Monday, November 24, 2008


So i figured it is near the end of the year and time to compile a list of favorites.
I did not buy new music for quite a long time due to the thriftiness accompanying being a national park volunteer.
due to that, this is not going to be a list of releases solely in 2008, but rather, a list of favorite albums since I left Chicago in October 2007 - that is , what has come into my possession within that timeframe and been released at least close to within that same time.
here's the list in no particular order:

Tunng - Good Arrows
Burnt Friedman - First Night Forever
Swell Session - Swell Communications
Amorphous Androgynous - The Peppermint Tree
Iron & Wine - The Shepherd's Dog
Mercury Rev - Snowflake Midnight
Adam Franklin - Bolts of Melody
Benoit Pioulard - Temper
Atlas Sound - Let the Blind Lead Those Who Can See But Cannot Feel
Syclops - I've Got My Eye On You

other heavy spins:
The Books: The Lemon of Pink
Animal Collective - Sung Tongs
Plaid - Spokes
Rollerskate Skinny - Horsedrawn Wishes
Caribou - Up In Flames
Swervedriver - both Mezcal Head and Raise
Mercury Rev - The Secret Migration
Corker/Conboy - Radiant Idiot
Plants and Animals - Parc Avenue

sorry there are not links. i am lazy.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Ragged Cloak of Colors

The search,
Ah, yes! The search
Yet what are we searching for?
Better still, what am I searching for?
All around amusing!

A tear shed here and there,
But it is but a passing moment
In which I care
About that pain, that confusion
That all around illusion.

Are you confused too?
Say yes and we can laugh
Out loud at this holy mess!
Stumbling as we may
Hoping for that day
When a light shines on
That target – that destination
That place which we seek.

What is it you expect and see
Within me?
Are you sure you have
Sight to see?
Or maybe you mistake my moment
For something more
And try to keep score?

To do so is to commit yourself
To some misunderstanding
Of my meaning
Of my path
Of my temporary plight.

To read into it without asking
Now, that is a folly of which I must laugh!
For that laughter burns away the anger
Which I feel towards you
Wanting me to fit some role
Some outside definition
Of who I am.

I take these ragged pieces of
Experience good and bad
And rename them,
Reclaim them
And weave them into something
Not unlike my own homemade
Dervish cloak.
My mistakes and my grandest acts
Are equals – all adding a wider palette
Of colors to this garment.
How is it that you cannot gaze upon them
When it is I whom has to wear them!
Imagine it!
I am this being
Due to those actions
This living which I have done
Enriches my understanding.

Casting judgement on this from
Some high seat of simplicity
Will not do!
Walk by my side and see for yourself
How my eyes have been opened wider
With each and every ragged bit.
With each and every glorious jewel.

You will see how all too human
both you and I are!
Playing, praying, stumbling
Rising, crying, and laughing.

So let me digest.
Let it come to rest
And trust in this
My ability to cope
To grow
To know the fullness of life.

If you just once
Let go of that judgement,
That need to control
To be safe
You just might see that side
Of me which I refuse to hide
So why hide from it?

I’m just a simple soul,
Complex in color,
Trying to walk the path to the light.
Let me bring forth your compassion
I’ll show you mine without hesitation.

Those barriers do neither you nor I
One ounce of favor.
So let them disintegrate
And relax into this.
It’s just another color
Of my cloak.



There are different wells within your heart.
Some fill with each good rain,
Others are far too deep for that.

In one well
You have just a few precious cups of water,
That "love" is literally something of yourself,
It can grow as slow as a diamond
If it is lost.

Your love
Should never be offered to the mouth of a
Only to someone
Who has the valor and daring
To cut pieces of their soul off with a knife
Then weave them into a blanket
To protect you.

There are different wells within us.
Some fill with each good rain,
Others are far, far too deep
For that.


ghazal 323

Laden with my ignorant ties
Ashamed of the courageous and wise
May a hidden hand help me rise
Or else madness becomes my prize.
Of stars and fate ask of my eyes
That watch the havens until sunrise.
I kiss the cup that me apprise
Of the world’s turnings and its disguise.
Praise of wine-sellers’ reprise
Praise of God’s bounty, why despise.
Grateful for my power and size
Unable to deal in deceit and lies.
Drunk like Hafiz, till my demise,
Hopeful of that angel’s enterprise.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Wallace Stevens

a few poems by Wallace Stevens
(who was thankfully brought to my attention by Ellie)

Final Solilioquy of the Interior Paramour

Light the first light of evening
In which we rest and, for small reason, think
The world imagined is the ultimate good.

