Tuesday, January 27, 2009

My Featured Music

Jupiter Rising - January 22, 2005

Twelve AM and twenty below,
Eerie moon casts pale blue glow,
Frost-filled air o'er fields of snow,
And Jupiter is rising.

Low and bright off to the east,
Above a wood of shadow beast,
Nightmares settle down to feast,
And Jupiter is rising.

Whiteface stands, a silver peak, 
Darkwood forest at its feet,
Tree snaps frozen, heart skips beat,
And Jupiter is rising.

The Fungi Song

Some people think we are hairy
and others think we are scary.
All diners should be wary
because we are fungi.

It doesn't seem to make sense
and it sounds rediculous
but together we are fungi
and alone I am fungus.

The largest living thing on earth,
we are difficult to spot.
Mycelial threads throughout the soil,
a little mushroom at the top.

Northway South - September 8, 2002

I seek purpose, clarity of mind.
I travel down the road and wonder
what I've left behind.

I think of where I'm heading and
I wonder if its true,
if the path that is my life
is really leading me to you.

Surely there is something more.
If not home, well then where?
And why is it I can't forget
the sweet smell of your hair?

I long to be completely free,
my life to put on hold.
And sample all there is to see
before I grow too old.

An Autumn Prayer - August 22, 2002

Lord, I thank you for the gifts
of moon and stars and tide.
I thank you for the blessings
of my family and my bride.

And as the sun is setting
on the first light hints of Fall,
it's life cycling through its seasons
for which I thank you most of all.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Michael's Messages: Expectations • January 25, 2009

Jonah 3:1-5, 10; Psalm 62:5-12l; 1 Corinthians 7:29-31; Mark 1:14-20


When people first met Jesus, I wonder if they really knew what to expect. At some point, people began to see him as the promised Messiah, and so they had the promises of the Old Testament prophets to guide their expectations. But when Jesus first started his ministry, when he walked along the shore and called out to a few fishermen, what did those fishermen expect. When the crowds began to gather everywhere he went, what were they expecting to hear? When the poor, the lame, the sick began to press in around Jesus, just to see him, be near him, maybe touch his robe – what did the expect?

There is who you are, who you want to be, who people think you are, who you try to be for people. There is what other people see in you, what you do or see in yourself. There is what people tell you to do, there is what society tells or compels you to do. There is your conscience, which may be right or wrong.

. . . 

Sermon by Michael R. Martin – January 25, 2009
First United Methodist Church of Saranac Lake, 8:30AM

Click Title to read full message

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Sitting on a Rock Behind my Motel Room (c 1980)

Not far from humanity, but close to the trees. Waiting for the robins to sing in the nighttime. My thoughts sifting gently in the whispering breeze. Tires on the highway humming their chords. Pleasant gray clouds.

Tonight I cannot find the words to express the way I feel. Tonight I cannot find words to express the way I cannot find words. Tonight it is only me & my motel room & the rock in the field behind it. Tonight it is only the gentle, cool breeze & the pleasant warmth of the gray felt cloud cover overhead. Tonight the mosquitoes and I are perched in a moment of time, not far removed from the hum of the highway. Tonight is not a memory. Tonight is tonight. Somewhere between last night & tomorrow morning. Somewhere between the birth & death of a healthy, middle-class, perhaps a trifle spoiled American male. Tonight exists, but here it is shared with no one. Tonight has nothing to offer. Tonight is just tonight, which is enough for  me. Perhaps, on a night like tonnight I will sit with someone. And we will share nothing but the night itself. Side by side, we shall sit, exchanging no words. Together our minds will drift in separate dimensions. To share closeness in space will be enough. The true quality of friendship has no words. It is like tonight. Intimate. Indescribable. A moment in itself.

Time passes slowly on top of  large rocks.

Written somewhere in New Hampshire while on my way to a summer job. I was driving on my motorcycle from a job site in Concord to a job site somewhere in Keene. I think perhaps I stayed over more than one night, or stayed there on the way back, because I recall a maid saying to me "so you are a poet." Being a clueless, young lad, for all I know she was hitting on me.

Found written on pages loosely found within my old notebook of songs and writings.

