The Work of American Poet Igor Goldkind

Archive for June, 2014

What We Do


What We Do.

What We Do












Can you hear the sound?


That quiet roar of Being?





In the background,


In the cracks in the ground.


It’s the low rumble of a lumbering Lorry engine.


Do you hear it?


It’s just behind

The straggling dream of

Trying to get ‘somewhere’

Over some rainbow.



No Revelation . . .


Nothing was ever concealed;

Merely overlooked

By you,

By me.


While we were busy leaping

To catch the stick in our teeth

Thrown by our masters:

Money without faces

Men who have yet to be named.


When we are not trained to do tricks

Like dogs.

(Some of us even carry certificates.)

We are laboratory rats

Being tested for complacency

And our ability to follow simple instructions:

Like ‘Buy This Again!’


Well…what did you expect?

Angels with broken wings?

Excuses are open wounds

But mistakes open a clear glass window

Through which you can see,

In the distance:

Where you live,

Who you are and

Who answers your door when death knocks.



New Poem this morning; 11 am:


My legs are pistons.
Because I got my engine going on
Right here, down between my legs,
At the centre of my Being.
I got my engine going on.

And it’s not idle.
No, I’m not just idling away my time.
Though the Earth’s Sky might say it’s not so,
I got my engine going on
Firing on all pistons, moving slowly forwards
Making quiet progress.


Not just ticking over
Can you tell when you’re bullshitting yourself?
Where you can find every reason to stay coldly still?
Is your engine going on?
Or are you just sitting idle,
Burning fuel?



Me, I got my engine going on.


The Poet Warrior: ‘Uruwashii’ (Not, Poet-worrier!)

The Samurai Poet-Warrior

Famous for his skill with the pen and the sword or the “bun and the bu”, the harmony of fighting and learning. The Samurai were expected to be cultured and literate, and admired the ancient saying “bunbu-ryōdō” (文武両道, lit., literary arts, military arts, both ways) or “The pen and the sword in accord.” By the time of the Edo period, Japan had a higher literacy comparable to that in central Europe.The number of men who actually achieved the ideal and lived their lives by it was high.

An early term for warrior, “uruwashii”, was written with a kanji that combined the characters for literary study (“bun” 文) and military arts (“bu” 武), and is mentioned in the Heike Monogatari (late 12th century). The Heike Monogatari makes reference to the educated poet-swordsman ideal in its mention of Taira no Tadanori’s death:

Friends and foes alike wet their sleeves with tears and said,

What a pity! Tadanori was a great general,
pre-eminent in the arts of both sword and poetry.

it is said the warrior’s is the twofold way of pen and sword, and he should have a taste for both ways. Even if a man has no natural ability he can be a warrior by sticking assiduously to both divisions of the Way. Generally speaking, the way of the warrior is resolute acceptance of death.
Know the smallest things and the biggest things, the shallowest things and the deepest things. As if it were a straight road mapped out on the ground … These things cannot be explained in detail. From one thing, know ten thousand things. When you attain the Way of strategy there will not be one thing you cannot see. You must study hard.

21 Maxims of a Poet Warrior


1. Accept everything just the way it is.
2. Do not seek pleasure for its own sake.
3. Do not, under any circumstances, depend on a partial feeling.
4. Think lightly of yourself and deeply of the world.
5. Be detached from desire your whole life long.
6. Do not regret what you have done.
7. Never be jealous.
8. Never let yourself be saddened by a separation.
9. Resentment and complaint are appropriate neither for oneself nor others.
10. Do not let yourself be guided by the feeling of lust or love.
11. In all things have no preferences.
12. Be indifferent to where you live.
13. Do not pursue the taste of good food.
14. Do not hold on to possessions you no longer need.
15. Do not act following customary beliefs.
16. Do not collect weapons or practice with weapons beyond what is useful.
17. Do not fear death.
18. Do not seek to possess either goods or fiefs for your old age.
19. Respect Buddha and the gods without counting on their help.
20. You may abandon your own body but you must preserve your honour.
21. Never stray from the Way.

