Mugging For the Camera


Started a new set of prompts – I love lists of things – this one will prove to be endlessly productive for another couple of years – 227 Rules For Monks. These are from the 30 nissaggiyas. This is what 8. Not to ask for a good quality robe from a dāyakā who is saving money to offer one.  inspired 🙂

Mugging For the Camera

do I need another coffee mug

even from Mumbai

or another t-shirt

even one from Istanbul

do I want you buying me gifts

on your travels


it’s nice to be thought of

but you know

a photo of the mug would be enough

better yet

a photo of you holding that cup

to your lips

because when you travel

that’s what I miss the most

or a picture of you

mugging in the mirror

in your hotel room

with the tee shirt pulled up

with one hand

the camera in the other

and your dick below

catching the glint of the summer sun


I don’t want your overtime work

that pays for the travel

to be turned into some souvenir

that sits on the shelf

until I donate it to some garage sale

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington at 2018’s – sweet,eh?

Not Tonight Dear

Not Tonight Dear

I didn’t enjoy it

I never have

but so many do

I had to try it

I thought it might be different

with him

when I said yes

let’s do it

it was no different

I didn’t enjoy it any more or less

that I ever have

I expected

that if I did it often enough

with the right guy

I’d start to like it

start to see why others did it

but it never got more pleasant

in fact

I began to dread it so much

I stopped doing anything

with anyone

I didn’t explain


I kept it to myself

it seemed pointless to be contradictory

to have to explain it to anyone

I thought it might be better

with him

it wasn’t

I kept that disappointment to myself

even tired to act as if

it was great

oh baby oh baby

he was fooled


I was happy to make him happy

looking forward to being together

yet dreading it at the same time

going through the motions

for the emotional pay off

My take on Law 38 reflects on people pleasing – things we do only to keep other people happy. Some of them are done out of politeness & have little emotional cost. Things like saying ‘good morning’ to a neighbour or asking someone how there are when in fact one doesn’t really care & often they feel it isn’t  any of your business how they feel anyway. We do this lock step of harmless courtesy that is more productive than being clearly indifferent or out right antagonistic.

When someone asks me how I’m doing I can’t even be bothered saying ‘ as you fucking cared!’ We all usually nod and say fine & go on or way. Do I enjoy those moments? Hard to say. But like many people I don’t have the energy or the inclination to challenge those harmless social niceties.

This piece does have a more sexual subtext though than mere social niceties. I know that for women for decades this sort of sexual cooperation for the good of the marriage has been a part of the bargain – putting their pleasure last – as if that made them more noble. Perish the notion they might impugn taxi masculinity’s sexual prowess.

I chat with, sometime meet with, guys who are into ‘things’ that don’t appeal that much to me but I’m willing to try – sometimes things that didn’t work with one guy work very nicely with another – often its a difference in attitude as opposed to technique. Also the speed at which things are expected comes into my willingness.

On the first date, as opposed to the fourth date – give me time to warm up to it – I’m a good communicator & let guys I meet know that directly – I’m not in bait & switch. Some this pieces comes from that sort of bait & switch. A guy says he’s a total top then after messing around becomes a power bottom who is pissed off at me for not going with this – not that I mind a power bottom but this switch is the off switch for me.

There are guys who try to ‘guilt’ you into things – someone, what are you afraid of, don’t you trust me, try it – because to many ‘no’ means negotiate & if you don’t negotiate you are a prude, no fun, not hot enough to begin with, or you should be grateful & give in as a way of thanking them for showing up.

If you are a top master dom who wants to train me as his sub & I say no thanks – it’s not because I am a closed minded prude but it’s because … well actually it’s none of his business why.

Like many of the Laws pieces this reflects some of me, but a past me who was eager for sexual experience & said yes to things & then realize ‘not for me.’  Saying ‘no’ doesn’t mean I have a closed mind but is not an invitation for negotiation either.

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Lazarus Kiss.26

Sis amplexibus Amor alios mututa memini et amoris in mutationes memini.

May you be embraced by a love beyond recall that alters others

and a love within recall that alters you.



Harris checked his cell to see if he had Alex’s number. The recent calls were all from unknown caller. He deleted them. Had he had kept the napkin that Alex had written number on that first time. Nah. Would the number be listed? He doubted if he could get it from 411. He didn’t know what he wanted to say either so it was okay that he didn’t have the number.

Grabbing Alex and kissing him on the elevator was like scene in a romcom. It would end with them reconnecting in the airport. Yeah, he’d be leaving for Aruba to get away from it all, to mull things out and Alex would be pushing through crowds in the airport to stop him before he got on the plane. Or Harris would be looking, expecting that with frail manipulating music in the background and getting on the plane broken hearted because Alex had taken his final no for a real no and he’d get to his seat and there would be Alex sitting in the one next to him already.

