April 30, 2013
Don’t plague the butterfly
blessing the lemon bush
it’s like pushing a ballerina off balance
or stealing a bushel-full of tangelos
working to be ripe.
As intent as breath
cancer takes us
from the ones we love.
Truth waits for us to discover
Justice has her eyes covered.
Chaos harbors the scales.
Hectares of ash move out with the waves.
Heart travels through Chaos,
from life to peace,
freedom from fight
On the day you die a roadrunner steaks across the road. We rent a canoe and laugh too hard as we remember how to row. We set out for some place to say a prayer and a sandy shoal to rest and picnic. I think of Giovanni and Nicholo in matching life jackets and bucket hats on the empty bench between us. We discover a halcyon cove where the birds loll on marooned branches. I place my hands over my chest stare up into the sky and weep. Jane recites her poem
Please take this shy Spanish girl
whom they say you resemble
and ride with her, here are the field poppies
damaged by night, here your blue slumber, your horse.
Take this prayer, which you must surrender
in order to understand, as in moments when you are reduced
to the truth. When you are ready,
the beasts will be there. Let silence go through your heart,
the mild horse your blue one
already stirring toward morning, where it will be white.
While she recites I think of you in your final hours. I hear Chris Cornell singing “all night thing.” A lone heron watches us row back to the dock.
I pledge to see you, dear one. I will repeat you, your brilliance, the mode of your brow. Countless gestures impart understanding. Like a child fighting sleep we move towards closure. I will shrink into a bawl then open as you flower through time, loving, ardent, with the capacity of your spirit to give.
Denise Marie Franco b. December 18th 1967 d. March 13th 2013. In Denise’s words,
“On this Thanksgiving 2012, I give thanks for the wonderful life I have lived and the wonderful life I continue to live. I am blessed to have two wonderful children, and a wonderful man who light my world and fill my life with love on a daily basis. I am blessed to have a wonderful supportive family, and amazing supportive friends. Friends I consider like family! Friends I’ve known most my life (you know who you are) , and ones I’ve met in recent years, all who add substance and peace and love to my world.
Thank You… because I feel very fortunate!”
The slideshow is composed of photographs taken by Denise. “Blue Nude” is from Jane Miller’s Many Junipers, Heartbeats. The image above is of a poem I wrote several years ago. Brian Watson found it among Denise’s papers and read it at her memorial celebration in Malibu California at the Nicholas Canyon Chumash Village.
from JAKE LEVINE’S Collage Of All 348 Of My Failed Loves Combined Into One Meditation Loosely Located In Gate’s Pass Concerning A Sunset And Its Vague Relationship To My Relationships But Also Dreams And An Angel For Mayakovsky’s Immortal Soul
October 6, 2012
BTW I’ll be taking requests- So, if there is some writing from here or published else where you would like to hear a recording of let me know by commenting on the piece you would like to hear or commenting here or if you are a contributor who would like to send me a breif recording of your contribution (3min or less) email me a voice file!
September 18, 2012
SPIRAL ORB is an experiment in permaculture poetics, juxtaposition, interrelationships, and intertextuality—a cross-pollination. The opening poem composts fragments from each of the pieces in Spiral Orb. Standing also as the table of contents, each line is embedded with a hyperlink to its original piece. Once at each piece, you will find links to the other pieces. Spiral Orb Five is a special issue on A Poetic Inventory of Saguaro National Park.
September 11, 2012
HI, I’ll be presenting for Trickhouse Live at Casa Libre W/ Deanne Stillman Tuesday, September 18 7-9 p.m. $5 Suggested Donation
Trick House Live is an integrative arts series that brings together people working with words, images, sounds, videos, and a variety of performances. The series serves as a venue for visiting artists to interact with local artists and for the borders between genres and mediums to be permeable. Trickhouse Live is a physical world extension of the online cross-genre arts journal, Trickhouse.org which is based in Tucson.
Deanne Stillman is the award-winning author of Mustang, a Los Angeles Times Best Book of 2008, and the cult classic Twentynine Palms, a Los Angeles Times Best Book of 2001 which Hunter Thompson called “A strange and brilliant story by an important American writer.” Her latest book, Desert Reckoning, is based on her acclaimed Rolling Stone article, “The Great Mojave Manhunt.” She is a member of the core faculty at the UC Riverside-Palm Desert Low Residency MFA Creative Writing Program and currently divides her time between Tucson, AZ and Los Angeles, CA.
I make poems and visual art. You can view a portfolio of my visual art at valyntinagrenier.com. I hosts Back Room Live, and blog at Harriet Homemaker and Life Long Press. The photo was taken by Richard Siken at LIVE @ LIV, thanks Richard!
March 24, 2012
March 28, 2011
Hi. I had hoped to get some MP3’s of a few of my favorite pieces of writing up… alas, I’ve been super busy with my visual art blog and getting ready for two shows in APRIL! Check out what I’ve been up to at HARRIET HOMEMAKER and please come back the last Saturday of April for more literary arts…
Happy Monday +V
February 27, 2011
I LOVE YOUR BRAIN
Here. Will you take this stone
and make a wish, then give it to the miller.
She’ll make you a page
while I sleep so the robot
can change me. I’ll wish for ice cream.
Surrounded by these columns, each heart-shaped capitol crowned w/ a brain,
I’d like to give you this tiny robot.
Hold it like a river stone,
here, in the palm of your hand, while I light the page.
Here’s to watching the sky change w/ my love, the miller!
“I’ll STAND BY YOU” SANG THE MILLER
waiting in line for a scoop of ice-cream.
She hid a love note on a page
of our notepad for me to find. Her brain
suits my heart like a precious stone
in its circle of rose. I hope she’ll forgive me this robot.
DEAR DA VINCI ROBOT
Thank you for helping the miller,
was blocking our path to the ice-cream
parlor. Origami brain-
I’m so glad you answered our page.
Thank you for being brave enough to use a robot
to remove the endometriosis and organs that pained me, that seized my brain,
my spirit, the heart of the miller.
Now we can argue about ice-cream,
a simple scoop vs. blended w/ toppings on a cold stone.
DEAR DR STONE
Thank you for wondering. I feel as light as a page
descending in air. I feel hope. Eating ice-cream
can bring about joy. I stopped for some on my way to the miller.
It helped ease my brain.
“Ice-cream,” I sang at the cornerstone,
“Brain and Heart–” right here on the front page:
“Robot surgeon grants a wish,” for my love, Jane Miller!