Sunday, August 30, 2009

Like Father, Like Son

He is no longer the "other Bird".

Summer Bird flew out from underneath the shadow of Kentucky Derby winner Mine That Bird Saturday with a surprisingly easy 3 1/2-length victory in the Grade 1, $1 million Travers Stakes over a sloppy Saratoga track in Saratoga Springs, New York.

Hold Me Back, the longest shot on the board at 17-1, rallied from last to be second, 1 1/2 lengths ahead of Quality Road, the 3-2 favorite. He was followed in the order of finish by Charitable Man, Warriors Reward, and Kensei. Our Edge, who set the pace for the opening half-mile, was eased.

The Travers victory coupled with his win in the Belmont Stakes in June should put Summer Bird atop the 3-year-old division heading into the fall.

"To me he is the champion colt right now," said winning trainer Tim Ice.

Considering Summer Bird didn't make his first start until March, that's quite an achievement.

"For him starting his first race in March, to be where he's at now could only show what a great horse he is," said Ice, who trains Summer Bird for Drs. Kalarikkal and Vilasini Jayaraman.

Summer Bird is the 30th Belmont Stakes winner to also capture the Travers. The last one to do it was Birdstone, who happens to be Summer Bird's sire.

When Birdstone won the Travers, he did it in a driving rainstorm that had developed just moments before the race began. Saturday, Summer Bird had to do it over an extremely sloppy track made that way by heavy rains Friday night and day-long showers on Saturday.

But from the time he left the gate, Summer Bird showed jockey Kent Desormeaux that the slop was not going to be an issue. Expecting to be next-to-last in the seven-horse field, Desormeaux found himself a relatively close fourth as Our Edge set the pace, stalked by Jim Dandy winner Kensei.

Summer Bird was four wide on the first turn and then moved up into a stalking third while remaining four wide down the backside. He was simply galloping through the sloppy surface while Our Edge ran a half-mile in 46.88 seconds. Kensei, took over from a tiring Our Edge at the half-mile pole while Desormeaux maintained a hold on Summer Bird.

"I could have went to the front at the seven-eighths pole," Desormeaux said. "For at least a half a mile I had him under restraint."

Leaving the five-sixteenths pole, Desormeaux decided to open the race up and began to ask Summer Bird for run. By the quarter pole he had a length lead, and turning for home he continued to widen his advantage.

"I thought, let's stretch them out from here and force them to keep up with me instead of allowing it to be a European style of race," Desormeaux said. "With that being said, I got to my breaking point where I thought it was time to go, which was the five-sixteenths. I let him go and he took off full of run."

Ice says people have been calling his horse the "other Bird" for a while, but he doesn't really care anymore.

"They can call him the other Bird if they want, but he's won the Belmont and the Travers," Ice said.

"Take it from there."

Summer Bird covered the 1 1/4 miles in 2:02.83 in the slop.

If you want to watch the race -

Friday, August 28, 2009

Ginsberg and Drooker

Note: Adult language and themes present in the following poem

By Allen Ginsberg


I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,

dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,

angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,

who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz,

who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated,

who passed through universities with radiant eyes hallucinating Arkansas and Blake-light tragedy among the scholars of war,

who were expelled from the academies for crazy & publishing obscene odes on the windows of the skull,

who cowered in unshaven rooms in underwear, burning their money in wastebaskets and listening to the Terror through the wall,

who got busted in their pubic beards returning through Laredo with a belt of marijuana for New York,

who ate fire in paint hotels or drank turpentine in Paradise Alley, death, or purgatoried their torsos night after nightwith dreams, with drugs, with waking nightmares, alcohol and cock and endless balls,

incomparable blind streets of shuddering cloud and lightning in the mind leaping towards poles of Canada & Paterson, illuminating all the motionless world of Time between,

