Herbie Mann Comin' Home

Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Lotta diddle, a 50 year, half-a-centenary's worth of memories most of which washed by liquids through some system. The decade before I've no close memories at all.

H New Year's. Neither melancholy nor sentimental nor drunk. Cold. Measuring a way's ahead. Path obscure like all traverses.

Want to read.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Friday, December 19, 2008

Love Storm

This wind storm stalks my future.

It is to be held personally responsible for the anxiety trembling within me.

An action will be filed with the Court of Natural Law, and an injunctive writ be pursued: not to come within 500 miles of plaintiff for the remainder of his days.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Hill Flurries

Breezily this snow. Got a wind now. Hasn't stuck yet. Nine hours late.

How destructive nature is to my plans.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Friday, November 28, 2008

The Buck Stops Here

No project ever fails.

Top Management knows that things have succeeded, or have 'come within a whisper of succeeding with a modest bit of help now'.

They may actually convince whoever the Money Supply is. Be that as it may, the more effort T.M. has to expend in 'proving' its success (irrelevant though that actuality may be), the more irritation will be sent in shuddering payback (not to be confused with 'back pay') internally within the system.

'We'll handle this discreetly'

The embarrassing chew-outs, dope-slaps, and unfair rages descend with avalanche-speed until 'someone takes the fall'.

The sloth and disengagement, the masturbatory power-gyrations at the top ultimately lead to one thing:

"You're fired."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Work Sutra

Early morning work and late night

Meeting cross men and saying yes

Taking the fed-up word-spew of a fishwife

Siestas inbetween.

Sometimes the thirst is so great

It takes three glasses of water.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Mon Semblance

Did the man see me talking to myself?

I prepared to pass and be openly friendly.

As I did, I saw his eyes had cast themselves down

And he was talking to himself !

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Body Warmth

Something about losing it all, now that the Depression season is around the corner.

All gifts are out of the sack; the warmth is the warmth from just here,

Friends are those who speak to you right now, the grocery clerk, the bagger.

Take turns at this public drinking fountain and note the person there before you

Then take note of the person after you, the brothers and sisters of your having been here

Just here, right now, the ones who register that true thing.

Chord To Cord

Following time-honored advice, a slow-down. Why not listen to parts of musical compositions instead of gourmandizing on a great table of it? Classical pieces, if begun to be understood, need careful attention.

One movement at a time. Either conversation between, like a palate-cleanser, or unpunctuatable snacks of street noise, television two rooms away, stratospheric airplanes growing more and more indistinct, wind that knocks an upright rake down.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

BG Sketch

The boy was the youngest child of the second wife of an old father. The only son, Darrell was. His father had been a baker by trade, and a trade unionist by inclination, burly, tough, but a good father to his six children. The first three were daughters of the first wife, a woman institutionalized for a kind of dementia.

Of the younger three, the eldest married a man scion to a wealthy, distant family from whom they both conspired to hide her religion.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Essence Before Existence

Not sure whether the devil is in the mutatis or in the mutandis.

Never you mind. The Universal lies in the intercommunicability of the confusion.

Beneficial and smooth as would be our mutually-dependent cultural and commercial life,

Our digital 'globality', what marks us, is the precision of our babel.

Saturday, November 8, 2008


Eyes closed in the darkest of dark rooms

Be blind, even: world glow.

Love's pull-date

The half-life of urge as it becomes solemnity

Fulcrum Soft, Grasshopper

When power exercises itself with the least resistance: bureaucratic language.

An aerosol spray in a dark room -- you don't see it.

Friday, November 7, 2008

The Siblings

Analysis looks at its shared room: Exegesis, Deconstruction.

An Oedipal juggle: forms like it OR forms of it.

What's In A Name?

Some bursts of anger, some of sugar, mark the animal.

How we rationalize and temper it, come to terms with it, spells the angel.

Winged serpents? We call this package 'human'.

Thursday, November 6, 2008


Sometimes I move like a cat

Sometimes a rhino

The genius lies in an absence of mind

Small Business Opportunity

Woman in the beige skirt folding merchandise. Small, chic retailer. Striking deep yellow scarf with red overdesign wraps around a jaw disfigurement that must be severe. This mystery: how terrifying? How wet?

Monday, November 3, 2008

Five Responses To The November Election

Should the unspeakable happen and the (only) good candidate not win tomorrow, here're my alternatives:

1) Shave my head, don an orange robe, carry a rice bowl, and be aware of the swirl of events around me only as momentary illusion;

2) Saturate myself in foreign language Grand Opera and philately

3) Go out with a big 'bang';

4) Become a European;

5) Therapy, breakdown, therapy, breakdown, therapy, breakdown . . .

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tough Docket

Sharpness v. Fullness

Clarity v. Complexity


Things that move too fast: they control you.

Resume Complete

I used to be a Broadway producer

I used to be a kennel man

I used to be a purveyor of hot chestnut cones

I used to hand out Kleenex at the kiosk

At lunch breaks, I caught squirrels for the tourists

I used to mumble as part of a classical chorus

I used to franchise child's toy weaponry

I used to model tic repellent

From time to time, I would get hired to work the Sultan's fan

I used to clean grout in WNBA stalls

I used to Twist in department store windows

I used to 'vogue' as a space android

Once I was nominated as candidate for Vice-President on a minor party ticket

I used to spill soup as part of paid party gags

I used to sit in on inter-corporate meetings pretending to be part of the other entourage

I used to be the least called-on Hollywood Square

Seasonally, I broke horses, put out fires, taught skiing, and played uke.

Herd Autumn





Third Movement


I am very happy

I am a little happy

Yes. I must show happy

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008


I used to be a Broadway producer, used to be a kennelman, was a hot chestnut cone purveyor, a door-to-door, whatever there was I was. I was.

Friday, October 10, 2008

The Cynic GOP

Sarah Palin : Hillary Clinton : : Clarence Thomas : Thurgood Marshall

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Form Fitting

It's a Procrustean bed of their own making.

They made their Procrustean bed -- let them lie in it!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Democrat

After an overnight five hours of sleep, I did my morning work, shopped for potatoes and meatloaf, heard a lot about the financial collapse, stripped my bed and washed the sheets, listened to the stocks fall, scraped dishes of egg, watched ten minutes of the hard-guy movie Heat, the armored-truck explosion punctuating each grind of my teeth against pecan-laced cereal, wrote five impassioned letters to my senators, committee chairs, and reps, and waited.

