Sunday, October 31, 2010

In the Rain of Italy

This morning i walked in the rain Mass,
the rain was soft and very cold..
the wind blew down from the mountains,
meeting the sea and making it flat,
as smooth as silk,
like a pond in Mississippi on a still day..
i will miss Taggia,
i will miss the new friends i have made..
we leave today for Nice and fly home tomorrow,
I can't wait to see my beautiful wife and son,
and of course,
Jack..the little dude..
Taggia, Italy

Saturday, October 30, 2010


Last night we went to a restaurant/bar in the town,
the atmosphere was not like an American r/b,
there was a warmth in the air,
people were kind, friendly, and jovial..
the Italians are full of expression,
when they are smiling they really smile..
they asked me to play some songs,
the next thing i knew it is 1 hour later,
a box drummer named Luigi joined me,
as well as the bartender named Denardo who plays harmonica,
they were both very very good and simply put,
we jammed!
i sang a few U2 songs and the entire bar sang along,
I did "Country Roads" and people came in from the street to sing along!
The whole world knows Johnny Cash and Elvis songs,
i made up some songs about Italy and they cheered,
at the end they asked me to come back soon,
i told there is nothing more that I would like to do..
Everything is grace.
Taggia, Italy

Friday, October 29, 2010


Pippo is 80 years old..
He looks about 50,
he speaks no English,
I speak enough Italian to say hello,
goodbye, thank you, yes, no, and pasta..
we walked from the villa to the Church,
named after a Saint I have never heard of..
as we walked he hummed an aria,
i knew it because of Andrea Bocelli..
we arrived for the last 10 minutes of Adoration,
the sanctuary began to fill..
young as well as old,
teenagers, young adults, the very old..
the pews as old as time..
the kneelers as hard as cement,
but everyone knelt,
the Mass was in Latin,
Pippo was happy that I knew the Latin,
an 80 year old Italian,
a 45 year old American,
praying and singing in Latin together to God,
it was pretty amazing..

Taggia, Italy

Thursday, October 28, 2010


the places we walk here in Taggia are ancient,
the people are animated!
they talk with their hands...
they sing when they talk..
the food is not explainable..
the wine is rich, full, and clean...
the weather is everywhere..
the flowers remind me of Van gogh.
all of this is grace..
today i will go to daily Mass with an 80 year old man named Pippo,
i will not understand the language,
but i will understand..


Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Italy is beautiful!!!
We flew into Nice an hour ago,
now we are in Taggia, Italy..
so amazing is the sunshine here,
so beautiful the flowers on the hillside,
the ocean only a few hundred yards away..
I smell coffee brewng in the kitchen,
we are about to go have lunch in the village..

Taggia, Italy

Tuesday, October 26, 2010


I wish trains were more a part of American travel,
all of Europe has this cheap and convenient option,
if politicians and environmentalist really wanted to do good,
create jobs and help the environment,
it seems building train tracks throughout the country would help..
but i digress
we rode from Stuttgart to Ruenling and had dinner with Cornelius,
and his girlfriend..
two wonderful and kind new friends,
he a pipe maker,
she a fashion designer..
since we were in Germany we decided to have Italian food...
it was incredible!
tomorrow we leave for Italy,
maybe there we will have German food!
by the way,
it is winter here already..
there is a chance of snow..
Stuttgart, Germany

Sunday, October 24, 2010


we drove far out into the country yesterday,
huge windmills scattered throughout
they turn in slow motion,
somehow beautiful..
we had lunch in a restaurant built in the 1700's.
older than America..
i had to duck my head walking through,
the food was incredible, simple, and light..
the wind never stops blowing here
the sky could rain any time,
the weather seems so much alive,
and then the sun,
when it shines,
is crisp,
cleaner than i can remember..


the "WALK" street is amazing..
a street in the city center with no cars..
1 1/2 miles long.
thousands of people walking and shopping
last night we had dinner on a Channel,
a harbour restaraunt with incredible food..
the Danes are a gracious people..
i am about to walk to a Catholic Church a mile away..
i love going to different Masses around the world..
no matter that I can't undestand the language,
it doesn't matter in a Mass..
I know what is happening..
it is Universal(Catholic)..
i am sitting by a window..
it looks very cold out there..
i love it.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Hippie Cows

Last night we drove through the country,
sea gulls cover parts of green fields,
so white against the deep green,
among them mingled cows with very long hair,
these cows had bangs..
i have been around and among cows,
but I have never seen this species up close,
only in National Geographic..
no matter where i roam grace finds me,
i see the world around me in color because if it,
it is good to see old friends,
to walk along a lake as the wind pelts my face,
without grace,
this is just another country,
just another journey without purpose.
with grace,
the lives we touch and are touched by,
means something eternal..
even among the hippie cows..

Friday, October 22, 2010


We landed in Copenhagen 2 hours ago..
it is a land of wind..
it is howling as i write this outside the hotel window,
this is an enchanting place.
Vikings are everywhere.
Tall men and women..
water, harbours, ships, statues.
it has been ten years since my last visit..
it is good to be back.
we are about to drive out into the country,
to see an old friend..