~Miyamoto Musashi, Samurai


21 Maxims of a Wandering Samurai

In fifteen-hundred eighty-four a Samurai was born
Who would become a Ronin and thereby received much scorn
A Ronin is a Samurai who’s masterless, you see
It was quite frowned upon for these Warriors to be free

But Miyamoto knew these twenty-one things to be true
And didn’t need a master to adhere, follow, pursue
He followed his own inner truth and went where the wind blew
And now his maxims have blown your way to inspire you

You do not need to follow them because I told you so
You’ll follow ‘cause they are all truths that you already know
Twenty-one maxims which plainly state truths we may not
Want to follow, some might be resisted, even fought

Because they fly in the face of comfort and luxury
But these are truths that no one can dispute or disagree
Twenty-one steps to let go, to accept and have peace
To understand, to be selfless and make your anguish cease

Twenty-one steps followed by a Ronin Samurai
Who knew the truth was within him and declared, “I won’t die
As many of my brothers did when they had lost their master”
Musashi would not accept anything as a disaster

In and out all things did flow and just one thing was held
And that was twenty-one maxims that Musashi compelled
Himself to follow and now you can follow them as well
It’s not on problems but on truths that all of us should dwellwarriorpoet


SAMURAI POETRY: the Way of Pen and Sword

When the Samurai class was established as the ruling caste in Japan at the beginning of the 18th century the warriors were required to educate themselves in practical administration. This included literary skills, culture in general and some familiarity with law. The Samurai had been, even in the early days of the 13th century, relatively literate, compared to the often unlettered Knights and even Kings of the West.

It was traditional for some of them to take part in poetry competitions, though of a rather special kind. In an ordinary poetry contest there are two or three winners so to say, and some in the second rank, as judged by the expert arbiters. These last were often famous poets, but in any case critics of some standing.

However, such a result would not perhaps be satisfactory in the case of Warriors intensely conscious of what they call their ‘Honour’. The loser in a horse race had been known to attack the winner. Even when passing each other in the street, if the tip of one’s scabbard should happen to touch the scabbard of another Samurai it could be taken as an insult leading to a duel.

1939860_282113671946647_1276780783_nThe organizers of Samurai poetry contests had to devise some way of giving merit or de-merit to each poem without putting most of the contestants in a relatively low category, with just a few enjoying triumph. They devised a system under which each poet’s verse was either a winner or loser, and yet none of them felt absolutely superior or inferior in the contest.

The poems and the poets were divided into two sides, L and R. The proceedings began with a poem on the assigned theme by a poet of the Left; this was read out by his team leader, who might add a word or two in support of it. Then a poem from the Right was read in similar style. Then each pair of poems was considered by the judges and one was declared superior and one the lesser. The judges gave their reasons in each case.

No Samurai felt humiliated even if his poem lost because there was no absolute judgement about the whole contest. Perhaps his verse had lost to the finest verse in the whole collection. Nothing was stated as to this. He might be the second best poet there. And in the same way the winner could not become too over-bearing because it might be, that he was the second worst poet there. So nobody’s honour was touched by the result – good or bad.

I have looked up the records of one or two of these competitions. The judges’ comments are surprisingly frank: one line which referred to a classical Chinese mountain was criticized as being ‘artificial and a little pedantic’. Another comment was to the effect that a poem had put out leaves, but not flowers. In fact many of the comments by the judges were on the negative side. It is believed that the harshness of criticism did raise the level of poetic achievement. In the 12th century the uta-awase or poetry contest was one of the main forms of entertainment. It is especially noteworthy that the poems were judged by being spoken aloud, and not in written form. This meant that the language had to be kept simple, with few Sino-Japanese compounds that are often ambiguous when spoken. The poems could thus be understood and appreciated by ordinary people, not simply by cultivated courtiers. This strain of elegant simplicity and austerity runs through much of Japanese traditional culture, which is correspondingly inexpensive and could thus percolate down to the relatively poor members of society.

The honour in which a good poet was held is reflected in an historical incident. A castle was under siege and the attackers were going to mount simultaneous assaults on the four gates. But their commander discovered that one of the defenders at the south gate was a famous poet. He gave orders that the attack on the south gate should be only a sham affair so that the poet would not be killed. However it should be added that in a similar case where, an attacker had hinted that a particularly talented Samurai defender should not be killed; the man in question by chance discovered this. Before the battle began he dressed in brilliant colours with his family crest prominent and charged out at the head of his men to meet the attackers. They had to cut him down, but it is good to record that his opposing commander wrote a poem commending his heroism.