Just waited for the clothes to dry.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Bobby Orr's German Hour's Up

Herr . . . er . . . her whore's air errs our heir's hair

Almost All-Purpose Line

'X' with a pull-date old enough to have a bar mitzvah

The Verge Of Vitality

Movement in the dreams of bacteria:

Deep will, quiet sound


When the plane landed, I found myself lifting my exhausted head off the Denny's counter top.

The eggs were cold, and two streaks of coffee incised trompe l'oeil gulleys on the outside of the cup and dried there like last season's riverbed.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


The woman and her daughter went to Europe where the woman got bitten by a dog on Corfu. People were there to translate 'tetanus', and a local clinic with unfamiliar-looking tongue depressors and band-aids that were called something else.

They reassured her that the incidence of rabies on the island was very, very small. In the evening, the tour ship served small cherry tomatoes and water from springs in the Trentino-Alto Adige-Sudtirol. The sea was nice under the slivered moon, and she was nervous.

Word Sprinkles

1) instruct / construct -- construct / instruct

2) calculus / callouses /calcium

3) pi / torsion / agon

4) measure -- weld words

5) hoist: city -- fingers: philosophy

6) [done in a circle] --circuit: music of the spheres

7) work sun mold water

8) flange / tradition -- load / future

9) ions / bread / weld -- strong / corrugate / milk

10) valence / tone / pendant / orbit

11) music: steel

Disease This !

1) Over 140 / 90 and still climbing

2) Hypertensive . . . And Proud

3) Inside Me: HBP -- The Silent Killer


If there is such a thing as The Greatest Gen

I don't know if it's the one

Who had ten minutes to sit with Sartre

Or the one who sat for a lost decade

Between the stools of Gertrude Stein

And Anais Nin, or neither of the two.

For an afternoon of band music, it was Lincoln,

And for a fife's tune was the Founders.

Carnegie was pentitent for his. And ours,

Ours of Newts and Dubs,

We ghosts just move our mouth.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Monday, September 15, 2008

Being Visited

The thunderstorm comes on quickly. It is Wyoming.

Onto the porch pads a wet dog. It has clear marks of abuse.

They dry it off and feed it. It falls asleep in the kitchen and the dad stays with it.

They get a good couple of months, good weather. It manages brightness.

The two girls love the new dog. It only takes a minute or two to frame their three faces.

Later on, another thunderstorm hits. It is a shock to the whole family that the dog disappears.

Woman Times Two

1) The case against Hillary as Presidential standard-bearer was this:

If elected, her spouse would reside in the White House and be, arguably, a daily influence if not actual, unconfirmed advisor -- a problem only in that her spouse has already served the maximum two terms as President residing in the White House. This is not unconstitutional. This does raise 'Constitutional eyebrows', an alert, that earlier, fairly recent power hasn't been sufficiently severed.

2) The case against Sarah Palin as Vice-Presidential standard-bearer is this:

Had anyone stood blindfolded in any American shopping mall, been twirled around, then stopped to find the first woman they stumbled into, the odds would be strong of picking someone about as adequate.

Now And In The Future

Some speculation plays with an idea that there is already a 'future' out there, in place, at some other dimension, just waiting to happen. It's ready to fold itself into our living fabric as time comes.

Some other speculation, based (it seems) on physical theories derived from quantum mechanics, has it that there are innumerable 'futures' that accord with innumerable current universes.

Fatalism grows from the first. Nothing we do hasn't already been foretold, since wherever we aim, we will reach what is already there.

Implied by the second is confusion over what is 'real': we are living our lives, but theoretically may also very well be living our lives in many other ways. Who are we?

The second may also suggest to us a wealth of resources (uh, in this universe, borrowing metaphorically from the other) and options for what we do want to do.

That gives us license, but no further direction than the person who says I don't know what to do. Worse: the person who says I'm doing this because I say so.

More On These Dances

[Mickey's] Monkey (bending w/alternating one-arm high/thumb out/banana hold)
Madison (languorous legs)

Twist (hips/elbows)
Mashed Potatoes (balls of feet)
Jerk (yanking shoulders/wrists and snapping spine thrust)

Swim ('freestyle' arms)
[Funky] Chicken
Pony (active spine/thighs hopping and arms-out/fists-parallel 'reins'-holding)

Stroll (relaxed falling ankles)

Frug (rapid arm pulls?)
Hully Gully (line dance changing steps)
Shimmy (quick shudder revolve arms straight down A frame)

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Land-Locked Countries

--Africa: 13

Burkina Faso
Central African Republic


--Asia: 13




--Europe: 10



Czech Republic


--North America: 0


--South America: 2


1) Almost 1/5 of these begin with the letter (and corresponding sound) 'B'.

2) Almost one-third of these begin with either the letter 'B' or the letter 'A'.

3) The longer the 'resident continent' has had hominids, the more official countries there are.

4) The newer the 'sweep' of 'civilized' countries, the fewer the official countries there are.

How Wars Are Won

13 Rules Of War (Bevin Alexander):

1) Strike at enemy weakness

2) Defend, then attack

3) Hold one place, strike another

4) Feigned retreat

5) Central Position

6) Employ superior weapon

7) Drive stake at enemy's heart

8) Block enemy's retreat

9) Land an overwhelming blow

10) Stroke at a weak spot

11) Envelop on all sides (caldron battle)

12) Uproar east, attack west

13) Maneuvers on the rear

With Thee, I Speak, Baby

Celebrities with whom I feel I might hold honest conversation with, making allowance for differential in power, wealth, personal achievement, stage of life, and profession. Alphabetically:

Lauren Bacall
Warren Beatty
Kate Blanchett

Humphrey Bogart
Jill Clayburgh
Sammy Davis, Jr.

Katherine Hepburn
Angelica Huston
Glenda Jackson

Paul Newman
Gregory Peck
Edward G. Robinson

Gena Rowlands

Martin Scorsese
Juliet Stevenson

Meryl Streep

Nine women. Seven men. Two English, the rest yanks.

