Thursday, May 31, 2007

A Challenge

He told me that
he liked my profiles
better than my frontals,

to which I replied,
guess I'll have to
do more frontals.

Then he wanted to see
if I could do a dog

I described that
I'd do the nose with
concentric circles

and he said
it wouldn't

"Maybe, someday,
I'd give it a try,"
I thought.

My son believed
that he got stronger
carrying a heavy bat.

We push ourselves,
even when "good enough"
is ok, just because...

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Buyer's Remorse

Should I or shouldn't I?
it is all so simple
in the midst of passion.

Then, later, I turn it
over in my head,
over and over again,

wondering if I
should have paid less,
or picked a different

specimen, with
battling with realizations

until finally something
else comes along
to occupy my cluttered mind.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007


The exasperation of numbers,
showing one side,
and a moment later, another.

There are always multiple

depending on one's persuasion.
Years ago I read,
How to Lie with Statistics,

yet, I'm still often persuaded
by one strong argument

while another sits
so quietly
on the sidelines,

waiting to come out
just at the right time
to embarrass and harass.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Home Again

"So, are you going
to travel when
you retire?" they ask.

I feel like a lump
when I tell them
how much I like it at home.

I keep trying
to travel,
and keep appreciating

more and more
just being home,
and traveling

in my mind,
and not,
in my body.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


It is hard to know
how interest rates,
and interest of the more curious sort

are related.
The curious interest
lets us know

that we are still alive,
while the other interest,
as in rates,

let's one person help another.
One could say
that both the

money lender
and lendee gain
from the transaction,

though the lendee
appears to be in debt
for most

of their life,
while the lender
goes home each day

with a wallet
that grows a bigger
and bigger pot belly.

Saturday, May 26, 2007


Making a big decision
is always

I've done
a number of them.

I feel like I'm on
a high diving board,
and at the point

of no return where
my feet have left the board
and my weight is over the water,

and then I think,
oh, my god,
do I really want to do this?

Friday, May 25, 2007

Invisible Man

The man who wasn't there
posed for me
when noone else would

(because they weren't around).
He didn't like to stay still,
and finally he vanished altogether.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

House Hunting

She read about one
on Speedway,
and decided

that was the
one for her,
but upon seeing it

in the flesh,
found that her heart
was elsewhere.

Still more days
to play the field,
we'll see where her

heart ends up...
I doubt

is still
in the running.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Little Man, Big Man

When I was little,
I couldn't wait
until I was big,

yet I didn't
really believe it
would ever happen.

The wait seemed endless,
only to find out that
bigness wasn't especially

an age thing,
but rather
a state of mind.

If only
I had known,
I could have

flipped a switch,
and towered
over them all.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Color Again

Color again,
the sun shines,
the light at the end

of the tunnel,
he said.
The end is near,

so he reached
warming his

hands with the sun,
and wondering
what kind of

permanent damage
the rays will make
on his happy face.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Son (sic) Unworshiper

He was blinded
by the son (sic?),
so much so

that he could not
see light
from darkness.

Each day he
would hide
from him,

only to forget
by morning
his daily rebirth.

He needed him to
see his reflection
in the stream,

yet who was he
without him,

who struggled in

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Goodbye Dr. Doolittles

Since the fifth grade
I've drawn Dr. Doolittles
as if he was going

out of style,
(or whatever
the expression is.)

I thought
I should
try creating

something else
to see if it would
"come alive"

as when
Steiglitz photographed
clouds to show that

he was really good,
since he had
no hypnotic effect

on the personalities
of his
human subjects.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Writer's Block

I wondered what
it would be like
to one day be so

tongue tied that
I couldn't picture
or write, being

held hostige
by muteness,

up in
the air, a
rough texture

on my face,
pronounced features
but jagged,

from being drawn
on bumpy


Friday, May 18, 2007


The old dog,
convinced that this was
not a popcorn night,

plopped down,
oblivious to the design
on the geometric carpet.

