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Beat Poet Michael McClure Dead at 87 May 6, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in Beat Poets, Michael McClure, Veteran Poets.
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San Francisco Chronicle Obituary

Indian Valley College, Novato, CA 1976

Poem by Jade Blackmore – Thelonius Monk and Nellie in a Dream May 4, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in poems about jazz musicians, Veteran Poets.
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Thelonius Monk and Nellie in a Dream

Fingers make their own way across the keyboard,
At once thundering and adroit.
The green velvet curtains reveal a miracle or a debacle,
Depending on the prescribed mood.
The reefer smoke a given as
disembodied voices shriek from outside.

Killing time at the airport.
An impromptu whirling dervish
Out of his element
Amusing the masses.

A hotel room,
A clap of thunder.

“I am very sick.”
Cubist sound fades
Into quiet everyday life,
A picture window view across the Hudson.
The circuitry miscalculation
That formed a life,
Now steadied
Into routine,
As Nica’s
Cats roam free.
The daily walk down leaf-shaded sidewalks,
The untouched piano.

Somewhere in a parallel universe,
Nellie and Thelonius still dance
in a fever dream,
backstage at the Five Spot,
bits and pieces of
the East Village night
juxtaposed like miscreant stars. 





Poems by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal- Lightning Flash and No Need (The King of the Streets) April 29, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in chapbooks, Los Angeles, Los Angeles poets, Luis Cuauhtémoc Berriozábal, Uncategorized.
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Drawing by Luis Cuauhtemoc Berriozabal


I see you in people I knew,
like a flash of lightning,
come and gone. I know you
are your own person, but
as frame of reference it is
not uncommon to make
comparisons. You have a
look in your face when I talk
and I can sense disappointment.
I know it will soon be over.
I have gone through this before.
There are no hard feelings.
I am accustomed to lightning
and how it shines and disappears.


As long as I have
a heartbeat
I will not ever
feel poor. At
night I make a home
in a park.
Food is all around.
I take from
the kind hearted.
Sometimes it’s
just around, on
trees, in trash
bins, almost fresh.
For movies
I watch the stars,
the people,
or the tall trees.
For music
I hear the birds,
crickets, and
cars zooming past.
For books I
have no need. I
read the clouds,
lips, newspapers
left behind.
I still dream. When
I become so
absorbed in
my dreams, I find
just enough
to get me through
the day. I
do not feel poor.
I am the
king of the streets.
There is no
need for a crown
or golden
robe. I keep still
when I feel
tired. If it rains,
I find a
bridge for shelter.
Do not feel
sad about me

Read a review of Luis’ chapbook Before and Well After Midnight, at Clockwise Cat.

Still I Rise by Maya Angelou April 12, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in poems, poetry, poetry readings, Uncategorized.
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Poem by Jade Blackmore- End of Days April 10, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in Jade Blackmore, poems, poetry, Veteran Poets.
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End of Days 

The hyacinth weaved along the trellis and
Wafted a faint scent last spring,
but now you really notice the smell,
like perfume on some elderly lady with too much rouge and a pillboxbox hat.

The air neutral but sweet, the spotless clouds gather, their delivery undiluted by a third party.
The cardinals chirp, releasing sound instead of noise at rush hour
The musical notes sent into the skies like some ethereal realm.

But there are reminders of the not too recent past
The wooden beams rise up to obscure the mountains,
leaves blow around in a cyclone the momentary motorized whirring
drowning out the bird arias.

The sirens still rage every now and then,
red lights flashing,
a few lone figures
Hold hammers or machetes in the dark,
Crawl out of tents
With glass pipes and bags of trash.

The rain cleanses the streets,
Unencumbered by cars, or children on skateboards,
Or bickering couples.
Is it the template for Armageddon
Or a reset, another chance
For humans to make it right
upon their return?



Jack Kerouac reads American Haikus April 9, 2020

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Poems by John Grey – What Do You Think? and Strip Club April 8, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in John Grey, poems, poetry, Veteran Poets.
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To give validity
to the quality
of my words

I showed them
to three different people
whose views
I greatly valued –

I left the room
so they could read them
without interference
from my presence –

when they returned,

one said

the second,
“needs work”

the third,
“it’s getting there”.

This was merely
my latest foray
into the opinions of others.

needs work,
it’s getting there

is how I rate them.