He played out a couple of similar fantasies.

Him showing up at Alex’s wedding like in the Graduate and them taking off to everyone’s shock. Or bringing Alex back to life with a kiss like Neo did with Trinity. The two of them basked in a golden radiance.

Yet the thought of making them actual, removing the lights, the cameras and the emotive music left him with the action. The action, the reality of what they would do. He knew in a general way what gay guys did to each other. He couldn’t see himself doing that. Well, letting Alex suck his cock – that wouldn’t be too bad. That happens in prison and it doesn’t mean either of the guys is really queer.

The curse had locked them in it’s prison. One where neither of them was at liberty to choose. Yet Alex was pretty eager the other day when he was here. Couldn’t wait to strip off in front of Harris. Made all the moves as if he knew what to do. Alex was the one with the hard on not Harris. Got pissed when Harris didn’t respond as he expected. How was he supposed to respond?

The only dick Harris had ever touched was his own. Why had he done that impulsive kiss in the elevator. He could have said fuck off and don’t bother me again and be done with it. He sensed that Alex wouldn’t give up that easily. Harris wanted to get this out of the way to let his life could get back to normal. Was Alex working at Story?

He pulled on shorts and Orko tee and his new Breathers. They were super comfortable and he imagined the little jets of air puffing out like they did on the box. When he got there he didn’t see Cally or Alex. In fact the Monday staff wasn’t familiar to him at all. He doubted if they would give him Alex’s phone number. He sat on the patio with a Sapporo’s wondering what to do.

He paid for his beer and went in to the bathroom and passed the staff room. The door was ajar. He spotted a shift list by the light switch. Names and phone numbers.

“Cool.” He spotted Alex’s and memorized it in a glance. In washroom he called Alex.

“Whose phone are you using now Linda.”

“This isn’t Linda.”

“Harris? I was …”

“Expecting Linda.” Harris left the bar.

“Yeah we had a big blow-out. I had to block her calls.”

“Sounds rough.” Harris didn’t want to appear too eager. “I was just wondering what you were up to?”

“Other than changin’ locks. Nothing. Where you at?”
“Can we meet for a coffee” He didn’t want a repeat of what happened at his place. Alex was a strong. Queer rape wasn’t something fantasized about.

“Yeah, I guess. Where?”

“That Mug Thuggs near Sherbourne.”

“Yeah, say, half-an-hour.”

“See you then.”

Harris wasn’t sure what to do to kill that much time. He noticed was wearing the shorts that he had let Alex wear the other day. Right, he’s already gotten into my pants. Nah, going back to his place was too much trouble. His new Breathers were more comfortable than he expected. If that other pair fit he’d keep them.

He walked to Sherbourne. He saw Alex sitting in the cafe window. He waved. Alex smiled and waved back.

A van stopped and cut off the view. A man hopped out of the diver’s side.

“Get in we have to talk.” The man slid the side door open and pushed Harris toward it.

It was Dave. It was a Mamma S’s pizza party delivery van. There was woman sitting in the passenger seat.

“What the fuck.” Harris twisted away. Dave grabbed him by the arm and pulled him back.

“I don’t want to hurt you. We only want to talk to you. See it’s Fran … I mean Kate. She came back.”

Cars horns were blowing.

“Let him go.” Alex was pulling Dave away. “I said let him go.”

“Who the hell are you?” Dave pushed Harris at the open door of the van.

“None y’r business.” Alex dropped into a defense stance.

“Butt out buddy, This is between this guy and me. See.”

Alex grabbed Dave and spun him around. “Not any more.”


Kate woke around noon rested and at peace. Her room at Phil’s actually had space to move between the bed and the walls. She realized how quickly she had adapted to the tiny room in Sal’s mobile home. How long could she have lived there though. She could hear every noise, fart or burp, anyone made in that trailer.

Here she could hear nothing. Noise from outside when she listened intently. But it was silence. All silence.

So she was back. Now what? She dreading having to face Sophia but knew there was no choice. She did love Dave but could she pry him away from his mother.

She showered. Changed into Julie’s clothes. They were too large for her. She tied a bandana around her head. It would do while her hair grew back in. No more wigs.

She went downstairs. No one was home. There was note on the kitchen table.

“Kate, make yourself at home. There’s lots to eat in the fridge. Phil is usually home around 5 and I’ll be home around 2. GiGio.”

GiGio was Phil’s wife.

She had a banana and yogurt. She went to the bank to see how much she had. There had been a insurance settlement when her parents died. She hadn’t dipped much into that thanks to the trust fund Mamma S had created to look after her medical needs.