Peyote solidities of halls, backyard green tree cemetery dawns, wine drunkenness over the rooftops, storefront boroughs of teahead joyride neon blinking traffic light, sun and moon and tree vibrations in the roaring winter dusks of Brooklyn, ashcan rantings and kind king light of mind,

who chained themselves to subways for the endless ride from Battery to holy Bronx on benzedrine until the noise of wheels and children brought them down shuddering mouth-wracked and battered bleak of brain all drained of brilliance in the drear light of Zoo,

who sank all night in submarine light of Bickford's floated out and sat through the stale beer afternoon in desolate Fugazzi's, listening to the crack of doom on the hydrogen jukebox,

who talked continuously seventy hours from park to pad to bar to Bellevue to museum to the Brooklyn Bridge,

a lost batallion of platonic conversationalists jumping down the stoops off fire escapes off windowsills off Empire State out of the moonyacketayakking screaming vomiting whispering facts and memories and anecdotes and eyeball kicks and shocks of hospitals and jails and wars,

whose intellects disgorged in total recall for seven days and nights with brilliant eyes, meat for the Synagogue cast on the pavement,

who vanished into nowhere Zen New Jersey leaving a trail of ambiguous picture postcards of Atlantic City Hall,

suffering Eastern sweats and Tangerian bone-grindings and migraines of China under junk-withdrawal in Newark's bleak furnished room,

who wandered around and around at midnight in the railway yard wondering where to go, and went, leaving no broken hearts,

who lit cigarettes in boxcars boxcars boxcars racketing through snow toward lonesome farms in grandfather night,

who studied Plotinus Poe St John of the Cross telepathy and bop kabbalah because the universe instinctively vibrated at their feet in Kansas,

who loned it through the streets of Idaho seeking visionary indian angels who were visionary indian angels,

who thought they were only mad when Baltimore gleamed in supernatural ecstasy,

who jumped in limousines with the Chinaman of Oklahoma on the impulse of winter midnight streetlight smalltown rain,

who lounged hungry and lonesome through Houston seeking jazz or sex or soup, and followed the brilliant Spaniard to converse about America and Eternity, a hopeless task, and so took ship to Africa,

who disappeared into the volcanoes of Mexico leaving nothing behind but the shadow of dungarees and the larva and ash of poetry scattered in fireplace Chicago,

who reappeared on the West Coast investigating the FBI in beards and shorts with big pacifist eyes sexy in their dark skin passing out incomprehensible leaflets,

who burned cigarette holes in their arms protesting the narcotic tobacco haze of Capitalism, who distributed Supercommunist pamphlets in Union Square weeping and undressing while the sirens of Los Alamos wailed them down, and wailed down Wall, and the Staten Island ferry also wailed,

who broke down crying in white gymnasiums naked and trembling before the machinery of other skeletons,

who bit detectives in the neck and shrieked with delight in policecars for committing no crime but their own wild cooking pederasty and intoxication,

who howled on their knees in the subway and were dragged off the roof waving genitals and manuscripts,

who let themselves be fucked in the ass by saintly motorcyclists, and screamed with joy,

who blew and were blown by those human seraphim, the sailors, caresses of Atlantic and Caribbean love,

who balled in the morning in the evenings in rosegardens and the grass of public parks and cemeteries scattering their semen freely to whomever come who may, who hiccuped endlessly trying to giggle but wound up with a sob behind a partition in a Turkish Bath when the blond & naked angel came to pierce them with a sword,

who lost their loveboys to the three old shrews of fate the one eyed shrew of the heterosexual dollar the one eyed shrew that winks out of the womb and the one eyed shrew that does nothing but sit on her ass and snip the intellectual golden threads of the craftsman's loom,

who copulated ecstatic and insatiate and fell off the bed, and continued along the floor and down the hall and ended fainting on the wall with a vision of ultimate cunt and come eluding the last gyzym of consciousness,

who sweetened the snatches of a million girls trembling in the sunset, and were red eyed in the morning but were prepared to sweeten the snatch of the sunrise, flashing buttocks under barns and naked in the lake,

who went out whoring through Colorado in myriad stolen night-cars, N.C., secret hero of these poems, cocksman and Adonis of Denver—joy to the memory of his innumerable lays of girls in empty lots & diner backyards, moviehouses' rickety rows, on mountaintops in caves or with gaunt waitresses in familiar roadside lonely petticoat upliftings & especially secret gas-station solipsisms of johns, & hometown alleys too,

