I really want to get this going....

Each day's listing is an excerpted edit from my work. These are numbered and sub-headed for ease of read and isolation from full body of continued text. Each small excerpt is a single-themed piece culled from a much larger whole. Please follow the heading numbers down to #1, or click on 'archive'. The highest numbers are most recently posted, obviously. If so interested, for follow-up, you may contact via e-mail shown - perhaps for discussion or annotation needed.

Sunday, May 31, 2009



Two things I learned from living home : Rubberdog and Gloriani and that was long ago : Rubberdog was a little black puppy eventually run over by a car and left dead on the side of the road and Gloriani was the sound of unfounded praise that comes from doing something that you would have done anyway and none of it really made sense which is one of the reasons I left that hell-hole as quickly and easily as I could : points anywhere by any means : and the next thing I knew there I was just roving like a rover and settled like a settler at Tompkins Square Park just holding the bag - and it was my own filled with a few shirts and nothing much else and I said slowly and deliberately to myself : 'you will be what you will be and the points to be reckoned with when constructing your own character are first to remember not to overplay the necessities and secondly not to forget the optionals' - items like timeline storyline emphasis where-you-been and where-you-going and all that because that's the only sort of thing that people care about - linear stuff of which they can make sense otherwise their obliterated little minds go scatter-shot crazy over who you might be and what you're doing right there in front of them : my first few nights were quite alone in that very park one hundred degrees for sure and blistering crazy too August 7 '67 the Puerto Rican girl I came to know I called her just for fun 'Gloriana' too and for that she laughed and kissed me hard which I soon learned to like and then this total suave cool guy comes slinkering around taking names and numbers and that all went away 'my name is Andy Bonamo and I can stay with you if you want 'and the first few nights after that were spent on the floor of some big room above the old vaudeville house on First Avenue where they let us sleep for free and stay as long as we'd like and the big old window - really huge - looked out over the old marque and squared out over the blistering street in the blistering heat - a new city heat a heat that never ended a hundred degrees at night heat which Gloriana of course only added to - great white heaves of fiery love on bundled dirty clothing on the ancient wooden floor tons and tons of that stuff everywhere and down below on the open-wide street all the local landlords (seemed like every Long Island Jew that ever existed) came each week or so to check their holdings see their renters get their money for all the tiny little shit-hole shops and laundries and furniture stores and junk heaps and sundries and paper shops piled high along the street and it seemed really did seem they owned everything from their big black cars parked along the curb left running and sure to charm the neighborhood boys 'so as to know who's Boss' they'd chime in while marking their papers and books - little black ledgers and wads of cash was pretty much what they ever carried and I never knew and Andy never knew and for Goddamn sure Gloriana never knew why someone never just killed these guys dead - her brothers or their friends or somebody - and make off with the money and probably the car too but that was never answered she'd smirk instead and say 'de bastards'll git theirs yet you see' and we'd laugh and figure she knew what she meant and probably probably I'd mention to no one in particular if I had the gumption I'd do the job myself 'cept I'd have nowhere to go because THIS was it THIS place was the place to which I'd already gone and there wasn't nothing left : 'SEE! SEE!' : I'd cry to myself and wander the streets - stealing food and money where I could hanging with my little stories in Greenwich Village cellars where no one knew the difference between what I'd say and what was true - 'wide-open world engulfed long ago my father was killed when I was 7 gunned down by a mobster in Cleveland and my mother never took me back in much after that I stayed with Granma or Uncle Nieto the crazy fucking bastard that he was - all rummied up and horny all the time all he ever did was clamor for more and I lit out early me and Huck Finn me and whomever I fucking chose and wished to be with and accompany : crimes of passion and crimes of mirth too : and I probably knew your mother before she knew you' (that never made any sense but they always loved that line - coming as it was from a dip-shit hot-ass 17-year old kid just a month away from 18 and and and well fame or something!) and I played the music they wanted to hear and these all were nothing anyway but steps baby steps for a very first boy moving first time forward and then I broke one day into a record store I'd gotten access to through a friend and stole a bunch of records a bunch and from a rag on the ground on St. Mark's Place they sold like fucking hotcakes for seventy-five cents each and no one knew no better then me how obvious all that was but nothing ever happened and I let it be - the record business I'd determined was not for me.

