Erika Robuck

For Erika. Lament for Spring.

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I gotta go way back /When I go back/gary snyder and diPrima/ $21 monthly grocery bills/the year i got outta college/37 this week & still nothin/but a poet’s heart~

All but one of the strawberry plants have died
the chamomile is turning brown
it is winter & I don’t know what to do
w all this sun.  A moon passes, spotted
opulence, tide rush of spring.  Bird cries
in complete ascent, oh her tongue-flicked
breath.  Here, there never were bare branches
or earth-freeze, then
spongy, wet.

Men come across the street
& take a tall tree down.  It is March,
my skin already summer brown. Wantonness
got me an empty pack of cigarettes.
A day at a time goes in hours some times
or ten minute increments–so far I avoid
a second pack.  It has been one month
since I put down the words.
Every time, despite the understanding
it is harder to make the return.

Erika Robuck & Edna St. Vincent Millay

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Today is Erika Robuck’s third release from Penguin/Nal, Fallen Beauty, an historical fiction novel starring Edna St. Vincent Millay.

Millay, a rebel devotee of love and passion, of Life, a dazzling revelrous madwoman who brutally demanded what it means to live out of life: from the timeless space of fear and love, devotion, desperation, soul, the Call–Poetry–

This is a book about what it means to be a woman, an exile, and ultimately, redeemed.

Erika is a dear sister and friend, and without her I know I would not have undertaken the holy vow of endless devotion to the words.  Which means I am not sure, without her, what would’ve become with this very life of my own.

Congrats, sister!  Buy her new book, here.

Nother Sunday holla

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Ahhh, so this song which SHOOK me today:

Nina Simone radio on Pandora; hula-hooping for no reason other than the hips wanna move; thank love & human hearts  this exists; following  #dangerousblackkids on Twit; random surfer encounters on the side of PCH followed by unexpectedly rad Valentine’s Day dates; our first trans-dialectic Salon for next weekend after a night w the ladies of Brasil, Romania, and Thailand;  and of course, an advance of Erika’s new book and a  dedication which made me cry.

Just like Muse-ic

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I slept til 12.

Or, Candlemas insight woke me at 6 am, still on my couch third night in a row so I can tend nightmares, regressions…

And then the dawn, & insight.  I went back to sleep.  I have lived on the couch.  Donna M Gershon that Cin and Susan sent me.

“And if you thinkin bout turnin back, I got the shotgun on ya back.”

Brooks.  Psychopomp from Narnia, ushering in the feeling…the Poetry Muse-ic feeling.  Then Erika, & a smile from the moon.

So here it is.  Smile!  The light’s been cast.

Full Moon & the Duende

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Some writer days I’m just way more superstitious than others.


I burn the candles, beseech the angels, thank the saints.

Cast love about the place from the Holy Mother, get the sacred heart flame of Jesus fired up, too.  Honor the goddess Earth, her sister Moon.

It’s because as any true writer will tell you, of the Duende.   Spanish folklore reported the Duende as a goblin-like spirit that rouses up in us like hot-blooded possession, he who is phantom and different from the Muse, all bathed and transcendent in her ephemeral white.  Muse is great for escape, anyway isn’t that what transcendence is?  Duende is worth fighting for, for him you struggle and sweat and stay in the ring.


Duende is human, all the way…and people who know me know that’s what I honor, what to me is most sacred: profane, touching, our broken human life.  It’s that for which I will always fight.

In any case, this week is the full moon.  She peaks Thursday morning and so will be at her fullest in the night sky on Wednesday.  She is the traditional Harvest moon, closest to the Fall Equinox which ushers in a whole new energy over the weekend.  We’ve felt it coming since the New Moon, though.  Hear it, sense it, feel it in the evening air?

I was sleepless last night under the white moonbath through my skylight in the loft.  She was getting our attention.  It is peak time for review of our year, what has grown, what blessings reaped.  What sacred doubts?  Sacred because it is how you will gather courage to regroup, and start again.

It’s too the time that these spirits will rise in us, as ghosts or angels, Duende or Muse, whichever one.  This is the moon for that, Sacred Looking Moon, just before Fall.