Dec 30, 2003

I have discovered a computerized Scrabble game.

Soon I will be like Jackie Chan, except with Scrabble instead of Kung-Fu.

Dec 29, 2003

To the 100+ "Rapping Golem" Searchers

Check your copies of the friggin' books (I know you have them), it's spelled "Gollum"...

I am happy to have so many hits to the blog, though. READ MORE POETRY! OVERTHROW GEORGE W. BUSH IN 2004!

Thank you.

Dec 24, 2003

cyberculture floozie
You are a Cyberculture Floozie. The theoretical
aspects of postmodernism interest you only
insofar as they can be used to make cool blinky
things. You probably take psychedelics and
know at least one programming language (HTML
counts!). Other postmodernists call you a
corporate whore. They're probably just jealous
because you make more money than them.

Dec 22, 2003

I [HEART] Godless Communists

Endless Christmas Carols Irk Czech Clerks
Mon Dec 22,10:35 AM ET

PRAGUE, Czech Republic - Labor unions in the Czech Republic demanded Monday that stores stop playing Christmas carols incessantly or pay compensation for causing emotional trauma to sales clerks.

Some stores here play the same songs all day — and play them loudly. Employees say shifts have become unbearable.

"To listen to it for eight hours a day is not healthy, that's for sure," said Alexandr Leiner, a union leader. "And for the customers, it's almost unbearable as well."

Leiner said unions have written to major chains, such as Tesco, and demanded that employees be compensated. He said the unions want 500 koruna (US$19) or two days off as a possible compensation. They've received no response.

Unions in neighboring Austria have lodged similar complaints against stores there.

Al Quaida is after me Lucky Charms!

As the day approaches, I find my general disdain replaced by a shimmering indifference. I found myself thinking this morning, "crap, I'm going to lose a day of mail service this week."

I finished buying all of the books that various members of my family will not read in a record 1.75 hours on Saturday.

I finally finished up the translation of my Danish friend's manuscript on Saturday with the aid of a big honkin' Danish-English English-Danish dictionary. It took me about a year in toto to finish it, so it feels pretty good to be done.

For the record, no, I don't speak Danish. Just call me Robert Bly.

Dec 19, 2003

Palace Ghost caught on film.

The sun phoebus
ignites the glass box, the
forgotten public
swallow's wings blades
of shadow carve out
my heart to bake
in those rays
the ghosts will eat
it all.
Steaming manhole covers
the ghosts live
there, pluck
hard purple berries from
barren vines that cling
to the grey stone,
roseate sucker patterns
casting lattice shadows,
all this cold beauty, make me
a machine sans
ghost in the, freeze me
in the cold beauty,
the bleeding thing
lies down
in marble arms.

How to sleep with the weight of ghosts squashing the air out of one's lungs? A gate of horn and a gate of bone and specters and demons behind each. Wake with the motto 'I can't go on,' caught on my lips when there is every reason to keep going on. Saturnian folly in the holy days of Saturn. Those savage old gods staking their claim in the blood. Phoebus Apollo battles the Rabbit in the Moon; the blood of their wounds records a narrative on the paper skin of the world. A ghost's apocrypha. The ghosts sing those hymns in the caverns of the ears in the desolate hours. Thus they steal one's dreams and those hollows under the eyes are stained grey-black with the layers and layers of their fingerprints.

Dec 18, 2003

Aaron says this story made him think of me. Can't imagine why.

Every Thursday morning for the past few weeks an elderly mentally-impaired
gentleman (who has quite the drooling problem) comes to Barnes and Noble. He
heads straight for the newsstand. He begins at one end, and methodically
removes all the subscription cards from each and every magazine. Depending on
the mood he's in, he'll either collect them in a bag, or as he has recently
been doing, heap them in a single tremendous pile on the floor. This process
takes him several hours, during which he is quite fond of engaging in
conversations with other customers. As nearly every single customer at Barnes
and Noble in Northville, Michigan believes themself to be better than the rest
of the world's population, this proves to be incredibly hilarious. His favorite
Target is mothers with babies in strollers. "Can't s/he walk YET?" he'll spray
to the mothers, who look at him as though he were a pile of shit that fell from
the sky and began singing opera. After an awkward silence, they'll usually
laugh nervously and explain that the children can't or that they are too tired.
This is the wrong thing to do. "I know what you should get him/her!" (He only
speaks in exclamations.) "What's that?" the mother will reply, with an
increasing look of terror in her eyes. Once again, this is the wrong thing to
do, as Mr. 'drool on the subscription cards' is approaching his punchline. "A
STICK OF DYNAMITE!" he yells, and then laughs maniacally


Do you remember the character "Latrine" from the movie Top Secret? I'm pretty much the spiritual analog, I think.
Somebody got here by way of a search for "golem + rapping + funny."

