• Watching Butterflies

    The other day was a beautiful day. 83° low humidity. Jill rightfully wanted to go out for a while. We started on a drive, ostensibly to Princeton. On the way, I mentioned that there is a nature park pretty close to home. She agreed to a walk, so we pulled into… Crystal Lake Park. With a mindful eye kept for Jason, we got out of the car and started our walk. We passed a sign notifying all that the park was closed dusk to dawn. Now I’m thinking “Great, vampires too.” There’s a nice paved walking jogging and biking path running through the woods, and since I didn’t have bug spray in the car, we decided to opt for that path as opposed to the ones that were just mowed spots along the woods and fields. Neither of us is in great shape, and I’m still recovering from knee replacement surgery, and walking with a cane. Moseying along, we find a shady spot with a wood railed fence overlooking a small ravine, so we stop to take a look. I’m mentioning something about wildlife when I noticed a beautiful dark butterfly. I pointed it out to Jill, and another one comes to view. Then another. Sometime between that and me running out of fingers to count with, Jill turns to me and asks “Do you have children?” For those of you that are lacking in knowledge of my present history, Jill has Alzheimer’s. And we’ve been together for close to 20 years. After answering, “No” and reflecting on being asked a question usually reserved for a first or second date by someone who once upon a time knew all about me… It’s so sad

    Then I think about how things could be so very different. No ex wife, no ligation over alimony or child support. And the butterflies keep coming. Jill wants to go, so we amble back to the car. Jill, of course, wanders towards the wrong car, then gets in the driver’s seat of our car. It takes a little bit to coax her out and into the passenger’s side, and I ask if she knows that she can’t drive, she answers in the affirmative, with a mournful yes that breaks my heart a little bit more. She was so independent, creative and adventurous when we met.

    After asking what felt like 57 times with no answer, I made an executive decision and headed for Princeton. Driving through town was very strange. I lived there 28 years ago, and we both spent a lot of time there back in the day. It was so, so different. What used to be here was gone or something else, over and over. Some of the old places were still there, but it was still a little surreal and sad. At the same time, there are a lot of happy and fond memories attached to the town. It reminded me of the butterflies and the changes they go through. I chose to take the longer more scenic route home after we decided not to take a walk. Meandering towards home, it occurs to me how Alzheimer’s is like a butterfly in reverse. You start with a beautiful creature and sadly watch as they retreat slowly into a cocoon, losing themselves and the things that made them enjoy life. It’s painful and frightening to have to stand by watching, knowing that there’s not much you can do. I can’t even begin to imagine what it feels like from the other side. Jill’s still aware that she’s losing herself, and she’s scared and confused a lot. She’s always telling me “I’ve got to figure out what’s going on…”

    So I guess in a way, I’m always watching butterflies.

  • Dead Soul Brother

    Greg,

    What was your last living thought?

    You went so peacefully, quietly

    the way it should be done

    but not at 28

    It’s so very hard to think of you

    as Not

    So different, you and I

    We were a gentle riot

    you and me

    You were such

    a gentle giant

    Always had a minute for fun

    you’ll always be Great to me

    Don’t think I’ll ever see you smile

    Again

    So if you get restless

    Come see me once in a while

    my friend

    I miss you more, as the daze go by

    Almost been here or there before

    I’m still mad at you

    & it’s still sad

    I couldn’t cry as you walked out that final door

    but I love you, Brother

    & you’ll never be just another

    Another dead friend

    Somewhat

    Like a midnight mystery lover

    w/ the drug things we had to do

    undercover

    we understood each other

    My errant almost twin

    Soul Brother

  • Poetry

    Worlds of words

    Oh, to think

    If the people were

    All Poets

    Or could Almost understand

    Holiness would bless

    caress & undress

    Yield w/ wanting

    to the word “Yes”

    So set desires on fire

    seek them with innocence

    Need not be a thief

    or a liar

    Poetry is sacred to me

    &

    Genius is within humanity

    But, damn! You’ve got to look very hard

    To begin to see

    What would set us free

    But I will start with

    Poetry

  • Rambling

    “Lose the fear of pain

    Walking in the sharpened rain”