The sign is as dingy as the doorway below.
It must have stripped off some bulbs
in tandem with the dancers within.
Should you go in?
Rain does your thinking for you.
And the cab driver wants his dough.
You pay him, then retreat to the safety of an awning,
wait until two guys stride up the sidewalk
and into the club without looking sideways.
That’s your cue.
Once inside, you’re assaulted by bright pink light
from one direction and a deep red from another.
If sordid had a palette,
you’re sure these would be the first colors it would choose.
to adorn its seedy canvas.
It’s just not the colors but the nakedness
your eyes must adjust to.
You turn away from the woman dancing on the countertop,
stumble into a chair and table that appears vacant,
cast your eyes around, breathe a sigh at not being
the only unaccompanied patron of the place.
That’s when desire takes over.
The dancer really is totally naked.
Her breasts are saggy
and birthmarks are like a signature
scribbled just below the navel.
But she’s anonymous and so are you.
Your loins harden,
eyes linger at the rim of their sockets.
Sweat tickles your brow
and your skin begins to tingle.
The waitress comes by,
squawks, “What are you having?”
You have a hard time answering.
You are not sure there is a name for it.


John Grey is an Australian poet and US resident. His work has been featured in Front Range Review, Studio One and Columbia Review, Naugatuck River Review, Abyss and Apex and Midwest Quarterly.

Poem by Jade Blackmore – Grandma’s Dining Room Cabinet April 7, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in 1960s, Jade Blackmore, poems, poems about families, poetry, Veteran Poets.
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Grandma’s Dining Room Cabinet

It was there in the background of every family photo – the sliding doors looked like glass, but moved at the touch of a finger, like plastic.

The contents were for show, a cornucopia of memories.The serving dishes and silver-edged white-plates were stacked way back in the kitchen cabinets,And the portly relatives we only saw at Christmas and Thanksgiving brought them out of hiding.

The cabinet came from Montgomery Wards or Sears. Delivery day was always an event, and Grandpa would direct (and correct) the deliverymen until Grandma calmed him down. She give the guys a tip of buck or two before they left, but made sure Grandpa didn’t see. (“It’s their job,” he would say sometimes, “They already get paid enough.”)

The blond sides of the cabinets felt like wood grain, but the bottom drawers were heavy like wood when the little cousins playfully pulled them open after dessert.
The wine glasses and carafes line the first shelf of the cabinet, resting on an old Christmas tablecloth with a holly and berry pattern.  

Framed photos from holidays past line the second shelf.
Grandma and her brothers and sisters in their polyester finery posing around the family matriarch, the great-Grandma we only saw at anniversaries, weddings and funeral dinners in red-boothed banquet halls,
Cousins in pleated, green plaid Catholic school uniforms,An Easter line-up with all the kids sitting on the plastic-covered couch – the baby cries as the teen cousin rolls her eyes.

The photographs of Grandma are out of my reach now,
The wine glasses dispersed to recipients unknown,
It’s been so long the memories, the pictures in my mind, are faint,
But the feelings they conjure bring tears,
And that’s all I have to remember her by.

Poem by Jade Blackmore – The Old Man Who Lived Alone February 11, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in poems, poetry, Veteran Poets.
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The old man lived alone in an apartment by the freeway.
The TV flickered through half pulled window blinds.
Every Christmas, a poinsettia plant guarded the doorway 

Sometimes the man would stand on the balcony and smoke cigarettes with his next door neighbor.
He’d talk about the old days.
He used to live in a house in Beverly Hills
And rode hoses with his Dad as a kid.
Worked in radio for awhile, when the money was good

Sometimes, he would walk to a waiting van on the corner
with a small plaid suitcase
to visit a friend at a nursing home
way in the Valley. 

One day, the neighbor who smoked with him on the balcony said,
“I haven’t seen him for a week.”
The old man didn’t answer the door when he knocked.
He asked the other tenants, but no one else had seen him,
And none of them had his phone number.
The powers-that-be didn’t respond to the neighbors’ concern.
Still, the TV flickered.

When the old man didn’t pay his rent,
A last-minute phone call lead to a disconnected number,
and his body on the kitchen floor.
It had been there three weeks.  

The coroner van pulled up
to nervous whispers in the hallway,
And incense burning in the next door neighbor’s apartment.
Is that all you are
In the end,
A bad smell to be covered up?

The bushes push through barbed wire by the back gate.
The chipped edges of the dresser convince the living to pass up free furniture.
Collectible pocket knives are sealed haphazardly in a cardboard box,
With a scalloped edged-photograph on top.
In a scratched black and white haze,
A boy in a cowboy hat stands in front of a pony.
A few days later, the wind blows it away.


Conversation in Taos by Gregory Corso (Recited by Marianne Faithfull) January 22, 2020

Posted by vscorpiozine in Beat Poets, Gregory Corso, Marianne Faithfull, poems, poetry, poetry readings, readings.
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