Now I want to see the funny rapping golem.

Dec 17, 2003

Just when it seemed like the quizzes had gone away...

You are a Radical. Right on!

What kind of Sixties Person are you?
brought to you by Quizilla
Anyone who is looking for a room, or knows someone who is looking for a room should consider the following:

Large room available January 1 - apt is 2nd & 3rd floor of a two family
house in Somerville (near Somerville Hospital - Porter and Davis within
walking/biking distance )- rent is $600 (and $600 deposit) + utilities
(phone, electric, heat and cable modem tho no TV). Hardwood floors, sunny,
pantry, front porch, large living room, dining room and kitchen. Landlord on

Housemates: one guy: Harvard extention student, 24, into music, fiction,
current events, beer. Vegetarian but not militantly so. One gal: poet, works
at non-profit in Boston, loves and collects books. In general, a laid back
environment. Email for more information

Io, Saturnalia

Dec 16, 2003

Apres moi, les grincheux.
Note to Self:

Do not mention Communist sympathies on first date.

Dec 15, 2003

Here is an article which describes the capture of Sadam Hussein as a "Christmas Gift" for G.W.B. It employs plenty of Santa metaphors.

Maybe I am refusing to look on the bright side of things today. I honestly don't know why I'm in such a foul mood. After an awesome weekend I should at least be neutral if not chipper. Yet I feel unusually bilious, even for me.

If there is something to smile at today, somebody please let me know, because I would like to smile. I really would.

Insert Quarter

"My gunner said: 'Is that it? No shooting?"' said Capt. Desmond Bailey, a commander of troops that encircled Saddam.

"He's the best gunner in the troop, so he was a bit disappointed."

Go home and play a video game, Einstein...
Now *THAT* was a party...

But back to the land of Samuel Adam's impotent blunderbuss, after a 6 1/2 hour bus ride.

Surly. Grrrrrr. I'm back. Kiss kiss.

Dec 12, 2003

Holiday Gift Ideas

For the perfect gift for your mate/boss/mistress/favorite 24-hour convenience store clerk, you may wish to consider this bag of rocks.

Or perhaps this old wooden lobster trap.

If they already have enough rocks and lobster traps, maybe some human hair will bring a smile to their face.

For the young people in your life, how about some used play-doh?

Saddam's Palace May Be New U.S. Embassy

"Meet the new boss, same as the old boss."

I will be in NYC for the Ugly Duckling Presse recent chapbooks release party and reading with comrades Tieger and Hoff. Hope to see as many of you NYers as possible.

So no blogging this weekend. Listen to the wind beating your windows if you miss me, for we amount to the same thing.

Dec 11, 2003

I keep shaking, but I can't break them! Argh! Pesky larval humans!...
What is the ghost saying?

**** Free Poetry ****

That's right folks, this numbskull from Craigslist will write you a poem for free. That's right, gratis. "Suprise your significant other with some rhymes about your feelings or just a paradise setting on a rainy day to bring a smile to you face, it is completely up to you."

I know you were all thinking that the post was me. However, I do not work for free. I do however accept beer, sexual favors, or trades.

If anyone is interested in the text of the little presentation I gave last winter about Rexroth's 100 Poems from the Chinese, it seems to have made its way here.

From the Tomb

Haven't posted any poems on here for awhile because all of my poetic efforts have been focussed on print stuff. But here's an oldie (hopefully the formatting will work) that I'm posting because it holds some obscure personal relevance this morning.



perturbed perhaps
In this new climate, I'm made of puffballs,
styrofoam orbs
stuck with drinky things,
litte swords, little umbrellas, a sparkler
or two. Brain
a matrix of bilious conjecture embedded
in grey slate. Slate piles
to indicate status. Status queue,
reservoir of raspy laughter,
watershed of auld lang syne,
straw hat indicates, I'm a cowboy,
you're a cowboy, we're all cowboys here,
snapped shepherds' crooks for arms.
Excess hourglass
sand extracted from the round corners of my eyes,
that tiny foo-dog ball merely revolving,
occular, occult
like an undisclosed agenda: I say
frozen tears but you know that's wrong
because saltwater can't freeze,
the glaciers say so. I want to be a glacier
when I grow cold. Tell all my loves,
my falcons:
the countenance hopper makes Frosty a real boy.

All you falcons
I dare you to return
to my arms they're sticks.
You falcons regardant you falcons recursant
wants the ratte of wings
for their birthday.

