Thursday, August 31, 2017

The Strait Way of Righteousness

Straight is the Gait?

Do as I say, not as I do say.


Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wise Guys

A word to the wise is enough, gawddammit!


Tuesday, August 29, 2017

First of All:

First things first!

But first, announce: "First things first!"

But before that, call out, "First!"



Monday, August 28, 2017

Leave Good Expressions Behind You

First expressions are the lastingest.

By the bye, the artwork above is Autumn Rhythm No. 30, Jackson Pollock (1950).


Sunday, August 27, 2017

Cruel and Unusual Punishment: T. S. Eliot's Spelling Bee

T. S. Eliot

From the proverbial T. S. Eliot: "April is the cruellest month."

Less cruellest would be: "April is the cruelest month."


Saturday, August 26, 2017

Which Way to Burn: Before or After Crossing?

Don't burn the bridge till you come to it.


Friday, August 25, 2017

Classical Gas

All things must pass gas.

Everybody thinks it's disgusting, but everybody likes to do it!


Thursday, August 24, 2017

Muslims who marry infidels?

According to Ali Waked, writing for Breitbart (August 19, 2017):
While sharia law allows Muslims to marry non-Muslim women who convert to Islam, the law forbids a Muslim woman from marrying a non-Muslim man unless he converts to Islam.


Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Fate of a Mustard Seed?

Faith may move mountains, but so do earthquakes . . . and they do it faster.


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Don Quixote Wisdom?

Forewarned is forearmed, so why've I got just two forearms when I've been forewarned so many times?


Monday, August 21, 2017

Takes One to Know One!

It takes one to know one, two, three, four, five, and the rest of the natural number system!


Sunday, August 20, 2017



Cold hands, warmth-thievin' heart!


Saturday, August 19, 2017

Clothes Maketh the Man

Clothes maketh the man; woman maketh the clothes. Therefore . . .


Friday, August 18, 2017

No Sweat

Alleged Sweatdrop!

Don't sweat the small stuff; sweat the great big stuff!


Thursday, August 17, 2017

In the Tradition of "Where's Wally?"

The Thinker
The Gates of Hell

A little learning is a dangerous think.

Just look where Rodin's Thinker ended up!


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Everything for Sale?

Every man has his price, but why sell yourself short?

My mama told me, "You better shop around."


Tuesday, August 15, 2017



Genius is one percent inspiration, ninety-nine percent exasperation!


Monday, August 14, 2017

Moral Hazards?

Love of Money

Bad money drives out good . . . morals.

Actually, the proverb stopped at the word "good." I therefore asked "good what?" No answer was given. I decided "morals" worked as well as any, so I kept it.

But what is bad money?


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Six Feet Underdog?

It's better to live than to decease.

But all dogs go to heaven
because they give
than they receive.


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Attitude is Everything!

Don't mix business with pleasure; make that extra effort to hate your work.


Friday, August 11, 2017

Two more proverbs on excess

Better late than sorry, and better safe than never.

Wait, that ain't right. It's . . .

Better late than safe, and better sorry than never.

No, wait. It's . . .

Better sorry than late, and better never than safe.

No, it's . . . never mind.


Thursday, August 10, 2017

Adverse Obesity

Obesity makes strained-bed fellows.


Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Some like it hot!

"Comparisons are odious" is like saying similes are silly!


Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Another Death in the Family

Aunt Ava Jo

My Aunt Ava Jo passed away recently. Her official obituary can be found at Barker Funeral Home, part of which I post below:
Ava Jo Perryman Bowling was born June 10, 1930 in Salem, Arkansas. She left this life on July 24, 2017 in Salem, Arkansas. She was the daughter of Henry and Mabel Shell Perryman. Ava Jo attended the Salem Schools and graduated as valedictorian in 1948 from Salem High School. She attended college at Central Baptist College, Arkansas State College and the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. She studied Home Economics. After her first year of college she taught school at the one-room schoolhouse in the community of Fairview near Salem. She also taught Home Economics at Salem High School in 1951-52. During her college years, she worked at several different jobs including Sears Department Store in Kansas City, Missouri.

Ava Jo married Clarence Calvin Bowling [also of Salem, Arkansas] on September 4, 1953 at Salem First Baptist Church. They lived in Fayetteville before moving to Beaumont, Texas, which would be their home for 48 years. They had three children: Mark, Cindy and Sara. Ava Jo was an excellent homemaker and housewife. She provided stability, security and love for her children. She also worked part time as a secretary at Blue Bell Creameries Distribution.