Saturday, May 23, 2009



It was the thin man hiding between buildings who so haunted the streets to the extent that there was nowhere people did not look for him - gabardine and leather corduroy and silk long black coat and high-top boots as he went around to each street seeking things from the past like looking for old glass windows with the ripply and bubbled scar'd look of age with the ever-so-slightly yellowed view from them where the modern world descended from presence and became lost in a haze of steam and smoke and sail with the rich smell of clams and shellfish roiling in the air and the frothing mouths of fish piled high atop one another as they were heaved from nets and wriggled to death on the concrete floor and lobsters tried to run in endless circles nowhere as the fish-monger with his great hook ripped and tore flesh to move each crate of fish to be weighed and thrown and sold and piled high atop wet metal trays and the thin light of the outside world pressed through the narrow windows of the huge fish market as men's voices yelled back and forth and screamed weights at each other and sought truck departure times and loaded crates and boxes of fish for destination past the endless meadows and roadways leading out to the strangled and dry world beyond a world where in some places fish were strange as strange as the aroma of the sea and the salt-air of the freshness and the smell and the odor of kelp and seaweed and tide and sand and wet rock jetties running out for hundreds of feet along soaked and sprayed wooden quays where sloppy boats tied at anchor rocked slowly back and forth and where the distant lights from the shoreline cast lonely fish lines of their own to the small men atop the rocks silently and with true loneliness fishing for dreams and regrets all tied together and there there the dead men walking the doomed old men stalking the bay staring out in their loneliness to the lights of the nearing sea but unable as they were to speak they all remained silent with their regrets and hatreds and sorrow and loss for there was nowhere nothing left to give them back from the great world around them as the last beyond was over and the end of all things had arisen for one and each and every so they remained alone and aloof as old men do silent in their beyond and they sat near where the great old wood was piled up high and yet they forsake'd it all the past and their memory and the glowing ember of experience as they missed everything around them and only sought the modern but even that with regret they missed the old brick ignored the crooked chimneys ignored the old smokestacks ignored the rippled glass of countless windows ignored they missed all all all of their own experiences in a stupidity of raiment and mind which was as poverty-stricken as the poor days they once came out of claiming now to only want all things new senseless but new so that the thin man passed and sought instead the Pearl Street Station where once was generated the power and the stability of that power to light at first a small entire city filled with wonder and glory in time and place lit with Heaven's own glow as if a great and Christian light had arisen to enrapture in the hearts of men a Christmas sublime one filled with promise and the new light of all things and the small squat station stood silent set in concrete and brick with no noise but the nineteenth century hum leftover of noises never heard before the click and swoops of power passing pulling powering everything new in a wondrous flash of something no one knew the building quietly in its own fey mist stood there and the bricked roadway around it led down to the water's edge and the wharf where men loitered and smoked and the wet shine of wires and metal and click click of horse hooves on paving stones with the round clang of wheels turning and the long slow creak of