Monday, October 25, 2010

Traveling the Road (Six Men Passed)


                               Traveling the Road (Six Men Passed)


                                That makes the second man I’ve seen
Walking on the side of I-85.

The first had a weighted beard,
                                Carried three overfilled backpacks,
And looked like he hiked from the mountains.
                       
This man, older, wrinkled, and stooped,
                                 Is walking up the exit
                                Opposite from the traffic forward,
                                Moving toward his time in reverse.
                       
The scenes around me do not change
                                Except for the wood splinters in the road –
                                Disintegration of the trees around me.
                       
Then the road closes to one,
                                Almost to a stop.

As I wait for it to reopen
                                There appears the third man.
                       
Straight from some movie,
                                Ragged, long hair, mustache,
                                Sunglasses half on his sun-beaten face,
                                He moves casually, minus his bike.
                       
His effort is hardly any,
                                Knowing he isn’t going places particular,
                                Sort of lost, sort of wandering;
                                The third man seems the least so far.
                       
Man number four along the road
                                Carries a duffel bag of his life,
                                Headset turned to oblivious,
                                Head down, cap on,
                                Hiding from the deepening light
                                 In the wide of this space.
                       
Number five walks silent -
                                No bags, no music, no hat,
                                No facial hair or expression -
                                Simply solitary.

                                The length of the hair on number six
                                Allows a ponytail to his back
                                And a bag hanging low onto his ass,
                                Drunk as he staggers about.
                       
Strong contrast between the men,
                                As well as the cut-through woods,
                                Forces my mind to passions.

                                               And as I pass Green Lake –
                               A muddy expanse of water,
                                               Murky in its cold –
                                                I don’t know where I am.
                                   
The green has turned…
                                                Starting to fade…
                                                Becoming a dying brown.
                                   
And in the blind world
                                                This place doesn’t exist
                                                Counties, cities, creeks, all the sky,
Everything is named in color.

My car barrels past all six pedestrians
                                With the road expanding before me,
                                                My guideposts dropping leaves like hints,
                                                Knowing my walk has yet to begin.

A Toast of Blue


                                A Toast of Blue


Twist off
                                and lick the under-
                                side of the cap,
                                mixing the metal taste
                                with the bleeding insincerity
inside your mouth.
                       
Set the bottle down
                                and find that Skip James album
                                you tend to play in the dark.
                                Begin with his voice –
                                that wild, howling scream –
                                and sink in the rhythm
                                of the guitar or piano
                                or his feet pounding the floor.
                                Sip with each lurch
                                of your soul.

Lift the liquid to a drop
                                on your tongue then read
                                the label four times in tune
                                and place it back,
                                clinking the table with its
                                glass serenade breaking you.
                       
Your head slumps
                                chin to table,
                                you view the top
                                through tinted refractions,
                                overturned in its disgrace,
                                its humbled example.

                                To finish the drink
                                your eyes repair
their known motion,
                                aiming the tilting
of the empty
from stomach to mind,
from mind to mouth,
from mouth to glass.
                       

                                And in this present
                                the ancient sounds slow
                                allowing these words,
                                in this place,
                                on this fault,
                                to cry myself true.

Grace Upon My Lips


                         Grace Upon My Lips



                  Fan from this base
                                 A flame which reaches for heaven
                                 For that is the only chance
                 Of reaching you.
                                 Yet closeness can’t come
                                 For fear of singeing you
                                 As you’re held high above
                                 This aching ground.
                                 Float beyond my solid reach
                 Towards the purity of the sky
                                 Here your image will always be
                                 The praise of beauty,
                 The song of art,
                                 The one to amaze and beautify
                                 The claims of the clouds.
                 This earth shall only tarnish
                                 And stain with every step
                                 So free your shadows to the winds
                 Look over those who sing your air
                                 And take pains to know
                                 The terra-prisoned souls
                 Who view your perfect pristine.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Lyricism - Part 3 (You Have No Choice and Dreams in the Wind)

Here are some more lyrics rescued from a torn and shredded high school folder helpfully labeled "Lyrics." As before, in an effort to rid the world, and myself, of these ridiculous expressions of lyrical content, I will be presenting selected lyrics from several "songs" here to allow the proper disgrace they will undoubtedly bestow upon me.

Read at your own risk. The song is in blue type with red type reserved for my public destruction.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Auf Wiedersehen, College Fund

Mrs. Seal, The Model Known as Heidi Klum, The Project Runway axe-lady... 
 