© 2000 Trevor LeggettNagoya_Castle(Edit2)

A warrior poet once said
You’re not dead yet so live like you could be
A warrior poet said
Have no regrets when you’re old
Have no regrets when you’re old
A warrior poet once said
You’re not dead yet so live like you could be
A warrior poet said
Have no regrets when you’re old
Have no regrets when you’re old

When your body wants to run
But your heart knows you’re better than that
The blood you spilled on battlefields
I promise you will not go unspent
Neither will I leave you stranded

The promise rings as our battle cry
You’re never alone regardless of doubt
But faith comes so easy to some
Better luck next time, better luck next time
Watch as the teargas burns my eyes
It burns my eyes

A warrior poet once said
You’re not dead yet so live like you could be
A warrior poet said
Have no regrets when you’re old
Have no regrets when you’re dead.



WHO WILL DRAW ME A PICTURE FOR THIS POEM? (Serious submissions entertained. Payment upon commission.)


I am propelled like a bullet from a gun barreling through space,
Through your flesh,
Through the time you have misspent on this Earth now ending,
Too late to regret the bending trigger of my gun.

I penetrate your vagina,
Your mind,
Your sense of inner self,
Tearing through your false resistance like a runaway train.

I cannot stop, I am momentum now.
Ripping through your many lives,
Decimating your hopes for the peace tomorrow that now will never come.
Because my trajectory is certain and yours is a wet pipe dream.

You are obliterated into fragments by the curling of my finger.
Now Isis will never find you.
Fear is a man’s best friend:
And a little pressure goes a long ways.


Draw-a-poem competition now!!!
Prizes to be won!!!
Including payment for a commission in the new book!
Fame, fortune and peace of mind guaranteed!!!!
Act now, before it’s too late!
Ooops, it’s too late!!
No, it’s not; GOTCHA!!!
Enter now, submite to  or personally to
Thank you and god bless!!!!!!


I realised today, just now in fact, what an accelerated, roller coaster rapid, high impact that network media has made on my life, to my work and on the shifting sands of my very sense of self.  In the past 6 months mainly, but glimmering on the event horizon more than a year ago and then before then, a five year trajectory of exploration and criticism.

I hated Facebook when I just joined it and in fact, I only joined Facebook to show it up.  To prove that it was merely a passing trend, a blip on the horizontal line, a useless waste of time for those who had too much time to spend.

And then I was wrong.

Then I began to see into the Matrix.  Not just what it was but what it was crystal-like growing into; emerging as something different, something we couldn’t even fully imagine it to be and yet we would be using it everyday, we would be the willing participants in this mad experiment in meshed communications: tight 24/7 connectivity.

We are all of us, each others audience.

We are a great, wide, awesomely scalable scope of human interaction through word, through emotion, through opinion, through compassion, through malice, through the simple exchange of our thoughts we become more than the sum.




There is a third colour pill and it’s green.




Network media brought my words, my work to the attention of a publisher.

In the conceiving of my work, I have set up several Facebook pages each dedicated either to a work in progress like THE DARK CLOUD in which invited participants to enter into a kind of crowd sourced edit, openly talking about the stanzas and giving their opinion as to stanzas to include or exclude.  The final edit was compleed in a recording stuido in New York once the music was added, but the crowd source edit was an important stage in the creative process.  Likewise, I have had ample support and respect from those 25K or so new visitors to my poem FB pages who are now aware of my book IS SHE AVAILABLE? and have sampled some of the contents including my poems, the images produced by some exceptionally gifted artists both established and relatively unknown who have honoured me by each rendering a visual interpretation of one of my words.

(There are also two comics strip stories I have done illustrated one by David Lloyd of ‘V’ and Occupy mask fame and an old story about Jack Kerouac painted by Glenn Fabry.)

With words we conjure pictures, so why have an artist do anything?

Because it is not the artist’s job to invoke new imagery, but rather to allow their imagery to invoke new words!

cropped-prof_at_board_5f_250711.jpgWe are a networked society now.

A grand interconnected matrix of systems, protocols, computations and output formats that are desinged to make administering to our social and conumser means more efficient and more profitable.  We are what our machines are here to serve.  If you do not tell the machine what to do it continues to seek instructions and will continue to do so until either you, someone else or something else tells it what it needs to know to do what it needs to do.

If you don’t vote, someone else casts your vote for you.

If you don’t pay attention, the world passes you by and changes into something that you didn’t notice it was changing into, leaving you lost and feeling out of date and pathetic and remorseful and sad.    So you sit down and have a little cry and then switch on the TV to see if there’s someone else’s life you could pretend to be part of;, rather than your own which is sad and miserable and  can you last remember when you weren’t lonely?