the massive door opening and the broad look into a generating station of Hell an industrial pit of new design covered in smoke and sweat and levers and handles and the black web of wires and insulation knitted like Lucifer's sweater itself and the idle men groaning in the flashing light as they reviewed their tasks and watched the next man attempt what they could not and this all still called for brawn and strength a strength which groaned and broke so many men those reluctant to enter the Hell of time and energy and work and light light which was supposed to be so heavenly and good and glorious light enough to end all time but which in time turned out instead to be the light of slavery and work labor's paltry wages and darkness the very light of darkness from dark Satanic mills to black basements of the nineteen tens and twenties wherein people died struggling with work for wages thrown for pennies and dimes while masters lurked behind locked doors smirking with glee the smirk of lucre's vast lust for more the irreducible point past which there is no more to be made for the point arises when the money itself begins to make the money and the need for mankind is gone and thus the great servitude of labor and wage begins and those down are kept down by being given just enough and no more for it is the manager and the owner who seek to make the riches needed for nothing except more more more always more and so the great vast wiry city grew upward and the denizens of dead in five points and Chinatown and Chelsea and West End died and continued to die in their sadness and poverty blessed are the poor in spirit for they shall inherit the hate and they shall inherit the earth and take with them all it has to offer the dirt and soil of death the pit of regret the old and sorry excuses of the lame and the crippled the crowded and those with cough and gurgle and bad lungs and eyesight made rotten by darkness and heat all of that which started before the light but which was then carried by the light and embraced by the light as only later did the great mass of Union Square men demand and the huge rafts of people sought power and wages together in packs and mobs and labor riots and fires which burned brighter than light itself and beckoned men back to a time of mobs and packs of crazed and hungry wolves and there only there the thin man fled and moved away to walk himself the fabled water's edges along the varied river beneath the Roebling Bridge undone by time and essay and legend and fault and upward looking he watched the feet of all mankind divest itself across the span and walk through all its doubts and marvels and leave behind the last of everything and seek only that open future into which they thought they walked but chimera and illusion and hoax and even the fiddle-faddle of broken promises and horrid laughter at their expense they walked to nothing and left it too in their breached silence they clutched at bags and handles in the blindness they sought to walk with hope alone and were betrayed by those whose good eyes saw enough to trip them up and he watched man after man woman after woman descending as they fell from the bridge to the cruel and icy waters below and they cast off along the way everything they had as if to lessen the splash the crack the hit of their body upon the cruel hard water so cold the blood itself did not bleed as they hit they just floated until death took them in and still still the fishmongers were yelling and heaving their crates and jabbing their hooks into soft and soiled flesh the great flesh of all things in all time forever and what was lost was but the skyline view above the brazen shape of Brooklyn the tall enamel towers of Manhattan the basic lights of Pearl and Water and Wall and Maiden Lane the hanging man from the buttonwood tree.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


