• What Is There To Say?

    I admit to ostriching a bit for the last few months. I admit that it took almost three months to come back around to finding a voice and becoming slightly less overwhelmed enough to use it. Ironically just as the plague gets worse than ever here in the US. To be specific, just as the plague hits record levels, as the nation explodes in well overdue revolt, as the “president” loses what was left of his marbles, as we learn about meth-gators (whatever happened to the murder hornets, btw? Can someone talk to the 2020 season writers about continuity, please?) and killer worms, as the Sahara sands cross the Atlantic…

  • Love (and Poetry) in the Time of Covid

    I live in North Carolina, where a state-wide shelter-in-place order for the month of April started yesterday. (Can we talk about that phrase, by the way? Every time someone uses it, it brings up hurricanes and tornadoes for me. Maybe it’s metaphorical? Maybe we’re giving the powers that be less credit for creative thinking than they deserve? Is there a ‘phrase maker’-in-chief? There should be..maybe the poet laureate can do double duty?) However, my wife and I have already been “sheltering-in-place” for two weeks today due to an overabundance of caution as I have ridiculously bad asthma. So by now, in that middle ground of getting cabin fever when the…

  • Notes from an Asthmatic with Anxiety during a Coronavirus Outbreak

    My sweetie, she doesn’t always get my sense of humor. Or she does, but judges it at times either worthy of a groan or the evil eye. Lately, it’s been more the latter, with a good bit of ‘take it back’ thrown in. The reason is the topic: being an asthmatic during a respiratory virus outbreak. I swear to the flying spaghetti monster that if NPR mentions one more time how people with preexisting conditions are effectively screwed and might as well toss themselves on the Black Plague cart (insert Monty Python joke here…”I’m not dead!”) I’m going to, well, I mean, I dunno, write a very firmly worded complaint.…

  • How to Spatchcock a Turkey

    Step One: Argue with your wife about how this was her idea in the first place and you are absolutely not going to agree to Spatchcock the turkey on Thanksgiving’s Eve, no matter what that damn word means. Grump about this for at least a full morning while your wife nods and grunts (lady-like, mind you) at you absentmindedly and pats your shoulder several times. Step Two: Accept that your Spatchcocking of the turkey was always inevitable.  Lean into this and the additional inevitability that you are probably going to do a worse job at this task than you’ve ever done at any task previously, that one time in Science…

  • Picasso, Genius, and Other Misconceptions

    There’s a new show on Hulu called Genius. The first season followed Einstein’s life, and the second is following Picasso’s, following a format where each episode switches back and forth between a chronological telling of the life from birth, and the life in older age, generally around 60 or so. Both men lived around the same time, more or less. Both old ages dealt with Nazi Europe. Both youth’s dealt with visionary minds in a world that was not built for nor appreciated visionary minds. Both men raised their metaphorical (and sometimes not so metaphorical) middle fingers at all the odds and the bad mouthers and convention and insistently, obsessively,…

  • Zebras, Nails and Other Overcomplications

    My sweetie said something to me recently. “When you see a four legged animal, see a horse, not a zebra.” And, if this were in regards to art, or imagination, or living a generally colorful life, that would be terrible advice. However, it’s about none of those things. It’s about, specifically, in this instance, the fact that my life long asthma has been working as much overtime as a workaholic firefighter on a multi week string of 24 hour shifts, and we’ve been freaking out about it a bit. Because this isn’t something that happens. In fact, in the 10 years we’ve been together, as she pointed out well before…

  • Poetics Online and Indulging One’s Passions

    By trade, I am a web developer and graphic designer, in addition to an illustrator. But my first love, now and always, is poetry and writing. And because of my nature and I imagine an upbringing by two intellectuals and scholars, I have a deep affection for research, deep thought, and contemplation for its own sake. As a related side note, I’m a part of a poetry community in Florida that, every April, decides to throw sanity to the wind and write thirty form poems, with 30 distinct forms, in 30 days in celebration of National Poetry Month. This, earlier this year, gave me an idea. As my community, which…

  • Sanity Ritual: Journaling

    The brain is a funny thing. Everyone, as far as I’ve noticed, has their sanity rituals. Things they do, whether they’re aware of it or not, that keep centered. Keep them clear and present and in a relatively even mood. And the reason I say that the brain is a funny thing, is that inevitably we’ll stray away from those things-we’re busy, we get caught up in life, etc etc-and then we wonder why we’re so crabby and empty-brained and dark-mooded, because the brain somehow forgets, over and over, not only what keeps it happy but that it feels other than how it feels in the moment. Sometimes, we’re way,…

  • Sleepy Sunday Meditations

    There’s something about a rainy Sunday where you don’t actually need to leave the house. Oh sure, you could leave the house. There are always groceries to get. You could clean out the car. But. But you could also get those groceries tomorrow, and the car is always going to be messy anyways, and Monday is lurking around the corner peeking impatiently waving it’s list of things to do and hefting its bucket of stress, and anyways, it’s raining. We flew in this morning from a quick two night trip, and after a nap, and a proper dog cuddle, my sweetie decided it was of utmost necessity to make home…