Sunday, February 21, 2010

A moment of clarity

Walking to dinner a few days ago, I glanced to the north. On the days when the haze of coal smoke is light and the winds are not clogged with dust, a blanket of soft clarity falls upon the mountains at sunset. Every detail stands in sharp relief as shadows crawl sleepily across weathered peaks peering intently into the coming night.

Why do things usually become clear just before darkness falls?

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Feeling nostalgic...

I've been feeling nostalgic all week, so I was going through the archives of my blogs that have been lain to rest. I found this poem from five years ago and surprisingly, I don't hate it yet. Since most of you did not know me (much less know I had a blog) then, I figured it wasn't too much of a faux pas to post it again.

Portlanders, this mountain is none other than our beloved Mt. Hood.

Without further ado:

In the Shadow of a Mountain

The mountain on the horizon has brought us here
to sit on the sun-drenched curb
in the short time remaining us
Brown bottles filled with good spirits
and the echo of comfortable laughter
I've always had a weakness for girls who like beer

The heat of summer's fall burns the smell
of asphalt onto our lips and tongues
leaving parking spaces hazy and indistinct
newly painted lines undulating dreamily
in the mirage of farewell

But, goodbyes are never for good with us
and the lines around our love rarely keep their places
between sister and brother, friend and lover
or the silence that's born in feeling too much

As clumsy words tumble reluctantly
into the space between our long-eyed gazes
to identify the intimacy

Unfolding in this surprising scene
we're setting the horizon free

In the shadow of snow-capped majesty

© 2005 E. Ramón Chaparro

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Haiti Relief Donations Revisited

Another great article in the NY Times on the fund-raising aspect of disasters.


an excerpt from "I Love You, Me Neither"

"This failure to communicate is an abuse of good timing. In him we have in him a mensch of great talents and capacities, including sleight of hand, limericks, baking, and perfect renditions of Serge Gainsbourg songs despite knowing no French. He is above all a listener, a true auralphile with a sincerity of task not used for self-serving ends, making him one of the great potential finds of all time. However, even with this key piece peripheral equipment, he is still running on a standard operating system, and so is naturally drawn to that who does not share such a drawing. Human nature and associated foibles are simply a programming error, it should seem to logical people.

She could use a listener, but she’s too distracted to know this. Distraction is a much easier than introspection, even with the horrible return on investment. She, as aforesaid, craves basic satisfactions, but not really from the troglodytic sort that she incidentally appeals to as much as those that are different from her parents. Again, her stunted sensibility for taking in the world outside of her skin should be a condition of extreme allure, yet in combination with her misinformed conscience, it makes a stew that is awful for sharing. He knows that being of sound mind, but who is driven in quiet moments by his mind?

This for her is tragic, or at least downtrodden, as it waylays her from the substance and thrill she most wants. She loves magic, witty poems of a dirty slant, desserts, and new music, and yet she is 15 billion miles from the good-looking guy sitting immediately to her left that encapsulates the exact parts she could use: a less-brutal love.

She likes him too. Just not now."

--Jason Leary

Read the rest here on the excellent blog project 30POV