275. PERFECTLY CLEAN BILLS - the Deck Hand Scams - (nyc, 3/68):

"Hold it up motherfucker" that was all I heard and all I really had to – the guy was a sailor of some sort a stevedore maybe or a deck-hand all cocked up and rippled with muscle and bravado – and what he had just then mistakenly assumed was that I was someone he should be chasing down for taking something from the deck of the ship – which of course I had but could never tell him or let on about – so I turned and simply said back quickly as I kept moving ‘it’s for Ed Trenery and he wanted it brought down to him immediately – you’ll have to take it up with him’ which was some form of the truth in the fact that yes there really was an Ed Trenery down on the wharf but he was in no way concerned with me nor what was in my hands and it apparently worked as an excuse or at least forestalled any further pursuit at that instant of me and of the two large brown satchels in my hands – which were stuffed with cash and had been sought immediately by three men in a strange black car out along West Street who – I’d noticed – were still awaiting my arrival and that arrival being made (at least long enough for me to get away) I dove into the opened door and the car simply and with great ease I might add sped away into the early dusk of any Tuesday evening and if I was pursued I had been pursued fruitlessly I’d guessed since no one seemed to be following and the apparent ease of the ‘heist’ – if that was what it was – in and of itself was alarming for me : I’d been promised a clean 75 bucks to do what was needed – which I’d just done – and that amount of money-as-pay had just been handed over to me "nice going how you went about that kid – took nerves and balls to just walk up there and you did it with both – good now beat it and stay close so’s we can catch up to you again when needed aw'right?" - I nodded my assent and scrambled out of the black Cadillac stretch somewhere I noticed just north of the US Postal building on Eighth Avenue and everything else – me and them included of course – just merged with traffic - me on foot in a half-rush and them in their black car tooling along pretty much like all the rest except longer and headed towards uptown and not across town and it felt good to have succeeded first time like that and I knew I’d see them again soon – once the taste of this gets in your mouth you just generally want more – but for the moment what interested me was in going over all of what had occurred in my head : the two briefcase-sized satchels had seemed to have had hundreds no thousands of dollars in them and the bills were all aligned and crisp and banded – so it wasn’t just some day’s receipts kind of thing or anything like that – they seemed perfect and clean and new and counted and separated – all that stuff just like a bank does – so I figured they were either bank-stuff already stolen or new bills just – shall we say – ‘mass produced’ and I don’t mean a church collection – I mean real solid-gold class A counterfeit money like ‘if it fits under the counter we take it!’ kind of dough : however what it was doing on board that little cargo ship and why these malfeasant knuckleheads too had an interest in it was beyond me AND why it was pretty much just left there untended and allowed to disappear as it did still wrankled me but I had done what was asked and gotten already my 75 bucks plus the good notion that I could work well and could do more for them sometime soon – I almost looked forward to the day.
It was only later much later after I’d done this sort of thing 6 or 7 times that I found out what was really happening – and because of finding that out I stopped doing it (at probably a greater risk to my own life and limb) : the guys name was Antonio DeScarpa and he was from somewhere around Sullivan Street I forget but what came down was that one day we were somehow just talking and he was asking me a lot of questions about my interests and what I wanted to do and what I was doing all this stuff for – all of that sort of talk – and I began telling him about my interests in art and writing and learning and literature and all of that and of course it was like telling him I was interested in translating the Septuagint back into a new form of Greek and he just stopped dead in his tracks and ceased talking to stare me down and say – "get the fuck out kid and get the fuck out now ! this shit’s gonna ruin you for life – you’ll never live it down and sooner or later you’re gonna take a fall – y’unerstandin me?" – I had at that moment no clue as to what he was alluding so he explained it all for me pretty much as follows: ‘everybody ‘cept you is in on this heist – this is counterfeit money in a constant stream coming in from somewhere and everyone knows about it – the guy who leaves it laying around the guy who never chases you down though he sees you taking it the twerps in the car who drive you away and pay you their measly hundred bucks or whatever it is – the people on the boat the whole bunch of them they KNOW this is all going on – HUGE amounts of counterfeit money being brought in and distributed – tens of thousands shit hundreds of thousands eventually of money – and the only one right now in real jeopardy is YOU you dumb son-of-a-bitch – you’re a nobody and you’re the ONLY one they all know enough to finger if they’re poked – you’re the stooge the fall guy the whatever and if they DIDN’T want you to take those envelopes believe me they’d have shot you dead the first night and right now each and every time you’re brought back in you're getting closer to big big trouble and fuck all your dreams of painting or writing or whatever the fuck you’re talking about - now take this money and get as far the fuck away from me NOW as you can – I do NOT wish to see your sorry ass ‘round here again!" - and I did suddenly understand what I'd gotten in the middle of and good bad or indifferent as I may have been to it I sensed immediately the danger I was in now FROM BOTH SIDES actually and it was in some respects at that moment that I once more simply had the temerity (fortunately I guess) and stop and save my life.