Internal Debate

My way:

No way these jots 'go elegant'

staircase in a molecular asymmetry

rather hemi-hedrality.

More 'bull elephant'.

No way!


Public Education

Tradesman's literacy


Scribal literacy

Burb Haiku

Lawn water

The neighborhood's a village

People's sweat

Bad, Bad Double Date

Look at me let you.

Get -- I can't, over this.

Stop stepping my dog.

Two cooks broth the spoil -- Man! Eee!

Your meow's the cat

A sore for eyesight.

Ear me in a whisper

Close a little comer.

T Shirt Notions

Where are those entrepreneurs?

Shakespeare Shirts [I've seen timid, limited versions of these -- come-on, people!]

Smartmouth Stuff [in-your-face 'humor', off-the-wall, 'stand-up'-on-a-chest,etc.]

Classiclit [famous -- need I say non-copyrighted phrases/lines]

What I Really Said Was . . . [fill in outrageous 'explanatory' endings]

Lance's 4 Horsemen

Of our American apolcalypse:


What In-Joke?

In one episode, Sex and the City (SATC, for those who seem to be in the know or who like unpronounceable acronyms) gave Carrie Bradshaw's address as:

245 East 73rd St.
(whose zip code is 10021)

Simply a fiction?

Does this belong to anyone who might be in a position to sue on the grounds of 'invasion of privacy'?

Tortious, that is to say?

Or: does this belong to one of the writers or producers and makes for a great teasing self-glorification?

Friday, September 12, 2008

Strict Liability

Nothing about her metabolism spoke abnormality.

In a modern way, she showed fashion, but not vanity.

The business was licensed, clean, collected for local charity.

She 'bought for the office', cooperative sociability.

Monday, ten, Wednesday, ten again, and Friday's regularity

The butter-baked brown sugar-filled pecan and glazed croissant twisty.

She binged and purged her jones in smear-mouth deviltry

Sitting alone in her room with her recognized injurious dead pity.

Band Of Literacy

Read on a train: can
Read in a car: can't

Laundramat: can
Read to music: can't

High-wire attention

Hair-fine concentration
Thin 'zone'

Thursday, September 11, 2008

If You Don't Commit, Jimbo, What Are You?

The official insisted the pen at him.

Inked boxes stared up at him from the form page.

'Other', he checked, and overfilled 'specify':

Protestantized Judeo-Unitarian panentheistic Taoist.

It was over. They gave him his passport and told him he could leave.

In the open air, he felt someone looking.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The Rod Spared

So the parent let go with a set of recriminations the strength of a fatwa.

An Era Of Humor

The postal employee had a favorite joke whose punchline was 'Eeyoww!'

He shared the joke with another worker who often sat near him, both of them at their mail cases.

They found moments during each evening's work to repeat the joke in various contexts, struggling time and again to hold back the unrestrained laughter the joke brought them to.

The punchline itself became a shorthand for the whole joke, and it signaled laughs just on its own. Over time, the laughter diminished into chuckles, then into smiles, into a greeting and sometimes an inadvertent mumble below the breath of one or the other of them.

Eventually, the second worker retired.

The day afterward, the first worker, sitting at his customary place, looked forward at his mail case and repeated, to no one in particular, 'Eeyoww! Eeyoww!' A laugh came out with a quick snort. 'Eeyoww!' He repeated, and the tears of laughter ran down his cheeks.


You walk into a large church, a city's large church, late when there are no people, the usual silence and coldness of a big space with little heating. God's house. Nothing between your body standing somewhere near the entrance and the structural walls and partitions and benches and raised forward area where holy things specially take place.

Outside, occasional wheel traffic. Inside, no more than low slides and twists of a building's viscera.

'Hello?' you call. You move in so that the building can hear better. "Hello?' your head turns as you call.

God's voice.

The Golden Mean

In a world of 5 Star restaurants,

A burger, fries, and a malt.

In a world of mass starvation,

A burger, fries, and a malt.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

One-Sided Conversation

Nurse: Room 249 Window.

[ ]:

Nurse: She's more alert today -- when she woke, she said I'm resurrected. Why did you resurrect me?

[ ]:

Nurse: We're ruling out sepsis.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Formula One

Bertolucci's Ashkenazi's
Fibonacci beat the Stasi:

Yin yang, feng shui
Mah jongg, wu wei


Through an agency outside himself, the hood of the boy's car flew up and wrapped around the windshield.

Neither he nor his friend was hurt, but to get home they had to stick their head out the door windows as they drove.

God damn it! -- an imprecation his father, the rabbi, hurled when he found out.

The boy, who died before he had children, retracted his head and quivered.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Mood Spike

Earthiest of coffees, of root matter, so distressed and dirty

Plus brown sugar crumble

Over a bowl of warm glazed wheat

Contrast, wash it, go: bitterest of coffees

Morning, everywhere it's sunrise

Love's in its abundance, even in its sores

Crest Fallen



Eleventh Hour As It Passes

Coming suddenly, no thoughts follow.

A self-conscious dying: Grabbing for rescue. Finding resolution. Learning a lesson. Facing one's totality. Utter loss. Anxiety. Utter rest.

More of it, this dying, from a living vantage:

Running to the edge of the high board, springing with a breath and holding onto form. Sailing off it.

Seeing your friend the other side of the restaurant storefront glass and waiting that moment before you greet. The crystalized conversation where you each find the other, where everything makes sense.

Emotion, Viscera

The story about Confucius: upon hearing an imposing ceremonial music for the first time, he lost his sense of taste for meat for three months.

The dialogue of John Cassavetes in Minnie and Moscowitz: 'I love you so much I forget to go to the bathroom.'

Saturday, September 6, 2008


It's smothering.

Like it must be when one's drowning.

A mountain filling the mouth, bacterial dirt clogging the interstices between each tooth, the gag reflex prevented by no further room for the throat to do but recoil in order to disgorge, but in the recoiling only to make room for more silt, root matter, fungi, that ever-intrudes.

Being waffled against firm chainlink as the hooligan crowd rages in their hundred toward your exit.

Like it must be when a vast sea storms and water hits like corner brick and the breath waits its patient count to 200 and quickened 400 and itself vacuums its fill of flotsam, phyloplancton, and fine salt.

Is power.