who faded out in vast sordid movies, were shifted in dreams, woke on a sudden Manhattan, and picked themselves up out of basements hungover with heartless Tokay and horrors of Third Avenue iron dreams & stumbled to unemployment offices,

who walked all night with their shoes full of blood on the snowbank docks waiting for a door in the East River to open full of steamheat and opium,

who created great suicidal dramas on the appartment cliff-banks of the Hudson under the wartime blue floodlight of the moon & their heads shall be crowned with laurel in oblivion,

who ate the lamb stew of the imagination or digested the crab at the muddy bottom of the rivers of the Bowery,

who wept at the romance of the streets with their pushcarts full of onions and bad music,

who sat in boxes breathing in the darkness under the bridge, and rose up to build harpsichords in their lofts, who coughed on the sixth floor of Harlem crowned with flame under the tubercular sky surrounded by orange crates of theology,

who scribbled all night rocking and rolling over lofty incantations which in the yellow morning were stanzas of gibberish,

who cooked rotten animals lung heart feet tail borsht & tortillas dreaming of the pure vegetable kingdom,

who plunged themselves under meat trucks looking for an egg,

who threw their watches off the roof to cast their ballot for an Eternity outside of Time, & alarm clocks fell on their heads every day for the next decade,

who cut their wrists three times successively unsuccessfully, gave up and were forced to open antique stores where they thought they were growing old and cried,

who were burned alive in their innocent flannel suits on Madison Avenue amid blasts of leaden verse & the tanked-up clatter of the iron regiments of fashion & the nitroglycerine shrieks of the fairies of advertising & the mustard gas of sinister intelligent editors, or were run down by the drunken taxicabs of Absolute Reality,who jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge this actually happened and walked away unknown and forgotten into the ghostly daze of Chinatown soup alleyways & firetrucks, not even one free beer,

who sang out of their windows in despair, fell out of the subway window, jumped in the filthy Passaic, leaped on negroes, cried all over the street, danced on broken wineglasses barefoot smashed phonograph records of nostalgic European 1930s German jazz finished the whiskey and threw up groaning into the bloody toilet, moans in their ears and the blast of colossal steamwhistles,

who barreled down the highways of the past journeying to each other's hotrod-Golgotha jail-solitude watch Birmingham jazz incarnation,

who drove crosscountry seventytwo hours to find out if I had a vision or you had a vision or he had a vision to find out Eternity,

who journeyed to Denver, who died in Denver, who came back to Denver & waited in vain, who watched over Denver & brooded & loned in Denver and finally went away to find out the Time, & now Denver is lonesome for her heroes,

who fell on their knees in hopeless cathedrals praying for each other's salvation and light and breasts, until the soul illuminated its hair for a second,

who crashed through their minds in jail waiting for impossible criminals with golden heads and the charm of reality in their hearts who sang sweet blues to Alcatraz,

who retired to Mexico to cultivate a habit, or Rocky Mount to tender Buddha or Tangiers to boys or Southern Pacific to the black locomotive or Harvard to Narcissus to Woodlawn to the daisychain or grave,

who demanded sanity trials accusing the radio of hypnotism & were left with their insanity & their hands & a hung jury,

who threw potato salad at CCNY lecturerson Dadaism and subsequently presented themselves on the granite steps of the madhouse with the shaven heads and harlequin speech of suicide, demanding instantaneous lobotomy,

and who were given instead the concrete void of insulin Metrazol electricity hydrotherapy psychotherapy occupational therapy pingpong & amnesia,

who in humorless protest overturned only one symbolic pingpong table, resting briefly in catatonia,

returning years later truly bald except for a wig of blood, and tears and fingers, to the visible madman doom of the wards of the madtowns of the East,