I wonder if  you still have her number and whether or not she would fancy a surprise call on a Sunday morning

after so long?

After so many years.

She’d have the police onto you.


Why do I have the kind of face that people like to see arrested?

Why does everyone always call the police on me, even when I haven’t broken any laws?

Which the police are always very quick to point out to my complainer.  People seem to like to call the police on me because I don’t act the way that they do.  I don’t speak like they do and I’m rather adament and insistent that certain rules of common decency, not to mention the rule of  law, be obeyed.

Actually, I insist on principle over rule.  I think people should actually try and understand the rules and the reasoning for the rules that they choose to live or work by.  I like police officers (most I’ve met), they have a hard job and are constrained by strict procedures and laws.  I like that.  Those are my laws, the laws of a society that prescribe the parameters of our human interactions.

Cops, by the way, both British and American tend to like me; even when I’m being arrested them.

I act respectfully, I know my rights and I’m described by one sergeant as “a reasonable and articulate man”.

(I quite like being called a ‘man’ by a uniformed officer; it feels somewhat like accreditation.)

Unfortunately, “reasonable and articulate” can upset some other people’s whole way of being.

I’m very glad that it does.

Don’t go sailing if don’t like your boat being upset a few times.  It’s bound to happen.

Following the rules is easy btw, any Nazi can do that; understanding the rules that are laid down and testing them against reality, improving upon, refining rules through the appropriate channels is also something I like to do.  People think of me as a big complainer, but I actually do allot of things behind the scenes, through the proper channels, to get things done. To improve on what is already in place.

You can do that too.  It feels great!

This network of networks, this web of Friends has furthered, changed he trajectory of my career and for this I will be eternally grateful and I promise my readers this:

If you support me, if you buy my books, read my blog, comment on my FB pages…

I promise to continue telling you the Truth, as I know it and only I can know it but that I can share with you.

I promise to keep my inegrity over all other considerations, to explore, to provoke, say uncomfortable things, to say unpopular things; to make you feel and to make you think; those are my twin tasks.


Thank you, my friends.  I’ll see you in the stream.




A Dark Shadow Passes Over a Bright Child's Face







028d6dcf6c3a95a30b403cb00e3cb813Love is an Imperfect Sphere

to be found somewhere outside of our orbit

Beyond the reach promised by light,

the last kiss of a dying star.

It is after all, merely the shadow of a mass you once believed in

and can now barely recall.




That the sun that shines all around you, on the brightest and darkest of days

is somewhere still constant; somewhere still burning,

as fiercely as on its first day.



The shape of the shadow that passes o’er the bright child’s face,

Is the memory of all that you’ve lost.

The black spot where all that matters disappear to:

Celestial spheres

Poking your head through to the other side.

For all that passes this way passes us by.



For Suzanne,

June 9th, 2014



028d6dcf6c3a95a30b403cb00e3cb813Love is an Imperfect Sphere

to be found somewhere outside of your orbit

Beyond the reach promised by light,

the last kiss of a dying star.

It is after all, merely the shadow of a mass you once believed in

and now can barely recall.




That the sun that shines all around you, on the brightest and darkest of days

is somewhere still constant; somewhere still burning,

as fiercely as on its first day.



The shape of the shadow that passes o’er the bright child’s face,

Is the memory of all that you’ve lost.

The black spot where all that matters disappears to.

Celestial spheres

Poking your head through to the other side.

For all that passes this way passes you by.



For Suzanne,

June 9th, 2014



I think one of the great moral lies of the ages is that of self-sacrifice; the idea that true human love and compassion is demonstrated by going without so that others may have.  I think that’s bullshit.  Or more correctly, within my Nietzchian understanding, the mentality of the weak herd.

Self-sacrefice is useless because something is still lost.  The  receiver may prosper momentarily as long as the gift may last, but the giver is encumbered in the giving.  That’s because of the fundamental moral flaw in the equation, this fundamentally Protestant idea of charity.  It is not that it is useless to give, but it is useless to give what is not needed.  Or more exactly, to genuinely give is to give something that is actually needed by the receiver; not something that you think that they might like.  That is false conscience,  false giving, if you will.

It is the mentality of the colonialist: we know what is best for you.  Here, take our gifts and be grateful you ingrateful, primitive wretches!

On the other hand, to empathize with another, to see the world you are sharing from their vantage point;  to see what someone else actually needs and to give that to them because one has a surplus of cash, water, food or hospice is the essential act of selfless generosity.

