The Grey of Tintern

Many years ago, I began writing poem-stories about a place I named Tintern Island.  Every so often, it appears again.  Here is a recent one.  At Tintern Island the sky is grey


Murshida 2

For a moment, walking hand in hand

I felt we ceased to be.

Passers-by saw not two, but one.



For a moment,  my love for you

Was no more, for I was not;

For a moment,  even you were not;

For a moment,  what remained

Was love without an owner,

Without a source, without an object.

For a moment, what remained

Was all that really is,

For a moment.


My friend, when this had passed,

I felt the touch of your hand

And we were smiling

In a still, warm day.


Murshida 1

Years ago, I had a magical affair with a young woman who was into the sufi traditions.  In those traditions, a murshid is a teacher.  I think i coined the term murshida, to refer to a female teacher.  Maybe it is for real.  She certainly was…is.  I composed my Murshida poems over a period of some time, after our relationship changed form.  I will feed them into this blog a bit at a time.  I felt they needed a place other than a notebook on a shelf.   Murshida 1

Thumb Print Scone

Ah, the muse!  There I was, lazing over a coffee, and she sideswiped me.  A small girl holding most of a thumb print scone…a nibble already ingested…several crumbs clung desperately to her lips.  It was her!  My muse! and once again, in a most unexpected, altho always welcome, guise.

                         Thumb Print Scone

The little girl told me,

Speaking most earnestly, that

She was sitting behind me, well,

Not exactly behind me,

First, her mother

And then her.

And I had to agree,

Seeing that it was, indeed,



And since she

Had told me a Truth,

And it was capital ‘T’

Truth, for her,

I felt duty bound

To return the compliment.

I told her to stick her thumb into the jam

In the middle of her thumb print scone,

And lick it,

Her thumb, that is.

I told her that’s why they are called

Thumb print scones.

So, she did,

And she was satisfied.


Her mother too

Felt pleased.

She had always wondered why

They were called that.



I, too

Can dispense wisdom.


Too Bright to See

At sunrise, the light is very special.  Magic time for photographers and other artists.   You need light in order to see, but, sometimes…The sun is too bright to see

Happy Valentines

Here’s one for the old love feast!!!!     Happy Valentines.2doc

Starting the Blues

This morning I walked, reformatted a digital camera,

Drank coffee, read a book, tried writing, and

Went to Long & McQuade to buy a book on blues,

And booked a lesson

With someone who was probably yet to be born

When I first heard the delta blues,

And hated it.  Ah. In my decreptitude,

Though not, I think, because of it,

I find I must play the blues, as I listen

With worn ears to Reverend Gary DAvis,

And Lightnin’ Hopkins,

And Robert Johnson and Blind Blake,

To John Fahey who unearthed Bukka White,

To Big Bill Broonzy,

Who played the Spirituals to Jazz Concerts,

Filling in for Robert Johnson, dead of strychnine

(Assisted by pneumonia)

Administered by a jealous husband.

I couldn’t write this morning

With Death Don’t Have No Mercy

And Key to the Highway

Making me bitter at my long, easy life.

But, then I remember Mendelssohn

And know that art does not only grow from pain.

So I’ll play guitar in my room,

Not the graveyard, but still I

Hope for a meeting at the Crossroads,

Where I’ll barter what’s left of my soul

For One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer,

And one line that everyone knows

Without knowing who played it first.