Sunday, September 30, 2007

The Male Brain

I had to laugh at Friday's entry from So I guess it's true what they say about the male brain being a sex organ, and the female brain being just a blabber box. And I thought those were just urban myths and/or stereo types.

"Under a microscope or an fMRI scan, the differences between male and female brains are revealed to be complex and widespread. In the brain centers for language and hearing, for example, women have 11% more neurons than men. The principal hub of emotion and memory formation--the hippocampus--is also larger in the female brain, as is the brain circuitry for language and observing emotions in others. This means that women are, on average, better at expressing emotions and remembering the details of emotional events. Men, by contrast, have two and a half times the brain space devoted to sexual drive as well as larger brain centers for action and aggression. Sexual thoughts floats through a man's brain many times each day on average, and through a woman's only once a day. Perhaps three to four times a day on her hottest days. ...

"The numbers vary, but on average girls speak two to three times more words per day than boys. ... Girls speak faster on average, especially when they are in a social setting. Men haven't always appreciated that verbal edge. In Colonial America, women were put in the town stocks with wooden clips on their tongues or tortured by the 'dunking stool,' held underwater and almost drowned--punishments that were never imposed on men--for the crime of 'talking too much.' ...

"There is a biological reason for [this female talking] behavior. Connecting through talking activates the pleasure centers in a girl's brain. Sharing secrets that have romantic and sexual implications activates those centers even more. We're not talking about a small amount of pleasure. This is huge. It's a major dopamine and oxytocin rush, which is the biggest, fattest neurological reward you can get outside of an orgasm. Dopamine is a neurochemical that stimulates the motivation and pleasure circuits in the brain. Estrogen at puberty increases dopamine and oxytocin production in girls. Oxytocin is a neurohormone that triggers and is triggered by intimacy. ...

"Why do ... boys become so taciturn and monosyllabic that they verge on autistic when they hit their teens? The testicular surges of testosterone marinate the boys' brains. Testosterone has been shown to decrease talking as well as interest in socializing--except when it involves sports or sexual pursuits. In fact, sexual pursuit and body parts become pretty much obsessions."

Louann Brizendine, M.D., The Female Brain, Broadway Books, Copyright 2006 by Louann Brizendine, pp. 5, 36-39.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

About Plagiarism

I've been having fun looking for poems in Spanish
that would be good for ninos and also for muchachos.
I found a section of this one, "About Plagiarism," for the muchachos . . .
(I still have to figure out how to make accents on the computer.)

". . . when we like a woman, we tell her so
by stealing poems from the great poets.
The women fall disastrously in love with the poem
and even though they smile, looking into our eyes,
they never believe in our lyrical prowess,
yet they admit they've never read anything like it.
Sometimes they ask in a whisper how we came up with these things.
Fortunately, they don't wait for an answer."

. . . cuando nos gusta una mujer, para decirselo,
robamos los poemas de los buenos poetas.
Ellos fatalmente se enamoran del poema,
y aunque sonrien mirandonos los ojos
no confian jamas en nuestra lirica aptitud,
mas reconocen que nunca hablan leido asunto semejante.
En ocasiones susurran preguntando como se nos ocurren esas cosas,
y no esperan respuesta por fortuna."

from "Acerca de los plagios"
by Eduardo Langagne from Ruido de Suenos


Here Suzanne is giving a charla in her school on the importance of composting. I keep looking at this photo, imagining the two of us teaching poetry instead. The kids were fascinated by our presence there.

After Suzanne's presentation, all the kids ran outside to start their own composting project. A few were more interested in picking mamees and handing them to us. A mamee is a fruit that tastes like a papaya crossed with an orange. I'm not sure how you spell it, but I learned the hard way, one must not eat too many mamees in one day . . .

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

This is a pic of Suzanne and me at Suchitoto, one of the few tourist spots in El Salvador. We spent some time today talking on the phone about our Spanish poetry day in her school near Santa Maria Ostuma. I'm getting excited about it and am finding some fun Spanish poems and bilingual books for kids. Suggestions are welcome.

