adventures in dysthymia

Monday, February 28, 2005

What kind of dog are you?

http://www.gone2thedogs.com/index.html

I seem to be a Bergamasco Sheepdog. Laid-back, good with kids, but I'll bite your a...er, leg if you threaten my turf. With my current hairstyle I do kind of look like one.

ROWBOAT

How did I end up in this rowboat
with Anne, heading for God?

Or is that the isle of Bali Hai,
there over the horizon’s curve?

My heart’s desire waits there,
I’m sure, unattainable

unless one knows the right people.
Won’t you put in a good word for me?

After all, I’ve spent a lifetime
in search of your happiness,

knowing none myself
save when I pull the hardest.

Stephen Brooke ©2005

...various elements percolated up here...Anne, of course, is Anne Sexton, referencing her 'Awful Rowing Toward God'...Bali Hai because my friend Karen was trying out for a role in a production of South Pacific...Bali Hai is beyond reach for most of us in our little rowboats...and a recognition that I've spent most of my life trying to make other people happy in hopes that a little would rub off on me. :)

Saturday, February 19, 2005

FOR YOU

Here’s one more paint-by-numbers poem
meant to please everyone
but me. I’ll mention colors
and women and the smell of roses.
I’ll spread the sky with silent
stars and satin sheets.

What, you want more?
Come on down to the coffeehouse
every other Monday. I’ll toss
my hair back and wear my best
poet’s voice. You’ll know
I’m reading for you. Only you.

Stephen Brooke ©2005

Thursday, February 17, 2005

I have in my hands (okay, I put it down so I could type) the first Lulu-printed version of my chapbook, Pieces of the Moon. It looks pretty decent; my illustrations came out well, a little thinner paper than my self-published books, but with a nice slick cover. With my picture on the back...yeah! :)

I reckon this is the way for me to go. I keep all of my rights, have a distribution channel online (other than my own site), and total control of the appearance. More books to come! Of course, I will continue to submit stuff to publishers -- there is something to be said for being able to mail a completed book out rather than a manuscript.

Time to send out an order for a box of 'em. They'll sell like day-old hotcakes.

BLENDER

I threw the past
in a blender –
some of this,
some of that –
and gave it a taste.

There was a memory
of strawberries
and the scents
of spice and women.
There was wine.

I had expected
bitterness,
to spit out
the flavors of pain
and regret.

There was none;
only the sad
subtle tinge
of forgotten dreams
remained, mixed

with some of this
and some of that.

Stephen Brooke ©2005

not one of my better efforts -- just fooling around with the blender image. a lot of my recent stuff has not been very ambitious.

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

In goes another quarter.
How many till life
plays my song?

still writing a quinzaine now and again. typically, distilled from several lines I had scribbled earlier, thinking they would be a longer poem.

A Part of Me

There is a part of me –
the impractical part and that
is a pretty big part, you know –
that remains in love with you.

A part of me hides from love.
Don’t hurt yourself, it cautions;
don’t hurt her. Don’t do anything.
I’m good at that, after all.

There is a part of me
that tries too hard to please
everyone, to shoulder
each burden as my own.

It is a part that seeks
to earn love, your love,
any love, that thirsts to need
and to be needed.

We are the sum of our parts,
aren’t we? I add up
to little, it would seem,
except for this:

You are and will be
forever a part of me.

Stephen Brooke ©2005

Sunday, February 13, 2005

TONIGHT

Tonight, we will wear
our love and nothing more.
Let tomorrow bring
its fashions, it colors;
the sun loves all new things.
But tonight, I am clothed
in you and you in me.

Tonight, I must love you.
It is the time for us;
later, we may read the sky
and find new essence
in our stars. They have shone
us the way here. Might they
not whisper to what end, tonight?

Stephen Brooke ©2005

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Anyone seen that T. Rowe Price commercial where they illustrate consistent performance with a batter hitting a baseball to the same spot over and over? That's not consistency, commercial-writer guys; that's predictability. An outfielder could stand there and catch those balls all day long. Or at least for nine innings.

