Monday, June 28, 2004

Miscellaneous Notes From the Road

assorted unrelated thoughts as dictated into my Sony Clie PDA -- random, perhaps works in progress, perhaps stuff for the cutting room floor. I know they are not all "keepers"
Pearlescent clouds on baby blue
the sky, to me, today.

I marvel at the glorious scene
how many shades of green?


What if Jesus were to come into the world today,
at a time when we idolize sports figures, fashion models, and pop stars;
How would he be received?

Would we receive him for who he was
Or would we, like the Pharisees of old,
doubt him and seek to condemn him to death?

How would we recognize him?
How would he make himself known to a world
that is hung up on TV,
and the internet,
and instant messaging,
and Hollywood?


I know your life is sometimes hard.
And that I at times make it harder.
But I do have a deep love for you.
Like the deep love I have for
this green earth and its waters.

It's not a unique love.
I feel it for some, at times for many.
But it is a deep love, a true love.
And hopefully knowing that will make your life
just a little easier.


A trampoline
is a fun machine.
It recalls to you your youth.

Jump a while.
Can't help smile.
And that's the God's honest truth.

Friday, June 25, 2004

Solstice Rain

Rain on the roof,
murmuring like an excited crowd.
Rain water streams off the eaves,
splashing to the ground, like bacon sizzling on a griddle.

The rainfall crescendos,
the crowd roars, rising from their seats,
filling the air with cheers.

The summer squall fades,
the applause slowly falters,
the quieting crowd sits, hushed, whispering
leaving only the sound of a breeze through trees
and scattered dripping.

Tuesday, June 22, 2004

a migraine*

sickening pain, up one side of the neck,
through half the face,
sizzling at the scalp and searing through one eyeball

the mind screaming in agony
sickness rising from deep below the stomach
pushing against the back of the throat

no hope for reasoning
no ability to focus externally
the mind collapsing in upon its miserable self

the clock ticks too loud
each second crashes like cymbals
sending synaptic shockwaves through the brain

any light is too bright
but sunglasses do little to help closed eyes
when eyelids phosphoresce hot white, lime green & purple

and any medicines that DO work, make you much sicker first,
intensified pain & nausea until you finally pass out
and sometime later your brain reboots, and you awake

but its not over then
for now, though thankfully pain-free,
follows a period of wiped out listless detachment

and some days the meds don't work, the pain grows,
mounting upon itself in cressendo triple forte and life becomes meaningless,
the mind collapses upon itself, no longer able to escape the blackhole of pain

on those days, at that time
you have but one angel of mercy, one savior
and that is the one who finally jabs you with demerol

*Not The migraine, just one of many

Not such a good day @ Cedar Eden

The highlight: Mathew had his fifth grade graduation (Moving UP) ceremony tonight, and received High Honors w/Effort all four marking periods.

Beyond that, Marlene was up all night sick with what Emily had Sunday. And I've got a splitting headache that won't quite. And I have to be up at 4AM to sample four West Chester & Putnam County lakes. E-Yikes!

So, here is what tonight looks like at Cedar Eden . . .

Marlene sick on the couch

Mathew watching HP on DVD

Emily IM-ing her friends

These pictures, BTW, were taken with my new Sony Clie PEG-TH55 and uploaded to my smugmug site directly from the PDA using its built-in wireless capabilities. . . pretty cool (I really wanted the Palm Tungsten C but I went through two units in one week with failing WIFI and others had similar experiences so I switched to SONY)

Sunday, June 20, 2004

Father's Day, Q & A

Q: So, what are you going to do for Father's Day?

A: Oh, take it easy, do nothing, sit around and watch TV, maybe fall asleep in my chair

Q: I see. . . So pretty much like every day for you, eh?

Thursday, June 17, 2004


Fort Wayne Airport,
early Thursday
Tired, so tired.
Hours of flying ahead of me,
into storms that will blossom at ALB.
Traveling is exciting, interesting
but its always so nice to be heading home.

Sometimes I return with mixed emotions:
Both good and bad lie ahead
Still, there is nothing like comfortable sorroundings,
one's own shower, one's own bed.
And though I feel like I earned a day of rest
It's right back at it tomorrow morn.