I am not sure how to address you, but I have to discuss something with you. I know that you have a line of "active-wear" clothes that you are hawking on amazon.com. In fact, I will be nice and include a link to the collection here. 
If you wouldn't mind, could you explain a couple of things to me?
 
My first question is this - Why the HELL are you doing that 80s Flashdance-esque jump on the front page? I know models sometimes do weird things to get "the shot," but this is a little disturbing. Your face looks a little like Skeletor with a rug. And exactly what exercise or activity are you supposedly performing in that pose? It looks as if you stumbled upon a trampoline and camera and said, "Let's go take a picture!" Most people I know will not be in that situation anytime soon, so I am not sure to whom this photo is appealing.

My second question, and last question (albeit with several offshoots) is this - $78 for SWEAT PANTS???
 

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Old Couple


                                    The Old Couple



                        They sit together with hands folded
                        Into each other and they speak
                        In soft tones into their ears,
                        Betraying their decaying bodies.
                        She smiles, he whistles,
                        She smokes, he sings,
                        She talks, he tries to hear,
                        She sews, he jokes,
                        They’ve meshed into life together.
                        Grandparents certain, close in sight
                        To how I remember mine,
                        Even these days as they visit
                        In my dreams, surprising me
                        To ask how they can be here
                        When they both have left
                        Their home where I knew them.
                        We see the couple warm
                        At their loves bonded
                        And we touch our palms to our chests.
                        A younger man and woman pass
                        With hysterical slaps by her
                        And mistaken indifference by him,
                        Not quite balanced, I guess
                        It depends on the age.
                        They sit together as one
                        Not afraid to see the others' eyes
                        And they glow as their friends
                        And the days go bye.

White Absentia


                                                   White Absentia

                        “Face it this place is a mess, it’s got a hole in the ceiling;
                        The rain comes and washes away all the hope and the feeling.”
                                                                                                -Taime Downe


                                    The train hopped and my tracks stopped
                                    And I bled upon my rosary
                                    Giving grace and snubbing fate
                                    And blinded in my fury
                                    ‘Til I stop.

                                    No slowing, no brakes, no collision
                                    Which spills into the drunken dawn,
                                    Only a halt.
                                    To cease the wheels’ motion,
                                    To pause the speed essence,
                                    To focus on the blood
                                    Clotting unpleasant
                                    Between the beads
                                    And weakening the string
                                    ‘Til it breaks.

                                    Sprinkled through the air,
                                    The prayers sound like marbles
                                    On the tiled kitchen floor
                                    Batted about when the cat yawns
                                    And rolls over and back,
                                    Paws extended in stretch.
                                    Deep sighs wake it
                                    As the crucifix lands on its nose,
                                    Startled into stupor
                                    ‘Til the shock

                                    Settles in without asking
                                    Or answering requests from night-
                                    Light hidden nightdreams.
                                    Peaceful sleep relaxes muscles
                                    In the eyes allowing them to roam
                                    The face of God carelessly,
                                    Against the rigidity of his wake-
                                    Fully obscene labors. Greedy vision
                                    ‘Til red covers

                                    The scope of it all
                                    In layers and days of paint
                                    Shielding the windows
                                    And trapping the blackness
                                    Within the walls.
                                    Fear forces rodents through mazes
                                    Mapped from my twisted beaded string,
                                    And my arms and my legs
                                    Move anxious for release
                                    ‘Til the absence sets.

Monday, September 20, 2010

The First Kiss

She took his hand and looked into his face, searching for an answer to her unasked question. Her fingers traced her thoughts upon his palm, each line ending with a question mark. She paused all motion, all breath, and opened her mouth slightly to begin a word but no sound escaped.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ode to My Couch

Couch, oh couch
Nine feet in length
You stand on your dark wooden frame
So silent, so still
Born the same year
As me, 1973
I've grown
And you've changed
But just your complexion
(Slightly less bright
And velvety)
You seduce with your softness
Your springs now loving fingers
Gently cradling all bottoms
Beyond your temptation
You relish your role
For relaxation
As every living thing
Human, dog, or even cat
Has succumbed to your charms
And slept in your bosom
So be proud, oh couch
And listen not to the haters
Who would like to disgard
Your brilliance to the dumpster
Instead, focus on the joy
And the happiness
You have provided all these years
And will for years beyond
For you are my couch
The best couch
The most comfortable couch in the world
The orange couch

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Coming Up...