    Willie B. Good

    I was looking for a particular notebook/journal… Part of the reason was to find the poem containing the lines above. Willie B. Good is a pseudonym, an alter ego, old blues man. I found the notebook, which has some good stuff, but the search for the referenced poem ended in disappointment. It was, how to say it nicely… Shit. I was 21 and doing too much acid and drinking, as well as “partying” in general, tho at the time, “too much” was an alien concept, at least to me. I was doing a lot of writing, but a lot of it looks/sounds the same. I guess that reflects the repetition of my daily life, as it were. I think acid can, and did for me, expand consciousness. It can however make everyday reality seem, for a better way to put it, lacking potential, which drinking was probably an attempt to blot out, which I was aware of. My mom sent me to a drug and alcohol councilor when I was 16-ish. One time he told me ” This weekend you were found, no coat, shirt half off, in a puddle that was freezing over. That doesn’t sound like fun.” He continues with “I can see going out with a girl or some friends and smoking a joint or two, maybe a couple drinks…” I looked at him and interrupted “Sometimes It’s not about fun, it’s about oblivion.” I didn’t see it as a problem, I saw it as the only reasonable solution. I believe that the episode he referenced came about when I invited a very attractive young lady to help me drink a fifth of whiskey, don’t remember the brand. Long story short-ish, she didn’t show up which I responded to by “sharing” the bottle with some friends. We were in a shed behind the arcade that the owner put there so we didn’t have to party in the elements. Sharing this particular evening consisted of passing the bottle around, except my turns were an impressive guzzle. The bottle only made 2-3 trips around the 3 or 4 of us. My friends were like “what happened, it’s empty already.” The answer became obvious a few minutes later when I started wobbling and weaving…

    I’ll probably use Willie’s lines somewhere else, or maybe attempt a rewrite of the original material. Right now, I’m not working, recovering from knee replacement surgery. One of the things I’m s’posed to be doing is working on my book, which reads about like this here thingie, ramble or whatnot. I did at least start this blog, tho I’m still having trouble with the paperwork I should be doing. Guess I’ll work on my procrastination sometime later. It’s a cross between amazing and borderline idiocy, the distractions that I manage to find for myself, all the time telling myself that I’m doing the best I can. Circumstances, circumstances, home all day with Jill, who is suffering with Alzheimer’s when I’m used to (and sick of) going to 40 some stops 4 days a week. We have helpers coming in 4-5 days a week, and Jill’s friends call and/or come by. My friends, not so much. They do call, but as hard as it is to admit, I’m very lonely, haven’t even seen family in years, starting before the pandemic. Even had a couple friends come back to visit, call to tell me that they’re around, be great to see you… Told them to call when they had some time, then… (Sounds of crickets chirping) I didn’t call back because I know that they certainly had plans and I don’t want to be a pest, but with everything else going on, I took it personally, and again, hard to admit, it hurt a lot. So, complications with the incision healing keeping me from being too active and bathing with waterless soap that I hoarded up over the 2 months I was in and out of the hospital last fall keeping me from feeling quite human, depression, loneliness, being broke emotional and financially, not to mention losing Honey, my 3 year old puppy dog to medical issues right before surgery are taking their toll. I’m a survivor and I’ll get through it and come out stronger, but it sure as shit don’t feel that way, and hasn’t for about a month. I do get moments of sunshine, like when mother birds bring their babies and feed them in front of my window by the bird feeder, waking up in a good mood for a much needed change, enjoying a meal, or sharing a laugh with Jill. Ah, and life goes on… So if you like, you can wait here as I take another walk in the sharpened rain…

  • The Window

    Distorted images

    shining up from wet pavement

    Slow lonely traffic

    uncertain destination

    Civilization

    a wilderness mispercepted

    Discovery born of

    unschooled education

    Decadence, future father of Roman change

    Will the futures dawn ignite Heaven or Hell

    Will Eden triumph or Hades again paroled

    Looking thru a window into a wishing well

    Looking out a window

    at what may well always be

    Thinking of the Ancient Gods

    but that is not what I see

  • Rant #1

    In view of the fact that God limited the intelligence of man, it seems unfair that He did not also limit his stupidity.

