Sunday, November 30, 2014


"Like a Thief's Dream, the first full-length nonfiction book from photographer and filmmaker Danny Lyon, presents the story of James Ray Renton — thief, counterfeiter, and bank robber — who became one of America's Ten Most Wanted Men when he was charged with murdering a young Arkansas policeman, John Hussey, in 1976, and then one of the Fifteen Most Wanted after a daring escape."

Danny Lyon
Like A Thief's Dream
powerHouse Books

Saturday, November 29, 2014


James Koller with his children
Thea, Ida Rose & Bert
circa 1988
w/ Carson Arnold


We just had word while coming in the door from a day away, no lights on yet, getting the wood fire re-lit, that old friend of the family Jim Koller had a massive stroke Friday night in Joplin, Missouri.

His son Bert Koller sent us the news from Maine, where Jim had left a few days earlier for the midwest to be with family members before heading to the southwest where there is more family, and wanting to be way west in California for even more family somewhere down the road this winter.

Jim has lots of family — children, grandchildren, and so many friends.

It's time to put head, hands and hearts together and send the man we love some of that love. Even if you don't know Jim you may one day know his poetry, Teton Sioux translations, stories, songs, chants, and charms.

The editor of Coyote's Journal is somewhere on the cusp tonight.

In the territory where Jesse and Frank James called home.


photo 1988 © bob & susan arnold

"I'm writing you all to let you know that Jim had a stroke last night in Joplin, Missouri. He was also diagnosed with pneumonia. He is currently unable to communicate & the prognosis is not great, but his vitals are fine for the time being. If he does pull through he may need full time care. . ."

— Bert Koller, 29 November 2014


NEW!  from  L O N G H O U S E

The Islandian Poems & Fables 
 Dudley Laufman

Longhouse 2015

72 pages, perfect bound, 5.5 x 6.25 inches
ISBN 978-1-929048-25-0


order here through Paypal, plus $2.00 s/h (US shipping only)

Choose US order or International order


Fable of the Dancing Trees

A man ran up a snow hill.  From the top he could look out over much of the Islandian highlands to the south and the sloping mountains north of Morono.  He could see a train on the monorail to Islandian's northernmost village.  Running up the trail below him were some evergreen trees dashing rapidly out of sight below him and then climbing towards him.  They surrounded him and started pushing him down the hill, their needles were sharp.  He pushed some roughly away, but after some persuasive struggle they got him down the hill and over to a beautiful tree woman.  She had a little tuft of needles under her lower lip, and earrings on her branches like the decorations that American John Lang talks about in their holidays they have.  The man said Oh I am sorry to have pushed you, I hope I didn't hurt you.  But why have you captured me?  She said, I need a partner for our dance and I want you, will you please be my partner?  Oh yes, he cried. Yes, I will.  She took his hand and led him into a dance in the high forest of Morono.  Her needles were soft.

Friday, November 28, 2014


Ursula K Le Guin
National Book Award
Lifetime Achievement Award

Thursday, November 27, 2014


as it snows jukebox
music compiled by bob arnold
thanksgiving 2014


John Brandi
Back Road Chalkies
November 2014

back road chalkies  photo  2014  © bob  arnold




Wednesday, November 26, 2014



I never knew there was so much blood

in a man until my son killed himself

he did it with a kitchen knife stab-
bing himself all over and cutting his

wrists     then he got into the bathtub
and died there in the water     that's

where we found him     but could he have
changed his mind for a moment     the floor

was a carpet of blood & blood was spat-
tered on the walls the basin was cov-

ered with blood     did he stand there
looking at himself in the mirror still

wondering who he really was and then
went on with it     I had to wipe away the

blood     it took me four hours to do it
but I couldn't have asked anyone else

because after all it was my blood too.


Leaning over me her hair
makes a cave around her

face a darkness where her
eyes are hardly seen she

tells me she is a cat she
says she hates me because

I make her show her pleas-
ure she makes a cat-hate

sound and then ever so
tenderly hands under my

head raises my mouth into
the dark cave of her love.

The Collected Poems of
James Laughlin
New Directions 2013
edited by Peter Glassgold


Comes sometimes from

the blaze of light

when an asteroid

passes us too near.

There is also

the softer radiance

when we are separated

and sink into sleep

thinking of each other.


and when I finally awoke
from it we seemed to be

back where we'd left off
some thirty years before

in the compartment of a
wagon-lit somewhere in

Italy loving and arguing
soft words and then hard

words over where we'd go
next to Venice or Rome or

better to split again you
back to him I back to her.


             For William Carlos Williams

Bill on the way you saw
the way your heart saw

what your your eyes saw not
just the way you saw a

wheelbarrow or the falls
or the blossoms of the

shad tree or Floss in a
rose and 100 other flow-

ers your patients & the
babies and the measure

of your lines in Brueg-
hel's painting of that

dance so many things the
rest of us would never

have seen except for you.


I want to touch you
in beautiful places

places that no one
else has ever found

places we found to-
gether when we were

in Otherwhere such
beautiful places.

J A M E S   L A U G H L I N

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


(Don't Worry) If There's a Hell Below We're All Going to Go by Curtis Mayfield on Grooveshark

H2Ogate Blues by Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson on Grooveshark

The Purge by The Game on Grooveshark

Backlash Blues by Nina Simone on Grooveshark

Likambo Ya Ngana by Franco on Grooveshark

compiled by BA the night of ferguson, mo. grand jury release
disbelief disbelief disbelief
 chose not to indict
 Darren Wilson
 in the fatal shooting
 of Michael Brown
even after all these years
of knowing better
a verdict
for  us &

Mamie Till, summer 1955                                               Michael Brown Sr, summer 2014
Photograph: Chicago Sun-Times via AP                                                      Richard Perry / AFP / Getty      


If the white man has inflicted the wound of racism upon black men, the cost has been that he would receive the mirror image of that wound into himself.

