Beautiful, Bubbling Chaos

Blaze of Creativity

In a second, one iota, in the tiniest of times,

is the space to make a gesture that surpasses reason, rhymes,

that outpaces every meaning, each idea, concept, scheme,

hold more power than all order and more hope than any dream—

It’s the glint of living freely in a bright, creative flare

without borders, without worries, only hope and joy in there;

it’s the tumbling of the atoms into place where happenstance

makes them line up into beauty as pure music, pleasure, dance—

If the chaos of the openness and depth of space affrights,

how will any of us find a way to light the empty nights?

Let the effervescent madness take a sweeping arc abroad:

in such wild, uncharted wonders, one might hear the voice of God!Digital illo: Beautiful, Bubbling Chaos

Chaos is the Order of the Day

Whenever I think I’m finding my balance, getting the hang of things, or otherwise making rational sense of my life, something happens to remind me that in my reality, these things are impossibilities. And probably unnecessary anyhow. The longer I look at anything, the more its illogical qualities emerge; the more illogical and foolish the world appears to me, the more at home I feel in it. Go figure. Graphite drwg + text: First the Egg, Then the Toast

If You’re Not Growing, You’re Disintegrating

Decrepit Like Everybody Else

I ought to get my rear in gear; encroaching entropy

Challenges my mere existence, yes, the being-ness of me—


Why, I’ll be disappearing soon, with chaos on the rise—

Order is losing ground to it, and much to my surprise,

Growth falls to dissolution at a speed I comprehend

Is likely to outlast me, too, as I fade to my end—

And now I am unraveling, unwinding, getting old

And obsolete, for that’s the end of every tale that’s told.

Goodbye to all you younger things: relish your hour of youth—

You’ll all join me, and soon enough, and that’s the simple truth.

I Think I Must’ve Dropped It Here Somewhere

Peace of mind and clarity can be mighty hard to come by these days. Half of the time I have a tendency to suspect they’re things I once had access to or even owned in small quantities but somehow misplaced. Don’t mind me, I’ll be crawling around here on hands and knees with my compatriots. If we look like we’re hunting for lost contact lenses while not actually awake, you might well be right.

graphite drawingRespite

Among the herds and hordes that clamor for attention undeserved,

Some few remain that will not yammer but sit back, demure, reserved—

Odd, in the cacophony of wild, attention-grabbing rush,

That what finally wins from me my focused notice is mere hush—

The effect of surfeit, excess, ultimately in the riot

Of the maelstrom, is what checks us in our racing: simple quiet—

So I seek the silent moment, empty spaces, basic form

Of absent noise and crush and foment, then go back to face the storm.

Presenting . . .

My life sometimes seems like a synopsis. Or maybe it’s one of those TV shows shot with a rapidly moving handheld camera, interrupted at frequent intervals by commercials so snipped into quick-cut bits as to become nearly stop-motion animation. Just when I think I know what’s happening, the scenery shifts and the action swerves in an entirely new and different direction. I can seldom sense what’s ten minutes ahead, let alone ten weeks or ten years.

This is no complaint, mind. I realize that such unpredictable chaos is likely closer to the norm than otherwise in this weird and wonderful world. And no one can have great adventures, joyful or otherwise, without a touch of that good old element of surprise–maybe even the slightest frisson of danger. The degree of risk often determines the possible breadth and depth of reward. Still, there are moments when I hunger for a sense of safety and stability, if not quite stasis. We all long for the familiar and comfortable from time to time.

But this is the tragicomedy we live, loaded with unnamed characters making entrances and exits that were never foreshadowed, doing unscripted deeds and introducing plot twists never imagined on this our stage. All we can do, each of us, is to find our own character, commit to it, and keep working on its subtleties and vagaries no matter what scene changes get sprung on us. I, for one, will always wonder what new or mysterious acts remain ahead for me, and hope I can make the required costume changes and keep up with the action as long as the story unfolds toward the final artwork

I’d Rather be Clean than Tidy, & I’d Rather be Tidy than Frustrated

It’s possible that, given my genetic descent from a pair of neatnik parents, I keep a slightly fussier house than average. But I must emphasize the word ‘descent’, because the Czarina of Creative Chaos and the Lama of Laziness are my spiritual parents too and often win out in the balance between controlled environment and bombing aftermath. What this means in practice is simply that I often settle (and therefore, my housemate and our guests must, too) for ‘clean enough for safety’. I don’t like any sense of living in the bottom of a rubbish tip, let along canoeing a sewer [the kind with appalling effluents in it, not the kind that makes things out of fabric]. So I think I can fairly claim that I have never–barring being bedridden–let my environs fall into utter wrack and ruin, but there are times when I’d rather let sleeping heaps lie and be satisfied with relatively germ-free untidiness than spend all of my energies on a pristine home.


Use every tool around, and you may find sufficient space for everything. Shelves, hooks, boxes, crates, and so much more can coordinate to make everything fit together. Pretty is nice, but pretty practical suits me better!

I can’t imagine wanting to have a ‘show house’ anyway. If I can’t slouch around a bit and put my feet up on the furniture (yes, dining surfaces excepted), it doesn’t feel comfortable enough for me to call Home. All the same, I enjoy those times when I’ve been in my cleaning-tornado mode enough to find whatever I need to find without pulling all of my remaining hair out by the roots, and to have the house all spiffed up and looking its prettiest beyond merely being generally non-toxic.


Plastic milk crates, bound together and bolted to the wall, lined with clean cardboard salvaged from packing boxes, make handy closet shelves that won’t trap dust and can easily be moved and reassembled.

For that reason, deep cleaning is not saved exclusively for the Spring, and a few spates of active reorganization throughout the year are not only helpful but refreshing. When those bouts result not only in unearthing and offloading unused, excessively worn, dated, or redundant things from closets, cupboards and spaces that ought by rights to be airier or at least better used, that is exceedingly pleasant. When the result is more practical organization, it also means that not only are things pleasanter than before in the short term but they will be easier to maintain in that state and even to return to it when the busyness of the everyday has overridden good intentions and available time for a while. I may never have that DIY-goddess glory of everything in pretty and cute and magnificent containers, all labeled alphabetically with gorgeous calligraphy and stored so beautifully that the cabinets should remain forever open and on display, but I have what I want where I want it. At least for the time being. My putative parents of Chaos and Laziness do come calling, and they’re ever so much more trouble to have around the place than my biological ones. Ah, well; I’ve learned to live with them.


Necktie hangers and clothespin-style clips work for holding all sorts of other things and can tuck behind the clothes so no extra space is required–and all of the ‘trimmings’ are easily visible.