Saturday, August 30, 2008


To establish 'character':


Friday, August 29, 2008

Knotty Wood Panel

A tribal African

Cricketer's rolled sleeve

Raging hawk, owl chick

White stallion's muzzle

Broad-faced flop-eared goat

A crazy man's face

Getty Mountain

Human clusters children the place

Floors, walkways, marbleize, monumentalate.

foot-arches, extenuated hams,

Require the sitting, the terraced concrete stream bed.

Sculptural rest beneath the re-bar stalks --

Sheaves of them -- hung with bougainvillea

Whose bright effloresces till one's breath breathes pink.

One ages up the stairs; on down, oasis.


graffiti : graffito : : photiti : photito

Imago: Moi


Friday, August 22, 2008

Getty Garden

Sheaves of rebar, fifteen feet high,

Differing widths,  moptop flopping,

Cascade-curving, ridden by bougainvillea

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Breaking Fast

Ten miles from here to there.  Ten L.A. miles.

Passing cars, fast.  Trailing cars, fast.

There: warm late morning, reservoir-cupping hill.

LAMILL Coffee Co.   A simple menu of great sophistication.

My mouth pursed at the waitress, grilled her,

Prosecutorily, and reluctantly ordered safe.

Ate along with B, who swapped bites of my perfect eggs.

With her polenta mixed with butternut squash,

Candied pecans,  and mascarpone.

My smooth, very potent, iced coffee.

My mouth pursed again.

Central Casting


Family, two families, of 5 or so people.

Daughter, 12-ish: balloon-shaped, green, festive, dowdy chiffon dress, cowboy boots, hair in German-style pretzel braids.

Father, 45 going on 65: thin jaw-burns, bowed back, extra weight.

Cosmopolitan hub. Rural, very rural, folks. Alaska? Dakota? Manitoba?

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Living The History

America's doubts: its policy wars.

Korea, Nam, Eye-rack.

Let America The Small be great again.

Guilt Throwdown

I daresay I bet I'll think

It's a sad day for you when you turn

Your back on me, the last person

I'll ever see! So what I'll have the tubes?

Who'll really feel worse then?!

Live with it, big shot, breathing on

To the haunt of my sobs

The guttering and shh of the machine!

Sunday, August 17, 2008


Getting older by the week's hours

Feeling stronger every Monday's seconds

From the inside out, the clock's

Old, wise, fucking good

St. Vitus

New Year's Eve, December 31, 1969. Four of us in my car. Rick and Gloria and Laurel and I. On the radio comes Credence Clearwater. 'Fortunate Son'. All the complaint -- Nam, draft, social class, social stasis, social disease, post-adolescent ghosts, bad luck, bad breath, bad karma -- shot through my arms and legs into a drive-by dance, into a shout-along, into a full-body poetry. Me 'speaking' it. 'The whole world was watching'.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Little Church In The Square

Can you direct me to the Protestantized Judeo-unitariarian-panentheistic-taoist congregation?

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lasting Fashion

Tattoos: you wear bad taste on your skin.

Piercings: you wear bad taste through your skin.

Thoughts: you wear bad taste beneath skin.

None of this goes away.

A Sober Accounting

Nothing satisfies the budgeteers except poundage and thickness and heft and faux-intelligible density.

If it looks substantial, it must be so.

Oh. And numbers.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

The New Young In The New Century

Here's a clear trend that's solid to my old eyes.

The young have veered to things the old would not:

'Graphic novels', 'body art', 'D.G.'

Images, not words, which makes this prophecy (critique?)

a whisper, not a slap, a joke, no charge before the bar.

Before, cartoons and animation were for kids. Tattoos for criminals.

Now, no one can read (or wants to) -- just be jarred, marred, en garde.

The Athlete

In Boston, I didn't run; I could have, just following the green streetcar past Fenway toward what was then and still might be 'The Big Dig'.

In Chicago, I didn't run; I could have, just taking a streak down Michigan Ave by the Trib. I was that close, but instead had a deepdish broccoli pizza, waited an hour to get it, too, and it was terrible.

In London, I didn't run; I could have, you know, around those nifty canals at Maida Vale above what's Little Cairo, just curved the streets, I could have, like Arabic, and with a bit of huff-and-puff, gone down to the Arch, gone further to the public loo in Harrods, one UK pound per entry. But I took the sooty Tube.

San Francisco, I was there, but didn't run, just stepped up to the girders underneath the Bridge, but the access lines were far off, and if memory serves, a guard or two preventing Kim Novak from standing as close as she did in Vertigo.

In New York, I didn't run; sure, I could have done that if it hadn't been for the cordon set up by police and more police for the GOP. The cyclists got arrested mere days after I saw an Arthur Miller play. I'm safe.

In L.A., I didn't run; my daughter's school had scheduled rooms and very few slots, and in missing her appointment, a bureaucrat told us to come back in twelve days. Ten minutes off, you'd think that time was gold, and here I was with a burning desire to burn and pillage and shave heads and shame whole family honors, so you'd think I'd have the get-up-and-go to run, but instead we sat with iced teas.

In Portland, I didn't run; I could have, but we only planted ourselves a day in place, and drove around that whole northwest of the state, through Salem to Corvallis to Eugene up McMinnville and Astoria and, well, back. Drank coffee, touched the Spruce Goose, sat in a pine grove around a seashell altar built to the Mother of God, and ate croissants, but never broke 3 mph on foot.

In Tucson, I didn't run; I could have, but I'd have had to rise at 3 a.m. for favorable heat. By 8, it was in the 80s, a triple-digit noon. Don't get me wrong, the Beaver Cave in the Desert Museum was cool, but cramped, and the thunder storms that broke at night refreshed the glass-partitioned restaurant. But who can run with a spoon and stoneware bowl? Instead, I stood barefoot on the cool tiled floor and thought tai chi.

Vehicular Aestheticide

The Cadillac SUV: grotesque like an athlete red-faced with steroids and stocky with ungainly bulk.

An insult upon an insult.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Earthpath, Starstreak

Nine stores down, she ensorcelled a lover by the Donna Karan.

Being young, he was illiterate of his Chinese tattoo.

Had she a sister, the sister's hankerings would be removed
just so by the revolve of the zodiac.

