Thursday, April 28, 2005

There are frogs nearby singing the last chorus of a wild rap, channeled down the canyon creek between the roads and tracts; I hear them less this year by half. Traffic has increased at night, the bump of manmade hip-hop rises and re-echoes with an argument for show. There's no real fight, it's just a tact to sell to more stuff, to make the noise that people make; expressions of rage corrupted, packaged, replacing anger at the world with bling. The suburban consumer doesn't know the origin, doesn't care, right or wrong, it hears that beat and lets it mask the sounds of earth, that dying gasp of how we lived before, that sweet soft music of amphibian spring.

Monday, April 25, 2005

I have more to say, but I get to repeatin' myself, like an old bum in a tan overcoat and bright red socks mumbling on a street corner, face all black from sleeping on creosote, fingernails a half inch long. "It's the end of the world, you know, it's the end of the world. Did you know it's the end of the world? Well, it's the end of the world."

There are some TV shows poppin' up that won't do any good cuz even though the hosts are young and hip (well, youngish and hippish), they say the shows ain't no good, and that Elvis would shoot the TV set, if they hadn't taken his gun away when he died.

I got flubbermigasted t'other day watching another hot show when the host laughed himself non-green at the jokes of a contemporary doing a guest turn, riffing on his old schtick that 1.8 degrees a century doesn't make any difference at all, you can't even set that on your thermostat, or some lame gag that made John Stewart haw-haw and act all giddy and obsequious. Anyway, Dennis Miller was--in his inimitibly smarmy "I know better" way--dead wrong. It does make a difference.

By the way it's the end of the world.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Oh, yeah. Earth Day. That one day a year when we give props to the planet. I knew it was coming but I kept putting off buying a card; they're so treacly, and I just couldn't figure out what I wanted to say. The Earth never writes back anyway. Makes me feel kinda rejected, if not outright alone on this speckled, crowded middle-aged globe, only geologically young in spots, so old otherwise, getting up there anyway, ready to go when the sun does but for now in want of a transplant because what used to be on top is going fast. They're working on flying in ice from Titan or possibly Pluto, though that procedure is expensive and according to some...unnecessary. Polar bears can move to Tuscon like everybody else.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Ping-ponging at a full stop over 36 years I rolled to the edge of this master planned community, and another year later I still don't get it; I mouse into Ralph's to buy milk and silently feel disdain for sparkly fish stickers on the cashier's lapel pin; I moved out of the Bible Belt, not to get away from that superstitious craziness, mind, but happy about it as a side benefit. This is California, and I know Ronald Reagan stumped against Reds in Orange, but those days of baron heirs and nervous farmhands are over. In Aliso Viejo, founded 1989, nonsense swings fully. It's suburbia hot-glued onto former rangeland (aka wilderness) and though somehow a few people got hold of the corporate heads/churchgoers and squeezed some earth from their grasp, it's all hodgepodge; nature and city vistas intertwined, so much clutter. Stop lights and speed limits, Wal-Mart (small version), The Home Depot once a mile, every conceivable stockholder's dream in form of a restaurant, $2.63 minimum for gas. And churches, by god, churches, temples, chapels, cathedrals, mosques everywhere. Pope pushers and other smiters distract the sinners from the sin, corralled in this gated pen. You get fries with that.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Scrounged around in the old junk pile yesterday and found nothing of value. Nearly got bitten by a few rats. A lot of running around, not much payoff, a small challenge to propriety or dignity or somethin'. Survived of course, except for a few scratches, nicks, bruises, mostly avoidable by...not scrounging around in junk piles. So there ya have it.

See the writing on the wall but read it anyway,
face the other way and there's a reflection,
run and you return.

This place is yesterday's
less than a minute earlier,
the earth nudged slightly left
or right in its orbit.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Human excretions collect around us, and of course sometimes it can't be helped. While surfing (cyberwise) I coast onto this terlet, which makes me laugh. They're as low as $1,550, unless you buy one before the 25th. Until then you can get a 15 percent discount. So hurry up!

Here in south O.C., laminated purple signs on the groomed hills read "Do Not Drink," meaning, well, that the "water" that just sprayed on you as you walked by is recycled.

Should one compost one's own? Urf. Used to be we kept our privacy out back--far back--where our jakes consisted of trenches or deeply dug wells. I guess it was, in a way, more natural to bury it and hope nothing leaked into the nearby crick, lessin' of course it was downstream from where we bathed.

Anyway it's impossible now. Most of us don't have back yards, and those of us who do would not want that there. We'd rather have it in a room of its own a few feet from the kitchen. Thomas Crapper, the British sanitary engineer who developed the ball and suction thingy in the tank, actually saved the world billions of gallons in fresh water (and so billions of dollars in utility bills). Indeed, were it not for Mr. Crapper, we might still be going out back in the winter, except that there are so many of us now, we'd never have a moment to ourselves.I think the ultimate can will evaporate all waste or beam it into outer space. Tourists on journeys through the solar system will simply have to look the other way. That is when they're not busy.

Now what to do with the waste we don't really need to make.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005


Returning to work, walking,
I wind between cars in leaf-strewn shadows
stuck to the edges of the hot parking lot.
The lost dusty route of Junipero Serra
scratched a thin bloody line
across this spot,but I am not accountable
for the zeal of a madman,
an obsessive or driven self-martyr possessed
by desire to reroute geography,
to harness the wild and end its authority,
to gather and squeeze the life out of people
who wandered these similar hills.

I think of these moments in panic.
Up and down the land and particularly along it,
accelerators wait; they wait because the brakes
get so much attention,

and though I know a river sometimes washed along this way,
I could not show you water--only grouted banks.

Friday, April 08, 2005

No clear reason to keep this up. One struggles to be heard in a cacophany that has no melody. Speech made humans evolve and now causes society to devolve. TV news, talk radio; everybody is listening but nobody really hears. By "nobody" I mean, well, hardly anybody. I mean, there are a lot of people in the world--so many that we are eating our own tail. And yet, nobody reads this blog for instance. Millions of blogs, by their nature self-involved proselytizing, preaching to a choir of one, linked to a larger world of unread things, are abandoned by their authors and their readers for a distracting ball of string called "news." There is nothing important about an old man dying. Do you know how many old men die? All of them! Meanwhile nature cries out, but no one answers. Do you know that I have tried? I'm over here! Do you hear?

Sunday, April 03, 2005

I don't know the names of flowers and I don't care to. There sure are a lot of them around. Clouds came in around 5 o'clock (which a day ago was 4 o'clock) so I had more light but less sun. Purple what-look-like-poppies shooting out of the high green grass, tiny yellow-white blossoms low to the ground, red bells, webby orange moss, miniature blue poker-uppers in that classic floral pattern a child draws: five or six elliptical petals around a circle in the middle. Clouds and flowers all around me as I trek the ridgeline with a cold; no special post-demise reports on NPR to overwhelm me (some dogmatic inelegant icon done returned to his maker).

The strange and wild winter rains have turned up sand, quenched thirsty seeds and made a paradise for bugs. There isn't a flower without an insect climbing around inside of it; lady bugs, ants, tiny flies. So much life. Beetles crossing paths, lizards jumping rock to rock, snakes slipping over boulders; bigger, sleepier creatures just waking. My stomach grumbles and something behind that oak growls back! This is my church.