Shaking palms indicate the flutter
of hummingbirds,
hirsute curlicues drawn on dun colored napkins indicate
the waves of the sea.

Yes, my legs are a sphere,
& my ribcage & my two eyes
metal marbles I think
you tell me as they fall in your lap.
I'm stuck here but
my armies of ocean-monkeys, of evil robots
bring me the names of the swan.
You names
I dare you to return
to my arms they're sticks.
The Y-shape indicating hands is rumored to intuit
veins of water under asphalt.
Divination nation, memos
in the tea leaves,
the river is the same river, when you're not looking.
The river freezes the river is my daughter.
Pause. Don't tell me
about your dream.

Dec 10, 2003

Clinton Googles Self

No doubt about it

It is a grey hair. It is slightly longer than the adjacent hairs, but seems to have relatively the same tensile strength. It does not dislodge when gently tugged, which rules out the possibility that it could be someone else's hair that has merely become lodged in my own. I have not been in the vicinity of grey paint or bleach recently. If I pluck it out, will it return as two more of its ilk? If I cut it off just above the root, so as to not remove the hair from the follicle entirely, it will still be there (thus mitigating the plucking out/two growing back problem), but below the canopy of the rest of the normally-colored hair. Or perhaps I should apply color with my red editing pen. Perhaps I should snip it off, put it in an envelope and send it to my ex-girlfriend with a note saying, "I hold you responsible for this..."


I finally bought a pair of boots. I don't know how I went through all of last winter without a pair.

And they're not combat boots, not Dr. Martens, not Fleuvogs or Sabras. I suppose this means I'm grown up now or something. They're from Australia and they are those kind that you don't have to lace and have the little elastic thingee on the side, sort of retro, sort of no-nonsense.

You know, I looked a lot edgier when I was alot less edgy. I had a nosering and a leather jacket and docs. But I was a puppydog.

Now I am a pitbull. A pitbull in aging-hipster boots...
Only the actual lyrics (as verified by the internet) are:

"Marching feet, Johnny Reb, what's the price of heroes?

Six in one, half dozen the other,
Tell that to the captain's mother,
Hey captain, don't you want to buy,
Some bone chains and toothpicks?"

At least I was close...


What would Freud make of this?

I'm getting ready for work, to go in early and proctor the exam which I'm proctoring today. Going through my closet and looking for a white shirt and tie (why am I wearing a tie?). I can't find a white shirt, I find a light green, a blue, and a magenta shirt, but no white? Didn't my father give me a white shirt for xmas two years ago? I decide on the light green shirt, and begin looking through ties. I select a really amazing grey and green op-art print tie that I really wish I had in real life. In the midst of the pile of ties is a pair of sparkly women's underpants. "Those are my girlfriend's..." Wait, I don't have a girlfriend...

What is that annoying sound? Thus the spell was broken and I woke up to get dressed to go to work early to proctor the exam. I consider wearing a white shirt and tie, but decide against it. Explaining to the folks at work why I'm wearing a tie would be too weird ("I had a dream I came to work in a white shirt and tie.")

Also, inexplicably, when I awoke from the dream, several lines of that old R.E.M. song, "Swan, Swan H," were lodged in my head.

Hey Captain, what's the price of peas?
Six and one-half dozen the other,
Tell that to the Captain's mother.

Hey Captain, don't you wanna buy some
bone-chains and tooth-picks?

Dec 6, 2003

While 'smiling' might be a strong word, this certainly caused an inexplicable relaxation of the facial muscles. Thanks to tiny voices.

OK, I smiled at the self-disecting rat. But I'm not supposed to admit that.

And I also finally finished the "29 Cheeseburgers" manuscript.

I suppose all and all, today could have been a lot worse.

Was that a moment of levity?

I'd better be careful lest it start snowing anvils.

Actually, I might sorta like that...

Back from from frozen armageddon & the Iijima / Scalapino reading.

Brenda's reading was perhaps the only thing which could have possibly made me smile today.


I am going to attempt to go to the Dunkin' Donuts down the street and get some coffee and an egg,bacon, and cheese on a croissant like a civilized human being.

So help me powers that be, should anything prevent me from reaching my destination, or upon reaching my destination, should the Dunkin' Donuts be closed, I will consume the world in a fiery ball

I think that is sufficiently hyperbolic to describe how exactly I'm feeling right now. Mind you, some years I am able to accept the coming of winter with grace and enjoy the beauty of the world covered in white.

This ain't one of them.

My rage knows no bounds. Somebody knock me out until May.


Little white parcels of agony.