This is, therefore, the intensest rendezvous.
It is in that thought that we collect ourselves,
Out of indifferences, into one thing:

Within that single thing, a single shawl
Wrapped tightly round us, since we are poor, a warmth,
A light, a power, the miraculous influence.

Here, now, we forget each other and ourselves.
We feel the obscurity of an order, a whole,
A knowledge, that which arranged the rendezvous.

Within its vital boundary, in the mind.
We say God and the imagination are one...
How high that highest candle lights the dark.

Out of this same light, out of central mind,
We make a dwelling in the evening air,
In which being there together is enough.


A High-Toned Old Christian Woman

Poetry is the supreme fiction, madame.
Take the moral law and make a nave of it
And from the nave build a haunted heaven. Thus,
The conscience is converted into palms,
Like windy citherns hankering for hymn.
We agree in principle. That's clear. But take
The opposing law and make a peristyle,
And from the peristyle project a masque
beyond the planets. Thus, our bawdiness,
Unpurged by epitaph, indulged at last,
Is equally converted into palms,
Squiggling like saxaphones. And palm for palm,
Madame, we are where we began. Allow,
Therefore, that in the planetary scene
Your disaffected flagellants, well-stuffed,
Smacking their muzzy bellies in parade,
Proud of such novelties of the sublime,
Such tink and tank and tunk-a-tunk-tunk,
May, merely may, madame, whip from themselves
A jovial hullabaloo among the spheres.
This will make widows wince. But fictive things
Wink as they will. Wink most when widows wince.

Monday, November 17, 2008

new hikes

I was lucky enough to finally take my first hike on Boulder Mountain thanks to my wonderful friend Kandis. see her blogpost about it here including pics.
We hiked around the King's Pasture area.
a couple of days later, Kandis, Jess, Elizabeth and myself hiked out along Haymaker Bench to the south side of the big bluff/ledge that is between the main bench area and Boulder Creek. We found a route up to the top of the Bench but since the sun was setting, all of us but Jess backtracked and he hotfooted it over and down.
I plan on making my own way to the top eventually and exploring a bit up there, possibly doing some camping up there too.
anyway, here are some pics...

Boulder Mountain:






root spirit

Haymaker Bench:

view south over escalante river

top of 'the gallumph'


Sunday, November 02, 2008

365 review

tonite i went back and looked at the pictures that i took for the 365 days group on flickr back in late '06 and early '07.I did not finish the entire 365 days, but did make it over 200. the year of pics was interrupted by my camping/road trip through utah and the 4 corners area.
it is incredible how life changes, how we go through so much
i am amazed at how melodramatic i could get. I feel so much more balanced these days.
I've been a very lucky man in this life and have managed to bring some really great changes into my life over the past few years.
looking at those pics solidified it for me.
it is strange to look back at that life in Chicago.
I feel like i have matured so much since then.
some examples:
day 11 of 365

Day 123 of 365 days
you can check out the whole photo set here
and all of my photo sets here
tons and tons of hiking pics, graf pics, random city pics, life pics, etc....

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Night Sky

The night sky overflowing
Pouring forth its milky stars
I gaze in wonder
Such bliss
This existence
Pouring into my Soul!

I weep for those moments
In which I had forgotten!
Alas, my heart swells
Like the sweetest overripe fruit.
The skin splitting and
Dripping with the sweet nectar
Of the Divine.

How did I ever lose sight of this?
Ah, 'twas so I could return and enjoy it
That much more!

The earthly guise of That Love
Flowers right here beside and inside of me
To have looked elsewhere was to be a fool.
For it is right here,
Reminding me
That all I need is to open
And be the
Love Love Love!

I can feel the warmth
Of that Loving Embrace
That Gift one cannot ask for
Which simply presents itself
In another Soul
Whom one is blessed enough
To share a moment,
even one glance!

There is not enough thanks in the world for that!

Yet I bow graciously,
Feeling the Divine Spark
Pass between us
And instill the warmth
Of that eternal blaze
In my Heart.

The thought of a cold winter fades.
There is no shortage of warmth here!
So, come sit by my fire,
And discover that it is not mine,
but Yours!
I'm just the hearth!
A spark of it has merely jumped here
So that You can witness
That which tends to hide in the self.

We'll tell stories of
The lived life
Ecstatic becoming
And sorrows of the heart.
Healing, Loving, Exploring.

Then, in that unmovable,
Unshakable silence,
We will take rest with
Divine smiles across our faces,
Knowing, that for a moment
We've touched Heaven.