She could afford a decent place. Had enough for first and last. But could she get a place without a real job. She’d need one as the money in the bank wouldn’t last forever.

First she had to get her stuff out of Sophia’s house. It had seemed natural that she live there while she was getting her treatments. Close to her fiancee and all that, now she wanted a life of her own. Too many people had been looking after her and it was time she learned how to do that herself.

She went to the Pazzoni house. Her key worked. Sophia hadn’t changed the locks. In her room she piled what she wanted on the bed. No more teddy bears or angels. Time to let those things go. Clothes that fit, shoes were all she needed. The photos of her parents went into the pile. The rest Sophia could donate.

What she had barely filled the suitcase. It was more than enough to start a life. She had been ready to start one with even less when she landed in Calgary.

Someone come in through the back door. It wasn’t Sophia. She knew the sound of Sophia’s high heels. It had to be Dave. She went up to the kitchen with her suitcase.


“Fra … Kate!”

She was suddenly his arms. Kissing him.

“I had to get my stuff. Your mother can do what she wants with the rest of it.”

“You are leaving! For good?”

“Leaving this house. Not you. I could never leave you.” she rubbed his head. He was such a big kid she could never hurt him. “You know that.”

She unbuttoned his shirt. His eyes widened.

“There is one other thing I’d like to leave in this house.”

“What’s that?” he whispered.

“Let’s go downstairs.” She took him by the hand.

They’d fooled around a few times so she wasn’t surprised by the weight of him, by the naked feel of him as they kissed and teased each other. But they had never gone all the way. There wasn’t as much pain as she expected when he entered her for the first time. He didn’t feel as large as he looked either. It felt right.

She lay snuggled against him.

“Thanks.” He kissed the back of her neck.

She rolled to face him “No more till we tie the knot.”

He bolted up. “You mean the wedding is on?”
“Not Mamma Pazzoni’s wedding though. Mine.”

“Anything you say.”

“Let’s get out of here before she gets home.”
She was dismayed to see the pizza party van in the garage. Covered with Mamma’s logos it was a traveling billboard not transportation.

“This’ll have to do I suppose.” she kissed him.

He opened the side door and put her suitcase in the back.

“Now keep your eyes on the road.” she touched his arm as he got into the driver’s seat. “Not on me.”

She dropped his hat over the security camera.

“We can’t keep my mother out of our lives that easily.”

“I’ll … we’ll think of something. It’s not as if she can sell your half of the business. I have money of my own.”

They we’re coming up to Bloor.

“Hey that’s him.” Kate bobbed in her seat.

“That guy I met. You know the one whose picture I don’t remember taking. I have to talk to him. I have to. Stop. Stop.”

Dave pulled over sharply and got out of the van. He slid the side door open and pushed Harris toward it. “Get in we have to talk.”

“What the fuck.” Harris twisted away. Dave grabbed him by the arm and pulled him back.

“We only want to talk to you. See it’s Fran … I mean Kate. She came back.”

Cars honked. Kate saw a guy dash out of the cafe.

“Let him go.” The man pulled Dave away. “I said let him go.”

“Who the hell are you?” Dave pushed Harris at the open door of the van.

“None of your business.” The man hunched a little.

“Butt out buddy, This is between this guy and me. see.”

The man grabbed Dave and twisted him around. “Not any more.”


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Because of their alphabetic closeness I’ve a couple of mp3 collections of albums by ELO and ELP. Two British groups that represent different aspects of prog rock. ELO (Electric Light Orchestra) sprung from The Move and have a clearly more radio friendly pop sound that at one time was playing with classical themes i.e. combining Beethoven’s Fifth with Roll Over Beethoven – their first few lps had them searching for what became a very commercial sound.

ELO were fond of themed lps: ElDorado with Wizard of Oz. There are too many great tracks to name check all over these recordings but the more commercially accruable they became the less interest they held for me. I have II/ ElDorado/Out of the Blue /New World Record.

By ELP (Emerson Lake & Palmer) I have, as stand alone’s: 1, Tarkus; mp3: Trilogy, Pictures at an Exhibition, Brain Salad Surgery, Welcome Back My Friends, Works. Though by the time they got to Works I was bored with them & only kept certain tracks from Works. But up to then they could do real wrong.

Emerson’s keyboard work was always amazing, at least to me on LSD. Like so many of the prog bands of the time the lyrics became portentous & muddled. But the sonics were engaging, elevating and sometimes daring. Emerson did slip into this honky-tonk musical-hall style at time which I found distracting but he wanted to show range. His work with Bowie is excellent.

They successfully incorporated classical into rock in a way no other band did without sounding bloated or forced. The live Pictures at an Exhibition is great fun & a great introduction to Mussorgsky. I like having Brain Salad as a single piece – as opposed to the lp where one had to turn it over half-way through.

