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No poems, only birds. My classic contradiction.

Sitting at my desk after work tonight. I reckon I could write you a poem, or something of that sort. But I’ll hold onto any words I have in that nature for a day or so. Trying like I do with a pen drawing. Before I begin with the pen work I let the drawing sit in pencil and examine it for a few days. Each time noticing things I hadn’t before.
I like doing that with words too. This helps me find their power or something like that.
 
I finished another large flying hawk. The layout of these drawings is simple but holds lots of texture. I feel good about this approach and would like to now put these birds into other positions in the natural kingdom. No easy task, but tonight’s pencil studies show promise I feel.
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The most recently finished of my 2’x4′ hawks on plywood.

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Climb the ladder to bring her the Moon.

It’s that vacation, or trip you went on. You saw something beautiful that reminded you of somebody you care a lot about. Maybe you wished they were there to see it.
That strange dream of a wonderful place and you thought, “My goodness if only I could bring all my friends here!”
 
Tonight I sit down to my piece of 2’x4′ plywood. It sits on my TV dinner tray that I covered with goofy stickers from here and there a layer of shellac on it helps keep the stickers down, and allows me to spin the plywood around with ease to get at any angle needed.
I get some headphones out of their hiding place. They are quite huge and sound like wrapping a concert hall around your head.
My pen is sitting next to my phone on top of a book of poems.
 
When the headphones plug in and that just-exactly-perfect song is rolling through them into my mind. I grab the pen off the book and I go on that vacation and have that strange beautiful dream. I think of many different wonderful people. And while I can’t take them to that moment of joy. I can show them the bird I caught in the wood-grain during. To turn off time, leave California for a few minutes to find something beautiful for the people you love.
 
I like that Idea, it seems romantic.
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I think I’m going to walk home now.

After I cooked her dinner I was standing in her kitchen, only acutely aware of the time I was wasting.
On the walls were frames hung with nothing inside them.
I walked out the door and into that night, walking down the street my eyes looked to the rooftops.
as I walked my mind turned up thoughts,
“That fire that burned down the old clock factory wasted less time than her and I.”
 
Well, that time was mine, and that time was hers. Just like how now doesn’t belong to yesterday,
I guess so long as my eyes don’t look that way.
 
Home alone again at last my sweet splendid palace of isolation by the railroad tracks.
My mind echoes back again to that time we rode in the car down to L.A.
She drove and I pretended to sleep all the way to Santa Barbara.
I remember the specific way the irritation rose from the ground and up my spine.
If given the choice, to ride again with her down that stretch of highway or drink a glass of chilled turpentine.
 
At the drop of a hat you’d find me heading to the icebox to get this empty glass cold.
And why?
Because She did an awful job at listening to, as I did a horrid job at seeing,
That we were just two skeletons meeting for brief moments of nurturing medicine and a make-believe peace-of-mind.
yes, even somebody who isn’t that you sold yourself was.
 
This was the less-than delightful nature of her and I.
 
It was some 90 miles from Los Angeles I knew I didn’t want to see her face again.
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Deal

“I’ve been gambling here abouts
for ten good solid years
If I told you all that went down
it would burn off both your ears…” -Robert Hunter

 

I laid out another life size hawk in pencil on plywood. Then I saw this tree in my head and heard The Grateful Dead coming through the branches. I tell you if I had a dime for every time that happened I’d own the bank.

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On a branch in the back of my mind.

I walked to California in concrete shoes,
Midwest boy with the nothing-certain blues.
 
She walked right past me with a halo made of lead,
I turned to look when I should have tied my shoes and fled,
 
She looked like spring and I looked like a thousand winters.
whenever I got near her my thoughts turned to splinters.
 
 
 
 
I’m not often sure who “she” is, but that’s an owl, I can tell you that much for certain.  
 
 
 
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It was her again, but it was all right.

She promised me poetry on my grave.
Or at the very least, to try and behave.
 
And as she stood there in the rain she made good.
I write my own poetry on a piece of wood.
 
Time yet not for a bed of dirt.
her words only echo they do not hurt.
 
Sifting through these ashes I found the words,
Bringing to page the largest of birds.
 
In my noblest of efforts to think ahead of my pen.
My thoughts drift back to her again.
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Holding still.

That one summer I made all those hawk drawings.
 
Hiding from the drought with a glass of wine and a veil of feathers over her head.
 
She had a halo like a red-tailed hawk.
 
It could make me stop in midsentence.
 
Pulling the car to the curb 236 miles from Los Angeles.
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When the last bolt of sunshine hits the mountain…

The other night while I was climbing around under my bed. I found an old cassette tape and against my better judgment I listened to the song that was going through her head, while she tossed and turned and lay awake in bed. The next day we said our goodbyes.
 
I am halfway through my 6th plywood raptor in flight drawing. Adding clear coats to the others to keep them safe from the elements and protect the drawings from when I inevitably drop them all somewhere foolish. If I was a bank robber my nickname would be “Clown-Shoes”
 
I forgot to write the words down when I woke up so they became forgotten.
His always seem to work for me though.
 
“And there’s nothing left to do but count the years
When the strings of my heart start to sever
And stones fall from my eyes instead of tears” -Robert Hunter
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Warbler reprise.

Trying out a paper thin wood veneer that has an adhesive backing. Supplied to me from my local art supply store to try out.  I adhered it to a piece of cold press art board. Gave it the warbler go, and I enjoy the results. It put up with the eraser plenty well. I’m a big fan of cherry lumber’s color and grain.