Pilgrim State's Rockland's and Greystone's foetid halls, bickering with the echoes of the soul, rocking and rolling in the midnight solitude-bench dolmen-realms of love, dream of life a nightmare, bodies turned to stone as heavy as the moon,

with mother finally *****, and the last fantastic book flung out of the tenement window, and the last door closed at 4 A.M. and the last telephone slammed at the wall in reply and the last furnished room emptied down to the last piece of mental furniture, a yellow paper rose twisted on a wire hanger on the closet, and even that imaginary, nothing but a hopeful little bit of hallucination—

ah, Carl, while you are not safe I am not safe, and now you're really in the total animal soup of time—and who therefore ran through the icy streets obsessed with a sudden flash of the alchemy of the use of the ellipse the catalog the meter & the vibrating plane,

who dreamt and made incarnate gaps in Time & Space through images juxtaposed, and trapped the archangel of the soulbetween 2 visual images and joined the elemental verbs and set the noun and dash of consciousness together jumping with sensation of Pater Omnipotens Aeterna Deusto recreate the syntax and measure of poor human prose and stand before you speechless and intelligent and shaking with shame, rejected yet confessing out the soul to conform to the rhythm of thought in his naked and endless head,

the madman bum and angel beat in Time, unknown, yet putting down here what might be left to say in time come after death,

and rose incarnate in the ghostly clothes of jazz in the goldhorn shadow of the band and blew the suffering of America's naked mind for love into an eli eli lamma lamma sabacthani saxophone cry that shivered the cities down to the last radio

with the absolute heart of the poem butchered out of their own bodies good to eat a thousand years.


What sphinx of cement and aluminium bashed open their skulls and ate up their brains and imagination?

Moloch! Solitude! Filth! Ugliness! Ashcans and unobtainable dollars! Children screaming under the stairways! Boys sobbing in armies! Old men weeping in the parks!

Moloch! Moloch! Nightmare of Moloch! Moloch the loveless! Mental Moloch! Moloch the heavy judger of men!

Moloch the incomprehensible prison! Moloch the crossbone soulless jailhouse and Congress of sorrows! Moloch whose buildings are judgement! Moloch the vast stone of war! Moloch the stunned governments!

Moloch whose mind is pure machinery! Moloch whose blood is running money! Moloch whose fingers are ten armies! Moloch whose breast is a cannibal dynamo! Moloch whose ear is a smoking tomb!

Moloch whose eyes are a thousand blind windows! Moloch whose skyscrapers stand in the long streets like endless Jehovas! Moloch whose factories dream and choke in the fog! Moloch whose smokestacks and antennae crown the cities!

Moloch whose love is endless oil and stone! Moloch whose soul is electricity and banks! Moloch whose poverty is the specter of genius! Moloch whose fate is a cloud of sexless hydrogen! Moloch whose name is the Mind!

Moloch in whom I sit lonely! Moloch in whom I dream angels! Crazy in Moloch! Cocksucker in Moloch! Lacklove and manless in Moloch!

Moloch who entered my soul early! Moloch in whom I am a consciousness without a body! Moloch who frightened me out of my natural ecstasy! Moloch whom I abandon! Wake up in Moloch! Light streaming out of the sky!

Moloch! Moloch! Robot apartments! invisable suburbs! skeleton treasuries! blind capitals! demonic industries! spectral nations! invincible madhouses! granite cocks! monstrous bombs!

They broke their backs lifting Moloch to Heaven! Pavements, trees, radios, tons! lifting the city to Heaven which exists and is everywhere about us!

Visions! omens! hallucinations! miracles! ecstacies! gone down the American river!

Dreams! adorations! illuminations! religions! the whole boatload of sensitive bullshit!

Breakthroughs! over the river! flips and crucifixions! gone down the flood! Highs! Epiphanies! Despairs! Ten years' animal screams and suicides! Minds! New loves! Mad generation! down on the rocks of Time!

Real holy laughter in the river! They saw it all! the wild eyes! the holy yells! They bade farewell! They jumped off the roof! to solitude! waving! carrying flowers! Down to the river! into the street!


