January 2020 Hindsight 4.0

January 2020It gets late early out there.  -Yogi Berra

Mixed Signals



the very center of a

January icicle night

with all the colors

running silent

screaming black and white

and the top of the tip

of the tongue’s pigment.




the very center of a

January icicle night

He ran from the room

like an errant fire engine

in his eyes was the lighthouse

on fire while a confused group

of hastily summoned volunteers

wondered what the next best course

of action might be

either make a run to connect hoses

or watch out for the jagged rocks

off the shore line shrouded in icy fog

or just shrug and leave quietly

by the clearly illuminated fire exits.


But instead

they sat arrested by him

in his wake

his warning

his smoke

while wondering

what could be next for all them



the very center

of a January Icicle Night.


From Sometime Grief-       12/11


Strange Winter

These long dry days

when pavement yawns bare gray

grass sleeps brown

and light shivers lost

without the blanket

of snow to surround..


So very quickly January

settles into herself

without memory’s delay

the novelty of newness

wearing thinner

every day.


Not a second thought

escapes here to slip away

nowhere goes the tongue

explaining nothing further

other than the day to day.


In this strangest Winter

forecasters scramble to explain

the lack of punch in the season

the vacant numbness

in practiced silence

to justify and ordain.


So stillborn

time seems

when a lull

in the beginning

seems to betray

what you know is coming

now to you any day.

In this the Strangest of Winters.

Uncollected   1.2012

January Letters 2012


So soon the light struggles to return

to fill the new year wolf ticket sky

in a lingering tentative twilight

towards some vague promise of Spring

merely a rumor of illumination

left in a hand written note

taped to a bus shelter on the corner

of 33rd St.. and Lexington

asking you in rhyme by name


What did all the years mean…..   …… ?


I recall writing those January letters

imploring you to reconsider

that annual ritual of tossing

the poet out of your life.


Now as you have finally succeed

you still read in stubborn justification

safe in the distance from these words afar

telling you exactly

what you never had the heart

to tell me

to my face.


Mute the voice

Blind the eye

drain the last pool

of affection dry.


What is written here now

has a place beyond words

where language is the

shallowest of vehicles

for sequestered emotions

scattered to the four corners

of isolation, exile

estrangement and banishment.


Distance now is the key

after you have left another

in so very deep

that the hope of a journey back

to all the lost moments are everything

that you can no longer keep.

 Uncollected 1/2012


 Get that Poem…

Written in the Coal Yard 102 1st Ave. between 6 & 7th St. East Village NYC Sunday Night 12/11/11

Listen there you

and better listen good

get the poem off your chest already

and then

take that crestfallen chin

with you.


You really want it

to continue to dig

a hole in you ?

Better face it at last.

Nothing you write really matters here

so it’s really time to try to forget it…

Write it down and then burn it.


If it was all just another

of your ill-advised creations

of the heart

then reconcile



at least try

to resist your insistence upon remembering

anything more about all this….


But you at least took your lumps

and I mean did your time

in payback zone all alone.


Some things I suppose

you could have said better

what rage you deferred

was perhaps at first what you should have thought better of…

or maybe your second guess was just the worst.


So now in this place past the end

you still feel that you would rather have had

it all done to you

than do the same hardness to another.


So they get the brake

They get another pass

But just how long

In their lives

Do you think that’s

Gonna last ?


But at least for tonight

and I mean right now

just for once

you can walk just right around the corner here

and get that poem off your chest

and take your skinny ass and crestfallen chin

with you.

Uncollected  12/2011

Another year ? Another Dybbuk

The Dybbuk Dreams

It was in the first few nights of the New Year

when all promise and disaster were as unopened mail

that the past had a walk in his sleep.

The Dybbuk’s hands opened old draws

shuffled through forgotten pages

Pausing to repeat a line of a letter

here and there.

Ashes were stirred and long dormant old flames set free

to flicker. Then the night faces could dance once more.

Night faces coming back to visit shining

eyes to glow back into.


Another year rolling itself out like an immense black wing .

Your sleeping form swept along in this night flight,

those waking hours, now the specter, this was the soul

strolling hand in hand with the eternal freedom of

time asleep.


She walked once more upon the mores, in a chilly thick fog.

Here where she had always known that he waited for her

In between anger and consequences,

in this dreamscape of quicksand recall where mushroomed

marsh islands of what might have been.


They both returned to this shadow realm of still photographs

hung and propped in the endless stark arms of winter.

Here where the past stood naked and true.

Both came with small hands grasping deep into the heart’s

pocket. Each visited at different points

along the dream curve, with separate dependencies and

versions of the same story.


They left messages here for each other.

The last word over and over. The promises of reconciliation

and forgiveness. The sensation they shared of never being

able to meet face to face again, outside of this place

of half light sand deep grey pools. Always to return to

the same beaten path, in the corner of the dream.

This place where the images of each other’s faces

in those frozen photos snared arrested looks

and eyes of love and delight that once were shared.


They both returned to this place, every so often

to get a face full and

look down at the other’s footprints

left in the path

from the night before.

Another Rubber Eden 1997


                                                                                            (For R.B)

The wonderful life Christmas is over

One tries not to be depressed.

Maybe re-read Brautigan’s piece

From 1963

Where he and his friend were

so depressed over Kennedy’s public execution

that they took pictures

of discarded Christmas trees

abandoned in the gutter

and then proceeded to get drunk

while watching a slide show of them later.


I get that.

All those rolls of left over wrapping paper

all about the place.

The lights that need to be taken down

before the neighbors start with

the “white trash” wisecracks



One thing you can say about Christmas

in this post modern area,

Once it’s over.

It’s dead.


A lot of build up.

A product orgy climax


And the day after ?

Forget about you


The day after Christmas

is like nailing a wood screw

into the back of an old friend

Who shows up once a year for a visit.


And as he walks out the door.

You slam and lock it on his heels

Hissing, “and don’t come back till next year,

You pain-in the-ass bastard.”


Thankful ?



This year I was thankful I didn’t end up

in the paraplegic chair

in a nursing home in Baldwin

after that nasty fall

down the Cold War stairs

back in your hometown

that ended up with you

kissing some concrete.


Instead I made it back here on Christmas Eve.

Just in time to have a good cry

With Alastair Sims.


Greeting from Gridville   12/03


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