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Dylan Live

last night i saw Bob Dylan in concert
i had a 9th row incredible seat,
the guy sitting next to me was from France,
he had seen Bob a few times over the years,
this was my first time..
He cautioned me that some nights are not so good with Bob,
I told him I didn't care..
i was just glad to be there..
When the show began with a pop of the snare drum,
we both knew tonight would be special..
Dylan, who is 69 years old, was Forever Young!
he smiled, made eye contact with the audience,
he belted out Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat,
i was amazed at his presence and showmanship,
every word was clear and he knew every word of every song,
he was like a preacher telling a story..
every song was better than the one before..
his band is remarkable!
Charlie Sexton is having the time of his life,
as is the rest of the band,
you can see, hear, and feel they know something,
and if you are there,
they let you in on it..


Monday, October 18, 2010

one question

there is a question..
and you must forgive me in advance..
this question is deeply troubling,
it has in some cases ignited wars,
simple words on a page have done this..
it has caused men and women to lie,.
if it is asked without an open heart,
it becomes an accusation,
an insult,
filled with doubt and rage...
a simple question asked by one king to another,
"What is Truth?"


Friday, October 15, 2010

Tom Cat

i slept with every window open
the wind howled around midnight
temp dropped quickly and it got cold..
too cold to get up and close the windows
where has the wind been?
there really hasn't been much wind this year..
not like last night.
the summer was so hot,
the wind hardly blew..
a Tom Cat moaned low somewhere in the darkness
on the prowl looking for a wife or a fight..
sirens wailed around 2:30,
sounded like a war zone for about 30 seconds
sound travels differently on the cool air..
more hollow and leaner..


Thursday, October 14, 2010

How Long?

the Ravens were crying out this morning
did anyone hear their song?
did anyone look up to the sky?
i keep wondering how long..

How long till she comes home
How long till she holds my hands
How long till our nation heals
How long till Jesus lands

His daughter is my true love
from that day in Mississippi
when I first saw her marching
twirling a rifle so fine, she is so fine

From that fine day till now my friend
she has been my passion true
every time i see her i feel a little weak
tell me, what's a poor boy to do?

How long till she comes to me
How long till she holds my hands
How long till our nation loves
How long till Jesus lands

in this crazy world of terror, sin, and war
in this day of dishonest gain and wicked love
I will listen to the Ravens when they sing their song
and I will smile when i see her coming home..


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

21'st Century Media Blues

Creflo Gloria and Kenneth
Joyce Benny Beth Joel and Jakes
plead to the camera for lost souls
to send money just ater their saved

this land is your land
this land is my land
but it ain't their land
he screams, "cause they're foreign"

Bobby's still out there
on his never ending tour
and he don't belong to no one
ain't never been nobody's fool

Is president Obama a Muslim?
20% think it true
while he stands there saying he isn't
swears he's a Christian like you

the road is on fire out before us
red flames, billowing smoke
but the devil's not to blame for it all my friend
"some among us think that life is but a joke"

there will be peace in the valley of our souls
in the midst of the war in our minds
in the battle waged for love in our hearts,
Everybody having a good time?

The Wounded lover stands at the door
waiting for His beloved to let Him in
knocking with blood on His knuckles
while His beloved keeps clinging to sin


Tuesday, October 12, 2010


if you have never seen "Hurt" by Johnny Cash,
here it is..
there is great need for this kind of art..
for this candid expression..
images of materialism, death, and redemption..
loss is something we all taste,
but honest reflection, "my empire of dirt", is not common,
especially in our time of "Cribs", "reality" shows
not any reality most know,
Cash was brave in this performance,
showing his frail shaking humanity..
this is how video was meant to be used.


Monday, October 11, 2010

dark sky

May Jesus be the star that always guides our steps
along the desert of the present...--St. Pio

to see a star,
we must look into the sky,
not the day-time sky,,
stars can only be seen at night..
i know many right now going through darkness,
and in this moment,
in their deep suffering, fear, and uncertainty,
in their frustration, anger, loneliness,
they can see something those in daylight can't..
it is a mystery why this is the undeniable truth,,
but once again,
this is why our Beloved suffered on a cross,
instead of being trampled to death by Camels..


for Magda

Sunday, October 10, 2010


this morning's walk was brisk
love this weather,
leaves are really turning here now,
falling on my head as i walked.
i saw an odd thing..
this little neighborhood,
small brownstones, manicured yards,
one tree had two skeletons in it..
they were hanging in tangled horror positions,
they didn't look like fake Halloween skeletons,
they looked real..
a few yards away stood a tall dark Douglas Fir..
out of place among the pines and oaks..
in the corner of the quaint little house,
a bundle of dead corn stalks..
crazy deal..


