Archive for the ‘Music’ Category

I am fond

In Life, Milwaukee, Music on February 10, 2014 at 1:52 pm

A little writing composed two summers ago (fittingly wishful-gazing for these February days, although surely the chilly sky outside my window now is as blue as I’ve ever seen it, and the naked tree branches reaching above the rooftops as majestic for their bare bones) – 

I am fond of this little house.

I moved in in December. I brought my guitar, I brought silverware, a bedspread, rugs. I brought books. I brought antique lamps made from brass and marble and fire hydrants. I brought pictures I wasn’t sure how to hang. I brought hopes and fears.

Today is July. I am in a nighttime room with soft green walls that look like mint ice cream, you want to lick them, or new leaves by a pond in England. My tabletop fan swirs as faithfully as a child. There is a painting on the wall above my gaze; I painted it in the 10th grade and called it ‘Hope’. There were a lot of fears moving in, just like the inky blackness surrounding the edges of the painting, but just like the center – a faded patch of light – my fears have also been swirling inward from the eddy of darkest night.

I feel concretely ok that I am not in love. I have a beautiful home that is a nest, that is a nighttime cocoon that wants nothing more from me than to inhabit each room. I want to fill this house with my potential, which is all it ever asked of me, I want to muddy its walls in song, to fling pitch and promise on them like eggs breaking into multicolored yolks. I want to steady its air with words. To match the peace of this room with the promise I carry inside. I want to let this house know that I am ready to be in love with it. I was the darkness on the edge of the painting, and I see now that it is the light.


We Go Recording

In Milwaukee, Music on January 28, 2014 at 1:28 pm

So this past weekend looked like –

And tasted like –

And sounded like –

And played like –

And felt like –

The World

In Music on January 21, 2014 at 10:37 pm

Well, I’m often sharing poems or quotes or thinky-thoughts from an afternoon or a foreign shore or a just-before-bed on Minutes of Honey here, but that probably doesn’t speak to the half of it, really. Because the half of it these days, dare I say the three quarters of it, is music.

Having written songs since I was racing down the street with my best friend as a kid, tumbling into her house, a new jingle on our squeaky mouths to the day someone in college turned around to me on a bus and said I kinda could sing sure thing to when my dad picked me up a rummage guitar and a cute boy sitting on his porch offered to teach me to today, finding myself smack dab in a band, in the throes of poetry wedded to sound wielded as music, I have found nothing more useful for a step-ladder to God, peace, or whatever it is we usually don’t know in life, than a song.

$7 guitar

$7 guitar

And, since the words behind a song often take second fiddle, I thought today, on a long overdue edition of Poetry Tuesday, I would promote them to first. So, dear friends, a little song I wrote last April called –

The World

So my little girl
I promised you the world
And here you are
You wanted sun and moon,
To smell the flowers in June,
To see the light, to see the dark
You sought torrential rain,
Days of joy and pain,
I promised a little too much of that last part

Hey there lollipop
I pulled out all the stops
I hope this is the place you want to be
Because your face by campground fires, your laugh on the telephone wires,
You alone are all I’ll ever need

So when the night comes howling
Its malady and strife
And all out there is stalling
And you lose yourself to fright

I want you to stop

And think upon heredity
The swan song of centuries
Ended to begin here in your life

Hey there apple pie
I’ve yet to find a word to paint you by
You surely would have done the old masters in
Remember summer days when we just lay a-ways
After getting up for bakery in the morning
Remember all that school, showing me all that you knew
You surely were the smarter of us two

Woo-oo-oo, my whistle symphony
I know you wanted to believe
That we would always land here at the top
But to my ken since fate is quick to join or journey as she sees fit
I’m just glad to know our love is journeying on

So if the night’s been howling
And I have left you here
And all out there is stalling
And you start to catch the fear

I want you to stop

And think upon heredity
The swan-song of centuries
Ended just to meet you, my dear

So my little girl
I promised you the world
And here you are
You wanted sun and moon
To hear the rooster croon
To see the light that once was dark
Turns out you’re what I live for
And so forever more
I bless you with the love that’s in my heart


In Life, Milwaukee, Music on January 18, 2014 at 12:19 pm

ImageThings really rallyingly decent. Playing with my band. Playing solo. Writing songs. Writing for a marketing company. Spending time with a nice boy. Keeping the existential thought junkets at bay by waking up in the morning and eating breakfast and washing dishes. By going swimming and vacuuming the rug and running races with my reading eyes to keep ahead of library fines and generally, in so busily doing, digging enough of a trench in time to keep worry from prying.