Sunday, May 10, 2009



When you drive a wedge you’ve got to drive it deep and hard so as to split the material it is entering - like ideas or philosophy I always thought that perfectly summed up the idea of revolution and subversive stuff : in no way an arms-carrier mind you I often did my share of breaking down the barricades and was never one to shy away from pushing for forms of violence or theft so as to take back what was illicitly gained in the first place - and if you look back at any of the big names in American finance or history you really can find that originally the source of any fortunes always came from graft corruption or some other form of law-breaking : buying of votes influence peddling trading in illicit freight or sanctioned good or – for that matter – making money from the buying and selling of armaments and bullets to both sides of any quarrel and (seemingly) taking a stance which favored both sides depending on to whom you were talking - all those Cos Cob estate and Wall Street fortunes ? all a sham a travesty and the rest - lawyers guns arms and money booze women slaves and the remainder of all that bootleg ancient trade in factors too sensitive to mention let alone the killing and beheading of hundreds of thousands and more of native Americans – called ‘Indians’ here’ who maybe just happened to be ‘in the way’ of all those double-crossed promises and pretenses with which the big military brass and the sovereign rights of the All-Mighty American power types ran through them like a lance through butter – one elongated steady and constant fell swoop as it’s put – and I for myself was never one to believe too much in any of that old ‘American’ nation-building Manifest Destiny Enlightenment Founding Fathers crap even though I knew and saw that it was being pushed at every opportunity by whomever it was at any moment who stood to gain something from it - banks or car dealers or politicians or schools or liars and cheats of whatever persuasion there could be who hung around sales reps’ offices and commercial agencies suspended in a greedy suspension of dis-belief so as to believe any of the bullshit penny-ante crap they were being paid to peddle and if they had to use the unlimited glories and high ideals of the great American Republic then so be it they’d do it - by those means were bodies delivered when needed were huge tracts of land and forests ripped and shredded for more and more stupid highway conversions subdivisions and rows after rows of stores shops malls and fantasy-amusement sham artifice - each one somehow connected with a built-up completely false made-up and concocted storyline befitting what it was they were meant to sell : some smarmy shit-assed Walt Disney like co-option of dream and subconscious in whichever manner those concepts intersected with real-true-daily-American money-making PRODUCTION - life as a sham and nothing more : at the end of 23rd Street there was the old pillar-and-shed construction of a pier long abandoned and in there lived an old wiry guy named Jenck Jannsen – some old Dutch or Swede or some sort of ancient American type who refused to budge and just stayed hunkered down there for as long as he chose – he looked to be about a hundred already but probably was no more than a cool forty-five but I never cared because no matter what he looked like Lazarus fresh from the grave - WWII Army veteran part-time gravedigger collecting a tiny bit of government money from service rendered and age and time but other than that the best he could do was get some change from passers-by or an occasional small heist of one sort or the other and I’d spend many a late afternoons just sitting around there sometimes with him watching the skies darken and the old wet winds come up blowing and in those days all along that west side area was truck freight and cargo depots and ship lines and piers and wharves and the like – and all of them had with them their own population of roustabouts flamers cargo guys heavers builders sailors with the occasional trader or buyer and seller mixed in - they were of course the ones in the most jeopardy because they wee always easy touches or easy types into whose cars it was a simple task to break and then take whatever it was could be found - sometimes cash money or briefcases with goods and samples and the rest - and nothing ever came of it and they never really knew what happened anyway but every so often somebody would get lucky and find a lot of this or that - and other times of course it would go bad and somebody would take a beating or get stabbed or pummeled and arrested – whatever and however it went – and the taxi guys would come around with their cabs and fares and people inside were sometimes unconscious or zoned out or drugged silent or tripping and whatever came of them was their problem and it went from every extreme you could think of to the other – talking here sex theft debasement and even just dumping off - drugs were becoming more prevalent as were the stupid misfits and kids tramping in from wherever and they always had nothing but trouble coming to them - so that even this Jannsen guy even he would sometimes have to look the other way to not see something he’d rather not know about or be witness to and anyway that was how he spent most of this time that and drink anyway and any time I spent there was time spent just watching and learning things seeing how they were done and watching how the graceful dull mantle of Fall and Winter settled in on the great awkward plain of New York Manhattan City as it fell : one time were sitting around together and he told me of the story he’d heard from like a hundred years back when parts of this area were still marshweed and mud and how it was once then the most dangerous place to be and bloodhounds and cops would sweep through the reeds and the flats almost every day looking for one or another thug or Irish dead body or businessman millionaire who’d been cut to death and dumped in these marshes while the family mansion and the estate goods were all looted and ruined and the building gutted and the firemen who all went along with the charade and the Westside crazy gangs who did this stuff – all those weird names I could never get straight – and he said sometimes if you went diligently ‘bout yer’ task you could still here and there find evidences of the old days even if it was just a bone or two but ‘skulls was the prizes the real gold – they can getch’a seventy-five bucks sometimes’ and yeah well I believed him anyway but by then everything had been turned over anyway and filled in with the muck and oil of the modern day but I listened nevertheless – and this went on for some time and then one day he wasn’t there no more and then the next and the next and I never knew what happened but it was the dead of Winter and he probably could have met his own dead of Winter in his own way by then anyway and yeah – for a long while – the old shed just stood there standing and always reminding me of him.