His sense of beauty, aesthetic, stemmed from mommie and movies,
'mamas', Ma Sheila, the Great Mother: same. At the point of satisfaction,
he just knew.

Thin, chocolate cigarettes, shoulders, each person laughing
with the tambre of a personal loneliness.

This woman, who are twins, they're myopic, so have four shoes
and eight eyes, forty cuticles, one for each Arabian Night.

Reading 'The Future'

Not a professional, but a poet.

Not a kibbitzer, but a cackler.

Not a survivor, but a transcender.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Old Salt

Unbelievably squinty, that Popeye, he dead of corncob and Olive Oyl and Sweet Pea and spinach and yam.

For Now, Calm

The papers are filed.

The docket is set.

The opening's heard.

The witnesses called.

The evidence shown.

The court notice is taken.

The defense demurs.

The court stipulates.

The plaintiff objects.

The counsels approach.

The jury withdraws.

The judge recuses.

The case mistries.

The justice reviews.

The trial's re-ordered.

The judgment is reached.

The appeal is sent.

The certiorari is granted.

The ruling is made.

The precedent's set.

The order is kept.

Face Fiction

Fitz looked at her freshness not looking at him, but, he felt, ordained for him: one can fall in love with a face.

About her face, now in three-quarter profile, he failed in about-face, he drew in sympathy with the curvature of the ear.

After cunnilingus, he washed his face with a mechanic's abrasive soap so that no one will know where I've traveled.

When she withdrew and did not appear again, he couldn't look his own way, he had defaced himself, even in mirrors.

The feeling would resurface, as do an archaeologist's tells: slice the end of a mound and layer upon layer would produce findings, create the sense of history.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Fuckin' A

Statistics gives to math its 'connotative' range.

Expletives to English, its 'zero': the needed filler, oath.

Thursday, July 31, 2008

In The Dumps

Seaweed bluegreen dung:

Love-child of

Gastroenteritis and

Pepto-Bismol Pink.

Unloved and gotten-rid-of.

Crystal Ball

How far into the future does the future go? Into the past, the past?

Language isn't the obstacle in answering.

In its exercise, it tells us the necessary answer: only present.

In its silence, it allows the necessary experience

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Book Bog

Credit C. She thought of 'blogging' about this phenomena. The title for it is mine.

In reading, I rotate. A stack of books, another stack, a third stack.

At the side wall of the room: auxilliary stacks not quite rejected, but not in favor, either. Waiting to get off the bench.

What keeps a book in rotation may come clear after some writing, though not now.

Now, just a mention of two books that have 'stalled', two that have been 'benched': Henry James's The Ambassadors, and a D.H. Lawrence collection on Italy.

With James, the difficulty of style instantly hits most readers now, and the difficulty in his later style is notorious. What can help his books are small chapters, smaller segments within the dense texture of his prose. The Ambassadors does not help in that regard. I've been finding the subtle behavioral hints in the characters' psychology take long paragraphs to gel, and the sections tens of pages per go. For me, not a reading 'for one sit'.

With Lawrence, the descriptive level is pronounced, with the setting, natural and man-made, articulating a world fully involved in the human story. Though these are travel pieces, the mood establishes the meaning for the place. Rich, richer, richest. Again, long pages of immersion, no quick 'break points'.

Editorial Blast

Definition of 'journalist': a cynic writing for morons.

Or is that cynical to say? Am I one then? Are you of the other party?

Oh. They're neither of us, 'the critical class'.

We don't chatter. We woe. Want prophecy.

Definition of 'America', then: the place that wants to be good,

The place that's not sure it is, will fight for that certainty.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Man Walks Into A Bar . . .

That's the existentialist joke:

Not that there's no meaning in the universe aside from us, but that there's no meaning in the universe aside from us. We're that important.

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Listening to chosen music.

Burning fast like a cheap candle.

Health Man, Idiosyncratic

My joy: plain yoghurt dusted with false sugar.

Then. A blend of various cereals, mysterious in mix,

Blindly reached at and grabbed into.

Chopped dates.

What indeterminate a pleasure is the flake

Tarted up like granola.

Message Made

Like talking to yourself, it is.

Like the man in the field talking to the stalks.

Like hailing the listener you think passed.

Like your own footsteps one for another, meant.

Like snapping the water awake.

Like telling, vulnerable, a truth to sleeping her.

Talking to yourself, it is, then.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

I'm The D.J., Bitch!

('Desk Jockey', I meant)

Art Appraisal

Renaissance prints of a Renaissance prince: what price do they yield when they field at Sotheby's?

A ducat, a florin, a sovereign, gold bar?

A billion of bullion, a million of mullion

The skill of a scullion, a skull of vermillion?

Baroquey gouache at the courts built for squash: what cost for quadrille on the dancefloor at Doyle's?

Sunday, July 20, 2008

The Deity Next Door

In speaking of YHWH, we're trying to make words approximate what we concede is beyond words.

Of course, the right question is: are we fooling ourselves? To go 'beyond words' in approaching the 'nature' of (note the metaphor) of G-dash-D may just be a way of sneaking things in -- establishing by quiet fiat what we (tentatively) claim to be discovering.

To go 'beyond words' may also avoid that by arriving honestly at '[ ]' -- a deliberate blank which, in truth, is a psychological gambit to shuffle scrabble tiles so as to obscure any evident understanding and shrug off its possibility.

Or to go 'beyond words' may assume a lotus-positionlike '{ }', where conceptualizing what is existentially occurring in 'real-time' is deliberately evaded, not assigned verbal recognition, just undergone. That might imply godly presence at any given time or place just by virtue of there being 'something' of which we can be aware. It might also imply nothing at all if the refusal to 'go verbal' is disciplined and maintained.

Consciousness is a key factor in human self-identity, and for humans, seems utterly sure. That which is in and of us suggests what is purposeful about us. Whether that 'something' is 'only' a nervous system may be beside the point.

HaShem tags it 'Name'. I'll call this The Existant. We find it hard to find. The Face whose eyes we dare not behold: where is it?

Try looking at a mirror honestly. Part of nature speaks to itself without saying a word. Is there something it wants to become?