I love this one from Octavia Paz from "Duration":

I will speak to you in stone-language
(answer with a green syllable)
I will speak to you in snow-language
(answer with a fan of bees)
I will speak to you in water language
(answer with a canoe of lightning)
I will speak to you in blood-language
(answer with a tower of birds)

from The Tree is Older Than You Are
selected by Naomi Shihab Nye
(one of my all-time favorite poets)

October Readings, Etc.

I have readings this fall! Please come if you are in town! And check out the The Montserrat Review’s best picks below. You can buy my book and the other BOA books at I'm thrilled to be on that list, and I have already read and really, really liked Peter Conners' and Tom Ward's books. Now to check out the rest!

October 9) I will be reading with Adele Steiner and Willa Schneberg for the Library of Congress, Poetry at Noon Series at the Pickford Theater, 3rd Floor, James Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue, S.E., Washington D.C..

October 9)Richard Peabody and I will read at 7:30 at The Writer's Center, 4508 Walsh Street, Bethesda, MD 20815. Phone: 301 654-8664, Fax: 801 730-6233

Oct. 13 and Oct. 21) I will be teaching a workshop from 1:00 to 3:00 on prose poetry and short fiction at The Poets' and Writers' League of Greater Cleveland, 12200 Fairhill Road, Townhouse 3-A, Cleveland, OH 44120
(216) 421-0403

Oct. 25:) I have a reading with Sean Dougherty and John Menaghan at 7:00 at the Oakland Center for the Arts, 220 W. Boardman Street, Youngstown, Ohio.

Oct. 27: ) The one and only Phil Brady and I will read at 5:00 at Mac's Backs, Books on Coventry, 1820 Coventry Rd., Cleveland Heights, Ohio 44118. 216-321-2665

The Montserrat Review Picks

Best Books for Fall Reading, 2007
By Book Review Editor Grace Cavalieri


The Montserrat Review Picks Its Favorite Reading (in no order)
Selected by Grace Cavalieri, Fall 2007.

Best Books of Poetry

Old Heart by Stanley Plumley. W. W. Norton & Co, Inc, c2007. 96 pgs.ISBN: 978-0-393-06568-8

Still to Mow by Maxine Kumin, c2007, W. W..Norton & Co, nc. 93 pgs. ISBN: 978-0-393-06549-7

Whiskey in the Garden of Eden by Sarah Browning, c2007. The Word Works. 77pgs. ISBN: 0-915380-668

Disclamor by G.C. Waldrep, c.2007. Boa Editions, Ltd. 99 pgs. ISBN: 978-1-929918-97-3

The Matter of the Casket by Thom Ward, c2007. CustomWords 80 pgs. ISBN: 9781933456690

Edge by Edge, The Quartet Series, c2007. toadllily Press. pgs. 67. ISBN: I-978-o-9766405-2-3

Of Whiskey and Winter by Peter Conners, c2007. White Pine Press. 81 pgs. ISBN: 978-1-893996-89-2

In line for the Exterminator by Jim Daniels, c2007. Wayne State Univ. Press. 114 pgs. ISBN: 978-0-8143-3381-5

Encouragement for a Man Falling to his Death by Christopher Kennedy, c2007. Boa Editions, Ltd. 68 pgs. ISBN: 978-1-929918-98-0

Sleeping with Houdini by Nin Andrews, c2007. Boa Editions, Ltd. 86 pgs. ISBN: 978-1-929918-99-7

The Kimnama by Kim Roberts, Vrzhu Press, c2007. 48 pgs. ISBN: 978-104303-1407-3

More Than Anything by Hiram Larew, c2007. Vrzhu Press, 52 pgs. ISBN: 978-1-4303-1406-6

Best Chapbooks:

