The Knowing Heart

jharjo2Last night, I was entertained by words. They were Joy Harjo‘s. She was at the NSU Ballroom in Tahlequah, and she read poetry, played songs on both the saxophone and flute, read from her memoir Crazy Brave, and shared her wisdom about writing, stories, poetry, and living the journey of life.

I just finished reading Crazy Brave last weekend. It is a short, fluent, plainly-spoken yet lyrical overview of her childhood and schooling and the path that brought her to poetry. When I finished the book, my first thought was: Well, this is Part 1 surely. I wanted to ask her that last night, but there was no time. However, she did confirm that the memoir ended where she had originally intended to begin it. Continue reading “The Knowing Heart”


Recent Poetry Machines

Pippi checks out the Poetic Fortune machine--coming to the museum this weekend.
Pippi checks out the Poetic Fortune machine.


For the price of a measly quarter, you can have a beautiful poetic fortune–a couplet that will set you on the path to riotuous living and harmony or debauchery and ditch-sleeping, whichever you prefer.

But wait, there’s more . . . if you also want a poetic fortune and cannot come toot sweet to the museum to insert your quarter into the machine, I will gladly do it for you. Send a U.S. dollar bill to my PayPal account (, and I will put a quarter in the machine for you and then email you a photo of the fortune you get! Continue reading “Recent Poetry Machines”

Events, Poems

Poem for Lewis Black

Lewis+BlackNOTE: I am going to a Lewis Black concert in Tulsa tonight and will attempt to give him this poem. Wish me luck.

Oklahoma Welcomes Lewis Black

We’re angry, too.
We have teachers judged by the highest standards
Making the lowest pay in the nation.
We embody Labor Omnia Vincit
Because we are cowboys and girls, waitresses,
Truck drivers, teachers and artists, dreamers
And pharmacists, customer service minimum-wage
Fast wood workers and tractor repairmen, beauty
Shop Labor Conquers All Things operators. Continue reading “Poem for Lewis Black”

Events, Musings

Biking Toward Poetry

leftthumbI used to ride my bicycle all over the place when I was a kid. We grew up on bicycles. When we lived down on Snake Creek, we routinely rode any bike that we could get working down to the Dip (creek named for the yellow warning sign in front of it). I’ll never forget the Christmas the four of us kids were led outside by our parents to see a row of shiny new bikes waiting for us: bright green things with tassels on the handgrips, bone-white banana seats, and plastic wicker-like baskets with blue and pink flowers on them. Continue reading “Biking Toward Poetry”