Spirit Vessels (Paperback)

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Description


I write myself out and start all over again. As a kid, I started writing standard forms: sonnets, blues, ballads and rock & roll stanzas—eventually converting to free verse after reading Whitman & Ginsberg. Later I added surrealist composition, tight objectivist line breaks, projectivist inclusion of history dream and myth to my palette —and incorporating jazz into my poetry both in writing and performance. Paid some dues with 9 months of Thursday night gigs at the Blue Nile with my band, the Frank Zappatistas, free jazz improvisation (special thanks to flutist Janna Saslaw who told me to just relax and have fun.) Reading the full Shakespeare canon taught me something about really creating a presence through poetry. The best compliment I have gotten in a long time came from a spoken word artist who told me, “Your poems are perfect for your voice.” Thanks, man, I’ve been doing it for a long time.



From the book:



il Giardino Abbandonato

Chista è 'na storia

d'un piscispàda:..

storia d'amuri…





il Giardino Abbandonato




Chista è 'na storia

d'un piscispàda:..

storia d'amuri…





a song of Modugno’s has haunted me


the song of the swordfish whose lover has been netted


the song of the émigré leaving his arid town


abandoned by water


the withered breast of his mother nursing her last child


while her first one leaves for America,


and of the moon just risen through the dried olive trees


the submerged oboe, his dead guitar


the mirror that speaks nobody’s name


water, water, Narcissus’s face in its mirror


the song of the black cat who twisted between


the suicide’s shoes


and the song of the dirt-farm fisherman


who was a slave to the sea


Well, the sea will keep you honest, and the eleven men


who burned and drowned in the sea of last summer


of the last summer in Hades, were bound by the sea


by the disease that stops my tongue. Water, water,


our need for it, our love of it


is all the element in which we drown


and the fact that one day we will return to it


and be absorbed into it


is both our tragedy and our resurrection.


War is not the answer, water is.


The song of Modugno


of the man who begged Christ for a remedy to save him


from his wicked padrone who beat him with his teeth


worse than a dog’s


the song of E Zezi, of the eleven men and women


who burned in a fireworks plant


because that was the work that had been given them to do


and that was the work of their fathers,


the work they surrendered to


or took pride in, what’s the use, Christ on his cross


should be so happy with his nails,A


the song of Modugno’s about the swordfish


plucked from the sea


whose last wish was to die with its lover.




Spirit Vessels is a 78 page hand-stitched paper book with spine

About the Author


Born 1954, educated in Catholic schools through grade 12 & studied judo to learn how to toss bullies. B.A., University of New Orleans, studied Poetics at the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics, Naropa Institute (now Naropa University) and M.A., University of Colorado, Boulder. Returned to New Orleans in 1989 to dig in, edited Mesechabe: The Journal of Surregionalism, founded Surregional Press & formed The Frank Zappatistas free-jazz/free-verse band. Now living in Slidell, LA, in the watershed of the West Pearl River.


Product Details
ISBN: 9780921053279
Publisher: FootHills Publishing
Publication Date: January 26th, 2018
Pages: 78