Thursday, November 26, 2009

Eccentric Chai for Concentric Times.

Out of a desire to eventually make my own brew for a self-made local coffee shop, I made the best batch of home brewed chai today. It will get tweaked many more times before it is finished, yet here it is.

Around 12 cups of water
1/4 cup cardamom seeds, crushed
2 tsp coriander seeds, crushed
2 tbsp whole cloves
3 sticks of cinnamon
10 fresh ginger shavings
1 tsp peppercorns, freshly ground
4 black tea bags of good quality tea (I use PG Tips or a loose leaf assam)
Sweetener to taste (honey or brown sugar tend to be ideal flavors)

-Boil ingredients and 2 of the tea bags in water until the spices and tea have been at a rolling boil for a good ten minutes.
-Reduce heat to a low simmer for at least 3 hours (increase the amount of time for a stronger brew).
-When your desired strength is reached, add sweetener and the other two tea bags. Bring to a boil once more.

Either serve or store refrigerated.

Friday, November 20, 2009

My, How Edifying!

There's this girl she's
how can I say
a little bit odd if not
more than that by
a million; she hates babies
and flowers but
brown is her
couleur favorit. neat
but the color is shit smear brown
you can nit pick spit in spite of it
without a purpose
or a porpoise full of doubt if you have
never seen a porpoise doubt you've
doubtfully never tried to see much of anything
as we all descend from porpoises

Our preachers professors and teachers
become speecheaters wanting the lingua franca
to be preserved like the french clause cause
ce n'est pas "un e-mèl" mais un courrier électronique, enfin these
frog eaters and shirt steamers stair climbers train prend-ers these
Keep us from writing with ease our thèse-issssshhhhhh
you may not know what you are talking about it
I do not misuse abbrevs what are you talking about?
If we read the chaucerdonneshakespearedickensdickinsonwoolfejoyceliot of the world
can the renovation take place-//summinor altrashuns hear an their.
Nuthin u cant handle.
But ill save that 4l8r.

The situation is this. The time is now. The location of the occurence exists everywhere but happens to find itself here, says Quantum Mechanics. So now that your attention may have been grabbed after such a dichotomy of linguistic shifts, might I now propose that this language experiment has meant entirely


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Body Parts Continued.

The world is on fire but
it is cooled by the deep breaths
and inhalations of its people.
Inhale, exhale
till the rapid firing of neurons
heat up my cranial insides once more.
Hacksaw and peer inside.
Something is hiding but can
no longer and is on
It doesn't want to play,
but it se cache behind
my frontal cortex
kicking the gray matter until
it behaves again.

I name body parts
so I treat them better.
Oh behave, Charlie,
Sally and Donna.
Don't be children.
Line up in a queue
like you're supposed to
you hear? There...
Names personalize objects and people
in a way that makes it frightening
the point when you realize
we are all fragility in a frame
walking around
hoping not to knock too hard
into furniture and sharp edges.
Internal bleeding is more
damaging than bleeding externally
and it's much much harder to diagnose.

My hearing hasn't been what it once was lately.
I can't hear the wind that would come to tea
every Wednesday
and would knock on my window.
I would let him in
and we'd have a chat.
How are you doing and how's your mother
and he'd go his merry way to the neighbor's house next door.
But they weren't as polite to him as I was, so he'd always stay longer at my house.

There are people who hate their hands
because they are too knobby or skinny or fat
people who chew their nails out
of nervousness or habit.
Nuns aren't supposed to have any bad
habits yet they wear one
on their head every day.
I wonder if nuns wear lacy underwear
or if not, if they have ever wanted to.
Nuns are people, too.

I take a dear deep breath
cherishing the air that
relaxes the tight muscles
and rigidity knots
that govern and hold
where they aren't wanted.
It is possible to asphyxiate oneself
and I have almost done so
but on accident.
I have to remind myself to breathe.
Here goes.
In and out
Up down
diaphragm lift
veiny currents shift and change and how
beautiful I feel them run
their course
coursing through arterial paths
and veins
and heart.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Pretty Saro.

I have, through my friend Mary, been introduced to Appalachian Folk Songs. The modern day singer Feist in fact, takes an Appalachian ballad and uses it in her song "Sea Lion Woman" reality, the song is called "See-Line Woman". Listen to the original, it's gorgeous.

Looking more and more into it, artists like Jerry Garcia and Bob Dylan have covered a bunch of the songs. "Handsome Molly" and "Dreadful Wind and Rain" are a couple of them, making me more and more curious about the influence this group of people have on our culture now. What is lost, and what have we kept? From the mid to late 1910's, British folklorist Cecil Sharp collected about 200 songs, but it's impossible that everything has been saved.

Ballads tell a story, generally a love story. This tradition has been passed down through years of immigration from Europe--primarily the British Isles. Some of the people of Appalachia intermarried with the Cherokee and other Native tribes. No doubt this affected the music as well, perhaps creates the interesting keys these songs are sung in. The music is weird, warped and beautiful.

Listen to "Pretty Saro" on YouTube. This performance of Iris DeMent gives me chills every time.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

A Day When My Words Are Few.

Here's for today, when I'm all worded out, and what I want to say will fail to be said eloquently. Billy Collins, U.S. Poet Laureate from 2001 to 2003--says it as I wish I could.


If ever there were a spring day so perfect,
so uplifted by a warm intermittent breeze

that it made you want to throw
open all the windows in the house

and unlatch the door to the canary's cage,
indeed, rip the little door from its jamb,

a day when the cool brick paths
and the garden bursting with peonies

seemed so etched in sunlight
that you felt like taking

a hammer to the glass paperweight
on the living room end table,

releasing the inhabitants
from their snow-covered cottage

so they could walk out,
holding hands and squinting

into this larger dome of blue and white,
well, today is just that kind of day.

-Billy Collins

Sunday, November 1, 2009

I Know! More Brooding Poetry.

I was going through my notes cramming for a midterm tomorrow, and I found this poem. I figured I could blog it. This was written in a class of 60+ college girls:

So many of you.
Lips in a row waiting to be picked.
Hearts waiting to be pricked
waiting for fire and candles
like a late night vigil
or a Christmas Eve service.

Someone has died and
been reborn--
Been torn
from their mother's chest
and thrown onto the grave
chest of another's.