Sunday, June 30, 2019

All Over the Place:
The snake god sings

By Michael H. Brownstein

How do you create sunlight and good day?
Three parts flour juice, opaque and measures,
furious greens, the grand shadow of the great oak
near the high ridge beyond the slow moving water,

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Drive sober, or it’s all over

By Moristotle

Road signs in Maryland warn, “Drive sober” –
they say to do it “or get pulled over.”
    Drinkers who think it will not show,
    if they let up and drove real slow,
get told, when stopped, they were drifting all over.

Copyright © 2019 by Moristotle

Friday, June 28, 2019

Goines On: Act like it

Click image for more vignettes
On the third night of trusting that he would awaken spryly the next morning, Goines had been a bit bolder than on the previous two nights, this time also affirming that the skin and muscles around his head would feel loose and relaxed. And the following morning he did feel significantly better than anticipated, as evidenced by the heightened vigor of his morning stretches. Goines’ body felt younger than usual, even vibrant.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Fiction: Jaudon – An American Family (a novel) [3]

Click image for more of the saga
Chapter 3. Houston

James screamed at the sight of Chassy’s limp body. There was a hole in her back from the Henry rifle’s bullet, which seemed to have killed her instantly. He threw his arms around her and pulled her to him. He held her in his lap, rocking her and crying until at last Sara touched his arm. “James, we have to get across the Sabine before nightfall.”

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Sketches from the Twin Cities:
walk along pond’s path

remembering a Fish Lake pond, late summer 2017

By Geoffrey Dean

on a fallen branch
seven turtles in the sun –
blur of water’s edge

twig-snap is the cause
diving turtles the effect –
ripples and bubbles

Monday, June 24, 2019

Goings On: Cardio walk

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Goines’ wife asked him whether he had had a good cardio walk. He said he had. “I walked at a pace of 16 minutes and 20 seconds a mile.”
    He hadn’t felt like walking fast when he left the house. And he almost forgot to start Runkeeper before starting out leftward to follow their street around the neighborhood. About a hundred yards ahead of him, a woman in black shorts was walking her dog. No longer accompanied by Ziggy, Goines decided to fall in behind the pair, and sped up a bit.

Sunday, June 23, 2019

All Over the Place:
Long hair/strong hair

By Michael H. Brownstein

That year spring did not come to Mid-Missouri.
My hair flowed into curls and arcs
so thick the sounds of the ocean vibrated through them.

Saturday, June 22, 2019

The Loneliest Liberal:
Speed, in numerous forms

By James Knudsen

If I were to recount my travels since the beginning of this month, you would probably expect a high-minded tale of theatre and ivory-towered academia. But this is going to be me. The end of the school year means that educators get time off and college students come home for the summer. My fiancée, Melany, her daughter Chloe, and I know that the first order of business at the end of the school year is to retrieve elder daughter Sophie from Southern Oregon University in Ashland, Oregon. There is also the matter of her stuff, which arrived there back in September courtesy of my Chrysler mini-van. However, said mini-van was procured by sister, Morissa, in late May to haul some of her stuff to Bainbridge Island, Washington. Hmmm.

Friday, June 21, 2019

Goines On: Ophthalmology appointment

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The ophthalmologist’s assistant checked Goines’ eye pressure and squeezed drops into his upturned eyes to dilate them for the retinal exam. Then she checked his meds – what he was still taking, no longer taking, taking that wasn’t listed. Goines had been diagnosed with blepharitis, and he told her he was using artificial tears more often now, not just in the morning and at night but also frequently during the day. He fingered the neck scarf he was wearing and started to say more, but stopped himself. The assistant seemed to notice, because she waited.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Fiction: Jaudon – An American Family (a novel) [2]

Click image for more of the saga
Chapter 2. Lousiana

The riders following their wagon came to the dock and began firing into the sky and shouting for the boat to return to the shore. Thankfully, the boat’s captain chose to continue across the river. James asked a deck hand why the boat didn’t turn around. “You don’t turn around in the middle of the Mississippi River. If the water catches as you slow to turn, you go over and that’s all for you. Those people can wait until tomorrow morning. Or they can swim.”

