Friday, November 7, 2014


My short story "Lilith," from the forthcoming collection Poison and Antidote, was first published here on pg 79. So pleased to have been included!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Novel fragment

“Dear Love, 

Today I’m sitting under the porch of the Pantheon. I haven’t been writing to you enough, I know. A year has passed since the last time we made love and the Pantheon is the only imperial building left standing in its entirety in Rome. It was raining that night. I followed you through the streets in it—in one of our hysterical scenes—and it’s raining here today. Thunder, lightning, the whole show. Try to say it’s different now, sitting in another continent. Still, the Pantheon is pretty beat up, rather the worse for the wear. Time has let most of the bad memories I have of us together slip away. Maybe it’s driven them off. This far away, now, loving you is easy. 

Agrippa built the Pantheon and—if Shakespeare is to be believed—he also suggested that Mark Anthony be given Octavia as a wife by Augustus, her brother. (I’ve found a cheap bookstall here with many pocketbook copies of Shakespeare’s plays.) That way they felt they could rely on Mark Anthony in Rome. But they could never rely on Mark Anthony. The only thing I can rely on is the emptiness of my mailbox. So I leave; I’m not going to sit around an empty apartment, going over the walls again and again. People come by, stop me from working. After this year away I could make you into an angel in my mind; all I have to do is strip away the wood like a sculptor. Why is it taking so long for us to say goodbye?

Mark Anthony left—both Rome and Octavia—and gave up everything for his love of Cleopatra, to fight a war against power, against empire.

I met a woman the other day I know I could fall in love with. But I also know, too, that my love for you won’t let me do it

(This is a fragment from the novel I'm working on that I've decided to cut. Just putting it here for safe keeping. Enjoy.)

Friday, October 3, 2014

Three Poems for Bill Gainer


This Economy

I can use this blade
one more week
if I draw it hard across
my face, ignore
the nicks and chafing.



I think of each
warm Autumn sun as the last
of summer


I enjoy the fiction longer
than any actual season


Florence is the corpse
of a city crawling
with frat boys and blind Japanese

Bologna teems
with living, breathing Italians



Sunday, September 28, 2014

Poison and Antidote

I know that things have been rather quite here on my blog this last year and I can explain: I have been busy preparing my second book and moving towards completing the revision of my first novel. While these pursuits have rather preempted the production of the shorter and musicated recordings of the kind of work that filled much of my first book, Sojourner, I am proud to announce that my second volume, a collection of nine inter-related short stories of the artists, musicians, Bohemians, strippers, and druggies of the San Francisco art and music scene of the first half of the 1980's is mere weeks away from publication.

If you're at all intrigued and want to browse in the collection, seven of the nine stories have already been published in various magazines and journals. There's a list with link on my website. Stay tuned for more details and the release date!

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Summertime Blues

Saw this sarcastic meme
been bothering me for days
implying that looting was not
the most caring response
to the pigs shooting another
unarmed child. And my dad

Says, “It just makes them look bad.”
—accent on the “them”—

and I thought, what’s wrong
with looting? Maybe your attitude
towards the word is a litmus test
for your social class.

I am all crass
and my dad, the soldier
is a traitor to his.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

Doing a spate of performances in August before I leave the States and head back to Italy. The first will be tomorrow night in Salt Lake City with the irrepressible M. E. Evans. If you're in earshot, show up!

Coming up later in the month: Inside Storytime in San Francisco (Aug. 19) and Poetry Unplugged in Sacramento, CA (Aug. 21)

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Keep Calm

When there was nothing left to lose
Losers rioted for out of vogue
Scarcity stood in short supply

The news remained reoccurring
In its hourly dailies and weeklies’
Circulatory newness

Once in a while there were some
Dissenting conformists correct
In their protest against carrying on

And yet we walk with our hand baskets
Full of the world through the Supermarket
Past Eleusis and right down to Hades

Where sulfur stinks the most
And the fields of forever
Make mortal boredom merely


In the air over England

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Syndic Literary Journal

The Syndic Literary Journal edited by LeRoy Chatfield  has devoted a whole page to my work in issue #11 in both textual and audio versions. You get: "Seventh Street," a short story fragment from Poison and Antidote, "What if Words?" a poem from Sojourner, and "Liberation," an as yet unpublished prose poem from my Paradoxa series. Enjoy! Comment! Share! Make me (in)famous!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Two-Part Interview

Hello all,

It seems like I've been everywhere but here lately. Mostly I've been re-writing and preparing one MS for publication this summer, and my first novel for publication next year. As I get ready for my summertime USA trip--stay tuned for reading dates to celebrate the new book, Poison and Antidote, a collection of 9  Bohemian tales of San Francisco during the bleak Reagan era--I've been guest blogging and getting interviewed by the fabulous Ela Vasilescu, a Romanian-born Florentine Writer of enormous talent. It's a long interview (I'm old!) but there's a treat at the bottom--just like in a box of colorful and sugary kid's breakfast cereal: a video Dorin Vasilescu made for my poem "Fires on Monkey Island." At last, all of my secrets revealed! Enjoy!


Part I

Part II

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

House Hunting

The kind editors of STREETLIGHT Magazine have published the opening story of my upcoming collection Poison and Antidote. Click on the picture to read, share, like--please. (Scroll down, it's the second story.)

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Testament of Faith

A brand-new online literary magazine called One Throne has published a story from my upcoming collection Poison and Antidote called "Testament of Faith." The editor calls it "A love story short on time but long on memory." I couldn't have said it better myself! (Click on the picture to read it)!testament-of-faith/c17m

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Novel Fragment/Teaser

Alone, he remembers to write.