Selfless because the giver is no longer obsessed with the act of giving and the moral superioirity that the gesture denotes.

The giver is only focussed on the receiver receiving what they need.

That is what a friend does.betrayal-quotes

A friend provides a friend in need with something that they can afford to share because the other person needs it and you have some to spare.  Or a friend may suggest a means by which their friend can achieve their need through a contact, a connection or information that the receiver did not have.  People who are not your friend but insist that they are and want what is best for you, are to be avoided like the plague.

In fact they are THE PLAGUE.

Run from them as fast as you can, as soon as they betray their symptoms of self-aggrandizing, moral superiorizing flakiness.

You can easily tell who they are.

They’re the ‘friends’ who always ask you how you’re doing when they know that you’re struggling with some necessity.  They always sound sympathetic, when what in fact they are doing is gloating and relishing in your comparative discomfort.

They like to watch you suffer, get updated on your sufferig and make sympathetic noises because that way they get front row seats to watch your ……suffering.

These false friends, these fakes and phonies, will offer you possible solutions that are always tied tightly to their good will, their schedule and their willingness to not let you forget who your benefactor is.  They will offer to arbitrate in disputes when they know the other party and have an agenda to place the other parties interests over your own.  These  betrayers will lead you on, giving you endless excuses about why things  have gone wrong and prevented them from fulfilling their offer to help you.  Do not rely on these twerps.  They are time and energy wasters.  They are flakes and I’ve met my fair share since I landed back in San Diego.

Southern California seems to attract flakes like a blizzard magnet.

I think it’s the warm weather and sunshine that attract people who don’t really do much with their lives and love to feast on the mistery of others.

Some of these flakes are American, some are from overseas trying to fit into their Californian flake dream as “kind and simple people”.  “Kindly be simple somewhere else”, is my response; some of us have things to do with our lives, in the real world!

California flakes (and they come from all over, even Sweden), don’t believe in language.  Or rather they beleive that language can conform to whatever mood that they’re in.  If they make a commitment or a promise and then change their minds or decide that they want more from what they agreed, they consistently forget that they said anything at all.

I actually had a so-called educated Swedish woman say to me straight faced that I should not hold her to her word or her agreements as English was her second language and that she understood basic terms like “cover”  (as in to cover a fee or cost), in the Swedish sense of the term and that I should make allowances for whatever she says or contradicts because her English wasn’t as good as mind.  Oh, and to ignore anyhing her son may have said as he’s not really mentally disposed to making comittments.   (!)

Her English was and is fine.  What’s askew is her moral compass as to how she meets her obligations and keeps her word; which of course, is non existent and not conducive  to her “kind and simple” life.


I’m surrounded by flakes who have no respect for their word, the words of others or any sense of moral purpose other than to get what’s in it for them.

Greed and calculated, camouflaged self-interest underscore the character of a flake, Swedish or otherwise.

Flakes  lack the imagination to understand mutual self interest or how the needs or objectives of many can become one direction, one attainable end result where everyone partaking wins.  No, flakes not only lack the imagination, they lack the will.  They are weak, pathetic, passive aggressive little shits. And if you step in one, wipe your shoe of and walk away.  You’ll thank me for it!

judas-iscariot-e1258831487664The other kind of friend that will betray you is the one who has betrayed themselves already.  These flakes often affect the highest moral posture, more often than not professing adherence to some religion or other.  Religious adherents are often the most morally dubious of individuals (Catholic priests and nuns, anyone?).  It’s not enough to be good, kind and compassionate, I got to make sure everyone else knows that I am in a public space, each and every Sunday.

Really??  That’s what makes you a good person?

Oh, I forgot, you told me that you were a kind and generous person.  I must not have been listening.  Personally, I don’t go around telling people what a kind and generous person I am; I just do what I do and hope for the best.  I act in kindness, compassion and generosity.  I don’t need to announce it because my actions always speak louder.

The less said about family the better, however in my particular cirucmstance not only was I side swiped by a mother and son Swedish couple of flakes, I had to deal with a major flake who I let get too close.

I felt sorry for her, my father’s second wife.  So when she professed to wanting to be referred to as my daughter’s second grandmother, I let pass my inital recoil to the misrepresentation and with my father’s urgings “indulged” the stupid woman.  Much as I had indulged her forcing my father to marry her in a Christian church knowing full well that he was a life long atheist.  Or the fact that she would utter supernatural drivel about my dad and mys sister being in heaven smiling down on me.