Tuesday, June 15, 2004

When all is said and done . . .

When all is said and done
and you reach the dusty end
will you have had some fun?
will you leave behind a friend?

When all is said and done
will the truth be finally told
of a spirit bright as sun
or a heart of dark and cold?

When all is said and done
and your time has passed away
will you leave a basket full
or a cache of empty days?

When all is said and done
If you knew the how, the when
would you change the here and now
or just live it all again?

Monday, June 14, 2004

Dinner & A Movie
or My Fortunes Tonight

• You will spend old age in comfort
and material wealth •

• Handsome is that handsome does •

source: First Wok, West Bethel Avenue, Muncie IN

p.s. I had the eggroll, Hot & Sour Soup & double-cooked pork (3 stars)
p.p.s. Had dinner and show: Bruce Almighty (two thumbs up!)

First Wok Still Life

First Wok Still Life

On the Road. Again
June 14, 2004

Well, here I am,
On the Road again.
Indiana, flooded Indiana.
A bit warm for my adirondack mountain blood.
But green. With water and wetlands. All that I need.

Thursday, June 10, 2004

Driving to Redwood
June 10, 2004

I've been wasting my days
wasting my nights
on things that, in the end,
do not matter;
things, that in the long run,
provide no enjoyment,
no precious memories;
serving only myself,
ignoring all responsibility,
and all others so much more deserving.

Lord, I am not worthy to receive you,
but only say the word and I shall be healed.
Sometimes I feel I have dug myself so deep,
there is no point in climbing out.
But then I see the beauty of the world around me,
nature as God's gift, and realize:
to see through these eyes
is reason enough
to rise up, and go on.

I have been blessed
with vision and talent
but so much more blessed
with love unconditional,
love forgiving (if not understanding),
from close friends and family:
a true sign that the holy spirit
is working in our lives.

Thoughts while Driving to NH
Early February 2004

If I could rewind the clock of life
twenty five years
and had the chance to live it all again
looking back, I would not change a thing

our time is here & now
our lives brought us here
I wouldn't change a single thing
and risk not having
this time with you, here and now


I want to hold you so close,
wrapped up in my arms,
that you can see the world through my eyes.


Every day life binds me.
Does it really matter who I am with?

Tuesday, June 08, 2004

Kayaking Last Weekend
June 5, 2004

Here are some images from our recent kayak trip. See the whole gallery on my Smugmug gallery.

A pitcher plant from Little Polliwog Pond

A pitcher plant reflected in Little Polliwog Pond

A pitcher plant from Little Polliwog Pond

A beaver lodge in Little Polliwog Pond

A sundew (Drosera) from Little Polliwog Pond

A sundew (Drosera) from Little Polliwog Pond - note the insects being "eaten"

A frog from Osgood Pond

A frog from Little Polliwog Pond

Mathew exploring in Church Pond

Emily exploring in Church Pond

Driving Exam

On August 3rd, I must attest,
I filed for my driving test.
If on the road I'm to prevail,
this test I must not, MUST NOT FAIL.
After the written test is done
there still is time for much more fun.
With a stranger I'll drive about
to see if I know what it's all about.
If he says that I did fine,
I'll drive until I'm 99.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1976


. . . is not the cute little loving creature that I thought she was. I knew she wasn't loving but I still though she was cute.
. . . is really a tough little woman who rules her friends and for some reason they respect her. I saw her acting like the little gang leader she is at Party '78.
. . . is not loving because she doesn't have to be. Her friends love to be with her because she laughs and has lots of cute mannerisms.
. . . can see that I have something better to offer but she lusts for power. SHe doesn't have to go to her so-called friends, they will come to her.
But this one will no longer ! !

She was a classic example of
"that cute little thing
who never did nothing but
who got everything."
She's still quite a charmer
and she's everyone's pet.
But you've kept her from caring
and she still can't care yet.

Now I'm mad at the world
for what you've done to her soul.
I've tried hard to help her.
She'll probably never be whole.
How can she miss caring?
She never had to try.
How can she know sharing?
You have her living a lie.