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Ozymandias is gone (a poem)

By Roger Owens

Is gone without a trace,
Like withered blades of grass.
He and his vaunted race
Beneath the lone and level sands
Are fallen, and erased.

Copyright © 2019 by Roger Owens

Tuesday, June 18, 2019

Goines On: Auto-suggestion

Click image for more vignettes
For several days after Goines and his wife returned home from Minneapolis, Goines had felt as tired first thing in the morning as he had going to bed the night before. He was groggy, his body hurt, he had little energy. He needed to do something to feel sprightly each morning. He decided to try something he had often used before, if not lately – something he called “auto-suggestion.” Before going to sleep, he would imagine things he could be excited about the next day, in the expectation that his mind – his mind/body – would prepare itself accordingly.

Sunday, June 16, 2019

All Over the Place: Father

By Michael H. Brownstein

I always thought you would outlive me
Lifting heavy boxes past the age of seventy,
Carrying them fifty feet without rest
As if you were white water riding a crest
Of a wave digging talons into sand—

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Goines On: Pregnant with possibility

By Moristotle

[Author’s Note: Allusions in this vignette to other Goines vignettes are not acknowledged. My intention is that the vignettes, artfully collected and arranged, might someday be published as a book, a sort of “portrait in a thousand strokes.”]

The sky ahead of Goines was vast and cloudless as he merged onto the freeway to go to an ophthalmology appointment. He felt strong, he felt good, enjoying the sky, the feeling. He felt as though there were many possibilities for him out there in that expanse of world and time, and though he knew he wouldn’t, he wanted to live forever.

Friday, June 14, 2019

A trip, limerick’d

Grand Marais with Grand Mo & Ma

By Geoffrey Dean

When Mo saw the light he declared
As he deeply pondered and stared,
    “Well, I’ll be,
    It’s made in Paris!”
But from brightness his sight was impaired.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Fiction: Jaudon – An American Family (a novel) [1]

The beginning of a tale that might never end

By Ed Rogers

[Editor’s Note: Ed tells me that he “needed to write something, so why not write something that I might never finish? The saga will continue through generations, maybe longer than I will be around to tell it. It could be my farewell song.”
    I hope we will all be around long enough to listen to all of the saga Ed manages to sing.

Monday, June 10, 2019

Goines On: In the company of poets

By Moristotle

Goines observed that a lot of poetry was appearing on a certain weblog lately, and as he drove along the freeway he became aware that he was composing something himself. His fingers were even tapping out the words on the steering wheel.
    Turning his attention to the words coalescing under his fingers, his excitement mounted and the freeway receded in his awareness. “The weblog was having a run of good luck....”

Sunday, June 9, 2019

All Over the Place:
Rouba Mas Faz

By Michael H. Brownstein

—He steals, but he gets stuff done

They did not bury his heart separately.
They never found his left foot, only bone.
The funeral director reattached his left arm.

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Poetry & Portraits: Hetch Hetchy

Drawing by Susan C. Price

Hetch Hetchy
By Eric Meub

[Originally published on January 11, 2014]

The grasses hissed beneath the oaks that mark
these fields. But now her swimming pool has spread
a net of light up into shadowed bark.
An over-irrigated oak falls dead.

Friday, June 7, 2019


Sarah Angst postcard art
An apocryphal history

By Geoffrey Dean

For those who are listening, a tale is in store,
A tale about sandwiches, witches, and more.
One Scholar inquired, when music was done,
How was, after all, the sandwich begun?
I told her sincerely what little I knew,
Of the Sandwich Earl’s haste as his appetite grew.
Her skeptical look and her lack of reply,
Showed me clearly I’d failed to reveal the full why.
If one is impatient, no relief will be found,
For this tale’s neither brief, nor by accur’cy bound:

Sunday, June 2, 2019

All Over the Place:
Field trip to the zoo

By Michael H. Brownstein

I nurture the wrong people,
gangrene girls with color scars,
small breasts like the yellow cusps of dandelion.

I have broken so many fights
the count is beyond fingers,
beyond toes.