Mixed in are: Arthur Brown: Strange – the title is right – experimental & quite unlike his Crazy World lp. Another of the prime prog rock groups King Crimson: Starless & Bible Black – wow – they are more austere in their sound than ELP, epic & challenging. (More about them when I get to K) Finally Tomita’s Firebird – prog without the rock – an electronic pioneer whose work sometimes fell on the cheesy side but well worth having & hearing. 


Mike didn’t want to be seen but knew if he pulled back too far between the two houses he wouldn’t be able to hear.

The woman who approached Robert was tall and thin. The red and green African print shift she wore was shapeless but as the breeze played it pulled it around her frame – the loose collar undulated as she strode beside Robert.

‘You cannot do this.’ Her rapid short words flicked at Robert. Her eyes narrowed as she slashed at him in a mix of French and Spanish so rapid that Mike couldn’t follow even if he could understand it.

Robert stopped and put his right hand on her shoulder.

‘Sister Coppah do not go on like this.’ Robert made a small gesture with his left hand over her face. Her eyes widened and she stepped back.

‘You cannot do this to your people. Remember. You have been warned.’

Robert walked away from her and went up the steps to the hotel.

The woman glared across the street. Mike pulled deeper into the shadow between the houses . She couldn’t have seen him but he felt the heat of her look play on his forehead. Drops of sweat quivered on his eyebrows, the tip of his nose. No she couldn’t have seen him. Even if she did who was he to her. No one.

The woman stood several minutes. She glanced at the hotel door as if her looks could draw Robert out to the street.

Mike’s neck ached. He had to move, get out into the open air. The sun was brighter where he was cowering. He stretched fully upright took a deep breath and walked out into the street. He brushed the back of his pants in case there was dirt from the house he had leaned against.

She didn’t turn away from the door as he crossed.

He went up the steps of the hotel. As he opened the door he glanced back. She was gone.

Chapbooks available:


kiss3on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


June 8-9 attending: Capturing Fire 2018

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee  – sweet,eh?

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr

Over The Rainbow (Flag)

The weekend I was in Washington DC coincided with their Gay Pride parade on Saturday & the Equality march on Sunday. Both of which had record breaking participation – in a clear show of defiance to the current administration. One of the side effects of both was the flood of the rainbow in every form including flags. They were everywhere: beads, hankies, stickers, tiaras, shorts, temp tattoos. At one time I would have seen this is a good sign, now I feel that it has all the sincerity of a … sidewalk Santa.

It has become a commercial ploy as opposed to a sign of political or ideological support. The message is ‘we are friendly to your wallet – your wallet being the pot of gold at the end of this rainbow’. Liquor stores displayed rainbow stripped bottles that I’m sure will be gone asap after the parades. Like Easter chocolates sold off or stored away until the next cash in opportunity.

Recently there’s been some ‘dissension’ over the addition of two more bands to the flag – one black, one brown – to make it more inclusive – I had never realized the the colors on the flag represented different ethic groups – I though it was meant to represent the bold colourful queer life style. There is no white stripe. But what ever allows people to feel more included is fine by me. Next they’ll have to add a grey streak to include the aging queer population. Because if there’s a group that seems to be under-represented that is the one.

The DC Pride Parade was stopped for an hour or so by a protest non-commercial Gay pride march. It seems as much as the commercialization of gay, of the flag, has gained in public tolerance there are many who find what these corporations represent ethically objectionable.

I’m a little too shallow to know what those exact objections are – but much like Black Lives Matters points out the dichotomy of allowing those that have a history of oppression representation in the parade, I accept that commercialization now places Pride at an interesting deciding point.

My take on commercialization is sort of two fold- Firstly I am not the target demographic for any of these corporations – I object to liquor companies capitalizing on Pride to sell the community a substance that is so destructive. In Toronto the ‘safe space’ for non-drinkers was reduced year after year – partly I think, because it didn’t serve the Brewery’s mandate – they didn’t understand why the safe space wouldn’t accept a gift of de-alcoholized beer.

The other fold is that all too often money is there for star power while local talent is usually expected to perform for free, or next-to-free, to show their support for the movement. If they are lucky they’ll get a free rainbow flag sticker. You know where they can stick their flag.

Then, again, perhaps my real issue is that my ego can’t take being ignored by tens of thousands of men at one time.