You;ve cared for her and loved her,
impressed by her charm but
never making her care back
did less good than harm.

I gave her my love but
she could not respond.
Now the damage you did
has broken our bond.

from The secret lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Monday, June 07, 2004

The Fire Opal

"Ooo say, aren't you sweet,"
cooed the maiden to the glistening stone
she spied awash of the rushing stream.
From that day forth
it would rule her mind 'til the end
of her days and her dream.

A cold, black stone to the touch,
to the eye, as red as fire.
The bright hue could make
the Pheonix blush
as did the maiden's desire.

She stopped to pick the ripened rock
and to clutch it to her heart.
The river, lusting for its own,
quickly swept the two apart.

They say she is crazy,
for she walks within a haze.
The river took the precious stone
and her wish of finer days.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

The road I travel

I travel
a road of gravel,
of ruts and bumps,
of trees and of stumps,
with hills I must climb
in my own time.

I don't seem to move
until I look back
and see that I couldn't be happy
on any other track.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Dorm Hyenas

Animals outside my door
fightin' o'er the scraps of new girls on the floor.
Chicks born near a lion's den
and as the battle rages, i'm alone inside again.

So much inside me with nowhere to go
so much inside me with no one who knows
If you don't want it, good luck to the wolf
who'll gobble you up and widen the gulf.

Time passes much to quick
though i've got as much as you
one day we al look back
and wonder where time went to

Don't waste your time with hyenas.
Their look is death, their intentions meaner.
unconcerned with all but their deepest urge
for satisfaction, the countryside they'll purge.

You have the choice of who you want to be
the decision is up to you, not me.
But life is mine, the world is my backyard
Don't search too long. Don't look too hard.

I can give freedom at the same time i give love
tell you things of beauty 'neath the sky above
songs of peace -- poetry
everything which is me

All this and more is yours if you choose
or stored until later if you refuse
I can't stop you from having the blues
so don't come for help once you'be been abused.

Though I've never turned 'round on a pretty face
(they can push me and shove me all over the place),
I'm subject to the moods of the whole human race
from the dance of euphoria to the dregs of disgrace.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Sunday, June 06, 2004

Snow flakes

the snow flakes . . .
racing hectically to the ground
only to find that they've lost all identity.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

I'm in love . . .

I'm in love with my stereo
It puts me in the mood I choose
It drowns out my thoughts
And repaints my blues

I'm in love with my motorcycle
It flies me where I want to go
It gives me something to concentrate on
Easing my brain when I feel psycho

I'm in love with speed,
It erases the clutter within.
The faster the better
To let my thoughts reform again.

I'm in love with my fountain pen,
Flowing my soul onto the page.
The only true connection 'tween me and you.
My inner soul knows no age.

I'm in love with you,
Whoever you are.
I only wish you could see
Someday I'm going far.

from The secret lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Curse of the Gemini

It's hard on me
to have been giving all along.
I wanted to see
if your love for me was strong.

And what I feel now is hurt.
Guess I'm not worth the effort.
You kept it to yourself
as you watched me walk away.

And what else can my thoughts be
Except that it was just me
Who was keeping us together!
It's over, probably for the better.

I'm sure I'm wrong / I'm sure I'm right.
My soul will never win this fight.
You'll see me smile / You'll hear me sigh.
It's the curse of the Gemini.

from The secret lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Saturday, June 05, 2004

I'd rather be . . .

I'd rather be just me, alone
Rattlin' 'round an empty home
Controlling why and where and when
You'd be invited 'round, as friend.

And if I chose to paddle west
You'd only be along as guest
And so much happier I would be
controlling my own destiny.

A Woe to Be

A woe to be
alone, with me.
No one here but I.
To long for love,
to touch be touched,
While living out a lie.

A flame that sparks
then sputters out
A heart as dark as night.
Reaching out
for hands to hold
And yet no wings for flight.


The forms, the patterns, the images . . .
a million tiny pieces which can't
all fit together at the same time.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

The Mike within

I will never have a girl.
It's something in the way I think.
All alone in the world,
I could probably use a shrink.