The Good Body by Anne Becker, c2007. Finishing Line Press. 29 pgs. ISBN: 978-1-59924-165-4

A String of Blue Lights by William Palmer, c2007. Puddinghouse. 30 pgs. ISBN: 1-58998-529-X

Best Novel:

Vivaldi's Virgins by Barbara Quick, c2007. HarperCollins. 281 pgs. ISBN: 978-0-06-089052-0

Best Anthologies:

American poets in the 21st Century, edited by Claudia Rankine & Lisa Sewell, c2007. Wesleyan Univ. Press. 388 pgs. ISBN: 978-o-8195-6727-7

Kiss the Sky, edited by Richard Peabody,c2007. Paycock Press,420 pgs. ISBN: 0-931181-24-0

Best Literary Magazines/Journals

Best Annuals:

Paterson Literary Review # 36, edited by Maria Mazziotti Gillan, c2007. Passaic County Community College. 360 pgs.

Pembroke Magazine #39, edited by Shelby Stephenson, c2007. Univ. Of North Carolina at Pembroke. 289 pgs.

Best biennial:

Connecticut Review, edited by Vivian Shipley,c2007. Conn. State Univ. System, 208 pgs. ISSN: 00106216

Best Quarterly Magazine

New Letters, edited by Robert Stewart, c2007.Univ. Missouri-Kansas City. 165 pgs. ISSN: 0146-4930

Best Monthly Literary Magazine:

Ocho;MiPOesias Print Companion.# 12, DiDi Menendez, c2007. A Menendez Publication. 85 pgs. ISSN:1939-4985


Grace Cavalieri is a poet and playwright. She produces and hosts "The Poet and the Poem" from the Library of Congress.

Saturday, September 22, 2007


Last night I dreamt that my father was alive, and when I woke I was thinking of all the superstitions he practiced and taught me. He believed in premonitions and ghosts, too. He and my southern cousin, Hadie, loved superstitions and loved to tell them to me. Some they laughed about, but others they practiced. My father, for example, never passed the salt hand-to-hand. He said it was bad manners to do so. Here are a few of their superstitions. I know there are more, but I can't remember them now . . .

1. Never pass the salt hand-to-hand. If you do, you might spill it. Spilled salt, everyone knows, is a bad omen.

2. If you spill salt, toss a pinch of it right hand over left shoulder. If you don't, bad luck will happen to you or someone you love.

3. If you wake up before 7AM on the first day of the month, you have to say bunny, bunny. Say this before saying another word. If you don't, you will never escape the mean kids on the playground or the bad luck that is already blowing your way.

4. If you are at a party, and suddenly everyone is quiet, start your watch. Take note. Because this happens every twenty minutes. Yep, every twenty minutes, the world goes silent, but just for a second. That's when the dead trade places with the living.

5. Hold your breath while passing a graveyard, or the dead will listen in on your secrets and dreams.

6. If you leave flowers on a bus or a train, your future love will find them and know you are thinking of him.

7. If a bird flies in the house, death will soon follow.

8. If you see a ghost walking by the sea, a hurricane is brewing. Leave immediately, or you will be washed out to sea.

9. If you wake up on the wrong side of the bed, you must remember your dreams. Otherwise your dreams will stalk you, ruining your life for days, weeks, months . . .

10. If you are eating a piece of pie, always eat the point last. You can wish on it, and the wish will come true, but only if you don't eat another bite until dinner time.

11. If you listen to your heartbeat for a long time, the distance between one beat and the next will lengthen. In this way you can slow down your life.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Oh man. It's hot again today. I have the fan on high. My legs are sticking to the chair, and my head feels 100 degrees because the little engines in there are stuck in one place. I keep taking out and putting back in the same stupid line. And I know I will do that from now until this poem is published or thrown out. Whine. But I can't wait until fall is really here. My sister sent me this photo from Maine to make me jealous. Just looking at it, I can taste the salt in the air and smell the pines. I bet it's a Northwest day, cool enough for a sweater . . . If it's not, I'll put on a wetsuit and take a dive in the ice cold water . . .