Carl Solomon! I'm with you in Rockland

where you're madder than I am

I'm with you in Rockland where you must feel strange

I'm with you in Rockland where you imitate the shade of my mother

I'm with you in Rockland where you've murdered your twelve secretaries

I'm with you in Rockland where you laugh at this invisible humour

I'm with you in Rockland where we are great writers on the same dreadful typewriter

I'm with you in Rockland where your condition has become serious and is reported on the radio

I'm with you in Rockland where the faculties of the skull no longer admit the worms of the senses

I'm with you in Rockland where you drink the tea of the breasts of the spinsters of Utica

I'm with you in Rockland where you pun on the bodies of your nurses the harpies of the Bronx
I'm with you in Rockland where you scream in a straightjacket that you're losing the game of actual pingpong of the abyss

I'm with you in Rockland where you bang on the catatonic piano the soul is innocent and immortal it should never die ungodly in an armed madhouse

I'm with you in Rockland where fifty more shocks will never return your soul to its body again from its pilgrimage to a cross in the void

I'm with you in Rockland where you accuse your doctors of insanity and plot the Hebrew socialist revolution against the fascist national Golgotha

I'm with you in Rockland where you will split the heavens of Long Island and resurrect your living human Jesus from the superhuman tomb

I'm with you in Rockland where there are twentyfive thousand mad comrades all together singing the final stanzas of the Internationale

I'm with you in Rockland where we hug and kiss the United States under our bedsheets the United States that coughs all night and won't let us sleep

I'm with you in Rockland where we wake up electrified out of the coma by our own souls' airplanes roaring over the roof they've come to drop angelic bombs the hospital illuminates itself imaginary walls collapse O skinny legions run outside O starry-spangled shock of mercy the eternal war is here O victory forget your underwear we're free

I'm with you in Rockland in my dreams you walk dripping from a sea-journey on the highway across America in tears to the door of my cottage in the Western night.

*The piece shown is Blood on the Moon and was supposedly inspired by the Moloch portion of Ginsberg's poem. The artist is Eric Drooker.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Ferlinghetti and Segal

Constantly Risking Absurdity
by Lawrence Ferlinghetti*

Constantly risking absurdity
and death
whenever he performs
above the heads
of his audience
the poet like an acrobat
climbs on rime
to a high wire of his own making
and balancing on eyebeams
above a sea of faces
paces his way
to the other side of the day
performing entrachats
and sleight-of-foot tricks
and other high theatrics
and all without mistaking
any thing
for what it may not be
For he's the super realist
who must perforce perceive
taut truth
before the taking of each stance or step
in his supposed advance
toward that still higher perch
where Beauty stands and waits
with gravity
to start her death-defying leap
And he
a little charleychaplin man
who may or may not catch
her fair eternal form
spreadeagled in the empty air
of existence

* The piece shown is Circus Acrobats (1981) by George Segal and was recently gifted to the Princeton University Art Museum from the George and Helen Segal Foundation.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Swenson and Giacometti

The Tall Figures of Giacometti*
by May Swensen

We move by means of our mud bumps,
We bubble as do the dead but more slowly.

The products of excruciating purges
we are squeezed out thin hard and dry.

If we exude a stench it is petrified sainthood.
Our feet are large crude fused together

solid like anvils. Ugly as truth is ugly
we are meant to stand upright a long time

and shudder without motion
under the scintillating pins of light

that dart between our bodies
of pimpled mud and your eyes.

*Alberto Giacometti - Swiss sculptor, painter, and printmaker.
The piece shown is entitled City Square (1948)

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dove and Kahlo

Sonnet in Primary Colors
by Rita Dove

This is for the woman with one black wing
perched over her eyes: lovely Frida*, erect
among parrots, in the stern petticoats of the peasant,
who painted herself as a present –
wildflowers entwining the plaster corset
her spine resides in the romance of mirrors.

Each night she lay down in pain and rose
to her celluloid butterflies of her Beloved Dead,
Lenin and Marx and Stalin arrayed at the footstead.
And rose to her easel, the hundred dogs panting
like children along the graveled walks of the garden, Diego’s**
love a skull in the circular window
of the thumbprint searing her immutable brow.

*Frida Kahlo – Mexican painter. The piece shown is entitled Self Portrait with Monkey and Parrot (1938)
**Diego Rivera – Mexican artist, husband of Frida Kahlo

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Ginsberg and Cėzanne

Cėzanne’s Ports
by Allen Ginsberg

In the foreground we see time and life
swept in a race
toward the left side of the picture
where shore meets shore.

But the meeting place
isn’t represented;
it doesn’t occur on the canvas.

For the other side of the bay
is Heaven and Eternity,
with a bleak white haze over it mountains.

And the immense water of L’Estaque* is a go-between
for minute rowboats.

