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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A Beer Drinkin' Truck Driver Talkin' Jive

I used to fancy myself a poet. I digested modern verse like a kid eating candy on Halloween.

And then I wrote. I wrote about what I saw; I wrote about what I felt; I wrote about writing.

I felt inspired at every turn of the corner.

And I made little chapbooks.

It's what we did, my friends and I.

We made zines.

We made chapbooks of poetry.

We made photo books.

We did not wait for approval or payment - we simply made things for the sake of making and for the sake of sharing. This was our Facebook-status-sharing-wall-post circa 1991.

I have a box full of stuff, and some shelved in that certain important section, of things like these from those that inspired me.

I keep hoping that MySpace, Facebook, Tumblr, Instagram or whatever will lead me down that path. I get glimpses of it, but nothing like holding a fresh zine or chapbook book in my hands. Doesn't matter if it was made on the office printer on the sly or Kinkos. Or if it is perfect bound and letter pressed.

Just that it come from the heart, a true slice of creativity from a person's soul, typos and all.

The following is the poem that opens up my chapbook Headaches And Assholes. I had moved from Maryland to Los Angeles and was living in Glendale. I had taken a liking to Pasadena. And decided to spend some time in the local watering holes. And one day struck up a random conversation with some old man. Because that was what life was about back then... striking up random conversations. Does any one remember those days?


the mouth under his
big pored-black headed
nose spoke of the first
freeway in california.

about corporate buy-
outs and oil and gas
and cars and "let's do
this and let's do that" and fuck;

he said fuck a lot
and put his head in
his large hand, a hand
that had driven plenty of big rigs

and cupped manny
a beers. i shook my head
and just grinned
eventually having

my stare turn into
some blank gaze fading
out over his hair;
grecian formula yellowed.

a beer truck drivin'
beer drinkin' truck driver
talkin' jive in
pasadena. and i was all ears.