Here we go.

Dec 5, 2003

Public Service Announcement

To those of you out there who are having sex: please close the door to your room.

Just because you haven't seen your roommate doesn't necessarily mean they're not home.

Thank you.

Brought to you by the Equal Rights for Celibates Commission.
Conservatives want to put Reagan's face on the dime.

How about the Nickel?

They could start making them out of wood.

Dec 4, 2003

Saturday, Dec. 6th at Wordsworth Books:

Poets Leslie Scalapino & Brenda Iijima

Sure to be one of the most spectacular readings of the season. Escape from the relentless mental torment of December by hearing truly amazing poems.


This would seem to fit the definition of "Uncanny":

Somebody got to the site by doing a search for "Oracle ventricle," which is the first line of one of the Astrometry Organon poems which was posted here months and months back, but hasn't been published anywhere, nor have I ever read it in public. I know this for a fact because it's about someone I try not to think about anymore and I've tried to sort of put the poem to rest.

The other creepy part of it is that the referring domain for that hit was from "" Around the time that the poem was written, I think in fact the same day, I had typed in and sent to the person in question, William Carlos Williams's "A Sort of Song," which features the famous line "Saxifrage is my flower that splits/ the rocks." I remember this because the person in question and I had been having a discussion about snakes. The title of the poem with the "Oracle Ventricle" line is THUBAN ("The Snake"), Alpha Draco "The Dragon."

Of course if one does a google search for "Oracle Ventricle," it leads you to only one place. Here.

It is a pun on the word "auricle," auricle being one of the other chambers of the human heart, so somebody else I guess must be interested in the pun.

But very strange.

Since I'm sure you are all wondering now, here is the poem which I had wanted to put to bed along time ago. The ghosts are busy, I guess. The poem becomes a revenant.


Oracle, ventricle:
dilated serpent torc:

the way she moves like a metronome
into and out of

grasses wilt & rise.

turning to dust
or pollen
on her lips
as if
inside her:
100 years
of peace.

David Rees at Gallery 108

Friday, December 5th at 8pm, 108 hosts a book release party for David Rees's "My New Fighting Technique is Unstoppable" (Riverhead Books). If uninitiated, please check out Rees will do a reading and there will be a Live Action Performance!

108 Beacon Street, Somerville. 617-441-3833.

Dec 3, 2003

Incidentally, Saturnalia is December 17-20.

Of course Christmas is depressing, it's a stand-in for the festival for the Lord of Melancholy...
Ugh. Staying at work because it is TOO FRIGGIN' COLD outside to want to walk home and then walk back to my class in Harvard Square.

Why is it that hell is characterized as being hot? I for one wouldn't mind some fires burning under me right at the moment.

Of course I say that now...

Though technically speaking, hell is the absence of God. If God is hope, than the absence of hope would also imply the absence of God. Ergo the absence of hope is also hell. Looking out the dark window...hmm...

In the Buddhist tradition, if I am correct, hell is to fail to be reincarnated and subsequently wander the material plane as a Hungry Ghost, an entity who's infernal hungers and desires can never be satisfied.

Saturn is the lord of Melancholy, and also connected to desire. The greedy god who wants to swallow his children again after he has vomited them up. To reintegrate all the parts of the shattered self in a form, also, of unsatiable hunger. Thus the melancholic is tormented not necessarily by an excess of despair, but rather an excess of desire. The desire to reintegrate the fractured god, the absent God into a formless whole. The idea of God itself as a Hungry Ghost, so hungry it seeks to consume its own children.

The ascetic seeks to be like God: if we take God to be a Hungry Ghost, then said Ghost, the melancholic, is holy. A saint in hell longing to be reunited with the insatiable creature which has spit him out, the host of infinite, unquenchable desire. Thus we are all holy in our human scrabblings, our infinite despair and longing. Thus despair is the divine impetus, the sound of God; the immortal scream of the deity upon regurgitating its children and seeing that they are apart from it.

Cheery, huh?

Don't worry, we're all really just hairless apes who like to tell stories...

Some cool poems from Guillermo on Venepoetics. (Or at least I think they're Guillermo's.)
Suggestion for a latinate name for Aaron's November/December chimaera:


Oh yes...

Something else to come out of the Thanksgiving trip to Connecticut was the knowledge that Fat Al is dead.

Fat Al was my mother's boyfriend from the time I was around 12 or so until I was 18. That age when what a boy really needs is an unemployed 300-pound bully bent on completely realigning his personality hanging around the house, eating dietetic cookies and watching daytime television.

