Saturday, October 21, 2017

Ambulatory Autumn, Part the First

Altar of the Great Pumpkin
before whom all else
is small

Mining a distinct vein
of October in California
A genuflection to the
Pumpkin apotheosis
at the Berkeley Bowl,
Following along ley lines
to examine College Avenue
in it's Oakland incarnation
with a side tip
to a tributary or two

the first man
 created by man

Excuse me,
can I take your picture?

Pardon me,
did you request...

A photograph?

Why certainly
It's what I'm here for

Just one thing
please don't allow
that insane clown Bozo
to be in the picture

So poignant a commodity
flowers sell well here
even with the abundant gardens

The Ginger Witch
of the Elmwood

With her conjuring mirror

With her swan-ecked squash

With her spirit parasol

With her grinding stone
yin yang
you're my thang

They say she put a spell
on the lady in the next stall
 to blemish her mini-pumpkins

The better to sell her own
bizarre gourds
many say they are hexed

Gun car

A closed-up shop

Still wearing
Andy Warhol drag

It so happens
I have a date myself tonight
We met on-line
says she a widow
 loves of film noir

I'm here anybody home?

Come on in,
I'm in the back

way back here

come in
don't be shy

I apologize
but I just remembered
something urgent

Think I'll take my chances with

 the Ginger Witch

12 October 2017

Friday, October 20, 2017

Not Dark Yet

But it's getting there

The edge of night

the year passes palpably
when I go out after dinner
with my coffee in a paper cup
and it's a race with
 the falling darkness

Bear necessities of life
but you can't just
cocoon at home

You got to go out
as Paul's uncle said

After office hours,
down to the sea
in stained glass ships

The Port
not heavily lit up
as evening subsides

Cold wooly clouds
over Alameda
Big changes
in atmospheric conditions
lessens fire danger

Clean air at last
what a blessing

The will to live
revives itself

The thrill of the elements

This change of temperature
reinvigorates us zombies
after a weird six weeks
of warmer than usual
followed by fire

Tonight I feel as if
harmony has been restored,
now to scurry home
and warm up a bit

18 October 2017

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Tragic Inevitability

Mayor of Berkeley,
get this case solved pronto

This striking 40-year old Mother
who was deaf left a dental office
on Alcatraz in the Lorin district
and was induced to go to
the encampment that calls
itself a "Homeless Protest"
under the BART tracks where
the HERE/THERE sculpture is

She was found dead in a tent
the next day
Her wallet phone and
the people she met
were nowhere to be found

The denizens of the camp said
that they saw her in distress
and had her lie down but sought
no aid for her because
they are reluctant to
"deal with authorities"
They left her alone to die

This is precisely what
is so appallingly inhumane
about the new permissiveness
around letting the indigent
and the desperate
set up tent cities
in our open spaces,
Human nature under duress
turns ugly
no one protects the innocent
and the vulnerable

The core group and ringleader
are the same opportunists who
took over the legit protest
in front of the central
Post Office
They stayed over a year
long after the building sale
was canceled

Mayor Bates let them
stay and it caused
permanent bad blood and
a hostile iron fence to
half-block the pedestrian sidewalk

These guys who I spoke to
has little to no political stance
They looked like a mean hippie
biker gang from a Roger Corman movie

They were not at all familiar faces
to this 40 year resident
and merely selected
Berkeley because it is a soft target
for opportunistic desperados
who are territorial and no good
to the poor neighborhoods they colonize.

Lastly I don't see Berkeley
allowing tent camps
in affluent parts of town,
Let's start one in the round-about
over the Thousand Oaks tunnel
and see how long it lasts

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Oakland Outsider

Street surrealist

The Berkeley Flaneur
morphs into another avatar
the Oakland Outsider

Viewed askance
by some natives
as a stranger
who gets stranger
by the hour

Wild bird attrition caused
by greedy stupid

Bird killer

Obstructing the flight path
from the hills and the estuary
to the Bay

It's really just a façade too
a narrow corridor rooms
stacked up to the sky

A drastic fall off

An Escher-like maze
reflective and deadly
for avifauna

Latest casualty

I've also recovered
a hummingbird
who met then same fate

Vehicular manslaughter

Scan your fingerprints
into the Matrix

A Mercedes jeep
how gaudy and absurd

One has little choice
look at Jacko

Ram tough truck
with trailer

Oakland Zoology

The Illuminaries stash
of painting supplies
City-sanctioned muralists
with execrable taste

Hunky Harley-Davidson
looks like a '58 Chevy
from the back

Smoke of the wildfires
colors the sky,
A motorized tall ship
heads out to open water

I'm about ready for
a Tequila sunrise

Theatre of cruelty
of the absurd
Insane clown president

hope this potable water
supply will come
to someone's rescue

Children's Fairyland

The approach has been in disarray
lots of street construction

The Children's Fairyland
accompanied by children

Let's see if
I can sneak inside

A book or a screen is one thing,
But the ability to sit and ride on
 Alice in Wonderland characters
Now you're talking
 a kid's language

It's a strange enough place
a patch-work quilt
of a child's imaginings

Rabbit loiters
on his day off
Closed Monday

The live oaks
in their fantastic forms
amplify the fantasy here
like very few other
amusement parks

Little kids love it here--
no scares even on

They changed her race
The Old Lady Who Lived in a Shoe
into a dark-skinned lady
Sort of courts the stereotype--
"so many children
she didn't know what to do"

Slowly gradually
the wildfires are
being contained

We still must endure
the insidious smoke

Let's pretend
It's a happy ending

As they say in
East London

Topiary dragon
did inhale
smoking still

Smokey phantasms
camp followers
of the Northern wildfires

October 2017