The Original of The Species

I did not

copy your runway walk

paint in your style


maybe I did take a little

you can’t blame me though

consider it flattery

I didn’t do it as well as you did

at least

I don’t think I did

no matter what others say

I didn’t try to do you

better than you do yourself

I never claimed to be the originator

just because I didn’t credit you

with being my inspiration

merely means

I knew everyone would see through me

would see you

not me

the fact that they didn’t

isn’t my fault

I’m not using your name

to get ahead

I’m not denying your influence

to suppress you

I’m denying it because

I have the power to do so

which was one of the best things

you taught me

how to use what power I have

to minimize the obvious influence

of others so my reflection of you

has now becomes the real deal

Chapbooks available:


kiss3on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


June 8-9 attending: Capturing Fire 2018

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee  – sweet,eh?

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr

Acceptable Fit


Started a new set of prompts – I love lists of things – this one will prove to be endlessly productive for another couple of years – 227 Rules For Monks. These are from the 30 nissaggiyas. This is #7 Not to ask for more than one upper robe and one lower robe in case of loss of the three robes.

Acceptable Fit

if you don’t ask

you won’t get

no one says no

if you don’t ask


I felt

I was never the man

my father expected me to be

I was never the man

I saw on TV

in movies

I would never be up to scratch

I would always be less than

all those guys who were real men

I felt

I would never be a real man

that the sweaty rough-and-tumble garb

of that sort of pride

would never be mine

even if I wore that garb

it would a costume

a disguise

to hide my heart

my butt

not the man I was

someone who strives not to be defined


except by choice

so I lost

the comfort of the acceptable


I felt was was never the man

my father wanted me to be

not that he wanted me to be like him

but to be the man he wanted to be

I was never asked

if his expectation was a good fit for me


I wasn’t aware

that I could say no

or that once I started to choose

the definitions

that I hoped would suit me

that I’d have to constantly be adjusting

to make the shoulders fit

to make the pants crease properly

but by losing the comfort of the acceptable

I found the ease of being me

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Gluten Free Atrocity

Gluten Free Atrocity

I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen

I followed every moment

from the very first cellphone video

the FB feed was mesmerizing

the tweets head spinning

the pundits were informative

I couldn’t get enough

the close up of the bleeding

were heart rending

I was washed by this flood

of compassion

dismay dispair

that this had happened

innocent people

men women children

killed maimed

forced to leave their homes

clubs churches

no safe place

shown no mercy

by their attackers or the press

I had to watch

flipping channels

media devices

to get the latest feed

the freshest atrocity

to feed my growing sense of outrage

drowning in powerless


oh look

Burger King now has gluten free buns


My take on Law 37 reflects my fascination for media, as opposed to content. I am not caught up in following news to the extent that the ‘I’ of this piece is but I know people who are, who can’t wait for the latest development & have become addicted to negative, tragic news – catastraporn. I’d rather sleep at night than have to check newsfeed. One friend has their TV set to wake them with CNN. So much for serenity.

Cell phones have changed reporting – we can get actual footage by victims as things are happening. Immediate & stunning but to what end? The event happens regardless of the coverage. The technology takes over – I started to watch a series about real life people but it was being shot on cell phones combined with some other hand held device & frankly I was bored within minutes. Crazy angles and constant flash cuts conveyed confusion not information or personality.

I also find the news media intrusive & manipulative. It’s one thing for a bystander to capture images, say of an out of control fire, but when victims have devices thrust as them by reporters while they are being rescued I change the channel. Your friends have been shot the last thing you want is some reporter asking ‘how do you feel’ – some reporter who is getting paid for being there while the victim may not even have the money to pay their medical bills when the dust settles.


I also mention ‘pundits’ – one of the last news stories I watched anything about was the flight that vanished a few years ago – the aviation experts were so uninformative all one got was speculation, the same speculations over and over – how much do these pundits get paid to satisfy the public need for commentary that tells us nothing?


I end on a cynical note – because every TV show has to break for commercials. The tragic events are brought down to reality by the mundane sensationalization of our daily lives. The final title came to me as I was posing this on June 21. There’s nothing like seeing the crowd of people plowed through by a suicide driver then cut to Marineland Niagara crowds lined up for a water slide. I guess violence has to struggle to get the attention it deserves.


Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee in Washington at 2018’s – sweet,eh?

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Lazarus Kiss.25

Sis amplexibus Amor alios mututa memini et amoris in mutationes memini.

May you be embraced by a love beyond recall that alters others

and a love within recall that alters you.


He arrived at his Dad’s office a few minutes after five. Della, his Dad’s secretary, sent him right in.

“Sorry. Got delayed at the shoe store.” Harris held up the bag bulging with his purchases.

“You and your mother. Better shoes than comic books though.”

“Dad I haven’t bought those since I went to U. of T. And I do what mother taught me. Something new means something old goes out. What’s up?”

“A couple of things. Your mother and I were talking about the …. curse …. One of my great grands once found something about it in his grand’s papers.”