Of course I have nada to complain about. Suzanne calls from El Salvador where there are no seasons. It's either hot or hotter.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

The Man with the Hole in His Head

by Rick Bursky

I'm reading at the Library of Congress on October 9 at noon. The topic is magic and magicians. I get to read my own and others'works. This is one of the Bursky poems I plan to read.

He doesn’t mind the whistle of pain
being sucked from his head by a breeze,
though occasionally he wears a hat.
It’s the way he surrounds himself in solitude
when his hair grows weary of responsibility
just as a field of prairie grass
tires of hiding a damaged landscape.

He knows the difference between a crutch
and a bowl of soup: a crutch is a wooden stick
a ruined man uses to poke at the world;
a bowl of soup is the mirror he stares into on Thursday night.

If the phone rings while he’s doing a crossword puzzle
the man might put his pencil in the hole then forget
where it is until it falls when he bends to tie a shoelace.

At a costume party, a rose stuck down in the hole, thorns taped to his shirt.
Each person asks how it happened and gets a different answer:
automobile accident, war wound, birth defect.

He knows more about empty spaces than anyone you’ll ever meet.
For instance, a hole, he wrote to a friend,
weighs twice as much as whatever it once held.

(from The Soup of Something Missing)

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

General Petraeus

copyright 2007

Rick Bursky sent me this photo of the General. The photo is copyrighted, so please don't use it without Rick's permission. But if you don't know of him, Rick is an amazing poet. Whatever he writes, read it. My favorite is his book, The Soup of Something Missing. This is what he wrote about the photo:

"I found this photo I took when I was in the army. It's General Petraeus when he was just Lieutenant Petraeus. We both were in the 1st of the 509th Airborne Battalion Combat Team stationed in Northern Italy. The photo was taken in France, 1976. Petraeus and I were part of a small group of paratroopers were sent to the French Army paratrooper school. The house behind him is a chateau in the Pyrenees Mountains in which we had dinner the night before."

Brady's Leap

Brady's Leap has been playing better than ever lately. I hope they do a new CD soon. Phil Brady can recite poetry like no one I've ever heard. And Kelly Bancroft has the voice of an angel. Listening to them play . . . it's so much fun. Maybe they'll play at AWP again this year. Or better yet, get a gig in the city at the same time at some cool place . . .

Monday, September 17, 2007

Sleeping with Houdini

My new book will be out so so soon! You can even order it on Amazon if you are, well, part-saint. Oh please! I always feel a kind of panic when a book is done. I look at it and immediately find something to change . . .

In fact I never stop changing my work. I can't read from my poems from books. I have to print out the pages so I can keep changing and changing them. No wonder I'm a poet. If I wrote a novel, the ending would change every time I thought about it.

Ah well, enough on anxiety! Houdini is almost here. Houdini, my childhood hero. I thought of him as a kind of god, or someone who dared to be like a god. I could never understand why someone would punch him in the stomach, just to prove he was human. I guess it's true what my mom always said. We people don't really like our gods.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

General B.S.-us

How is it that General Betray-us claims
there is evidence the surge is working . . .
How about the military's definitions and methods for taking statistics?
I particularly like this distinction I read in the Washington Post:

“If a bullet went through the back of the head, it's sectarian.
If it went through the front, it's criminal."

Ergo: sectarian violence is on the decline!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Los Tortugueros

For her birthday Suzanne slept on the beach with friends and watched for sea turtles (tortugas) to come up and lay their eggs. They didn't see any sea turtles, but they met a poacher who had gathered a sack of eggs. He showed off his eggs proudly but didn't appreciate their lack of enthusiasm or their efforts to make him give the eggs back. (Usually the eggs are taken to a preserve where they can be reburied and guarded.) Sea turtle eggs are such a delicacy there, they are worth some money. And where poverty is the norm, the folks who work to protect the turtle eggs are no match for poachers, or los tortugueros.

from the essay: "How I Came to Meet and Work with the Great Poet, Henri Michaux"

by Louise Landes Levi
in the intro of Someone Wants to Steal My Name

(Oh I wish I could have met Henri Michaux!)