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The GOP 'Virtue Analysis' Strategy Syllogism

If people do repetitive, routine work; and

If they fret and anger over such work, not finding relief enough in pay alone; and

If they see their life, effectively, a function of their work, their function in the economic scheme of things; and

If they psychologically justify that otherwise thankless work as their being needed, as their existential singularity of purpose; and

If they reify that justification into the status of personal virtue;


a) Other people, those without work, must be absent that virtue; and

b) Any system economically supporting those virtueless others must be wrong;

c) No one can make a 'rational' choice in favor of such a system; and

d) Any such choice is politically wrong

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Place Your Bets

Neither I nor the people of California knew what the outcome would be.

It was a crapshoot, and I'm the roll of the dice.

A 'Matter' Matter

Beneath the rear window negligently accorded my end of the shared office room, a corrugated shed roof for seasons has been taking a rain-pounding. Here, that means days on end of drizzle, puddling, two-minutes' barrage, the Spring hailpellet, overnights, thunderstorms hitting as summer surprises. Too: snow

Inert in sun.

Which will be the last part? The last part identifiable as metal?

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Have I Mentioned?

You haven't gotten the wrong idea, have you?

I mean, this isn't being done in order to join a trend.

I mean, the words plunked down here come to you with the notion that you're to digest any idea that may issue from the style, not that you're only to be passingly entertained or find any of this simply cute.

I mean, there's no intention of actually meeting or networking with a single person, live or RT or virtual.

I mean, I write this as I have everything else for some time with the realization that I'm likely never going to be read except by a select forced few even among whom there may be a majority who feel impinged upon by the gift.

I mean, I may already be dead for all you know.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


The incommensurability of 'I need' and the social containment of 'I need'


Violence is sweet

Racism becomes art

Courage is an excuse

Morality is a prison cell

Tripping Off The Tongue

It's easier to say the word 'heads' than the word 'tails'

'Me' than 'you'

'Here' than 'there'

'High' than 'low'

'Now' than 'then'

We're always flipping coins with 'the fix in'

Sunday, July 6, 2008

It Gets Me Goosepimply All Over

Joseph Cornell and
David Smith

Chaim Soutine and
Jack Levine

Klee and Kitaj and
Lucian Freud

And the Dreamtime
Abos of Kunga Kutjarra

Thursday, July 3, 2008

The Essence Of M.D.

1) Move muscles, but not too much.

2) Estrange no joints.

3) Circulate air, and keep blood clean. Circle again the manganese and iron, potassium; eat kidneys once a month.

4) Eat low on the food chain; never stuff.

5) Plants before animals. Water the more.

6) Don't fuck; fuck only her or him, not both, and be clear which.

7) Have friends who laugh, but not at you. Join groups, hold hands, use gloves.

8) Don't drive, at least not sitting down. Wear belts though they don't save knees.

9) Crying is good. Too much is bad.

10) Have a plan for any fear.

11) We always adjust the amount.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Three Reading Cycles

Reading defeated me when I was obligated to hold-to a particular book until finished. A foray becomes a commitment becomes an obligation becomes a tedium becomes an avoidance becomes no reading at all.

That was true in a corollary way with books loved: life transforms itself so much with a good book that the next book -- even if equally as good (!), but of a different author and different style -- suffers by letting the built enthusiasm of 'Book One' lapse.

So, I read in stacks, never going too far into one book before arbitrarily putting it down and opening another.

The 'three cycles' have developed from there:

1) Group One: the bedroom stack, often seven books, usually no more than ten, serves to greet me before sleep, an hour or two, if I can afford the time, or 10 minutes, 2 pages, if not. These are books that can be read in a period of months, possibly weeks, short or very engaging so as not to remain in the stack too long, not overstay a welcome. One or two of these also serve as 'travel' books to take to appointments where waiting in line or to take on trips.

2) Group Two: the day stack, two or three that are long and that find a rhythm to fit comfortably a period clearly more than a year or two. The enthusiasm level may be high, and these books are greeted as dearly as those in Group One, but their periodicity is longer, and the 'rotational mismatch' with those in the first group deserves separate reading attention -- weekends, vacation times, return visits.

3) Group Three: the auxilliary stack, maybe another 6 to 12, those that can't be handled easily before sleep: print too small, chapters too long and not accommodatingly paced, dense style (descriptive, too technical, 'educative'), but containing material that wants to be read and has personal virtue. These may have started out as Group One, but quickly got identified as something else. Too important and well-chosen simply to give away, they serve as 'change-ups' for the other two groups, and never (re-)enter routine consideration for regular reading rhythm, only periodic sampling for reassessment of virtue.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

A Pear, A Loaf, The Gentle Pause

This Age I won't be living:

Nestled under a willow by a small stream, my very self humble beneath the sky of the Creator reaches into a rucksack to draw out -- what? -- a thin book of poetry, a sketch pad, a book of prayer?

No. A flashdrive. My vade mecum.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

RIP: That Era Then

Just as a reminder. What we call 'The Sixties' was a whole bunch of things, delineated by-- if we can reserve this entry for one such delineation and that alone for now -- and bracketed by, the dates November 22, 1963, and April 15, 1974.

The dates are recognizable. First, President Kennedy's shooting in Dallas. Nothing but fear and only nervous, momentary hope since then. Yes, Lyndon Johnson had a 'mandate' actually to engineer the Civil Rights Act and The Great Society through a Congress where he had held formidable power. But within a year: Gulf of Tonkin incident and the great escalation (we now know partly out of his fear of being outflanked by even worse anti-Communist whackos) of the Vietnam War.

The somewhat arbitrary (but personally-felt) end date is the Hibernia Bank robbery in San Francisco by the Symbionese Liberation Army, one of whose members was the kidnapped Patty Hearst (revolutionary name, Tania). This was followed closely by the departure of Nixon from the White House after many hours of televised Watergate hearings.

Very hard not to see the downward slope in that, the trough, the depression.

Very hard not to understand the defiantly-long, stringy hair, the sideburns, the randiness, the alcohol consumption, the marriage loss, the spiritual depression.

When It Goes Dead

Like when you first feel Fall.

It's still summer -- even High Summer, August.

A cloud passes (okay, just a cloud)

Temperature dips, and the smell,

The smell of flora, shifts.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


When the man ate the stone
He couldn't pass it.

