Who would you love… (Valentine’s Day poem – notebook)

One of my old poems.  I’m told people like to repurpose this one…  feel free to use it for any purpose.

Who would you love if you didn’t love me?
If you weren’t who you are, who would you be?
If you don’t push it too far it fits like a glove
‘Cause you are who you are and you love who you love.

Happy V-D!


Erotic Cheating (notebook entry)

She responded to his love-making with a bored kind of awe, an honest and spontaneous emotion secretly calculated, he knew, to satisfy and enrage him.  It was only at that moment when he felt her completely beyond his reach, when the emptiness of her face reached doll-like authenticity, as her gasps and Gods and Oh, daddies transcended their ordinary rote quality to attain a flat, mechanical passion, when he knew she felt he brought her great pleasure, not for any reason having to do with her, but simply to prove that he could, that his member was able to return, via its brief hidden moment of triumph, to its regular inert state.

He began to dress quickly.  “No,” she protested, holding her arms out to him:  “cuddle.”

“You know I only have twenty minutes before I fall asleep,” he told her.  “I have to drive home.”

“Yes, before your wife gets home,” she muttered.  “No, don’t show me her picture again — why do you always want to show me her picture afterwards?”

“Do I?” he asked, putting his wallet back into his pants pocket and snatching up his keys.

“Turn the light out,” she called — but either she spoke too late, or he pretended not to hear her as he walked out the door.

*** Continue reading

A Kind of Communion (notebook entry)

There is nothing I must not look at, no truth I must hide from, nothing I will not see.  Yes, no doubt there will be much I never will understand, through failure to read the right books, or failure of curiosity, or outright stupidity.  But I will never be willfully ignorant.  I decided that a long time ago.  How long ago?  When I learned of Freud and unconscious motivations.  That hiding your own ugliness from yourself makes you sick.  But it seems now that that choice was already there, as if it were waiting for me to discover it, as if I had somehow made it long before, during childhood, and like an old stuffed animal, an old favorite, it was waiting all of that time for me to come back to it. Continue reading

the Maine Militia

Well, I’ll wrap up that story before catching you up with more recent stuff.

continued from the prior journal entry:

At this time, we traditionally met around the steel fire pit in the brick-paved center of the park.  On this day, while we discussed some point probably about equal in importance to the compost question, three men entered our camp.

They walked oddly, in comparison with most people.  Normally, three men in a group walk abreast, if they have the room.  They talk.  Or if they do not talk, they communicate with body language.  They have some shared sense of their objective, and they steer each other as they go along.  They dither:  those constant little moments of uncertainty born of courtesy.  They tend to focus more on where they are headed than where they are.

These men walked single-file.  The first was a big man perhaps in his fifties.  The other two were younger.  I later guessed they were his sons.  The first man, Mack, appeared to walk as a man lost in thought, without especially considering where he was going, but only where he was in that moment.  He had his hands in his pockets.  They walked very evenly, with no dithering.  All together, it was entirely unclear whether they were walking into the park, or into our group.

They stopped and stood a little off from our circle, and after looking us over a moment walked on.  I thought they continued to the library, but a good couple minutes later Lawrence spoke to me. “Do you want to take care of your customers?” he asked, pointing behind me.

The three men were standing at the food tent, in a line, still not talking.  They had their backs to the food table and were surveying our group.

I walked up to these three men and put my hand out. “I’m Conrad.  Conrad Cook.”  The man introduced himself as Mack Page.

The young man at his side was ready to shake hands too, but he held off, and I had an intuition and held off, and Mack did not introduce us.  The other young man was standing behind him, almost ignoring us, almost at attention.  After a moment, Mack seemed satisfied, as if I had passed a test.  I would go through their chain of command.

Mack looked over the Occupy Bangor meeting in paved center of the park. “Who’s the leader?” he asked.

“Ideologically, we don’t have a leader,” I replied. “In fact, of course, we do have leaders. They would be the officers, what we call point people, who run the committees. What we call working groups. But there’s no one leader overall.”

“Who’s that man that’s speaking?” Mack asked.

“That’s Lawrence,” I replied.

“What does he do?”

“He’s the head of security.”

Captain Kirk had an evil twin. Several heroes have. If you imagine George Bush Sr. having a good twin, someone who vaguely reminds you of the ex-President, but is a thoroughly decent human being, that’s Lawrence. Continue reading