My Father

Franz Kafka wrote a long letter to his father. It said a lot of what I wanted to say to my father but did not have the words or self-composure or courage to say. So I left it on his desk and sometime later I found it on the stairs going up to my room indicating he had read it and had nothing to say.To be humiliated by your father in any way and not be able to respond or … [Read more...]

Jenny Lynn

Cold wind is building and ready. It is not understood the pent feelings that have suddenly surfaced after long and even further back and then along the slow moving world and probably before the long awaited return of a Gypsy night. She said her name was Jenny Lynn. WAIT. Let me think.It was in the south section grid just beyond the usual spot where did we usually wait … [Read more...]

Straight Pool

It was nineteen-sixty-two, Saturday, a hot afternoon. “Whadaya want to do?”“I don’t know. Whadaya want to do, Kenny?” I answered. “Maybe we could go up to New Rochelle and play pool.” I was addicted to pool at that time.“Ok” he said, “I’ll stop by the cleaners and see if my father will give me some money.”“It’s ok with me,” I said, knowing that his father … [Read more...]

The Neighborhood

How did I get to Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn, New York? A good question. Maybe a loss of direction? I think so. At least there were different expectations for my life. Did anybody care? Did I care? Like Holden Caufield, after a semester of college, I had gone out to find myself, first in Europe, on a motorcycle, hanging out with pot smoking beatniks. It all just made me more … [Read more...]

Hear That Lonesome Whistle

I started drinking while the Wyoming sky was pink and you could still see forever. Earlier that day I found just enough smack to keep me from being sick. It got me moving. It got me out in the sun. It was the first day of summer, the longest day of the year, my mom’s birthday. I met John for drinks at the Albany, by that time the sky became over-ripened and the stars … [Read more...]

Heeding the Call of the Open Road

Beat culture and hippie culture were both long gone as a central movement by the time I was growing up, but hop on the bandwagon I did. As a teenager, there was nothing I wanted more than to get the hell out of dodge, my hometown in the California Bay Area, filled with cow patties, rednecks and suburban normalcy.Without having read Jack Kerouac’s books (yet), I adopted … [Read more...]