“So we’re talking how many generations back now. If I follow this chain correctly …. ” Harris counted them on his fingers. “You 1, your dad 2, his dad 3, his dad 4, the dad that didn’t tell 5, his dad 6. Or is that 7? All with a fatal attraction syndrome. We going back like five hundred years here? Did they have paper that far back.”

“Harris, I’m trying to helpful. If we can track it down maybe there’s information about undoing it. Or at least what caused it.”

“Right. Who would have access those papers.”

“That’s what I’m trying to discover. I have one of my clerks doing the research. Checking out the family tree. Which leads me to the real reason I wanted to see you.”

“Ah, the paternity test. You thinking you aren’t my father?” Harris laughed.

“No.” His father chuckled. “You’ve fallen too close to the tree for that. It’s your cousin we want to check out.”


“Your mother showed me the photos. The resemblance is too strong for him to be only a cousin.”

“Half brother? Well that would make for an interesting twig on the family tree.”

“If he’s mine. But your mother is pretty sure he’s yours.”

“Mine! Cripes! What was I, almost thirteen? Can thirteen years olds make babies.”

“Oh, yes. That much I do know.” He pressed the intercom. “Della, is Park from Drake’s Proof Positive here?”

“Yes, Mr. Stevens. I’ll send him in.”

“Drake’s does all our paternity work. Fast and 100% reliable.”

“Great. How do we get Michael’s DNA?”

“Your mother is working on that.”


Linda wasn’t there when Alex got home. Her clothes and jewelery were gone from the dresser and closet. All her make-up was cleared out of the bathroom. He figured she had gone off to her sister’s to teach him a lesson. Whatever he was glad not deal with her whimpers.

They’d been pretty hot for each other for the first few years though. She was the one who didn’t want more than living together. Marriage wasn’t for her. He was fine with that but if she had wanted he would have tied the knot. Now he was glad he hadn’t.

Alex found it hard to drop off. His visit with Harris kept turning over in his mind. He expected that all he had to do was flash his body and his dick and Harris would be all over him like any fag in heat. But instead Harris had pushed him away. Claimed he wasn’t gay either. Alex doubted that. The guy was way overweight, needed a decent hair cut and was a slob. No woman would be attracted unless she saw Harris as a fixer upper.

It might have gone better if he had shown a particle of the interest in Harris that he expected Harris to show in him. He’d watched that gay porn and  knew what went on once things got started but he saw those things being done to him not him doing them – Harris sucking him off, him flipping Harris over to fuck him.

He tossed and turned trying to get his mind around his attraction for Harris, why didn’t it work like his attraction for Linda. She was always eager for him. Not in a passive way either. His always made sure she got off as much as he did. Was he willing to see that Harris got off too. If a hand job would do the trick then he would go that far.

Next time he would not get out of his clothes as quickly, but it wasn’t his plan to get drenched, so that he had to change into dry clothes. Too bad Harris’s clothes were fucking huge. He didn’t much chance get to show off his assets. Tried to, but Harris kept looking away. At least he managed one good display of the goods.

Recalling the kiss and shove off the elevator he drifted to sleep.

He woke when something was being pushed on his face, smothering him.

“What the fu …” he shoved the something away.

“So that’s what she smells like.” Linda had the shorts and tee shirt he’d been wearing yesterday. “Fucker. I knew there was someone else, again. I can smell her.”

“Nah Baby I told ya der isn’t anyone else. I … got wet in th’ rain and had ta toss ‘em in the dryer at the laund’mat. That’s dryer smell.”

“That isn’t no goddam laundromat dryer smell. I know that smell. Nothing we ever dried down there smelled like that.” She threw the clothes at the wall.

“I din’ say it was the one we go ta.” He got out of bed, took the shorts and tee she had thrown and put them on. He went to the bathroom to pee.

“Oh right.” she followed him. “I suppose you stood there in front of a dryer on the other side of town in your undies, even this jumbo tee wouldn’t cover that lying ass of your. This is her’s too, isn’t it? You brought her here!!”

She had him.  The tee was the one Harris had let him wear. He didn’t have time to change out of it when Harris hurried him out of his place.

“I’ve had it. You whoring around all the time. With sluts in the alley at Story.”


“Oh yeah, I know all about that.”

“Cally’s spying on me. Christ …”

“She’s looking out for you. And me. How long has it been now? Four years five. I gave up my place to move into this east-end second-story crap box with you. How many sluts has their been?”

“I could ask ya the same.”

“You asshole. I might not mind it as much if you weren’t such a lousy liar. It’s not as if you don’t get enough here. You’re like every man. Just like my Dad. All another woman has to do smile and you spring into action.”

He put a bagel into the toaster.

“This is the last fucking last time. I’ve got a new place. Lined it up last week in fact. I’ll be out of here by Wednesday.”