Sunday, May 03, 2009



So here we have the 'powderhouse verve' - a reaction unlike any other something a separateness of living-to-live and Humanity - all of it - growing with every evening spray of light along glassed windows arrayed one after another with pictured logos - the words made flesh - depicting every pose of Mankind known with backlit energy and dingy dark-lit storeroom activities like the cobbler with his Cat's Paw soles bent serenely over the work table filled with shoes his leather apron in perfect shape the small tack hammer the bottoms of shoes turned upward up the little shoe-form work-vice over which he goes about his silent single task - the work of a life without a mask - heels and tips and polish and oils : the stonemason with his chisels and tools to drill and scratch and cut and etch and dig : the seamstress with her needles and sewing machines foot-treadle revolving wheel bobbin walker cloth : the woodmason with plane and hammer and rasp and saw and the polished finish of all and varied woods : the cabinet-maker with his forms the antiques artisan and his collected craft-period furnitures and fixtures the jumble of everything all thrown about on multi-leveled floors awaiting eyes and hands and bottoms : the mason and the writer and the bookbinder and the cook - glue seams paper print woods nails meats sauces crates and bushels the lawman the pistol-seller in his police shop the ragman the picker the dressmaker the dress-seller the carriage trade the horseman the pretzel guy the Chinese store the horseman and the lantern the Ming vase and the candle-shop the lancer and the driver drover teamster packhorse mover lifter weigher measurer accountant taxman preacher the purveyor of everything the glassman the glazier the painter the bakery the club the glass-blower sheet-glass window shop putty mirrors the zinc-baker chemistry man the bleeder the cutter the bishop the undertaker the gypsy fortune-teller open-window-shopfront the gravedigger the builder the plumber the fencemaker and all the rest every endeavor for which Mankind has grown a need and arisen and come to be the fruit-seller the vendor the cooker the cutter the slicer the butcher the farmhand the herdsman the killer the iceman the picker the broom-sweep the parsonage-keeper the sexton the bell-tower attendant and the accumulated everything of everyone existent and present - or - ALL Mankind YES! - it is that for which the graying light descends and tints all the windows with a blazing yellow-gold fire tinged red air and light with people walking to leave to board the train the steamer the ferry the tram the taxi the bus and all the endless rows of people picking through bread and rolls and candies and snacks the tubuler assortment of one vast lifetime of want the people in need and want in pain the aches the itches the rashes the causes and colds the cancers and the breaks the illnesses and the broken bones and limbs and injuries and unheard news and the stories the arrivals and departures the hordes boarding and disembarking the passings to and fro the goings and returnings and it is ALL that all for which the light develops and wanes and returns to color the fragmented glass of windows and cars and cabs and storefronts the newsman with blackened hands the waxy-eyed seller of stories and news the apron'd man the chestnut vendor taking glumly dim behind his wreath of smoke the charm of that smell the wants of kids and parents traipsing through Wintertime city streets or the wet sweats of Summer seeking cloths or clothes toys or trinkets gifts or things - any reason for coming out - the garish display the quiet display the air wrapped around light the sum and all and every total of each thing defining itself defining its season a tone a place a notion all humanity together and apart the words heard from the church doorways and organ musics shouted out careening around corners and passing trucks and buses and the crowds which linger to see what they may have left behind the Fifth Avenue lights the people in long coats and scarves and gloves the mufflers the mitts the boots the long-time destitute wares of all Summers too and Winter's sorry scape of clothing and layer and blanket and wool the sleighs with horses steamy-nosed in the evening darkness codding their hooves noisily and slow along the ancient and hardened street...