Saturday, March 28, 2009

Re: Sofia

A child's laughter is the sweetest sound on earth.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Vox Clamantis

You who
reigns supreme
here on earth,
among those who admire and respect and bow to you,
I spit in your face.
I call your sister whore
and your brother
and your ur-mother and all-powerful father inconsequential.

I will endure
beyond your earthly victory.

I say:
"your trophy is tarnished
your victory was preordained,
It was
a fixed gane,
a false challenge.

"Some other time,
some other place
your sycophantic seconds in life's duel,
and ignorance)
are gone
(and by which you have unfairly
have tilted the game,
here on earth)
I will face you,
universally free,
floating forever
you and I,
alone in the universe,
David and Goliath
naked of all armaments, cleverness and
and will defeat you,

My weapon will be
my will and
my human shout
'I love life!!!'"

Driving a stake into your lfe-sucking heart.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009



A huge building named after you at a famous college.
A scientific discovery that carries your name.
A film that you wrote that becomes a classic.


Me, I'd trade all that for

A granddaughter that remembers me
when she is thirty;
long after my death
in spite of the fact
that I died
when she was five.

Many years later, when talking with a friend,
her friend says to her
"Do you remember your grandfather? I don't remember mine."
And my granddaughter says,
"I remember my grandfather so well.
"He was A...and X...and Y...and...Z."

And a tear forms in her eye.
And her heart seems to skip a beat.

my friend,
is immortality.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Dirty Men

A dirty old man is a dirty young man unburdened by the logic of tactical subtlety.


"A quiet conscience makes one so serene."

-Lord Byron

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


I told my wife wanted to be alone.

So I went on a walk on the Promenade in Santa Monica, CA.

There is nothing more wonderfully, beautifully alone,
than wandering in the midst of a gathered crowd;
I looked at my watch; 3:30 in the afternoon, after lunch, and before the nighttime crowd gathers.

I saw a restaurant.
It looked promising.
Maybe I'd go there.
So I went in.
I looked around.

At a back table, I saw a lovely lady, sitting alone.
She sat facing the door.
She was looking around.
I looked down at the table in front of her.
One place setting.
Nobody was going to join her.

I looked at the menu, asked the maitre de about hours of service.
I looked at the back table lady again.
She really didn't seem to want to be alone.
But I did.
I continued on my way, back onto the Promenade.

I saw an old man seated on a bench.
He didn't seem to want to be alone either.
He stared at everyone.
He looked into my eyes.
I averted them.

I went into a bar.
People everywhere.
Everyone seemed together.
I didn't have to talk to anyone.

Until I saw a young man who was seated at a table, alone.
He was facing the crowd, like the lady at the restaurant.
He was looking around, too.

I averted his eyes, too, quickly decided to sit at the bar.
I would have a rare afternoon beer.
There was only one seat available.
Next to someone.

A seat opened up at the corner of the bar.
I moved there.
The bartendress served me a beer.
Without looking.
I watched a soccer game.

Ten minutes later, I resumed my walk on the Promenade.
Suddenly lonely people seemed to be everywhere.

I thought: Maybe I wasn't the only one who wanted to be alone.

Then I thught: On the contrary; maybe I was.

Maybe the others, unlike me, had to be alone.

Then I thought:

Why do they have to be alone?
Why don't lonely people walk up to one another?
Why don't they just walk up to one another?
Unlike me, they didn't choose to be alone today.
They can reach out.
They can join one another and talk about their loneliness.
Loneliness is hell...unless you want it, right?

Then I thought.

Maybe that's not such a good idea:
Maybe, if they talk to one another, they might find out why they are alone:

I went home.
My wife smiled when I came through the door.
I didn't.

Later I did.
A lot.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

"The New Yorker" and Rahm Emanuel

I love the New Yorker magazine. I really do. Especially for its subtlety.

This is what The New Yorker (and writer Ryan Lizzi) has to say about the background of President Obama's Chief of Staff, Rahm Emanuel, in its March feature about him.

"[Rahm] Emanuel grew up in a political family. His Israeli born father, Benjamin, was a member of the Irgun, a militant Zionist group from which the modern Israel was born [italics mine]..." Whoa!

Uh...did we leave something distinctively important get left out about the Isreali group, the Irgun? The Irgun, and its members, were terrorists.

According to the Encyclopedia Britannica, the Irgun was:

"...a Jewish right-wing underground movement in Palestine, founded in 1931. At first supported by many non-Socialist Zionist parties, in opposition to the Haganah, it became in 1936 an instrument of the Revisionist Party, an extreme nationalist group that had seceded from the World Zionist Organization and whose policies called for the use of force, if necessary, to establish a Jewish state on both sides of the Jordan. [italics mine]

"Irgun committed acts of terrorism and assassination [italics mine] against the British, whom it regarded as illegal occupiers, and it was also violently anti-Arab [italics mine]. Irgun also participated in the organization of illegal immigration into Palestine after the publication of the British White Paper on Palestine (1939), which severely limited immigration. Irgun’s violent activities led to execution of many of its members by the British; in retaliation, Irgun executed British army hostages. [italics mine]

I don't see much definitional and/or operational distinction between the activities of early Israeli Irgun and modern Palestinian Hamas. Yet in the articles, Rahm's Dad's activities simply portray him as an active member of a "militant Zionist group" from which "modern Israel was born."

Would the son of a modern Hamas participant be described in The New Yorker in the same whitewashed manner?

Your Israeli bias is showing, New Yorker. Sad.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Sharing the Moon

Sofia and I
share the moon.
We send it back and forth to each other
from Los Angeles to Washington, DC,
from Pacific Palisades to Capitol Hill,
so we can both view
the moon in all its shapes:
the full moon, with its round baby face,
the three-quarter moon,
like a bowl of breakfast cereal spilling over it's edge,
and the half moon
with its shape of a half eaten pie, both perfectly flat and perfectly round at the same time
and the quarter moon, which seems a cradle without a baby in it
(which is only proper since Sofia is almost five now and sleeps in a big bed).

Sometimes the moon Sofia and I send each other is just a sliver,
a thin line in the sky,
a reminder, more, than a full shape
of our shared and experienced moon.

( is not here at all!
Teasing us with

But whatever our moon, whenever, whatever shape,
it is always with our hearts
in our minds, where,
as Sofia knows,
all imaginings are born,
and in our phone calls: when we say,
"Thank you Grandpa for sending me the moon. It is outside my bedroom window now"; and I say "Send it back when you are finished, so I can see it, too."
"I love you, goodbye," she says. And I say "I love you, goodbye."
And she hangs up,
and the moon becomes my heart, so full,
so round,
so bright,
illuminating my nighttime sky.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Is an angry gay an oxymoron?

Sunday, March 01, 2009

More and Better

A capitalist wrote to socialist: "You cannot multiply wealth by dividing it." A socialist wrote back: "But you can multiply happiness by dividing greed."


What happens when the rich run out of money (or worse, out of the country)...who's going to pay taxes then?