Excuse me while I wretch.

I indulged this stupid woman and when she linked up with an internet boyfriend from some vulgar dating site six months after my father died, I tried to accept her happiness as parmount to my father’s memory and her claim that he was the man of her life.

I was able to indugle and tolerate most things, that is until she showed her true colours and exactly how thick her blood really was.  After promising me a place to stay in her parent’s vacant pool-side Cabana (they’re rich),  she changed her mind while I was in New York because her father wanted to spray for termites.  This left me effectively homeless for the past 2 weeks and at no small expense.  To compound matters, as all of my possessions were at her parents, I asked them to be returned to me; she obliged somewhat bt managed to lose all of my mothere’s legal documents in the process of ‘returning’ my things.

What an idiot!

What a flake.

The Swedish flakettes I can deal with in Small Claims Court for breach of a verbal contract to rent to me. (Boy do I have enough evidence through DMs and emails and applications to get my money back!)

But the betrayal by someone who has claimed for over a decade to be a memeber of your family is intolerable.

Towards the end of my career in comics, I had reason to admire the writing of Alan Moore more and more (pun intended).  The man was unquestionably the best writer working in comics.  But he had also affected what I first thought might be some kind of paranoid personality disorder.  More and more of our mutual acquantances would at some point announce to me that ‘Alan’ had cut them out of  his life, that he no longer had anything more to do with them and never spoke to them after some trespass was committed.  I thought that odd and soon found myself amongst the growing ranks of the exiled myself.Saddest-thing-about-betrayal

I thought to myself, how odd that a person of such social conscience and obvious human compassion (read him!), would stoop to such a level of schoolyard-like self-isolation.  Was Alan Moore a sulker?  A sulky old bastard?


But lately what I’ve come to realize that I had initially dimissed as an eccentricity. a personality quirk of a great talent, I now am realsiign is actually a very useful survival strategy.  Eliminate the people in your life who have caused you harm or are likely too.  Get rid of them.  Exile them from your circuit, never speak to them again.  It’s easy.  Try it.  You will get a reputation for being “difficult” diva-like or even unhinged and hermitic; I have.

So what?  It’s a small price to pay to get the flakes out of your hair and the bozos to the back of the bus!

I think Alan Moore is right to cut people out of his life; it gets shorter and shorter and we have less time and energy for too many good people in our lives already.  There ain’t room for you, my friend-flake; I’m in surivial mode.  Flakes are the companions of small children and when we grow, we learn to leave our children’s toys behind.  My view is to terminally cut people off who have wasted my time, my energy or who have tried to deceive or take unfair advantage.  If I see them to this to someone else, that also qualifies for termination.  This gives me the energy to focus on the few but real friends I have.  People I have known for years who have proven to be time and time again, my friends.  Actions speak louder than words and the actions of my real friends is a heavenly chorus.

Alan once asked me in the back of Dick Jude’s car whilst driving from London to Newcastle for Alan to be interviewed by Paula Yates (I had thought that Newcastle was on the District Line!); that when I was walking in the park and I happened to step in some dog shit, what did I do about it?

I didn’t really understand the question, so I replied “buy a new pair of shoes?”  Alan leered at the response:  “When you step in dog shit you don’t jump up and down on it; you just wipe your shoe clean and walk away”.

Alan Moore knows the score and soon you will too.

~Just a little pissed off at the number and density of flakes I run into in South California.

That’s one positive thing I can say about England; they have more snow but fewer flakes than California.


The word Friend is another ill defined word; or rather it is a word with so many facets of meaning that it promotes a tendency to be dazzled by the bright, shiny reflecting surfaces  and lose sight of the substance of the stone altogether.  Facebook of course, has been a primary instigator of subverting and perverting the word Friend into a  twisted and mutated semantic of its former meaning.  Or depending on your church, FB has facillitated the organic growth and evolution of the term Friend in its rather intensive and pervasive battery farm of usage.



What does the term Friend mean then, in the wake of the social media intra-dimension of simultaneous 24 hour connectivity?

Having recently escaped from England, another culture topography of Friendship, and having re-acquainted myself with Friends in the US I hadn’t seen in the flesh for 30 years, I’ve had recent opportunity to come to terms with the meaning and substance of Friendship in a direct in-your-face, kind of way.

Firstly, dear readers, I do not consider the vast majority of my Facebook Friends to be my ‘real’ friends.   I mean, I’m fond of  y’all and all that, don’t get me wrong; and some of my FB Friends are my real friends and have come to be through Facebook.