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Shared Substructure

Sometimes two
are one, and yet
soaring off to different

ends of the universe,
as siamese twins
with their own interests

and passions,
in their own worlds,
yet intimately sharing

a substructure
with their

A little like
never having to
say you're sorry,

it is that connection
that doesn't always need

or stimulations.
The common element
remains the shared

universe, bound
together by history
and understanding.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

A is for Anger

I must be naive or stupid
to think I can
end a war

with a few stories
and proverbs.
If only it was

that simple,
we'd send over to Iraq
story and proverb tellers,

instead of machine guns
and hand grenades.
Trying to touch the

forgiving side of someone
who has been so
trodden upon

is like
reaching into
a hot fire

to save a
glowing ember.
It seems so simple

even as one's hand is
warmed by
the friendly fire,

yet a moment later,
the pain of sizzling
fingers is unbearable.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007


Twins or soul mates,
sharing from birth
the same habitat,

creating negative spaces
dancing in
the embryonic liquid

of life, like friends
sensing every need
and want, time

never passing, except
perhaps in slow motion,
or suspended animation,

too pure in their
idealic dance to
notice (or care)

if they are

Monday, May 14, 2007


I lost a
friend today,
and don't know where

she went.
When I last saw her,
she was coming to life,

and, like an act
of witch craft,
suddenly vanished forever,

like a breeze,
never to reappear.
She just was

starting to grow a soul,
and to become
her own person,

and she was
to be with me
forever. But poof,
she now is gone forever.

I made a new friend,
which you see above.
Not the same,

but an expression
of a sorrowful

who must push on,
if heartbroken.

Sunday, May 13, 2007


Complementary is such
a strange word,
having nothing to do

with its "sounds like,"
It refers to one thing

that completes another,
and also suggests opposites,
as with color.

Strange! I often think
about pairs of people
(husbands and wives,

for example)
as either twins,
or opposites

(as in complements).
Like yin yan,
the opposites fit together
to complete

rather than oppose.
Somewhat like
red/green, blue/orange, violet/yellow,

yin yan acknowledges
that it takes
the pluralism

of both sides of the coin
to tell the
entire story.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

House Man

He only thought
about his house
until it replaced

his receding hairline.
He couldn't see
his thoughts or

feelings since
his brain was in
the basement

and his heart
(was busy)
pumping blood

to heat the house.
His head hurt
from the weight

of the house
so he took
too many pills

that rotted a
hole in his

All said and done,
others saw
his folly,

and entertained

Friday, May 11, 2007


I sat across from her
in the doctor's office
and noticed her

chin being tugged
by gravity, and
how she flipped

through magazines
as if every page
was as vacuous

as the next.
I wondered
if she knew

that I was
drawing her,
and tried to limit

the times
I would
look up at her,

so as to avoid
myself away.

I took
very deep breaths
each time

I lifted
my head
to watch her.

Thursday, May 10, 2007


Rush, rush, rush,
Alarm at six,
treadmill at six-thirty,

shower at seven
eight am breakfast,
meeting at ten

lunch at twelve
quick conversations
with a host of people

email for forty-five
minutes then off to
another meeting across

town at three, a
quick hallway conversation
at four, and back to

the meeting until four fifteen
then another hallway conversation
and a quick view of an

art exhibit, but not the
one I expected, then email
for five minutes, followed

by a slow drive home
stopping at the grocery,
getting hungrier by the

minute, calling from cell
phone to Thai restaurant,
going to their drive thru

to pick up dinner, then
come home, let the dogs
out, email, tired as a dog,

sleep for a few minutes,
and then work on the drawing
after taking

three phone calls and
talking to my wife
who came back early

because she had
forgotten something.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

Blind Black Architect

I dreamt of a
blind black architect
from NYC.

I was with him in
a hotel conference

and felt responsible
for him because he
was blind.

Then I was called
away to get
a gift for me.