Friday, January 16, 2009

About Thia's Song

Here's what has been said about my song, "Thia's Song," on my iLike user page:

Sue Merchant
Mar 10, 07:15 AM

Michael - Hi! Just wanted to post a message to say I really, really like 'Thia's Song' - Its beauty for me is with the meaningful lyric which you deliver beautifully with just the right amount of pathos ...and I loved to the simplicity but sophistication of the melody. I've added your song to my ilike list for my friends to see in the hope of sending some folk your way who will hopefully appreciate the song as I do...I personally think the song most worthy of a professional production just for maximum sound quality thats all. It would be well worth the outlay ...its quite, quite beautiful :o) All good wishes to you in your career Michael and do keep the songs coming! :o) All the best Sue

Michael R. Martin
Mar 11, 02:40 PM

Thanks, Sue, for the kind comments. There is a great story behind that song. I wrote it for my "baby" sister who had been diagnosed with stage 4 metastatic melanoma. Thanks to a lot of prayers and the good folks at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Cancer Center, she is now 4 years in remission.

Sue Merchant
Mar 11, 03:54 PM

:o) Now I see why I was able to feel the beauty in the song Michael - You have paid your little sister a most loving tribute and my very sincere best wishes go out to you all - may she continue to stay well for many, many years to come. A pleasure to have met you Michael - albeit 'virtually' :o) 
Kindest regards Sue

Check out Sue Merchant by clicking on her name above. She makes beautiful music.

Lost & Found

I dug out an old notebook that I was using for songwriting and poetry etc. back in the early days, circa 1978 - 1985. Man, there must be 60 songs in there, at least! And it is stuffed with pages and pages of whatever paper I could find or had at hand, full of scribbled thoughts and songs, song bits and thought fragments. So cool! I should scan some of the pages and post them here. I'll definately share some with you as I go through and relearn a bunch. I might have to extend my time in the studio coming up in Feb/March to record a bunch. My solo album will have to become a double or triple CD, maybe even a box set!

My 1977 Alvarez Yari Tree of Life was unplayable after I cut a new nut for it. I could tune it perfect and then simple chords were all 
out of wack. I finally took it to my favorite guitar tech at my favorite instrument shop, Scott at the Vintage Fret Shop in Ashland NH. It took him 15 minutes and cost me $15 bucks. He 
filed the nut down so the strings were at the right height and knocked off some sharp ends of some of the frets he put in a few years back. And just like that, it is back. My old guitar. I am absolutely ecstatic! That's me with my Alvarez, circa 1982. Everyone who knows me for playing knows my guitar. She's been a part of me since 1978, bought new the summer before I headed off to college.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

DirecTV Multi-Sattelite Receiver for sale

Hey, Yo!
I have an extra DirecTV D10-300 multi-satellite receiver and am offering it for sale on Ebay. If you are interested, check it out at http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&ssPageName=STRK:MESELX:IT&item=170294667115

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

My Mom

Mom . . .
When the world has made me crazy,
you are calm.
When my life has lost direction,
you are inspiration.

You are comfort when I'm ill.
A companion when I'm well.
A voice I can reoy on.
A shoulder I can cry on.

I owe you everything -- just for being Mom.

Culture Kills

Here are some more words to live by from Theodore Isaac Rubin (Reconciliations: Inner Peace in an Age of Anxiety) courtesy of my mom. Which ones hit home for you. For me, it is #3.

1) Stop the pursuit of the mythical "it" - that nonexistant, self-glorifying, heaven-producing magical "something" we sometimes mistakenly call our "real self," which couldn't have less to do with either reality or self.

2) Stop running in the rat race for success. Stand still long enough to become conscious of self and feelings other than lows and highs connected to failures & victories.

3) Get a feeling of yourself in the immediate world again - looking at and really seeing other people's faces, buildings, flowers, streets. Engage in really smellingam tasting, touching - indulging the perceptive senses.

4) Eventually, reorder your priorities, especially those that govern your use of time and energy.

5) Break through, somehow break through the enslavement of compulsive mechanical living to what I've come to call "tranquil aliveness."

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Reflections on January in the Adirondacks

We are settling into a typical January pattern. The woodstove is going full out. The days and nights are clear but cold. Nightime lows are 0°F or below, daytime highs are in the single digits. The sky is crystal clear and the stars are spectacular.

The weather folks are predicting that Wednesday's high temperature will be below 0°F.

-15° | -24°
-6° | -24°

Outside, the snow is hard and crusty. There is a well-worn path in the snow to the garage and to the woodshed. The dogs run out to do their business and hurry back to the door to be let in.

Thursday, January 08, 2009


The Multitude of Me

The decisions we make in youth, when life seems endless, when we are immortal and life revolves around us - they make us who we are.

I once tought I wouldn't change anything because the course of my life made me who I am. Now, I wish I could have split like a hydra at each juncture and followed each path to its conclusion.

And the multitude of me would sit down together in the here and now and decide which path was best, then take that one path and make it real.

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Two Dogs

Bruiser has a nose like a bear.
Sadie has a nose like a harbor seal.