But you already know who you are so there’s no need for me to expend energy trying to include you away from my exclusion zone.

So I use the prefix ‘Facebook’ Friends when referring to the larger category.  Some of my Facebook Friends are my readers, my audience and for them I am extremely grateful.  I was able to secure a book contract through Facebook and I have been able to slowly but steadily build an audience of some 2,500-3,000 followers who are ware of my existence, my work and my objectives and hopefully will actually buy my books when they come out.  I am writing for them every day now.  You are my audience and my obligation to inform, relate, provoke, insight and hopefully move is my primary job nove.  That central activity, that calling for which all else is merely a means.

If you continue to read me, to follow me, I assure you that you will be rewarded for your persistence.

Yes, I am building an audience using the resources at hand; that means you and if you like what I write and want me to write more, then you infomr your freinds to check me out and hopefully I can gain enough traction to actually make my first book a success.

I’ve determined that I’m not really a very good worker.

I mean, I do good work; but I’m not very good at following orders, especially ones that make no sense.

I would have failed as a Nazi, not for being perceived a Jew or even being particuarly averse to genocide.  No, I would have failed as a Nazi because given the most direct and simple order, I would have inevitably had questions:

“Are you sure these people are all Jews”?  “What if he murder an innocent Aryan by mistake?”

“Are these cattle cars really safe?  I mean, we don’t want to lose anyone on the way to be gassed, now do we?”

“Couldn’t we just persuade the trade union syndicalists with reason and argument as to the logial superiority of racist fascism?  I mean, have we really tried?”


judas_iscariotI would have made a terrible Nazi and been a deep disappointment to my family and friends.  Just as well, huh?

I digress, the point is that those who are not my ‘real friends‘ are  becoming my friends through engagement and familiarity.  Either that or are rapidly becoming non friends for equally relevant reasons: engagement and familiarity.

But the title of this blog meditation  YOU CAN ONLY BE BETRAYED BY A FRIEND, refers to a more universal experience of the word Friend that precedes Facebook and indeed predates the entire Internet of networked simultaneous conversations.  The betrayal of Friendship, the betrayal by a friend is always unexpected and usually occurs when one is most vulnerable.

When one is in states of Bardo-like transition; in the flux of needs.  It is precisely because betrayel is always experienced within this fragile frame that the feeling of betrayal, although initially a shock and a surprise, can lead to a meaningfull repose of  contemplation.  One has the opportunity in being betrayed of catching a glimpse beyond the semantics of Friendship and get a real insight into the nature of human relationships, both good and bad.  You never know who your real friends are until you need them, is virtually a cliche.  Well it is a cliche, but all cliches are true.


More to come in Part II in which I names names of betrayers and thank the real friends I have.  apophysis__betrayal_by_1footonthedawn



Hewn at the stems

The red, red blossoms shriek:

‘Murder! Murder!’

Succumbed by mortal pain.

We destroy all that we Love.

We cannot but help it;

Like scorpions, it is in our nature.

Though turtle-like,

We also carry the burden of loyal sacrifice and

The love of Truth.

Mr. Jekyl and Dr. Hyde

The two versions of the same coin

Flipped and suspended in the mid-air moment

Is it me or is it the world that remains thus divided?


The Grateful Comatose

DEMONFACESSMILINGDIABOLLICALLYSince my return to San Diego, I’ve observed higher percentage of people I encounter in southern California appear to be on some form of medication of one sort or another; either as a remedy for anxiety, grief, bi0polarity, depression or some sort of compulsive behaviour disorder.

This is extraordinary.

The last time I lived in San Diego, antidepressants or mood altering medicines were rarely prescribed and only then mainly to women and children  who were exhibiting ‘behaviour disorder’; whatever that is supposed to mean.    So how now, brown cow?  Why the sudden upsurge, over 30 years, in prescribed medication to a market that not so long ago would have been conisered mainstream, of of the mill, ordinary people?  Are we all mad or are we all being drugged against our will?

Well, niether, really, batman.

I mean, like most things, there really isn’t a clear disctinction between purposeful, act-of-will and responsive, passive, knee jerk reflex.

I mean, like most things actually are, not as we pretend that they are.

I run into medicated people every day.  I see medicated people but I do no dance with them.