I was told it would
just take a minute,
but it was taking

more and more time and
I was getting more
and more worried

about the blind black
architect. "How would
he get along without

me, being blind," I
asked one of my
diverse colleagues.

He replied that
"being black in NYC
is more difficult

than being blind.
If he survived that,
he will be fine."

Tuesday, May 8, 2007


A job is when you have
to do something you
don't want to do

because you were
paid to do it,
or maybe because you promised.

You don't feel
a sense of

because you just did it
for money like the
nightwalker who does her

tricks one after another,
sometimes feigning passion
and sometimes,

when he's too drunk,
just waiting
until the job is done.

Henry David called it
"quiet desperation," or
should he have said "tired"

relating to the
anticipation of that key
moment when the clock

ticks no more
and the eye lids
are gently told

the job
is over,

Monday, May 7, 2007


When two occupy
the same space,
one is interfering.

Even if the
intention is intimate,
someone isn't able

to move
because they are
sharing the same

What to some
is gentle touching

is to another
an imposition.
Often we think

that it is
the obstruction
that keeps us

from getting
to where
we are going,

yet, we yearn
to touch
each other,

but abhor sharing
our space or

that we are
often responsible
when bumping

those obvious

Sunday, May 6, 2007

My neighbor

We share a driveway.
He stopped his car
and got out

as I was
walking back
toward my house.

"People don't have
time to talk,"
he said,

"the golden age
isn't really

Too much to do
and I don't know
where to start.

I can't wait
until the end,"
he said.

His hands and arms
shook as he talked,
adding that he was

worried about his
friend from WWII,
a nose gunner,

who was in the town
in Kansas
just flattened by a tornado.

Then the sun came out,
and what looked like
a gloomy day was now idyllic.

I said,
"a beautiful day."

he answered,
"it is."

Saturday, May 5, 2007


The end of any year
means lots of parties,
one last night

and one tonight.
Sometimes more work
than work, just to go,

let alone to host.
This weekend it is
go, go, go.

Last night
he sat by
the unlit fireplace,

his head throbbing,
tired from
a long semester,

working too hard,
worrying too hard,
trying too hard,

he was able to
sit back
for a moment

and enjoy a
calmer moment.
"Less people

are here
than last
year," he commented,

with noone disappointed
that the subdued
gathering more

than matched
an exhausted

Friday, May 4, 2007


I don't like bullies.
The fat kid in the school yard
who sits on you

because he has nothing
better to do,
or the adult bully,

who threatens wrath,
and uses twisted "arguments"
to pretend that reason

is on his side.
Often it is easier
to take his side,

until the next time,
when the threats reappear,
and once again,

the fat kid is sitting on you,
and no adults are
around to help.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Barber Shop

"We got all that
high tech stuff,"
the police chief said,

discussing guns
with the civilians.
He only had to

buy two guns,
one for off duty
and one for on

duty when he
was a rookie.
His "son finished

college in 3 1/2 years
instead of 4 and
he was the youngest

in his class." His
badges and stripes,
hidden by the

barber's chair cloth,
made him seem more
like a regular guy

except for those blue
stripes on his pants
or his thick leather

mace holder
ready for

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Mr. Thumbtack

She wanted me to make
a paperclip into a

and someone else
requested I do something
with a staple remover.

I thought I'd make
a blue paperclip,
like the one I saw yesterday.

All these ideas made
me feel like a dunce,
with a thumbtack for a hat,

you know, one
of those especially
big and shiny tacks,

that don't have
paint and make that
tap tap noise

when they stick
into your shoe or
help you do

a headstand,
when you wear one
on top of your head.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Paper Clip

He said that
Richard Strauss
claimed he could compose

music about a paper clip.
I couldn't imagine
a less inspirational

object, so I thought
I'd give it a try,
only to discover

how beautiful it was
standing like a surf board
reaching into the sky

as elegant of
a curve that
ever was.