He buttered his bagel. Got ginger marmalade dipped the bagel in and ate it.

“Aren’t you going to say anything.”

“Ya want me t’get ya boxes from th’ supermarket?”

“Boxes.” she flew into a rage. “I’ll give you fucking boxes.” She rushed him  and began hitting him on the shoulders and head. “You heartless cunt.”

If she wanted out and she could have it. The less he resisted the faster and easier it would be. Part of him knew she wanted an apology but that wasn’t going to happen.

She stepped back to swing at him. He automatically blocked her hand and restrained himself before he could follow through with a jab of his own. He pushed her away. She went to the bedroom.

He finished his bagel listening to her pull drawers out and slam them back in.

She tugged a suitcase with squeaky wheels out of their bedroom. She could barely lift it.

“Want me ta take that for ya?”

“I can fucking manage. Try not to be here when I come back for the rest of my stuff.”

“Linda …”

“Oh shut the fuck up. And don’t worry I won’t mess with your goddam trophies or bleach your clothes while you’re out.”

She stood in the open doorway looking at him.

“What?” He knew this was the moment to reassure her, to back down so she could …. what …. forgive him. He stood and pulled his shorts down and held his cock and balls in the palm of his hand. “You want one last ride?”

“Thank God I’m not as stupid as you.”

She slammed the door behind her. He could hear the bump of her suitcase as she dragged down the two flights of stairs to the street.

He sniffed the tee shirts to see if he could smell a difference. His cell rang. What did she want how?
“Alex. It’s Tyler. Look I can’t do my beginners class today. Can you keep an eye on them.”

“What time? I have my own bunch at 3.”

“It’s at noon. The standard bunch of business guys escaping work to take it on each other and not their bosses.”

“Or girlfriends. Sure I can do that.”

Noon. That gave home a couple of hours to get ready. He showered and walked around his apartment drying off, looking at how much of it was his, how much was Linda’s. A lot of it was hers, the woman’s touch. It would be good to get back to simple living. What she didn’t take he’d drag to the curb. Pickers would scoop it up overnight and he would be free of her. That wasn’t a bad thing.

Would Harris like his place? Why the fuck why was he considering that. When he got to the kick boxing school he immersed himself in the classes. Focus was critical and the focus took him out of himself and back to the momentum of aim contact duck deek roll.

After his kick-box classes Alex went down to the boardwalk at the Beach. He used to go there with his Pops. He bought a hot-dog and piled on relish and mustard. Something Linda hated to see him do. The vendor wagons were germ pits. How could he trust the meat. He walked along the Goodman Trail and found a spot on the point that was far away from the volleyball players, away from the dogs, children, away from everything.

He clambered on the rocks on the shoreline where he could sit with his bare feet in the water. Was the water safe? He didn’t care. It was wet and cool.

Too much to figure out and no one he felt he could talk to. Definitely not Linda. The blow out they had made that very clear. If she couldn’t have things the way she wanted, the way they’d always been, then she didn’t want him at all. That she could throw away their four years together made him willing to let go of them too.

He was tempted at the time to spit out the truth to shut her up. But he didn’t know what that truth was. Cursed into being a queer? It was like being told he was now black when he could see that he was white.

He had run around yesterday in a rain storm. Got soaked. All for a fat guy he was obsessed with but who didn’t desire him. A guy who claimed to be as straight as Alex yet played this ‘come’ ‘now go’ routine with him.

Linda no longer appealed to him. She could tell. She could smell that other’s hands had been on him. Even the rain didn’t wash that off. What it did wash off was that the hands belonged to a man, not a woman. All because of a curse?

A wind blew across the lake carrying the shouts of the volley ball players. Then silence.

He dried his feet and put his socks and shoes back on. An ice cream would help.

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Fauré Gershwin

Gabriel Fauré is another of those late 19th Century composers recalled for one or two favourites if he’s known at all. The two best known works are his Requiem: a moody, elegant, romantic choral piece that is evocative & relaxing & melancholy – all the things a Requiem should be. Perhaps better known in his Pavane – another lush sweet piece that has been adapted for nearly every instrument composition & style.

Not a one-hit-wonder is the genius George Gershwin. I have in my collection Porgy & Bess: is several versions: the opera, the movie sound track, Louis Armstrong & Ella Fitzgerald, Cleo Lane & Ray Charles & an orchestra suite. I have various versions of  the Rhapsody In Blue including the original as performed by Paul Whitman, for 2 pianos, even a piano roll by Gershwin himself. American Paris Paris by various. Collections of songs performed by Bobby Crush, Ella Fitzgerald, Oscar Levant & more.

