Angry Haiku?/What? No nature image? No peace?/WTF?

As anyone who’s successfully completed second grade can tell you, a haiku is a Japanese poetic form, usually used to capture a philosophic snapshot of nature. The reason second graders know haiku has less to do with poetry than with learning about syllabification—the ability to break down words into their component syllables. Unlike most western … Continue reading Angry Haiku?/What? No nature image? No peace?/WTF?

The Thirst that Cannot be Quenched Must be Removed

Back when I was a boy, or slightly before, a group of drunks at Chase’s Tavern on Liberty Street in Baltimore found a solution. On April 5, 1840, six drinking buddies sick and tired of feeling sick and tired, formed a total abstinence group, the Washington Temperance Society (later the “Washingtonian Total Abstinence Society” or … Continue reading The Thirst that Cannot be Quenched Must be Removed

By the Light of Burning Tires I Watched My Life Go By

It’s hard for a fish to imagine the challenges of being a bird. The Uruguayan peasant child probably lacks identification with the Inuit boy. Only the most insightful fruit fly, living seven days, can picture the tortoise’s challenge of filling up a hundred years or more. And for each of these, vice-versa. Social drinkers and … Continue reading By the Light of Burning Tires I Watched My Life Go By

A Melancholy Goodbye Followed by an Enthusiastic “Hey There, World!”

Although my first novel began “I never intended this, of course,” when I came to Pittsburg in mid-August, I intended to stay for a year or so. I intended to finish another novel. I intended to write a memoir. I intended to learn some things about myself. I had a lot of intentions. After eight … Continue reading A Melancholy Goodbye Followed by an Enthusiastic “Hey There, World!”

“In Hopes that He May Peak Again!” (and find Beth Austin)

Yesterday, a lifelong dream came true. Really. Lifelong may be a stretch, but it’s not a break with reality. Let me explain. I’ve mentioned my childhood best friend, John Warnke, in this space before. We’ve reconnected over the past couple months, which has been nice for both of us. John’s father, an Army officer paralyzed … Continue reading “In Hopes that He May Peak Again!” (and find Beth Austin)