After serving a few months (location, name, and reason withheld due to legal advice from my sister-in-law's parakeet), Rantings, Ravings, and Writings will be back and better than ever in the upcoming days, weeks, months, years, and possibly eons (if the whole immortality thing works out). So hold on to your hats, hike up your socks, whet your whistles, (or any other cliche you prefer)... here is what is coming up on future episodes of Charles in Charge... um... I mean, Rantings, Ravings, and Writings...

  • The greatest family celebrity throwdown ever! Intrigue! Talent! Scandal! Blatant self-promotion! And SQUIRRELS! Okay, maybe no squirrels. Maybe.
  • More poetry than you can shake a stick at. Seriously. There is poetry so hot it will burn up your little shaking stick. 
  • An ode to the greatest piece of furniture of all time.
  • Lyricism galore! It may be closer than it appears, so you better step on the accelerator...
  • A man walks into a house. The Home Owners' Association says, "You can't do that one thing that makes sense." The man says ... How will it end? Is it a joke? Or is it ... The Man Versus the Evil HOA!!!
  • Political leanings so far left that you will have to french kiss Newt Gingrich to regain your balance. (What? I don't write political entries? I don't consider myself a Democrat or a Republican? I want to establish a benevolent government which will revolve around the lost teachings of Joss Whedon? Okay, okay, scratch the political writings... )
  • Actual reviews! Of music and books!
  • Guest opinions of people I do not know.
  • And, last, and certainly least, the life and times of me. That's right - my memoirs. All for the world to see! Here is an excerpt: "Day 1: I was born today. I don't understand why everyone is making such a big thing out of it. I was very slimy though. Glad they gave me a bath. I could get used to this." "Day 2 - Figured out how to resolve the energy demands of the United States without the continual use of fossil fuels or cow-towing to hippies and their magic solar power. Unfortunately, I have not yet mastered speech and can not share my knowledge with the world." "Day 3 - Figured out the perfect cupcake recipe. This cupcake will be so delicious that wars will end immediately so everyone can eat one. I have yet to decide if this discovery is better than the Day 2 discovery." "Day 4 - Hey! I can move my feet! Kick ass!" "Day 5 - My long term memory is beginning to fail. I hope I don't forget anything important, like that energy thing... oooo, look! It's a rattle!" "Day 6, or is it Day 7 - life is tough as a prisoner in this bassinet. I just hope I don't have to serve hard time in that crib-looking thing over there." 
So, be sure your butter is popcorned, your saddles are horsed, and your raise is roofed, because I'm bringing sexy back. (What? Timberlake doesn't care. He's too busy doing commercials with Peyton Manning. Chill out, lawyer dude.)

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Dear Dora, Please Help Me Understand

Dear Dora, Boots, Dora the Explorer Writers, Diego, Mermaids, Anyone Who is a Fan of Animation, Anyone Who is an Expert on Environmental Issues, and Anyone Who Has Seen Splash -

I need help. Please help me. I just watched a direct-to-DVD feature starring Dora the Explorer. This movie (at 45 minutes it was more of an extended episode, but we'll roll with it) was from 2007 and called Dora the Explorer Saves the Mermaids. I was hoping that I would be entertained. I wasn't. Worst case scenario, I was hoping that I would still be coherent at the end of my viewing. That is still to be determined.

The movie did cause my brain to hurt something awful though. I have so many questions to ask and I am hoping that someone, anyone, can help me. Please, my sanity may just depend on it.


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Soccer Made Easy

In an attempt to help others understand what is happening on your television sets, in bars, and all around the world this month, here is my glossary of soccer terms. You may think that you understand soccer, but then you hear the announcers (if you can get past the infernal buzz of the vuvuzelas) and you wonder what the hell is going on out there. A few simple vocabulary words here and you will be able to bullshit your way through any conversation with a soccer fan.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

World Cup of Pain

I thought I got all of my soccer hate out of my system. But then the World Cup came along.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Lyricism - Part 2 (Rebel and All's Well)

Here are some more lyrics rescued from a torn and shredded high school folder helpfully labeled "Lyrics." As before, in an effort to rid the world, and myself, of these ridiculous expressions of lyrical content, I will be presenting selected lyrics from several "songs" here to allow the proper disgrace they will undoubtedly bestow upon me.

Read at your own risk. The song is in blue type with red type reserved for my public destruction.