Once upon many a callow night I would make myself lost amidst the darkness of the Rampart Range ponderosa pine forest. I romanticized the mystery I exuded and the closeness I felt, alone, to the towering trees and the midnight pin-pricked vault above. “Why did she suddenly run off like that?” new friends would ask around the campfire, its hallowed light. Read More



Oakland by West Grand

Oakland by West Grand

In the bite-sized park across from the bus station a crowd gathered around some guys giving out food. The crowd started misbehaving so the guys distributing charity yelled at them to get in line and chastised with straight up “No’s!” Drug addicts and old Asians comprised the ‘far side of charity,’ and of course the pigeons. One guy called me over and insisted I take food, and when I grabbed a banana he commanded me to take two.

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‘Tis the Season to be Reading

(Photo via Pinterest but I believe photographer is Lee Jeffries.)

Attention Writer/Artist friends: If you are a regular reader of this blog or if I have read your poetry on your site, and if you have books available in print, please leave brief summaries of your work in the comments and links to your preferred purchase method. Oh, and children’s books are more than welcome too. Thank you!
(Please do not promote your book here if we have had no interaction yet. Thanks for your understanding.)


Photography by Bruce Gilden

I’m depressed. I’ve felt a surge of rejection over the past couple weeks, and what’s stupid is it all stems from the vitriolic, soul-crushing existence of social media. It’s simply embarrassing that, 1) we as a civilization have devolved to this being the “most efficient” way of communicating, when actually very little is communicated or learned; and 2) I, a pretty much against-the-mainstream, hippyish free spirit have fallen into all this must-maintain-an-online-presence nonsense. It’s hard living a life you know you’re not supposed to be living, that there’s a much better life for you, calling for you, if only… Read More

Himalayan Happiness

“Karpu” Photography by Amaya Engleking

Remember how after Tsewang and I wrote the bilingual love ballad with the first line being so intentionally cheesy because I only wanted to hear Karpu’s passionate ten year-old heart sing it, but his sister stated as a matter of fact, “No. He’s badly tuned.” And remember how after tea and before our long, bumpy cab ride to Swayambhu from the Nagarkot tower where Tsering Medo and Nima along with a couple dozen college kids hopped the barbed wire to stand on the gravity station to get the ghosts to come out, Joshua suggested to our party that we find a toilet. And Tsering asked with a naughty smile, “Little little or big and long?” Remember how on the sunny laundry day in Kathmandu, Read More


Photography by Armelle Touzeau

Broken brocade;

Where do I put this sequin when the sequence

Falls like notes from the cellar door?

On my knees searching on the dirty waxed floor

Hands graze gypsy mambo scuff-marks

And dirty martini olive-swords.

Candles glow in distant red bulbs,

My search waxes dim.

How does poetry save the world like God? Read More

A Day in San Bernardo


Don Carlos, the professional classical guitarist from whom I rented a room in Medellín, asked if I would feed the five tortugas in the atrium paradise under the lime tree and bougainvillea, and then accompany him in singing Renaissance music. We spent the afternoon learning lullabies and laments, and after much digging through ancient sheet music, he found the treasured García Lorca song arrangements.  Read More


Photo by Beorn DuPont

Breakfast beating at the hunger hour. The cobbler ate clams and drank Meritage, and Charlie from California called us all ‘homies’ while the phones kept buzzing. Bzzz, and Tim with his mandolin and Levon with his grooving views on duty and Dao while the ball of sun-dried tomato/basil whipped butter sat there wuwei… They were billy goats gruff and I coveted their lack of sensibilities. Merv, that ancient free spirit of a shoemaker, wandered town as a troll at SnowDown and asked around about “them hill-billies.”  Read More