Ava Jo was a dedicated and caring Christian woman. She was a member of Amelia Baptist and Westgate Memorial Baptist churches in Beaumont. She was a devoted Sunday school teacher for adult women. She was active in the Women’s Missionary Union, sang in the choir and was a supportive deacon’s wife. When she and Clarence moved to Horseshoe Bend, AR in 2003 they again became members of Salem First Baptist Church. Ava Jo was a kind and giving neighbor and wonderful cook. She also enjoyed reading and working crossword puzzles.
I remember those crossword puzzles. That was an interest she shared with her brother Harlin. I recall her working on those crosswords and only rarely asking for help. I noticed such things because I spent several holidays at her Texas home during my Baylor years. The fact that I attended Baylor at all is also due to her . . . albeit indirectly. Her elder daughter, Cindy, who was a year older than I, praised Baylor to the heavens and inadvertently persuaded me to apply there. Aunt Ava Jo therefore took an interest in me during my time in Texas. She reminded me that university life was more than just textbooks and tests, and she urged me to socialize. That was advice I wished to follow . . . so I did.

So, thanks, Aunt Ava Jo, for the good advice . . . and RIP.


Monday, August 07, 2017

Thumpteen thumps . . .

"Blessed are the pacemakers." They'll give your heart a damn good thumping!


Sunday, August 06, 2017

That Old Switcheroo!

Bait and Switcheroo

"Failing to plan is planning to fail." I can see that, I think, but what about its opposite? "Planning to fail is failing to plan." Does that switcheroo work?


Saturday, August 05, 2017

An Old Review Now Noted

How did I miss Deborah Smith's article of four years ago, namely, "The Uses of Uncertainty: Dalkey Archive's 'Library of Korea' Series" (The Quarterly Conversation, Issue 34, Winter 2014) - and especially how did I miss her review of The Soil that appears in that article? Follow this link (to the article link).
Ask any Korean or Korean literature student who wrote the first Korean novel, and the answer will almost certainly be Yi Kwang-su, whose career spanned the turn of the 20th century and witnessed the introduction of European literature into Korea, often via translations into Japanese, the language of Korea's colonizers at the time. The literary soil into which these new influences were being planted consisted of a rich Confucian heritage of lengthy poems and prose romances written in classical Chinese. Yi Kwang-su, among others, found in the novels of Zola and the stories of Maupassant an exciting new palette of potential techniques for creating an entirely new kind of literature, one more suited to the specific social, cultural, and political circumstances which Korea found itself in (the wrench of industrializing modernity was felt as even more of a brutal upheaval given that it was being implemented by a colonial power who also sought to suppress Korean cultural identity). However, in early novels like The Soil (serialized in the Donga Ilbo from 1932-33) we can also find intriguing traces of the earlier tradition. There's a confusingly large array of bit-part characters, and major characters who are (initially, at least) not so much fully rounded personalities as names appended to a list of characteristics, often corresponding to established types familiar to anyone versed in the Chinese classics.
Many more paragraphs follow, but let me correct one point, namely, that Yi Kwang-su wrote not the first Korean novel, but the first modern Korean novel. There is a difference. Deborah Smith, by the way, is the translator of the Korean novel Vegetarian.


Friday, August 04, 2017

By the way . . .

Sam Shepard died on Thursday, July 27, 2017 at his farm in Kentucky. I read all of the plays he'd composed by the mid-eighties while I was living in Berkeley in the mid- to latter eighties, but I didn't keep up with his later plays. I found his writing fascinating at the time, but I see no influence on my own writing, unless some poem or other was touched. Maybe a reader of my poems can let me know.

Anyway, Mr. Shepard, RIP.


Thursday, August 03, 2017

Let's have some nonsense!


Cold hands, warm heart, non-sense! - Cold hands do NOT imply a warm heart!


Wednesday, August 02, 2017

Speaking of Ravens . . .

The Raven

Here's quite a large raven of Ravenden, Arkansas, though the locals who named the town might not have distinguished so clearly between ravens and crows.


Tuesday, August 01, 2017

A Stately Raven?

Stately, Nothing!
I Am The State!
Photo by My Wife

Or just old cousin crow?