23 April 2012

In Court

(Author's note:  some observations from my recent morning as an uncalled Witness for the State)

Going to court in your home town is kind of like a family reunion.
That you dread.
The accents drop into your ear like old shoes slid onto your feet;
comfortable at first: they make you smile, but too soon you're sore from all the worn out places in the soles.

It's more than just a family reunion -
it's a carnival, a circus.
Where clerks and attorneys juggle piles of paper, affadavits and attaches,
and the clowns make themselves known by their repeat performances before the ringmaster.

Every good show must start with a parade,
And so this parade of people as order coalesces from chaos:
defendants, police, police, police, officers of the court,
another defendant, witnesses for the state.

The aura of the black-robed ringmaster is heavy in the room - though herself yet absent.
Name plaque and chair;
a serious chair most un-circuslike,
made to be sat upon at length and suitable to carry the weight of the judgment of others that falls so heavily on be-robed shoulders.

The garb of the un-robed on display is likewise telling in this civil service circus,
To wit:
the concept of "Sunday Best" exists on a continuum
(let that thought take root, I'll wait).

You see, some folks avoid a tie and button down shirt
as assiduously as they seek to avoid a guilty verdict.
A polo shirt punctuating the observation that
a man who had the forethought to obtain a tie would likely have avoided whatever troubles brought him here on this day.

Others seems to have sprung from the womb
with full-windsor firmly in place,
decorative neck cloth as a badge not so much of office as state of being.
Especially the State Police.

The players confer and move
to a spectator the choeography seems always close to collapsing entirely,
yet the pieces and players all fall into place as the barker, no the bailiff holds forth.
We hear "All rise", and so the real show begins.

19 April 2012


     One of my dreams, if you haven't worked it out by now, is to share my art with the world and have my talent validated in word and cash (hey, I'm being honest here).  Modern technology makes my potential audience enormous and gives me tools to offer my work, my creations, in ways that I wouldn't otherwise be able to.  While I'm able to offer you prints of my photos, I've found a service that is just starting up that will do this for me, while at the same time offering you my photo printed on canvas; always classy.  I'll let them speak for themselves.  From their site:
About the company
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17 April 2012

For Discovery

I don't know about you, 
but there are days -- moments -- where my life collapses about one event.
Even if it only lasts for a few moments.

Graduations, my wedding day, the day my children will be born (I gather), the day when a childhood icon, 
a hero of metal and ceramic,
dreams and hopes incarnate in a flying wing, a gliding truck, pass over my head.

As I watched majestic DISCOVERY fly by, 
bolted to the back of the 7 4 7 that gave her one last breath of wind before her long retirement at Udvar,
as my camera motors whirred and clicked and stored the moment as its own payload,
I knew that my life brought me here -- now -- in this moment and I'd be damned,
if I was going to miss a single moment of her goodbye, my only chance at hello.

For if not this moment then why the posters on my walls as a kid?
                            Why the eduction, the experience that led me to this job and this city?
Why such a strong connection felt for a winged truck?
Bellerophon cum clydesdale
Draught horse of the stars
 Delta of childhood dreams

All of these before me, oh DISCOVERY whom I'd never seen aloft with my own eyes now there, 
recumbant, one final tour.
One last breath of coastal air, 
way up there,
before at long last coming to her well-deserved rest.
To think of victories and memories,
friends lost to fire and wonder,
bust mostly of DISCOVERY.

10 April 2012

Ecologies of Scale

I'm staring at the chrome steel bar,
the one over-head on the subway?
You know,
the one you use to keep from flying into the poor bastard in front of you.

I'm staring at the bar where it forms a cross,
lost in my imagination,
avoiding eye contact with anyone.

I wonder for the nth time:
How many species of germs are on that bar?
How many species did I make mine when I touched it?
How many species on that bar are my own, transplanted?

Do any of these words apply to my new hitch-hikers:
Antibiotic Resistant
A disquieting train of thought.

Do they form germatic tribes?
Staphylococcal working groups?
Amoebic armies cutting wide swaths of destruction
thinner than a human hair?
Are there microscopic civilizations awaiting the Coming of the Hand?

My imagination has been known to run wild at times,
hopefully it runs wilder than anything living on that bar,
or that bar over there which I gripped a few minutes ago.
It's easy to become concerned about this undocumented biological trade.

But I'm on these damn trains every day,
and I haven't died yet.
I retreat to a different space in my imagination,
avoiding eye contact with anyone.

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