He sends letters. He describes the landscape and becomes the image of his surroundings to the people who read his postcards and letters. He speaks of himself as a feature of the places he visits, practically in the third person, his own tiny image in the corner of a bigger picture. (Bruegel: The Fall of Icarus.) His hand across the postcard is nowhere, describes a static scene with precision, false objectivity, with imaginary calm—written to be read two weeks later by which time he’ll be somewhere else. The autobiographer never gives himself away, is guarded by his own hand. An autobiographer never commits suicide.

Between his meetings with Persey he lives in the joy of being just that unfulfilled, of waiting to see her again. Like the workers busy with the trees in Bruegel’s Stormy Day—hurrying to be ready. He sends postcards of these two paintings off to friends back home, having seen them in the National Gallery in Brussels. He passes Bruegel’s house every morning on his walk from the youth hostel to the only café he can find that’s open in the city at six in the morning when the jet lag pushes him excitedly out of bed and into the streets. A traveler, all this feels more real to him than any glib message he can squeeze into the three-by-five format. He has slipped out of his place in time. He knows that the people receiving these postcards are going through the same motions today as yesterday back in San Francisco, and that now, for the first time in his life, he’s marginally free, unable to understand what they’re saying all around him.

This is a fragment from my first novel, Inbetween, which I'm currently revising for publication next year. While this section has just been cut from the novel, I like it to much to consign it to oblivion forever so here it is for your reading pleasure. Two lovers, Americans, twenty-somethings, struggle with their relationship, art, and politics while experiencing Europe for the first time, just as the Cold War comes to an end and the reign of terrorism begins. Peak your interest?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

The excellent people over at Visions with Voices have featured a Paradoxa prose poem of mine, "Zwariowany Kapelusznik" in both recorded and written form in this month's issue. Click on the image to listen and/or read.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Excellent blogger and dear friend M. E. Evans has kindly allowed me to write about my book Sojourner on her blog. If you've been curious about what's in it this should clarify matters--and the eBook version should be available any day now. It would be terrific sell a few more copies before my new collection comes out--you can get it at Paperback Exchange in Florence and Green Apple Books in San Francisco, directly from the publisher, or on Amazon. (Click on the picture to read the entry.)

Also, if you've never read Misty's blog on expatriate living you really should: it's perceptive, charming, and often hilarious. It's Italy's world, we only live in it!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Kind editors Laura and Lorna over at Origami Journal have published a section of "Devin Wants To Make a Movie," a story from my upcoming collection Poison and Antidote. Be afraid, be very afraid--and click on the picture to read it.

Friday, March 7, 2014

A Poem

Debra did a really good
Job, in Mantua, on her pizza.

Frozen bits of Lambrusco
rained on the foreign hats

of baroque theaters, streets
of blunt nails, rocks for

revolutionary throwing.
We had aperativo instead

for the Ducal Palaces are
now always open to the public eye.


Friday, February 21, 2014

My first ever Haiku

Sudden thunderstorm
scurrying shoppers plastic,
'cept a wet baguette

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Filial Piety

A syphilitic fighter pilot at once decorated the fuselage with his fingerprints, drained of both fluids and fuel where it would never rain. Sylvan landscapes of soft tiles painted in a foxhole under the fo’cs’le—it will never fly again. Slippery slopped down on all this sand—your Corsair lay like a silver fossil, remnant of an age of legless giantssmooth as a missile and phallic as a beached whale. Listen: the slipstream will no longer flip you, neither flaccid nor dripping; this is the end of your flying. The fling is flung, and all your flotsam already littering the veranda, is done. All good things... Or are they?

Then the fleas, Norwegian wood—this bird hastens to lift off. Smiles line up in the silo, sensory memories of skies once sewn upon your flight jacket. World War II, Korea, and home—you old philanderer, fixed, you old fossil, flummoxed by all love, my father. You always knew, you always flew away.



Saturday, February 15, 2014


Asked to write something about myself as a writer by the Creative People in Florence group I came up with this apology of sorts. It explains my history as a writer and why I chose to self publish.
(It also includes some visual/textual collaborations with photographer Debra A Zeller.)

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Casta Diva (chant)

Baby Dionysus
A kanthoros for wine drinking

A fecund fuck
            Keeps coming back

A kanthoros for wine drinking
A satyr, erect
Train wreck

A fecund fuck
Forever coming back


Tuesday, February 4, 2014


(Ode: a poem in praise of something.
Toad: a poem in blame of something.)

The Loser Without a Face  (for Joseph Campbell)

Others were in charge
of heaven, others claimed
the day, the night, the fruits
of all those endless shifts
of slavery.

You rose at dawn, went
down to work, and worked
and worked and worked
and, once in a while,
you got a day off

to wash your children’s diapers
to satisfy your spouse
to clean the toilets, the kitchen
and every other room in the bank’s house.

You were hardly a hero.
You lived for too many years.
You died and were almost immediately
obliterated by time.

True story.

Atlas Humbled (for Ayn Rand)

The selfish never
get what they want
‘cause no one likes
a brat.

            And mostly ‘cause
we only want what
we can’t have

respect—a way
to pass the time
without worrying, too much,

how bad it’s gonna hurt.


Thursday, January 30, 2014

I got interviewed by THE FLORENTINE, one of Florence's English-language monthly papers--twice!