But I won't go.
I already know
that it's me;
It's in my chemistry.

Once accepted,
I'm anticepted.
I'll survive;
Remain alive.

I'm taken wrong everyday
I guess somebody wants it that way
And though I won't fight it
I never invite it

Nobody knows what I'm like
They only see the outer Mike
You will never begin
To see the Mike within.

from The secret lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Questioning Infinity

Why am I confronted with infinity?
Am I supposed to make sense of it?
Or just let it rattle around in my mind?

Could it be I no longer function rationally?
That the world I view is seen through prismatic eyers?

Disorientation confronts me, stifles me.
There is no reflected image in the mirror.
Will someone ever stand beside me?

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Friday, June 04, 2004

Driving home after a day with you

Fire in the mirror,
the sunset paints the roadside red
Dylon's in my jukebox, playin'
I keep forging on a head.
Snowwind has my fingers freezin'
the heating unit has gone dead.
I grip the cold, biting steering wheel.
Visions of a night in bed.

As I unwind the twisted road
frostheaves jar my pearly whites
Dreamin' of the western sunshine
through long, cold days and lonely nights
In all-consuming wish for warmth
I fail to notice wondrous sights
As dusk burns the country to ashen-grey
Come down to earth, turn on my headlights.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Night fall

A crystal moon set in a cornflower blue sky
which darkens to indigo as night falls.
The brightest star ventures forth,
then another, and another,
in the order in which they appear every night.
Soon Orion's familiar form is watching
over the small, New-England community.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

This poem follows "Driving home after a day with you" in my journal and may actually be the ending to that poem, although it was written in a darker pen and stands on its own.

Not Noise

The fluorescent light sings like a cricket
from some dank corner of a cellar.
And perhaps it is calling me into its den;
It is to me, after all, sound and not noise,
though to some it comes across as irritating static.

A train passes like the climax of a great symphony,
reverberating through the perfect acoustics of a clear, winter eve.
Each note executed in random perfection,
warming my weary spirit with the grace of a song.
It is to me, after all, music and not noise,
though to some it comes across as a bothersome interruption.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Thursday, June 03, 2004


As introduction to this poem, I wrote:
The next poem is a cycle with no beginning and no end. The point at which it starts is not random, however. This is the point where it is noticed that something beautiful has been lost, or more correctly, is slipping away.

I do not believe that it, this beauty, ever really slips away. Our inner selves convince us,however, that it has. I shan't go into that here, though.
To prove that [the poem] cycles, go back to the start when you reach the end. Do not pause. It should appear to be like a flattened glove or sphere; like you see in some maps of the world.

This was sort-of inspired by "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance." But, nonetheless, it came from within me. To set the record straight, it is not drug-induced or -related.

. . . Quality is failing me
where once I was sailing free
locked in a world of windows
I cannot feel from where the wind blows
And can only hear their rattling pane
only watch the advancing rain
aware that the senses lie
gazing cautiously with a questioning eye

I look to the future, in my past
hoping the past in my future doesn't last,
from my platform - a speck of the present,
a way-station to rest where rest isn't.
I won't say I'm lost, perhaps a bit tired
of fighting through the space in which I'm mired.

Fleeting moments of insanity
as control breaks down and loses me
asking why too many times.
Reading what between the lines?
To my back, a black cloud creeps
somewhere ahead, a faint light seeps.

As my physical funtion sleeps
my frient soft and gently weeps
only for himself, I am sure
for we are separated by this glass door.
With mere sight as comunication,
we will not share in revelation.
Nor will we share in inspiration
but only share reitteration.
And taste a foul degradation.

The signal breaks. I lose the station
Once more nakedly alone
sinking like a weighted stone.
temptations tugging at my laces,
I turn to stare into their faces.
A cold, electric shock strikes out.
With the blow, I scream and shout,
"Release me, cut the bands, release me."
Where will the missing, dented piece by?

On my knees, blindly crawling
Stand ye up, now, cease your stalling.
I heave my chest to catch my breath
It's much too cold, I'll catch my death.
Strong arms wrap me in a blanketm
gone before there's time to thank it.
The ceiling's high, the floor is low.
How I'm suspended, I do not know.

