didn't feel like sleeping

watched tv
but wasn't interested

paid programming
paid programming

at 4 am thought
i should go to sleep

danny wakes me at 7
phoebe off to school

(i admire the sink
and how it is bolted to the wall

best 350 bucks
i ever spent

and a job
well done)

Monday, April 06, 2009

2 Year Old + Water * 5 Minutes = ???

Daniel goes downstairs. Later, I notice I hear water running. It has been running for a good time now, several minutes at least. 2 Year Old + Water * 5 Minutes = 10 gallons of warm water all over the basement floor. How?

Daniel gets onto the couch next to the bar/ island in the basement, the couch is pushed up against the bar for a tent Phoebe and I built. He gets his big plastic dump truck, puts it in the sink, and turns both taps on full. The dump body fills up and water gushes out of it, into the sink, and out of the sink in all directions! The happy tinkling of water going everywhere is delightful, I realize.

Well, I needed to clean the basement floor. It could have been worse. Only a few days ago I was down there cleaning another section of the basement when the WC toilet exploded raw sewage all over the floor and leaked through the basement ceiling, through a light fixture. That was pretty cool, too.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Just a Silly Toy! III

In my dream, I wandered through the World, going here and there, and some freinds I made on my travels would follow with me. We never stayed anywhere long, and some places did not welcome us. Word was getting around, and some communities actively sought us out to show them how to solve the cube. At times, my life was in danger, but somehow I made it through.

Then, after many years, I and some followers decided to get away, and go high up into the mountains. We hiked for a long time, over many days, until we came to a clearing on a beautiful alpine slope. The meadow there was full of tiny wildflowers, and grass -- to one side was a stream that had come all the way from the very top of the tallest mountain. It was a good place to stay, and so we set up camp, and relaxed in the late afternoon. I had something on my mind, about the Rubik's Cube, but I wasn't sure what it was.

That night, we made a campfire, and watched a slim crescent moon rise, stars wheeled over our heads. After talking and joking about small things, I took out my cube, and I looked at it. After all our wanderings, it looked a bit shabby, with scratches and scuffs. Here was a great dent in one of the blocks. I turned it this way and that, mixing it up a bit, and we all laughed at that. I turned it back so it was solved, and we laughed again. I looked at my poor, battered Rubik's Cube again, and I realized finally what I had to do.

"I solved the cube. It is just a toy."

"Yes." they replied.

"I realize, just now, that it is not enough to solve or unsolve the cube."

Many people there were shocked.

"It is just a toy. I have moved beyond needing this cube."

I broke my cube into pieces. It really took no effort to accomplish this.

"Now I am free, without it."

There were some there who simply could not accept this, and they left that night. Living without the cube! Insanity! Solve it, yes - get rid of it - no!

But my true companions got over the shock, and though it made my life more difficult, I was happier to be rid of it. Certain places would shun us, and would not buy or sell if you had no cube.

But in the end, I was so free without my cube. Think of it: my new understanding could not be stolen, sold, exchanged, or given away. The original point of fixation that took me far, was utterly abandoned, now it couldn't be broken, couldn't be lost, would not be mixed up, and not be located here, nor there, nor anywhere -- not not there.

My realization Was!

Just a Silly Toy! II

In my dream, after I solved the cube, and saw it was a toy, I tried telling people about what I had done. Most people didn't believe me, that it could be solved -- many others condemned me for being so presumptions and proud to undo what had been done. Others were profoundly disturbed, because they belonged to creeds where they would gather together and ritualistically turn the cubes into similar patterns, signifying their chosen cultural identity.

For the last group of people, I had created a concept that threatened, what they felt, was their very identities. If Rubik's Cubes could be made whole, how would they know who they were, compared to others? So many steadfastly ignored me, and my solution, I was even threatened with death as "a great nihilist". If I was not condemned as a non-believer, I was accused of playing with God's plan.

But there were a few people who saw what I had done, listened to what I had to say -- they solved their cubes, and they realized it was just a toy. Most of these people were happy, after they solved the puzzle, because they were free of it.

Just a Silly Toy!

I had the strangest dream last night -- I lived in a culture where when you were born, they gave you a Rubik's Cube, and it was completely solved. But over time, the cube would become hopelessly mixed up, and there wasn't anything you could do about it. It was unavoidable for the cube to become scrambled, and the more your personal cube was scrambly, the worse you'd feel about it. People worried about the mixed-up state of their Rubik's Cube, it was a source of sadness and heartbreak. Nobody knew how to solve it, it was just too hard to imagine you could fix it, though people would secretly try. Many people thought it was a great sin to try to solve the mixed up state of the cube. Other people tried, and failed, they made it worse in trying. In my dream, I decided to unscramble the cube, and after many years of secret effort, I succeeded! My Rubik's Cube was whole and solved, laying there before me...and then I realized, it was just a silly toy!

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Poem - april 2

take the age test
says an internet ad
how old are you

i am deadly old
older than older
past is too gone
the future broken

ha ha ha
just kidding
on april 2

Poem- Ticket

i wish i could say that
god got a parking ticket
or jesus got a ticket
but they can't and
they didn't

but neither can
buddha get a ticket
nor lao tzu or chung tzu
nor brahma
or mohammad

oh goodness look
they are all ticketless
unticketable and
non-ticketed even
if we think they should

Wednesday, April 01, 2009

April 1

Every day, for Daniel, who is 2, is April Fool's Day. He plays tricks all day long, spring, summer, fall and winter.

Phoebe, 11 years old, wants to play April Fool Tricks. "We should call up grandma, and tell her the house burned down!"

"Do you think she'd think that was funny?" I ask.

"No, probably not." Phoebe thinks. "How about we call my cousin Jared and tell him I broke my leg?"

"That might be better." I agree.