*L’Estaque – Fishing village in France
where Paul Cėzanne, French Postimpressionist,
painted many of his views of the sea.
The piece shown is entitled L'Estaque (1839-1906)

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Happy 40th Anniversary!

If you know anything at all about me you know that Santana runs through the very core and fabric of my life. So, of course, I have to show a few photos of him at Woodstock, which was pivotal and groundbreaking to/for his career.


1969 and 2009

Click on the link below (hit "watch" right under Carlos' picture), turn up your speakers and listen to Santana playing "Soul Sacrifice" at Woodstock (simply A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!). Santana's set (yes, the band did play more than just one song) is also regarded by those who know anything at all as THE highlight of the festival:

Thursday, August 6, 2009


From Dave Matthews web site:
"In Dave Matthews Band's continued effort to give back and support charities and socially conscious companies worldwide, they have forged a relationship with TOMS Shoes. TOMS Shoes was founded on a simple premise: With every pair you purchase, TOMS will give a pair of new shoes to a child in need. One for One. Since their beginning in May 2006, TOMS has given over 150,000 pairs of shoes to children in need through the purchases of caring customers. Because of their growing support, TOMS plans to give over 300,000 pairs of shoes to children in need around the world in 2009. Dave himself was so inspired by TOMS work that he got involved and has created his own design that we are now pleased to be offering in the official store. What easier way to get involved? Buy your pair of Dave Matthews designed TOMS today and you will not only be getting a great pair of shoes for yourself, but you'll be providing a pair to a child in need all in one easy step! Click here to find out more about TOMS Shoes. We are happy to be working with a great company like TOMS Shoes and excited to be able to offer these limited edition, vegan friendly shoes."

url to purchase either of the shoes shown above -

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


Below are the urls for a couple of sites some of you may find interesting.

Architects of a New Dawn: when you bring up this website click on the video that says "What is Architects of a New Dawn?" - the video is impactful and Carlos shares some thoughts starting at 2:50 on the video (he says more throughout the 6:12 of the video).
From the website :
"Architects of A New Dawn is a project, born from the dream and vision of Carlos Santana, to create a new global network, driven by extraordinary music and powerful media content.
It is designed to engage people of all walks of life to work together to create positive change in the global community where love can replace fear and where peace can replace conflict.
This is an invitation to join us and connect with other Architects literally from every part of the globe to find ways to effect change and transform our world together."

Milagro Foundation: Making a Difference in Children's Lives
From the website:
"The Milagro Foundation is a publicly supported foundation established by Carlos Santana and his family in 1998.
Milagro benefits underserved & vulnerable children around the world by making grants to community based tax-exempt organizations that work with children in areas of education, health & the arts.
Milagro means “miracle”. The image of children as divine miracles of light and hope, even as gifts to our lives, is the meaning of the name.
With funds generated by concert ticket donations, individual and corporate donors, Milagro supports children and youth in the San Francisco Bay area, across the United States, and in countries around the world touched by the music of Santana."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

My World This Week

With 2 days left before summer session ends this is the view from my desk. It's a vertiable paperpalooza!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Summer Session Countdown...

'Tis the last week of summer school so right now I'm experiencing the "joy" of listening to all the assorted (and creative) excuses from students as to why I should accept work that was due two-three weeks ago. It's such a predictable behavior as it happens at the same time each semester and, predictably, I feel like they're trying to engage me in an academic version of "Let's Make a Deal". However, I'm not Monty Hall and our classes take place at a college not the studios of ABC and NBC. So, although there are no deals to be had, their attempts at deal-making are quite entertaining and I do give them a Siskel and Ebert "thumbs up" for trying. Anyway, three more in-class days, tons of essays to grade, the computing and turning in of grades and then a two week respite (where the only things on my mind will be decompressing and a resort getaway) before the Fall semester begins with a sea of fresh, smiling faces.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Can You Say Chalk?

'Twas, by and large, a chalky week at the races. There were a few "medium paying" races on a couple of days but, alas (and alack), the phrase for the week was "chalk, chalk and more chalk". What's a longshot bettor to do? sigh....

Oh well, the morrow starts a new week - perhaps the horse gods will be kinder.