. . . He never let his picture be taken . . . He didn't want to be recognized . . . Michaux understood poetry as a tool. He liked the phrase, "monastery of the mind," . . . I thought of him as a kind of Dzogchen master, who, through the dialogue of his absolute medium, tore open the illusion of the subjective world, and explored its limits, like a gifted child in an unexpected universe . . . He did not want his photo taken, but was happy when the Dalai Lama saw his photo. Now I'm in the Dalai Lama's mind, he said, beaming.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Con esas tetas

These are two of the El Salvadorian boys in Suzanne's youth group. One has on an Abercrombie t-shirt. The other has a black t-shirt with these words:

con esas tetas que tienes lo que no quiero es ser tu amigo

With those tits you have, what I'm wanting
isn't to be your friend.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Nipple Head

Sometimes those word-a-days
(like the one posted below)
get into my brain
and then I can't stop thinking
about them . . ..
Esp. when I've been writing so long,
my neck hurts and my head feels so heavy
I swear it will fall right off,
and I'm hungry and tired and insane . . .

So now I'm thinking of having a napple
which is either a small nap
or a small apple
or a sleeping apple,
or an apple I dream of but never eat
or the nap I never take
but only imagine . . .
or maybe it's a misplaced nipple
or an insult.
My brother used to call folks
nipple heads. George Bush
for example, would be a perfect
example of a nipple head. Now THAT
was an insult back then, up there
with wiener. I mean nobody
ever wanted to be a wiener.


I love this entry from Word a Day:

"What's common among an orange and an omelet... and an uncle and an umpire?
Earlier all these words used to take the indefinite article "a", not "an".

They were coined by a process called false splitting. Let's take
orange. The original word was Sanskrit naranga. By the time it reached
English, the initial letter n had joined the article a, resulting in
"an orange". The word for orange is still narangi in Hindi, naranja in
Spanish, and naranj in Arabic.

This false splitting caused what should have been "a napron" to become
"an apron". The same process transformed "a nadder" into "an adder", and
reshaped many other words.

The n went the other way too. "Mine uncle" was interpreted as "my nuncle"
resulting in a synonym nuncle for uncle. The word newt was formed the same
way: "an ewte" misdivided into "a newte".

Could false splitting turn "an apple" into "a napple" or "a nail" into
"an ail" some day? Before the advent of printing, the language was primarily
oral/aural, resulting in mishearing and misinterpreting. Today, spelling
is mostly standardized, so chances of false splitting are slim, though
not impossible.

This week we'll look at a few more examples of words formed by false splitting.

eyas (EYE-uhs) noun

A nestling, especially a young falcon or hawk.

[By erroneous splitting of the original "a nyas" into "an eyas". From Latin
nidus (nest), ultimately from the Indo-European root sed- (to sit) that
is also the source of sit, chair, saddle, soot, sediment, cathedral, and

from Wordsmith

How Dumb Is He?

The man never ceases to amaze me. This article from Grist is just one more reminder of who is leading the country and where we are heading . . .

We'd Blame Jet Lag, But ...
Bush makes gaffes at APEC gathering, forum sets weak voluntary climate targets

In Sydney, Australia, late last week at the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation forum, U.S. President George Bush referred to APEC as OPEC, then tried to cover up his gaffe by explaining that Australia's prime minister had invited him to a summit of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries next year. Unfortunately, Australia has never been part of OPEC. Bush also called Australians "Austrians," mispronounced leaders' names, walked the wrong way off the stage, and, when asked whether there had been any new message in his speech, bristled, "Haven't you been listening to my past speeches?" Which is all far more interesting than the climate-change statement the 21-country forum's leaders agreed to this weekend, which touts non-binding "aspirational targets" to reduce "energy intensity" 25 percent by 2030. Energy intensity is the amount of energy needed to produce a dollar of gross domestic product.