When the stone ate the man
nothing was said.

3 Ways Of Looking At

Twenty dwarves took turns doing handstands on the carpet.
Twenty dwarves took turns doing handstands on the carpet.
Twenty dwarves took turns doing handstands on the carpet . . .

Diminutive dwarf girl in motorized wheelchair unmoving -- abandoned?
No! On cellphone!

Samson (the dwarf): You can only know a man so much.

The Last Time Ever I Dialed AM

Let's call it Summer, 1973, and let's give some slack for 'recent oldies' or 'call-in requests' on that day, whenever it might have been.

Hurricane Smith, Mongo Jerry, Maria Muldaur, Sylvia, and Minnie Ripperton.

Visceral memory.

Not Enough Credit

Women directors who should be noted more:

Sophia Coppola

Lost In Translation
Marie Antoinette

Mary Harron

American Psycho
I Shot Andy Warhol
The Notorious Betty Page

Sally Potter


Noticing now for the first time that all (?) of these films deal with 'off-kilter' love relationships, and I wonder if that's more telling about me (!!?) or the directors or women-as-directors or what-makes-for-interesting film.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

A Pipe Dream? Perhaps

My goal: to be able to write about anything I know nothing about.

For instance, great African run up Kilimanjaro in barefeet.

For another instance, to converse with a Korean kimchi take-out hostess:

She: (pointing at the taoist yin/yang circle on my t-shirt) You?
Me: It helps me to sleep.

For a third, to analyze Fred Astaire's dance partners.

'Small Zine' Titles

So far as I know, these mags don't exist, but they should:

Sharky Baby
El Locoloco
Young Churchill

Norman Conquest
Kris Kane
Smooth Jabbilist

Finer Trinket
Some Guts
Girl Fatale
Label At Risk

Friday, June 20, 2008


Think about it. To be somebody and nobody at the same time.

At once, both about to decompose and to ripen.

Ignored by the universe and be its justification.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Hefting My Share

If I carry the water, carry my weight

not carry a grudge or a torch,

I carry the day and

carry it on home

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

It's '64, I'm 35, The Sun's 85

What can be said about Brazil that isn't encapsulated by fine beach, samba, and Jobim?

One of my incarnations will be as the tall and tan me in a white tropical linen jacket, light-weight trousers, a plastic card with no credit limit, a small cigar, and rhythmic verve to my walk. Am I Orfeo? Vadinho? Or simply a well-tailored Fernando Lamas?

Where's the casino, namorada?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Long Life!

Well! I certainly don't intend to spend the remainder of my life in this century!


She was 'alone in a crowd' those last years.

Of course, I was just a lad -- 15, 16 -- as she approached her self-chosen death. But she did befriend me; I did learn the offerings of 'full living'.

The Kennedys? She, not they, would be the one likely on call.

I: a puppy.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Life Span

When I scan the lay of the cards before me, do I see a full ten years?

The idea of 'future' has been with me for as long as my 'past' remembers. At the last moment of consciousness, no doubt, anxiety will focus on 'future after the gone body'. So: ten full years?

What about ten minutes?

That seems a surer bet. I'm home. No road excursion set for another half-hour, so auto accident, a feral threat always, can be kept at bay. Morning hour, sleepy suburb -- the best time for coffee and musing, for poetry, for imagination, for taking stock, for stocking up, for a clean start.

Next to nil are the chances of a misplanned bank heist to occur on this spot. Very far is this from a main transport road with suspect trucks loaded with fertilizer and chemicals designed to blow buildings into world headlines. Extremely low in priority is this place on al Q'aeda's 'Top Ten Target' list.

No. Not near enough to the urban anomie, either, that can break a skull and leave you deaf or tube-fed in an expensive care bed.

Here. Hot coffee. Muffin-cap, a Danish, rugalah, the scone. Today, a 'classic pastry': sugar-crumble on soft cake whose layers split by a cinnamon goo.

What about ten minutes? It eats me up as I digest.

Sunday, June 8, 2008


(whisper it)

(surprise tartness of a tangerine wedge)

(hide all my reference to it from the surprise knock)

Fold Edge 'Me' Into Slot 'G'

Looking into scientific assuredness, we have complication after complication of combines and disassemblies, dissolutions and reattractions, appearances and escapes. Beyond those -- and they are numerous and vast, both minute and gigantic -- beyond those, we, as 'scientists', know nothing.

The grand question, one that spurred the scientific project in the first place, remains: is there 'nothing' outside the physical combinants which include the impulses that cause even this very writing by this very person?

Science itself rightly claims modest silence.

So, we either hold ourselves satisfied with the 'unanswerableness' of 'Why', or we're left with the abdication of our leading scientific types of inquiry or with the arbitrary creeds that preceded them.

If there's no discernible (large 'P') Purpose to the ever-more discoverable (small 'p') process, is there then a suggestive (small 'p') purpose that might give rise to a (large 'P) Process? That is: 1) out of nature, consciousness; then 2) out of consciousness, purposeful reordering of nature.

We may have the notion of (large 'G') God, because what we see as the ordering power -- inordinately, indefinably, impossibly (!?) Other (note the 'O') -- that ordering power really belongs to (small 'g') godlike us. Because we alone have conceived it. We, in our physically-grounded neural system, may be among (or, as yet, the pinnacle of) the most creative of chance complications.

And if there is indeed a (large 'P', large 'G') Purpose or God, we may be its vanguard.

It may be, therefore, that everything we do does have tremendous consequence just in its creative trials.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Hound Dog

Elvis: the White Man's Black Man.

No wonder they didn't like his hip gyrations. It wasn't so much the 'sexual suggestiveness', the 'improper motion', the 'lewdness'.

More than that, the importation of Black relaxation about such things. By 'Black', of course, we don't refer to the ministers and Christian church goers whose propriety was as buttoned-down as any
Danbury, Connecticut, White Episcopalian -- even though the Gospel enthusiasms did sweat and did sway and did yearn for promised release.

The 'Black' providing worry in the 50s meant those cut loose from any White regard -- born into that disregard, that use-value-only, that exploitation, that mean spot.
Their movement seemed a psychic danger, for sure.