    Konrad Adenauer

    WTF! I’ve been pretty much housebound since surgery a few weeks ago (knee replacement)… I’m not driving yet, so I’m limited to going out to Drs appointments and occasional trips to the supermarket and the pharmacy within, when I have a ride. Somehow, between every venture I fool myself into believing that we live in a “normal” world. What the fuck is wrong with me? Of perhaps more importance to “we” is what the fuck is wrong with people? Remember when it was “we”? When what was important was what was best for all? Now I keep forgetting that where you’re going is more important than wherever I may be going, be it the ER, the supermarket, a convenience store, or your sister’s house (guess she can wait). There’s no need to bend over and kiss my ass, I sure ain’t gonna do it for you, but is civility and a little respect too much to ask? Guess so. I know I’m not even close to perfect, and if I’m determined, there’s no way you’re going to out “Asshole” me, but I can at least be polite to and grateful for the persons with service jobs doing what I can’t or won’t do for myself. Ok, maybe you’ve been to the vet today and you have to put drops in Fido’s eyes a few times a day. But maybe the person that you’re treating like “the help” lost their favorite aunt yesterday and, if they’re lucky, they can get a day off for the funeral. IT’S NOT ALL ABOUT YOU! Except maybe when you drive past 3 signs that say “RIGHT LANE IS FOR TURNING ONLY” and it’s ok to make the people behind you that are turning right wait for you to venture through the traffic into the lane your dumb ass is s’posed to be in. I assume those people are going somewhere, but that brings us back to the fact that your destination is quite obviously priority to the utmost squared. Ever been in a checkout line and the person or two in front of you seemingly forgot that payment is expected and has to fumble around, perhaps get out an abacus to figure out which card has enough on it or if they have enough cash? Hey, sometimes that person is me (probably on the day I have to pick up drops for Fido’s eyes) but I at least turn around and apologize profusely. And are you the person that goes around the line of traffic to the front of the exit line to take your proper place in front of all of us lunkheads taking our place and waiting our turn? Do you have any idea how many times I’ve decided not to run your “too smart and important” ass off the road to have a little chat about how you are no better than others until you can stop bullets and not bleed? Or how many times your Mercedes, BMW. Lexus, etc is lucky to make it home without a dent shaped like my buggy, after racing to the red light without the desired outcome? I would continue, but perhaps it’s better to leave some for next time. Take peace that you can relax a bit, at least until I get back to driving on Your roads

    Have a far out and groovy day… Grrrrr

  • Moonshine

    She was a lover in an urgent hour

    A damsel in distress

    in an enchanted tower

    She heard the whisper of footsteps

    in the hall

    She felt a heartbeat thru

    the ancient wall

    A dark halo’d prince

    had come to be her man

    The key into lock was turned

    & hours into passion burned

    The wizard stayed home

    for a hundred years

    And all his words

    were for her ears

    Then one Summer

    She left to get a tan

    she liked the experience

    and found a Sunshine Man

  • Thinking About You

    Don’t know what to think about you

    But I’m thinking about you

    You capture infinite possibilities

    w/ just a smiling glance

    & fantasy memories

    Are waiting somewhere

    If we give ’em a chance

    Moving with sensuous grace

    Y’know you take my heart for a ride

    & I wonder what it would be like

    To spend time by your side

    ‘Cuz all I really know is

    If I painted a perfect angel

    Into a living dream

    She would look like you

    Move like you

    & Smile

    Like you

  • I DON’T BELIEVE IN FOREVER… ANYMORE

    I climb and I climb

    A circle of time

    I can’t take it anymore

    I can’t fake it anymore

    Everybody wants what’s mine

    I don’t believe in forever… anymore

    Sunday morning finds me dazed

    Looking for a place to stay

    Stubborn sidewalks, my breath in the air

    Pondering my death, and should I even care?

    I’m so tired of drinking with my “friends”

    So tired of nights with forgotten ends

    So tired of living on the edge

    So tired of dancing on the ledge

    I don’t believe in forever… anymore

    Spent all my money on a new girlfriend

    Another chance, nothing else is new

    Another beginning that will soon come to an end

    Another dance with a stranger like you

    Another chance, and nothing else will do

    Nothing else is new

    I don’t believe in forever… anymore

    I’m in an alley off of dream street

    A bra and a broken bottle at my feet

    I’m bleeding, it’s a dirty story

    About drinking, lust and glory

    The dawn is bruised

    Where night fell down on it

    I’m confused, contused

    And the glory’s all counterfeit

    I don’t believe in forever anymore, anymore

    Anymore

  • SHADOW

    The minutes join and form hours

    The evening sours

    This swelling feeling seems fitting

    For dark seductions

    In a darkened room

    Some loveless tomb

    Adoring victim 

    Who’s haunting who? 

    I leave her in a guilty bed

    To stalk a lover new

    Rattlesnake rustling of leaves

    In the trees

    Under a full moon

    Silent streets where tension is strung

    Alleys alive with a song unsung

    Over the edge and into my eyes

    I’m at home here

    For every home 

    Has a shadow of fear