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Sperm Sermon

Suzanne called last night from El Salvador because she had just returned with her youth group from some kind of religious event. The minister had given a sermon on the difficulty of getting into heaven. She called it his sperm sermon. Between giggles Suzanne quoted him:

Do you know how hard it is to get into heaven, the minister asked.
Do you know how bad the odds are for any one of you?
Well, let me put it in terms you teenagers can understand.
I know what's on your minds.
So let me tell you about heaven and sex.
Because I'm talking about sperm here.
Yes, sperm. And I want each of you to imagine
how many sperm come out of a single ejaculation.
60,000 is what I've read. Yep. Imagine that.
Now imagine all those sperm trying to fertilize one egg.
But only one lucky sperm ever becomes a man or a woman.
That's right, each one of you here today is one of the lucky sperm
walking around on human legs.
Many times not even one of the 60,000 even make it
through those Pearly Gates.
Have you ever wondered why?
No, I bet you haven't.
Well, I have . . .

Friday, September 7, 2007

Sick Pup

Nothing like a sick dog to take over your week. Sadie ate something nasty in the woods, and the vet was afraid it might have been chemicals of some kind because her reaction was so violent. She had to stay overnight in the animal hospital. Froda whined and whined for her. We all did. Now she's home, and both dogs are dining on chicken and rice like queens. (Froda won't stand for dog food if Sadie's over there chowing down the gourmet stuff.)

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Last lines

I used to think novelists didn't have to worry about last lines. For a poet there's so much pressure on that last line.

But lately I've been noticing the last lines of chapters. Some are like the moment before the soap opera ends. They have to keep you tuning back in. There are always those almost revelations, dead bodies, what ifs . . . I don't think I'll ever write a novel, but I've been thinking of last lines for chapters. Here are a few. I keep thinking of more.

1. But when I opened my eyes the next morning, nothing looked the same. I had no clue where I was. Who was this man looking down at me?

2. If I said it three times, it would have to come true.

3. This is your brother, he said, pointing to the dead body at the door. But it wasn't. It wasn't anyone I knew. But where was my brother?

4. I knew it was just the end of Act I, and I had lost. Or had I?

5. I was careful. Each day I made sure I left no evidence.

6. Even when I stole a glass of water (I was so unbearably thirsty then, I couldn't resist that cold filtered water ), I washed the glass and sprayed it with Glass Plus, erasing all fingerprints.

7. But still I sensed that someone was watching, as if my body were being traced by someone I could never see.

8. But what if they looked too closely at the girl walking down the street in his daughter's clothes?

9. Did anyone anyone notice that she was a little taller, thinner, that a few blond hairs sometimes strayed beneath her cap?

10. Did they think she was just some foreign relative, or someone who had a reason to be here after all, in this place where no one had a reason or a place to be or an after all.

11. She told him exactly what he needed to do. She told him his life depended on it. But would he listen? No, of course not. Instead he walked right into the burning house without a backward glance.

Managing Perceptions

1. When I was girl, I loved Coke. Coke in a green bottle, which I called Cocola. Then one day my dad told me it was brown sugar water. That if I put a tooth in it overnight, the tooth would dissolve by morning. I never liked Coke again. I imagined I could taste my tooth decaying.

2. I grew up in Charlottesville, Virginia. When I was child there, Charlottesville was a sleepy nowhere town. People complained of the heat and the ticks. Now Charlottesville is THE place to live. Every time I go back to visit, a new glitzy shop or hotel or business is going in.

3. The other night I read a story about about a Pakistani woman who was all set to marry the man of her dreams. Then the guy heard a rumor that she had kissed another man when she was twelve. So he decided she was no longer the woman he thought she was. One kiss had changed her in his eyes forever.