How far a racist imagination from musical body motion, dance, wild dance, to other body motions? What would slave holders have bequeathed and their embittered scions carry in terms of past power? The
seigneurial fruits of 'first coition', the jiggle and wiggle of lynchings?

One thing to muse over such heritage, glass of Jack in the hand, another to see it brought to light, dance-released, vinyl-repeated, toyed with joyously by your children.

Elvis: the Black Man's White Man.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Le 'Moi'

A sense of self-importance no one finds but only remotely justified.

An overlooked prophet becomes a prophet of the overlooked.


Friday, May 30, 2008



water matter
wet as a kiss

eyes up, mouth too
heaven lover

heaven's water
the lover's kiss

the matter that's
its own spirit

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Tuesday, May 27, 2008



Moving from the ante-room of the left brain to the cavern of the right.

Nick the Greek gives odds. Some dealers turn Tarot cards.

My current life requires three wall calendars each year. My coming life circles with the shadow on a sundial.

This follows sentence logic. Later on, the surprise fibers inter-shuttled of quiet memory.

Monday, May 26, 2008

". . . The Kindness Of Strangers"

As the story went according to my boyhood friend Mike, his neighbor M__ H__, a 'second lead' in one of the second-rank studios, entertained ladies quite a bit, and Mike would peek out the window, sometimes with binoculars, to get a load of who the new invitee was.

One day a young lady exited early one morning when Mike happened to be in his own driveway near the front lawn. The actor banged open his screen door and started playing with his penis, calling out to the girl by name and imploring her to come back.

Our adolescent circle didn't drop this story for weeks, howls turning into pushing-and-shoving laughter and imitation, then simply to the coded winks of those in-the-know.

Decades later the incident took on different meaning. Things connected up in my head. When he had called her by name -- Stella -- he must have been aping Brando in A Streetcar Named Desire.

I should also wonder whether my adolescent friend actually just saw M__ H__ tear at his T-shirt.

This Is Not California

Most desirous is a world with four Seattle Augusts.

Seattle itself, though, has only one.

It also has 2 Novembers and 2 Februaries, 3 maritime Junes, a month-and-a-half of Aprils scattered over 4 months in what's Springtime, half-a-month of July 4 sometime around mid-September, and 2 months named High Grey, noted for their afternoon dawns.

Almost always cool. Ten days of hot. Snow strokes, petite-mal seizures of white. A dozen days of bad, bad ice driving spread in unpredictable clusters over as many years.

Sunday, May 25, 2008


The illusion: a great actor sits on a stage after being honored by the organization arranging for his appearance and the showing of several new films.

Grateful and humble, he does his best -- and it really is good -- to entertain with conversation the critic chosen to review for everyone in the actor's presence his many strong film roles, the conversation that critic brings on stage through note cards.

Such an actor! He's got wonderful anecdotes dealing with some choice roles, an aesthetic toward his craft that he conveys with words fluttering and gliding along his hands, and a sense of presentation: where the misplaced mic should be corrected to, how to maneuver discussion to bring out
most effective commentary.

Most of all, in the audience one person, off to his left, some dozen rows back, at a side aisle, that one person laughs in honest abruptness, applauds hands at high-head level, displays his own hands, too, at or around his own face, both white in a dark audience. Those hands. They also interlace and thoughtfully point, they hold pensively to earlobe, they unconsciously stretch, the thumbs like butterfly wing points.

At the laughter, at the white-handedness, at the occasional um-hmm of agreement with an intelligent stage statement, the actor, Ben -- Sir Ben -- looks far enough to his left so that the audience member knows that he, he especially, has been noted and has gratified the great man, has given him what he acts most for.

What an actor!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

My World, My Mirror

Even when the attention's undivided, it's divided. And when it's whole, it's partial. And when it's full, it's depleted.

Isn't this the story of the category of categories? There's some sense of 'border', verge. An outside to the inside, a beginning before which we refuse to see there's something, and an end after which there's no confessed continuance. Self-containment.

What bounds me is me. I encapsulate the stuff of myself. The world I've seen I've seen, the day I've lived I've lived, the others I've known I've known.

Accuse this of being solipsistic, and what can I retort but J'en m'accuse ! And if the French is wrong, the judgment's based on la diccionaire que jai l'ecrit !

Arrest me, but know that it's on the basis of my own guilt and personal self-condemnation.

The police -- they're me! L'etat c'est moi!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Warm Terrace

A couple of degrees Fahrenheit one way or the other and I get cranky: heat should be stable as interest rates.

The vine and the friar. Port is to the lips of the fat monk what butterscotch is to a sweet tooth.

We, dumbly in suzerainty to thin sheets of cloud and the bee-flight of molecules.

Tart dentifrice whites, parched oak Zinfandels, Monster Reds with two heads, one hundred eyes.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Hey, Sorry! I'll Get It

America: bull in the China shop.

Every time we move, an elbow knocks into a piece of crockery or glassware. We're bluff about our breakage, and hearty.

Not needing to feel defensive,
we laugh and we pay.

Credit's good, right? Great. Say, how are the kids?


Old Food: refrigerated in its plastic
a transparency of cramped folds and coagulations.

Bed: retirement twice a day
never-rememberable dreams, oneself lost

Cat Box: beachcombing for kelp and crab --
cat hair drifts leewards on the forced air

Sunday, May 18, 2008


I see rock, they see silver
I see rock, they see gold

Strip me of my blindness

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Campaign For Prayer For The Campaign

Is there any national politician in America, who, when asked about 'the greatest philosopher', would not respond: Jesus?

The poor second speculated upon, but never actually chosen, is Socrates.

Never, ever, would we hear Plato or Nietzsche, the two poets among the philosophers, who also have uncomfortably undemocratic associations, anachronistically linked to 20th Century fascism. Such bad reps are cruisin' for a bruisin', just asking for a 'swift boat' attack.

Marx? Well, more a 'political economist', but, of course, a communist. Machiavelli? Half the same charge -- political theoretician -- and in addition, strictly an opportunist, a schemer.

Voltaire? Way too clever, too anti-Establishment, vehemently anti-clerical -- a debunker of religions.

Sartre? Double-breasted, film noir version of Voltaire plus Marx.

Forget any 'technical philosophy': Descartes, Hume, Whitehead, Wittgenstein, Ayer.

Got any more Buffalo wings?