Saturday, October 9, 2010


my grandfather was a Hobo for a while in the 30's..
"Hobo" is not a word used in our time..
he wanted to see the country before he went to work,
they were poor,
and the only way to do this was to hop trains,
he did it for a year..
a young man from Mississippi on the rails,
he talked about the community of Hobo's..
cool nicknames..
"Muleskinner", "Patch", "Singer", "Irish",
"Mose", to name a few..
he was called "Mississippi"..
he heard music he had never heard before,
saw terrain he had never seen before,
met criminals more famous than anyone else of the time,
saw snow in Chicago so deep it was taller than he was,
he slept in the box car when he could,
but many nights were spent on the ground near a fire..
he came back home and went to work,
for the next 50 years..
thankful for his time on the rails..


Friday, October 8, 2010


Tom waits Megaphone

St. Paul said to drink some wine,
for the stomach,
He also said not to drink too much,
for that is debauchery,
God is somewhere in the middle..
"this world is ever with us"
a poet said....
mental illness,
heavy stuff..
what we must do
is cry for mercy..
every other cry is less than,
this is why he died on a cross,
and not from a falling piano.


Thursday, October 7, 2010

every morning

the cool morning
leaves turning
she is too far away from me
and there is nothing i can do about it
except wait
the path always takes us places we do not expect
places we can't plan for..
no matter how much faith we feel
or how much doubt we ponder
we are children,
and every morning is Christmas,
when we believe in what we believe,
it is not easy to live like this.
in fact,
it is brutal to believe what we believe..
it demands every emotion,
every thought,
every failure,
every success,
every joy and sadness..
every morning..


Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Tom Waits

i dreamed last night that Tom Waits invited me over..

his wife was very nice and brought us coffee.
we sat in the hallway of his barn and talked about the view,
the back view was pasture and you could see a large wooden porch way out there..
he said it was Bob Dylan's porch.."A real eye soar!", he growled..
he asked me about living in Mississippi,
about Faulkner's grave,
said he had been there once a few years ago..
the view out the front of the barn was strange,
off in the distance you could see a highway,
it looked like an eight lane huge busy interstate..
it winded it's way through the pastoral hills,
ruining the beautiful..
Tom looked perplexed at this, "eye soar!" he growled,
dreams are so odd..
there was a cool breeze in the hallway of the barn,
he wore black with a blue pin on his lapel,
it read,


Blue Like Jazz

a few years ago i read a book
Blue like Jazz,
one word best describes it,
a friend of mine is involved making the film based on the book,
he asked me to share the journey of the film being made with you,
because he is involved,
i would encourage you to check it out,
creativity and expression,
honesty within the seeking,
candid about the ups and downs,
for me,
the book was a good moment in my journey home,
made me hungrier..


Tuesday, October 5, 2010

out looking for hope

there are mountains of reasons to climb here
some will die in this place some were born here
some will bring pleasure
some will bring  pain
hear the thunder rolling
can you smell the rain?

so much sickness
so much sadness
so much lying, trying, and blame
this old world seems uneasy
and the wind's getting breezy
take a whiff, can you smell rain?

a hard rain fell it will fall again
there'll be no where to run and hide
men will beat there breast
women won't bare their chest
and we'll wonder if God's on our side

blessed the feet
who brings words of peace
who comes running with good to explain
but no footfalls i hear
as the storm draws near
get your hat cause it's starting to rain

a hard rain fell it will fall again
there'll be no where to run and hide
men will beat there breast
crows will abandon the nest
and we'll wonder if God's on our side

send your youngest out for supplies
send your momma out for the gun
send your cousin out for the horse in the barn
send your prayers to the hidden one.

send your brother out for a shovel
send your sister out for a pale
send your lover out for a can of beans
send the devil on back to his hell

send your neighbor out for some matches
send your daddy out for some rope
send your enemy out for an olive tree leaf
send your daughter out looking for hope..


Monday, October 4, 2010

travel prayers

traveling can be a cool thing

mainly because of people
odd people,
strange people,
all ages, colors, creeds..
last night on my midnight flight home...
i sat in front of a young country rock band,
they were some funny dudes,
they had all of us in the back of the plane laughing,
they kept quoting lines from Forrest Gump,
parts about Lieutenant Dan..
"Shut up and get down!"
one guy in the band had a laugh that just made you laugh,
we all felt like zombies,
but these kids made us forget that for 45 minutes..
grace comes in so many different ways in this life..
then you hear about the "Travel to Europe" warning..
i don't like Terrorist,
they really are downers...
hope i don't meet any in my travels this month to Europe..


Friday, October 1, 2010


Crypts at Hollywood Cemetery in Richmond.
"Virginia is for lovers"..
that may be true..
but the one I love is in Mississippi,
so God bless us all..
it is beautiful city,
The James river flows..
in and around this old town..
i am here till Sunday..
this place is full of history,
Robert E. Lee,
the Civil War..
State's Rights..
but the rules of our society have even changed this place,
"No This"
"No That"
i wonder what we think we are protecting us from..
Richmond VA