Saturday, June 26, 2021
Thursday, June 24, 2021
I had the pleasure of publishing a brand new Rusty Barnes short story at the BEAT to a PULP webzine. Rusty is one of my favorite poets but this is the first time I've featured some of his fiction. Top notch, of course. And speaking of poetry, a colloboration of mine with writer Stephen J. Golds called "Waitin' Around To Die" appears at Punk Noir Magazine.
Lastly, I first became aware of Joni Mitchell’s Blue when Rolling Stone printed their instantly outmoded "Top 100 Albums of the Last 20 Years" in 1987. That her masterpiece was ranked at 46, I’d later learn, was one of the many problems with the male-dominated list, but I’m grateful they at least printed the final verse to “The Last Time I Saw Richard.”
I'm gonna blow this damn candle out
I don't want nobody comin' over to my table
I got nothing to talk to anybody about
All good dreamers pass this way some day
Hidin' behind bottles in dark cafes
Those lines hit me like a Joe Frazier right. This was dynamic poetry and I wanted to know more, hear more. Pre-internet, instant gratification was a rare commodity. I waited until pay day and then headed to Tape World where I purchased a cassette of Blue. Luckily, my car stereo had a tape player, so I could listen to my new purchase on the ride home.
Tuesday, June 22, 2021
Monday, June 14, 2021
Saturday, April 17, 2021
Wednesday, April 7, 2021
"No Line for a Common Thread" is my second published poem of '21. And without Stephen J. Golds it would not have seen the light of day. Thanks to his encouragement and legend Paul D. Brazill for making it happen at his mighty indie Punk Noir Magazine.
Monday, April 5, 2021
Sunday, March 14, 2021
Sunday, March 7, 2021
Monday, February 8, 2021
Rusty Barnes pulls the curtain back on JESUS IN THE GHOST ROOM with an ominous tone. “This is the year of terrible things ...” and yet it's not just the narrator's life that's on edge, he notes that nature itself is off kilter: "the moss doesn't even grow on the right side of the tree any more." From “Annus Horribilis,” this clever MEMENTO in poem finds our guide back at a picnic the night before as “my hands swirl in the air on their way to your pockets.” What exactly happened is open to interpretation, possibly just the rush of new love, but there’s enough mystery to read in a couple different scenarios.
Reminiscence grounds a significant portion of this collection. Mr. Barnes spirits us much farther back in his timeline to the family ties that forever haunt. It is “Summer 1974” and a father looms godlike in a young kid’s life. A sharp, familiar image from the time period is conveyed with the line “cigarette packs rolled into both sleeves,” but it’s the "like epaulets” description that delivers distinctive style. Other highlights include “Listening to Hugo Winterhalter in the Early AM” and “Fire.”
Mr. Barnes touches on many subjects, including his mom, loss of faith, male bonding, first sexual experience, nature, and imagination. An eclectic collection of verse, yes, and very relatable.
Friday, January 15, 2021
Tuesday, January 12, 2021
I have a post up at the Western Fictioneers blog reviewing Tom Clavin's DODGE CITY. One of my favorite books on Wyatt Earp that strips away a lot of the mythologizing and reveals a even more interesting historical figure.
Big news for me that, as I said on Twitter, has me floating on cloud nine: Close To The Bone has announced they will publish my poetry chapbook Dead Burying the Dead Under a Quaking Aspen.
And on the homefront we are still socially distancing and trying to get by the best we can. I'm fortunate to be gainfully employed (outside of writing) and have faith, though shaky, that this country can reach a plateau of stability sooner than later. Hope you are all doing well too.