Dear Love

In Family, Friends, Love, Music on October 27, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Dear Love,

You have been so good to me. You sent me to two parents who have given their entire lives to sharing you with me. You sent me to a best friend who when she cut my hair when we were six years old and we chased the ice cream truck with broken toes and made bad parties into giant jokes has never stopped showing me what you are. You sent me to a gang of girls to lick you into the bowls of leftover cupcake frosting and sweat you off of college dance parties sprinting into early hours, who let me cry you into their pillows after I lost you and was left with your memory. You sent me to a man who saw only you in me. You sent me to a gaggle of music-makers across continents, a troupe of acrobats happy for nothing more than catching your fleeting coattails for a sail.

Love, I love you. You were the forehead I kissed goodbye and the hand that held mine wordlessly stating you will be found again. You were the woman who hoped for me and the one who left her smile on my face.

When you leave, you have not left, because I love you love. And I love, you love.


What was ruckus ain’t ruckus ain’t skipping no more.

In Life, Love, Music on April 26, 2012 at 6:06 pm

The CD skips.  It’s been playing for almost three years now, so it’s bound to have some nicks and grooves. But in the car on the scenic route, today, it forgets.  We’re “nearly four” again on “Dominic St. in the afternoon.” Who’d know we once pushed so hard and trod so slow just to eke out another second of sound?  This sailing’s easy.

Today I’m not skipping.  Even though I’m thinking about him – my mind licking nicked and neural pathways that have recently caused the pain –  it’s like I’m bumper bowling in my brain, and no matter how the heavy floor-breaker rattles and whoops cerebral spaces, it’s cushy, even comfortable to host. Come on in, the water’s fine!

What was ruckus ain’t ruckus ain’t skipping no more.

One Gal Band

In Music on April 10, 2012 at 4:43 pm

So. I am jamming out, at night, at 10:36 at night to James Taylor on my laptop, on my flute. I am watching One Man Band, and there’s the Man, in show, Steamrolling Blues. And he can only hear the piano and the crowd sway, but I’m here, too, figuring on my tweed couch we’ve gone to G which begs a few flats from B minor and oh my God, I’m actually swaying as the half moon on my door lets in the no sun on a Monday night.

Just thought I’d mention that this is what I do with myself these days – I don’t date! I try not to hate! And I make the flute sound great! Tee hee.

New Orleans is Making Love to Itself and Everyone’s Invited.

In Music, Travel on March 20, 2012 at 7:50 pm

In New Orleans last week.  For Emily, who was found creeping in an orange car round a sweating stretch of airport under palms.

We took off!  My Tulane-master’s friend and I.  We ate hummus.  We waited for streetcars on neutral ground. We trod the street where every shop’s flung wide and bodies crowd amicably round long tables of tacos, bread pudding, and beignets (this is every street).

The grocery-story gave me tequila! When we stopped for squash and cheese.  The lady with the samples gave me the cup of afternoon liquor like no big thing.

I lost litres on sweating dance floors, to 80s tunes and saxophones and old men on guitar.  I drank a few litres, too, but lost those by the river, under the sun, swinging plastic-bag records hand to hand.

I’m trying to think about this…New Orleans.  I’m trying, but how does one fit unbridled breathing into words?  A few:

 fairy-lights, parades, dread-heads, poor, mosquitoes, swamp, Sun, porch fans, antique stores, gelato, and the MUSIC and the COLOR, oh boy, the COLOR, oh boy the MUSIC.

To paraphrase New Orleans, here’s how the shutters close and how the bar-floors sway, as street after street, audiences stumble in and out of draping swamp-stomp jazz, understanding they’ve been made to recycle it into dance.


In Music, Poetry on February 22, 2012 at 11:16 am

Harpo from Horse Feathers (1932), “Everyone Says I Love You”

Harpo quickly takes a seat between the spent guffaws
And brushes solemn majesty on forty-seven strings
His mouth is still as usual, but his hands sing.
What could be more water-true than everything this was?
In dashing turn and rivet rise I pause
To play my heart, whose winter wore a sting,
Whose tuning matched a well-thrown Groucho zing,
A madcap game of dash and broken laws.
It’s time There called my balconies to sound
And sat beside the trees of shading pine
Too long have I been neither Here nor thine,
A spinning top flung outward, up, and down.
Sit patient, now: strum pause and present rhyme – 
In music lost is found an interlude for he who plays the clown.