Fat Al did teach me how to fight (dirty), and also gave me his Saint Christopher medallion ("You're going to need this, you little shit" or somesuch) which I wore (religiously?) until the chain it was on on my neck finally gave out this past summer and the object disappeared into the folds of my room, where it most likely remains. Unless the ghosts have it. This, I suppose, is the only aspect of the religion he tried to instill in me that took.

Inexplicably, Fat Al was a Catholic, even though he was also reputedly half American Indian. He was also an incredibly ignorant, bigoted, and in general mean-spirited human being who believed that homosexuals and the disabled should be euthanized.

Fat Al would not drive into Hartford because he had allegedly severely beaten two black men with a tire iron during some sort of incident and feared the repecussions of this act. I suppose a white man of his size does most likely stand out in Hartford.

I cannot honestly say that he was not kind to me in some psychotic way, but if his God exists, I must say I do fear for him.

However, as you most likely already know, I am an agnostic, and no-one's judge.
Walk over the bridge on JFK, the wind whipping up the screams of ghosts from the river. Not frozen over, but soon. It is their river now. Their city. This savage wind their breath on my face, soon it will be frozen like theirs are.

My heart flares a little when I see the skull and crossbones in black and yellow on the back of her car. See her through the window, twisting beads onto lengths of wire. Remember that she is beautiful, my nose running all over my face.

She is always angry when I'm early I say I walked too fast because of the cold.

I give her the little yellow books and she fans them across the ledge in front of the window. I ask her if the sculpture is hers and she says it's just for show.

Closing time, "can you stand outside please?"

"Are you ready to walk fast, it's very cold?"

I realize I can only love the ones who move faster than I do. And I move like a stray. How fast a ghost can move, as death is inertia and a ghost defies death as surely as it defies life.

In the bar pretend not to know what to order for her. I can see that she is in pain. I know I will never see her smile again, at least when she is looking at me.

Why ask me what it's like to be a poet when you already know? We pretend not to remember our friends' names. We are wondering why we're here. A ghost does not know why it haunts, a ghost is like a barnacle attached to another barnacle. The other barnacle can turn inside out and there's a world inside of it.

I say that the advent of trains and busses and automobiles is important when considering the splintering of the narrative. She says we can hear voices from other places now in our heads and that is also important. We agree that the voices are important.

She says it is the movements, physical movements and abstract ones that constitute our lives. Even the movement of breath into and out of the body when one is still.

But a ghost doesn't breathe. A ghost is still even when it is whipping around you, even when it's dancing in the cord of the phone or on one of the points of a pair of scissors.

We will never forgive each other, not really. The narrative cracks. We go on making the movements of our lives, moving away from each other, but still our ghosts appear in the same mirror. I pretend to smile because I'm not really in the room.

Dec 2, 2003

*This* is what I'm talking about when I say "Alienation."

Boy Punished for Talking About Gay Mom

"A teacher who heard the remark scolded Marcus, telling him "gay" was a "bad word" and sending him to the principal's office. The following week, Marcus had to come to school early and repeatedly write: 'I will never use the word `gay' in school again.'"

Airtight logic, no? When I am done with them, they will beg for my Fist of Death, my pretties...

For you NYers out there...

Saturday, Dec. 13 7pm

BOOK RELEASE party for UDP's most recent chapbooks:
TEN MORE POEMS by James Hoff
CITY/TEMPLE by Mark Lamoureux

at The Nest, 88 Front Street in DUMBO, Brooklyn.
(F train to York St., A/C to High St.)


It's cold and it's wet and we will be up to our armpits in it soon enough.

I know my disdain for all things winter conflicts with my wannabe Canadianism as described below. Oh the great conflicing ironies of life.

Genetically, I know I'm supposed to like this crap. But, argh....

Oh Canada, Oh Canada!

As per this article, I find myself increasingly saying that I am "French Canadian" when asked about my ethnicity these days. Somewhat of a pose because my family left Acadia in the 19th century. However, if every marblemouthed New England yahoo is allowed to trace their lineage back to Miles Standish, I think I am allowed to declare myself French Canadian. "Lamoureux" is, after all, like "Smith" in Quebec. But as the North American divide deepens, I find myself wishing that Canada were more like Ireland with its immigration policy.

I think a good way for the land of the North to cement its cultural and world identity would be to offer asylum to disgruntled citizens of the United States, as Trudeau did with draft dodgers in during the Vietnam War.

If only it weren't so goddamned cold up there. But people seem a little more laid back about...keeping warm indoors if you get my drift up there, so maybe the long winters would feel not so bad in a culture where one did not feel completely alienated, frustrated, and alone...