W E N D E L L   B E R RY
The Hidden Wound


Monday, November 24, 2014


On Building A Stonewalk In November

This river drifts the land,

In the long air of pines

I smell spring.

Down here, don’t wear gloves,

Don’t wear boots with leaks,

Stay working, and of course

Use the flat stones —

All the things

One learns

In a first year —

The boots take awhile, I know.

But come to you water gentle,

Very clear

Draw strong

Carry the river home to bathe.

It is November / wide open / colding

There is ice you shouldn’t trust.

Bob Arnold


Where Rivers Meet
Mad River Press, 1989

photo 2012  © bob arnold

Sunday, November 23, 2014


edited by Leslie S. Klinger

Saturday, November 22, 2014


Bertolt Brecht
Love Poems
Liveright 2014

 translated by David Constantine & Tom Kuhn

Friday, November 21, 2014


Jean Rhys

Back Road Chalkies 
Fall 2014

back road chalkies  2014  © bob  arnold

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


It only took me 45 years later to come again upon this book — bottom shelf dusty bookshop, all used, way away from any city, backlot, no cover, no matter, last paged through the book with eyes wide open when it appeared in 1970 and I couldn't afford to purchase the book then and do now, only to find out later someone has cleanly removed three photographs from the text, so it's still not all with me, as I leaf through it now with you a few pages here and there — to my mind the California modern era photography cream of the crop.


Dennis Stock
California Trip
Grossman, 1970

once in vermont films 2014  © bob arnold

Tuesday, November 18, 2014


( Phaidon Press, 2014 )

A handy compendium in a long series of equally interesting titles from this publisher scooping up well-known or not so known photographers and artists works and setting them into a small enclosure. Hold it all in one hand. Carry it around with you. 
The weight of a camera.

Monday, November 17, 2014


 Langston Hughes



Play the blues for me.

Play the blues for me.

No other music

'Ll ease my misery.

Sing a soothin' song.

Said a soothin' song.

Cause the man I love's done

Done   me   wrong.

Can't you understand,

O, understand

A good woman's cryin'

For a no-good man?

Black gal like me,

black gal like me

'S got to hear a blues

For her misery.

Daybreak in Alabama

When I get to be a composer
I'm gonna write me some music about
Daybreak in Alabama
And I'm gonna put the purtiest songs in it
Rising out of the ground like a swamp mist
And falling out of heaven like soft dew.
I'm gonna put some tall tall trees in it
And the scent of pine needles
And the smell of red clay after rain
And long red necks
And poppy colored faces
And big brown arms
And the field daisy eyes
Of black and white black white black people
And I'm gonna put white hands
And black hands and brown and yellow hands
And red clay earth hands in it
Touching everybody with kind fingers
And touching each other natural as dew
In that dawn of music when I
Get to be a composer
And write about daybreak
In Alabama.


Folks, I'm telling you,

birthing is hard

and dying is mean 

so get yourself

a little loving

in between.

Little Lyric (Of Great Importance) 

I wish the rent

Was heaven sent. 


I went back in the alley

And I opened up my door.

All her clothes was gone:

She wasn't home no more.

I pulled back the covers,

I made down the bed.

A whole lot of room

Was the only thing I had.

Dream Variations

To fling my arms wide

In some place of the sun,

To whirl and to dance

Till the white day is done.

Then rest at cool evening

Beneath a tall tree

While night comes on gently,

       Dark like me —

That is my dream!

To fling my arms wide

In the face of the sun,

Dance! Whirl! Whirl!

Till the quick day is done

Rest at pale evening . . .

A tall, slim tree . . .

Night coming tenderly

        Black like me.



Selected Poems
Langston Hughes
Knopf, 1959

Sunday, November 16, 2014


I, Ladybug


Of the imaginary world



Sorely used


Lay down my rules

And you, ladybug

What do you do?

Who That Divines
Laura Moriarty
Nightboat Books, 2014

Saturday, November 15, 2014


"How strange and wonderful is our home, our earth, with its
swirling vaporous atmosphere, its flowing and frozen liquids,
its trembling plants, its creeping, crawling, climbing creatures,
the croaking things with wings that bang on rocks and soar
through fog, the furry grass, the scaly seas . . . how utterly
rich and wild. . .Yet some among us have the nerve,
the insolence, the brass, the gall to whine about the
limitations of our earthbound fate and yearn for some more
perfect world beyond the sky. We are none of us good enough
for the world we have."



Friday, November 14, 2014

Thursday, November 13, 2014


"The iPhone may cause broken bones and concussions. Yes, I’m leaving out a few in-between steps there.

So let me start over: Craig Palsson, a graduate student in the Yale economics department, argues in a new paper that the expansion of the 3G cellphone network led to more widespread adoption of the iPhone, which led to parents who discovered new apps and continual email on their cellphone; which led to parents who paid attention to their new toys at playgrounds and not necessarily to their small children; which led to 10 percent more accidents for those children from 2005 to 2012, including broken bones and concussions."

11 Nov 14


Much Loved
photographs by Mark Nixon
Abrams, 2013

you probably owned one, once upon a time . . .