It suddenly occurs to me:
I'm not suspended but sailing free
throughout a vast and open place
no windows, nor ceilings, only space.
All else is nothing but illusion
a manifested, vile intrusion.
Distractionless, I plainly see
existence of pure quality.
And for a second I beleive
that I will never have to leave.
But images reform the maze
my vision melts into the haze . . . (return to start)

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1979

This poem was inspired by my reading of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig, who wrote:

"Quality, or its absence, doesn't reside in either the subject or the object . . . (At) the moment of pure quality, there is no subject and there is no object."
"Quality isn't something you lay on top of subjects and objects . . . Real quality must be the source of the subjects and objects. . . "

To Nancy Cray
March 20, 1979

There are times I've called myself a poet
Probably unjustifiably so
But as long as I've gotten your attention
There's one thing I'd like to know

I think I'm feeling what I shouldn't
It seems that I've got designs on you
You seem to me a most beautiful person
I'm hoping that you'll tell me what to do

There are times when I haven't been sure of myself
I concealed that fact most carefully
But this once I'm breaking down to tell you
You determine what this friendship grows to be

I think it's a feeling I'd be best to hide
for the eyebrows raised would be more than a few
But I've just got to tell you, for I do believe,
if someone understands, it will be you.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1979

Where's it at?

She came in and she sat
then she asked, "Where's it at?"
I said "The world in which we live
is all relative."

"But I don't know," said she,
"just, where, exactly I should be."

"I think you'll do your best
if you let some time progress.
But don't do it passively
for there is lots to do and see."

from On Tap
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

At the Well

"You are dirt," she yelled with a heathen cry.
"You are dirt," she yelled and then spit in His eye.
"I put my faith in you but it turned out a lie."
You are dirt," she said . . . then He let out a sigh.

"You put your faith in me," He said, "It's true."
"But what on eart did you want me to do?
"I've given you life, your world, and you.
"Look around you. Is there more I can give you, too?"

"Think of loving, of laughter, and of deep, blue skies.
"Look around, then tell me that they were all lies.
"I've given you everything, make your own ties.
"Look around you and within you and you'll realize."

"I am sorry," she said, and she let out a sigh.
"I am sorry," she said, and she wiped off His eye.
"I put my faith in you, but I was living a lie.
"I am sorry," she said, and she started to cry.

And in the shadow of the world above
We must spread the source of love.

from The Secret Lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978


I'm messed up in the barbwire of your soul
And though I'll come out scratched, I'll come out whole.

from The Secret Lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Own a Fly


maintenance free.

Eating molecular spots of food
which you can not see.

No need to walk it
(they don't walk much).

It won't make noise
(they're quiet as such).



from The Secret Lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978


A vision: swooping, graceful, upwards into infinity . . .
An edge of confidence, barely defined . . .
A convergence, into one corridor, of all past experiences . . .
A window into the future, diverging into every conceivable and inconceivable direction . . .
An unsatisfiable thirst for knowledge . . .
A mind: thinking, knowing no boundary . . .
A universe.

from The Secret Lives of Fibber McGee
by Michael R. Martin c.1978

The Dungeons of Depression

The air hangs heavy
in the dungeons of depression
it casts a might weight
upon your soul.
Life passes by
in the dungeons of depression
each day inside its walls
brings a heavy toll.

I know what its like here
in the dungeons of depression
I've been cast here for
a length of time unknown.
The last time I laughed is
a million years gone by
and the voice inside my head
is not my own.

from Confusion: a finer distinction
by Michael R. Martin c.1976


A mattress,
wet with the moisture
of a September day,
struggling to remain green
but losing the battle
on several fronts.

Total defeat
by the frosts of October.
But its ideals live on
for the coming
of the spring thaw;
for the day
when it will return
in all its glory.

from On Tap
by Michael R. Martin c.1978


The brick building,
as the tree,
knows no time,
but stands quiet testimony
that patience achieves
its own glory.

from On Tap
by Michael R. Martin c.1978