4. The US agricultural dept. is afraid to allow Creekstone Premium Beef to test all its cows for Mad Cow Disease. It doesn't want any beef company to be able to claim its beef is safer than other meat. Then American might begin to question the safety of their burgers. After all, Americans now believe Mad Cow Disease only takes place in England and Canada.

5. My daughter's best friend used to have a sound machine. She couldn't sleep without the sound of the ocean. Then one night Suzanne spent the night. Why do you listen to static all night long? Suzanne asked. After that the friend's mom told me her daughter couldn't sleep for a week. The waves were no longer waves.

6. Sometimes I go to the bookstore and read the best sellers. I read the books that other people say are good reads. I don't necessarily like them. But the word, "best," promises me something. And I can almost imagine I am getting it, even if I am not. I have this feeling that's a metaphor for my life.

7. My sister gave me this CD that is supposed to help you calm down, love the world, be at peace. It makes little rain and binging noises. The directions warn that it won't work if you fall asleep. The minute I put it on, I fall sound asleep. I use it as a sedative. It's audio-Sominex.

8. A few years ago, I told a friend I didn't know how to kiss. I never felt sure what to do with the tongue. She gave me this book with deep kissing exercises. One of them was to pass a piece of candy--or some kind of sweet- from mouth to mouth. Ever since then I've kept my lips sealed tight. I don't want anything to do with kisses like that. Makes me think of left overs burped up.

9. When Bush was first elected, I remember thinking he might not be as bad as I feared. I had a friend who convinced me he'd be okay because he hired Rumsfeld.

10. I have this book by Pema Chodron called ALWAYS HAVE A JOYFUL MIND. The title reminds me of this story about the Harri Krishnas. They had this devotee who was always blissed out. They thought he was almost enlightened. Turned out he had a brain tumor that was turning him into a human cabbage.

11. I used to think of Zen as peaceful. Now I think of white noise and sandalwood incense, which makes me sneeze.

Monday, September 3, 2007


I've been thinking maybe I should write a blurb collection.
Just in case anyone needs one.

One blurb could start very Zen-like. Like one of those Hirshfield poems.
(Does anyone really live like that? Like all Zen?)

Within this book is another book. An invisible book which is not the book but has the same cover, title, font, page numbers . . .

Ah . . . such BS. There is no other book. I up to my nose in BS today.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Messing with my cookies

Strange things have been happening. I mean

just a bit ago I was trying to access my blog
and I got this little note from blogger headquarters

Someone has functionally disabled your blogger cookies.

I couldn't get in here for a while.
What's this with my cookies?

The Nicest Guy

What a week last week was. Between the news of Senator Craig and the news from the kids' high school where a faculty member (this guy I really liked) was arrested for importuning a 12 year old girl in a chat room (who turned out to be a cop), I dunno. I keep thinking of how my dad used to say, it's always the nicest guy who has a few kids and some nasty secrets buried in his backyard. It was a creepy point of view, and for years whenever someone said the term, the nicest guy, I'd think of his words.

But then again, my dad had a thing against nice guys. He was sure nice, by definition, was a kind of perversion.

The Most Pesticides

What fruits and vegies have the most pesticides?

The answer:
Peaches (97% have pesticide residues when you buy the non organic varieties at the store), apples (92%), sweet bell peppers (82%), celery (94%) , nectarines (97%), strawberries(92%), cherries (91%), pears (87%), grapes (85%), spinach (70%), lettuce(59%), potatoes (81%).

The least?

Onions, avocado, sweet corn, pineapples, mango, asparagus, kiwi, bananas, cabbage, broccoli, papaya, blueberries . . .

My friend, Ann G., asked me this so she'd know which foods to buy organic. According to the EWG (Enviro Working Group), if you avoid the top 12, or the dirty dozen, you will effectively lower your exposure to pesticides. For a more complete explanation and list, check out: