from FOOTNOTE 1 — “Minnie”

October 1, 2015

(The following is the Excerpt from The Twentieth Century Passes, a memoir of my father’s life) By the time I was born, three of my grandparents were already dead. They had died young, in their early 60s, just before and after the birth of my sister ten years before me. My parents had had me, […]

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from FOOTNOTE 1 — “Route 66: The American Road”

September 9, 2015

(News came two days ago that Martin Millner, along with George Maharis, one of the two stars of the legendary television series Route 66, has died, at 83. As a young boy, my own introduction to the adventure of road travel and the romance of the route came from the series and the experience of […]

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From FOOTNOTE 1: “Place … traveling”

August 31, 2015

(I thought I might offer here, complete, one of my ten works of poetry, essay, creative nonfiction and documentary journalism in the inaugural issue of Footnote. When I travel, every moment is a flight in the weightlessness of the journey, against the gravity of destinations and origins and belonging.) Place traveling It’s a road, behind and before. I […]

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From FOOTNOTE 1: “Bordello Rooms” (excerpt)

August 17, 2015

(The last of my ten works of poetry, essay, creative nonfiction and documentary journalism in the inaugural issue of Footnote is “Bordello Rooms.” Its ending offers a basis for understanding its closing placement, but its beginning offers a different explanation, for why I choose it to introduce the series of excerpts I will be offering […]

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Norm of the Norm

October 22, 2013

I didn’t think I would write anything. I was not friend or family to Norm Geras, and so could speak nothing of the private man that those to whom he truly belonged had known. And how many were there who could say at least as much as I – that though I had never met […]

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A Second Look: The Brotha & the Otha

August 21, 2013

President Obama’s summer vacation just concluded, there was a fair amount of attention to the frequency of his golfing: courses traversed, rounds played, partners played with. ABC News even gave us “Obama’s Vacation by the Numbers.” He made FIVE outings to local restaurants, including TWO dinners with friends, ONE intimate night out with the first […]

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We Fuses

March 14, 2013

. Julia gave me a splendid gift for my birthday today. When I was a very young man in Manhattan, in my early and later twenties, I would pour over and plow through the book reviews and journals – all the epistles from the church of literature –  including, deliciously each Sunday, the New York Times Book […]

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Taking Stock, Taking a Leave

March 4, 2013

. The first post on this blog is dated December 2, 2008, so I have been blogging as of the date of this post, four years, three months and two days. I began when Julia and I hit the road during a sabbatical year, traveling the country in our motor home researching Native American life. […]

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New Fiction

December 10, 2012

. My short story “La Revolución” is at the Ampersand Review. I spent a week. Gary worked as a critic for a music magazine, so even when he had to work, I tagged along. The music was everywhere. Gary and Pilar, his second wife, lived in Miramar, a wide open, breezy Havana suburb. They ran […]

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A Memory

August 23, 2012

I awoke today in the shadowy dim light of the pre-morning, and as I will, I lingered, to feel my body’s not-yet awakening, its comfort still in the homey impresses of the bed, the dawning recollection of its minor aches while my mind reached weakly, moment by moment, to crawl out of its foggy depths. […]

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How We Lived On It (51) – Route 66: The American Road

June 2, 2012

. The New York Times reported the other day, while talking with series co-star George Maharis (along with Martin Milner), that the complete four season series of Route 66, the iconic television show of the early 1960s is now available on DVD from the Shout! Factory. Post Kerouac’s On the Road, pre Ken Kesey’s Magic […]

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A Year with Death

May 17, 2012

. Once upon a culture long ago or far away, mourning was a state both ritually displayed and visibly endured over protracted time. Widows might literally or effectively sacrifice their lives, though this was manifestation of something other than grief. Black or some other mourning color might be worn for life, maybe for a few […]

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A Geology of Birds

May 13, 2012

. My parents were fortunate enough to live long lives, my mother, Helen, until 88, my father even longer. For the last eleven years of my mother’s life, after some decades of their wandering and separation, the three children had come together again in the same city. The birds had flocked together once more. Mother […]

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Rescue Me

April 4, 2012

. When I was in the second grade, I ran away from home. I told one or two of my classmates at school of my intention, and at the end of the day, when the school bus from P.S. 18 dropped us off about a mile further west along Hillside Avenue, in Queens Village, in […]

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Poetic License

August 29, 2011

As I mentioned last week, I am now contributing poetry editor at West magazine. Among my contributions in each issue will be a regular column on poetry called Poetic License. This issue’s essay is entitled “Poetic Thinking.” It is a Hollywood axiom that the first step to being a producer is calling yourself a producer. […]

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The Privilege of Being Here

August 4, 2011

My last post, about my nephew Rob’s birthday, got me to thinking. (There are exits all around.) Over a pre-birthday, birthday dinner this past Saturday, Rob acknowledged to me that he actually doesn’t feel very celebratory on his birthday. Actually, neither do I, though birthdays in our family, as in most others, have for years […]

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My Political Calendar for Friday, January 14, 2011

January 14, 2011

6 a.m. Morning in America 6:30 a.m. Exercise 1st Amendment right 2 tell liberal neighbor he’s an asshole. 7 a.m. Exercise 2nd Amendment right: target practice (neighbor leaves 4 work) 7:30 a.m. Morning Joe 8:30 a.m. “Rush” Hour 9:30 a.m. National conversation about race 10:30 a.m. Seek the better angels of our nature in a […]

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1 World, Ocean View

January 2, 2011

It was New Year’s Day. It was the California coast as we rode our bikes north in celebration of the new year. We pushed our loaner one-gear cruisers up the hills they weren’t meant to climb, straining against gravity and a little age. We topped one hill to arrive at a bluff side turnout, where […]

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December 25, 2010

“Carry me along, taddy, like you done through the toy fair.” James Joyce, Finnegans Wake “Do you really think he was born on Christmas Day,” my mother said. I was already fully adult, but felt instantly young and naïve. “No one knows when he was born. We don’t even know the year.” My mother then […]

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October 29, 2010

Arriving home from an evening out a few weeks ago, I sat down at the computer for one last check of email, Facebook, Twitter, all the disparate and convergent paths of communication. I discovered an email that made me cry out. (How soon, already, in resemblance to a long-form letter of lore seems an email […]

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Change Has Come

September 15, 2010

The projected two days became two and a half, but change is no longer coming to the sad red earth – it’s come. His Holy Blogmaster tolerated all of my definite confusion and vague certainty in conception and design, and my several “Hey, I’ve got another great idea”s when it seemed the end was in […]

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