At last, at last, at last! The cable guy came yesterday afternoon and hooked me up to the internet. No more 26.4 dial-up! No more problems getting on line when it's raining! (I hope) I can listen to radio online for more than 3 seconds at a time -- WMNF Tampa is going to have a new listener -- and not spend 20 minutes downloading a song.

How did I live without this? 'Course, five years ago I wasn't connected at all. I really don't know how I survived then!

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

Big changes -- or maybe just lots of little ones -- in my online presence lately. Tore down most of my website. It will be back, better'n ever. I have my illustrated chapbook, Pieces of the Moon, which I have been self-publishing the past year or so with a laser printer, now available at Lulu. It's going to cost more, I'm afraid, but it's probably better; certainly makes distribution simpler. And I unloaded the last copy I had printed just last week! Now that I have the process figured out, I'll put out more product. BTW, it is also available as a PDF download.

In Other Big Plans: I've been thinking for quite a long time about starting an online literary magazine. The space is there at my site...the question is whether I will have time. I'll make an announcement when I decide to go ahead with it. The name, not surprisingly, will be Peripheral Vision, the same as my Yahoo group.

Monday, February 07, 2005

I didn't watch any football yesterday; there was figure skating on another channel and I'd much rather watch Michelle Kwan than a bunch of large men running into each other. To me, the Superbowl means one thing and one thing only...it's almost time for Spring Training! Yaaaaaayyy!

Will this finally be the Year of the Cubs? Maybe they'll do better without Sammy So-so.

Saturday, February 05, 2005

WHISPER

Of course, this poem is for you--
they all are, you know?

Each word becomes another way
to speak your name.

To whom else would I whisper of love
in hopes of being overheard?

Stephen Brooke ©2005

Friday, February 04, 2005

A great boxer and a great guy, Max Schmeling, has passed away. He was 99 years old. Quite a life!

Thursday, February 03, 2005

FULLNESS

As the sail embraces the wind,
I shall take the fullness of you;
take it into myself and be
driven across what seas you will.

As the night must dream of dawn,
I'll seek visions in your arms
and count each star that climbs the dark
as prophecy of you, my morn.

As the pool has known the sky
in its mirrors of a moment,
I'll reflect both light and shadow;
I'll accept all that is you.

Stephen Brooke ©2005

...this is one of those poems that I partially wrote and couldn't find my way further...came back to it weeks later and finished up...more or less!

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

THE YEAR'S BEST [ACTUAL] HEADLINES OF 2004:

Crack Found on Governor's Daughter
imagine that

Something Went Wrong in Jet Crash, Expert Says
no, really?

Police Begin Campaign to Run Down Jaywalkers
now that's taking things a bit far

Is There a Ring of Debris around Uranus?
not if I wipe thoroughly

Panda Mating Fails; Veterinarian Takes Over
what a guy

Miners Refuse to Work after Death
good-for-nothin' lazy so-and-sos

Juvenile Court to Try Shooting Defendant
see if that works any better than a fair trial!

War Dims Hope for Peace
I can see where it might have that effect

If Strike Isn't Settled Quickly, It May Last Awhile
you think?

Cold Wave Linked to Temperatures
who would have thought!

Enfield (London) Couple Slain; Police Suspect Homicide
they may be on to something!

Red Tape Holds Up New Bridges
you mean there's something stronger than duct tape?

Man Struck By Lightning Faces Battery Charge
he probably IS the battery charge

New Study of Obesity Looks for Larger Test Group
weren't they fat enough?

Astronaut Takes Blame for Gas in Spacecraft
that's what he gets for eating those beans

Kids Make Nutritious Snacks
taste like chicken

Chef Throws His Heart into Helping Feed Needy
that was really giving of himself

Local High School Dropouts Cut in Half
Chainsaw Massacre all over again

Hospitals are Sued by 7 Foot Doctors
boy, are they tall!

Typhoon Rips Through Cemetery; Hundreds Dead
no comment needed...