I even found the first Rhapsody in Blue I heard by Stanley Black – it remains my favourite too. Gershwin’s music is embedded in the American identity. With the current debate about cultural appropriation it’s impossible ignore the influences of black music of the time on his writing. If he hadn’t tapped into the pop culture of the times he might have disappeared like actual ‘serious’ composers of the time.

But his struggle to be taken serious haunted him. He would have preferred not to be remembered as a Broadway/Hollywood hit maker. Though in the history of classical music composers like Chopin & Liszt were very popular without being regarded as non-serious.

I love Gershwin: His too brief life is a fascinating study of the conflict between commercial success & creative respect. His private life is also clouded by secrecy – never married, personal papers destroyed after this death etc. Another child of an immigrant family who moulded the USA of today.

Bomb Blast

Mike opened the newspaper to look for information on events at the university campus the night before. He and Robert had heard the Iraqi Students Committee protest that the afternoon’s debut of the film ‘Drop the Veil.’

The headline shook him:

‘Bomb Blast Kills Seven’

There had been no bombs. The bed and breakfast he was staying at was close enough that he would have heard that. He read through the article repeatedly.

‘A bomb blast in the Prince Albert area laid waste to four restaurants. The prime target was thought to be a bar run by Hell Fire, a local biker gang. The club was opened at the first of the summer as the gang attempted to make their business more main stream.

The bar was empty at the time but at La Vache next door a reception was being held for the press attending the Montreal International Film Festival.

The powerful blast levelled that building killing four. Two other nearby establishments were caught in the blaze.

Names of the diseased are being withheld pending notification of next of kin. The Montreal Festival will continue despite this tragedy which they feel is in no way connected with the festival or the picketing of the Iraqi film that afternoon.’

Press! Mike’s mind raced. Jack would have been at that reception. Should he call the hotel to check? Would they tell him? He wasn’t family and, as off two days ago, was now Jack’s ex.

The frothy latte he had been drinking was now cold. The whipped milk on the top congealed into a brown stain. He would be meeting with Robert in ten minutes. Was it too late to get out of that? If he went to Jack’s hotel he might be able to get some information.

That’s what he would have to do. If Robert didn’t understand – fuck him. Too much to explain anyway. Too much. Way too much.

He forced himself to gulp down the latte.

Chapbooks available:


kiss3on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


June 8-9 attending: Capturing Fire 2018

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee  – sweet,eh?

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr


It feels good to be back home after my intense week in Washington. I gave myself a full 24 hours to decompress – made no attempt to blog, tumblr or even look at my DC workshop notes. Unpacking laundry then unpacking memories. There’ll be a couple of these unpacking posts.


I loved The Fairfax on Embassy Row. Embassy Row is the name of an area not a street. According to my taxi driver on the way back to the airport The Fairfax was once the Ritz-Carlton. Hmm … it was posh but not luxurious – luxury would include things like bathrobe, bidet or free gym. They did offer free wifi, big towels & lots of them, a workable coffee perk, tea bags, a good sized bar fridge, a working a/c – no microwave. The tub was big & deep enough for me to take a bath. I was able to get maid service not to make my bed – saves them 10 minutes for one thing. None of which I had at last year’s dive.


One feature, that I didn’t get to use, was a mail chute! I can’t recall the last time I saw one of these. I did see the mailman picking up letter from the box at the bottom of the chute. I wished I had postcards to mail just to take a picture of them going down the glass front.

Everything I wanted to do was within walking distance as well. I did take the Metro down to Union Station one day. It’s comfortable enough & does the job but there’s always griping about it too. Just like TO. Beside airport transit I did take a taxi once – to get back to the hotel from Coffy Cafe. It was walkable but I didn’t want to be dragging my ass through those late night streets. I felt safe enough but didn’t want to be target for some angel-headed hipster’s need for a fix.

On my last night there, when it felt like 42C I came a cross IcyCode – an ice cream shop – where they make the ice cream right before your eyes 🙂 the ingredients are mixed on a cold plate – bigger than an extra large pizza – mixed, flavour is chopped in, spread out, re-chopped, re-spread several times then let set for a few second & scraped into several rolls, put into a little tub for the final touches. IcyCode. I had no idea this is what i was in for when I ordered – so I was super pleased. That’s my Sugar Daddy with its white cotton candy topping. Almost a spiritual awakening.

Chapbooks available:


kiss3on going 🙂 when new podcast are posted:  Disability after Dark  iTunes

August 31-Sept.3 – I have my ticket already


November 1 – 30 Participating NaNoWriMo


June 8-9 attending: Capturing Fire 2018

check out these poets from  Capturing Fire 2015 & 2016

Hey! Now you can give me $$$ to defray blog fees & buy coffee  – sweet,eh?

Like my pictures? I post lots on Tumblr