My father, when he was still alive strongly advised me to pursue a career in psychiatry or criminal pyschology under the simple premise that he had observed in his life a steady but noteworthy increase in the crazy population.  “There’s one thing you can count on with madness,” he used to say to me when I was finishing college; “it’s a growth industry”.

What I  notice that Southern Californians all have in common is a steady, fixed and dogged avoidance of what is really bothering them.  What is eating them from under their skins; from the outside in,  like a caustic acid of the soul.  They might as well be already dead and in hell for  what they fashioned for themselves; is each their own private corner of damnation .  And I hear their silent cries of anguish for some desperate relief and it makes me shudder.

To me, the answer is simple.  A by-product  no doubt, of my surviving trauma; of my viceralunderstanding what it feels to not allow myself to panic in a real crisis.  Maybe it’s the psychadelic drugs I took in college; I  don’t really know.

But I do know that If you won’t look into the void; it bloody well comes looking for you until you do!

This cannot be medicated for or away.  Your own existence on this mortal realm, this planet, this atmosphere, this mindscape is an irrevocable fact.

It cannot be avoided.  Everywhere you go there you are (JKZ).

So you get used to being around and notiing that the world is not just a stage but that one is an actor upon that stage with equal focus for the Greeks observing in the audience.  Our lives have meaning .  We are characters of our own divine literature; our own recounting of who we are.  I know myself by writing and talking about myself as my own observer.  Others have other golden paths:  arts, image, music, rhetoric, compassion, care giving, dancing, juggling, clowning around, being beautiful, being silent, being full of sound and fury.

We each, as Martin Luther  (not, King; the earlier Protestant one), proclaimed have our own connection unmediated by scheme or screen.

We each of us can look into the mirror of our own mortality and smile back at the grin on the skull that we see.

I make no apologizes or justifications for my vantage point in this particular observation.   Yes, I have been experienced and my insight is hard fought for and hard come by.  I make no pretensions at superiority, niether intellectual, moral nor spiritual;

I simply what I know and what I know is this: if you do not entertain demons in your living room, then they will come for you in your bed.

UnknownIn other words,  none of us can ever really escape the basic question mark hiding in the middle of the room.

We are doomed by our minds and by our natural tendance towards being curious.

We really do need to know what’s going on; in the film, in the play, in the book, in the game, in our lives as we experience them.

We want to know and if we want to know, it i the Truth that we want to know; not some pill shaped alternative.

Put down your medication.

Do not be scared.

Be mindfully afraid, not scared; be aware of your fear and walk along side it, forwards; into battle.

The battle is with with your own resistance.

Two opposing emtional forces; one says step forwards.

The other says run.

There is no time to run because once you begin to contemplate, even glimpse your own mortality, your own inner, childlike wonderment at-it-all returns like an old dear friend paying a surprise visit.  This is the blessing of the beginner’s mind.  The state of ready apprehension, joyful reception; the bliss of being at the cusp of the moment as it changes.  Getting passed the ball and running forwards, not backwards with it.

it is right here where we can see our own deaths, our own lives and the shadow of its meaning in a flash; in one instant of suspension of all time and all thinking.  We can see exactly who we are, who we were born, who we live and who we are when we die.  One in the same.  The bones under our skin.


It is us that we are afraid of.

The us that is not only naked, but skinless.


But ‘we’ are really ok; like a skeleton, we might look scary at first; but we’re really just smiling, fuzzy, bozos underneath.

So, my American friends: LESS MEDICATION and MORE CONTEMPLATION and a little bit of MEDITATION, maybe; OK?  Or as Timothy Leary once nearly a life time ago, “Instead of spending all of our time and energy on a war against drugs; why don’t we concentrate instead on a drug that stops wars?”  I heard him say that first hand.

So I know what I know.

What do you know?









droid2-e1357319186509Poem 1: THE GODS

In the trees, in the trees
I can feel them in the trees
The Gods, that is;
The ones who prepare us for tha PASSAGE out of Time.

We are Osiris, you and I,

Scattered fragments of longing
Long covered  by the deserts shifting sands
One hour glass at a time.

We are nothing but our longing, my friend.
We are merely the sum and
The cost of our yearning
To be tethered to the Whole.

Isis resembles our Selves
Pulling back intact, like magnets
The fragments of our lives.
One puzzle piece at a time.

seedless-watermelonPoem 2: NAMING THE DIVINE

There exists no firmer affirmation
Of our direct connect to the divine
Than can be found in the reading of great poetry
Or in the eating of ripe, seedless-sweet