JPG Magazine: MsB

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Thursday, July 24, 2008

more magic

magical mystery tour

silent grey sliver

squawking metamorphosis

heron moving on

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

shit sandwiches

Tonight, as I chatted with my friends about our grievous situations(glad to know I'm not the only one)I could feel the release of all the tension that has been inundating my life for awhile now. Nothing real profound, more like a gentle cool breeze on a warm day. Or maybe a warm breeze on a cool day. What ever. And I remembered when I was so sick I couldn't get out of bed the blogs would give me that feeling. I could almost get sappy here if I haven't already. But I think where I am going with this is pretty simple socialization can make those shit sandwiches go down just a little easier. And then living in a place that looks like this helps.

Monday, July 21, 2008

chatting with charles

I've been so obsessed with my wicked life I have been neglecting my e-mail buddies. so here dear Charles is your most revealing e-mail,weeks late, and me with out my mink coat.

Is writing trying to kill me?

my life before I’m a famous novelist

by Charles P. Ries

Writing ... why do I need you? A hobby for sadomasochists. I got another four rejections yesterday; that makes 150 (on my first book)—so far. Maybe 150 literary agents know something I don’t? Is it time for a new hobby? One I can play without agents? Maybe I should start spending more quality time with my girlfriend?

But then there are those days when the sun shines and I dig out from my blanket of rejection ... when I feel the inner steel of patient, relentless persistence ... when I jump out of bed and say, “My work doesn’t suck. I just need to find one agent who loves me.” And on those mornings I prance to my computer with hope in my heart and I query onward! I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and gosh darn it, some agent is going to love me! So today I sped past my 190th query with confidence in my new and improved manuscript that I’ve been working on (in its many forms) for eight years. Truly, writing is not a destination, it is a journey.

Dear Diary, I’m giving up writing and joining the circus. Yes, I will leave it all: the paper and pens, the publishers and agents who can’t love my inner fantasy, and I’ll join the circus. The make-up, big nose and fancy pants will help me overcome my feelings of obscurity. I will create an identity grander then my literary art. I will have something worth writing about. I will marry the fat lady, she’ll give birth to a midget, I’ll learn to swallow swords, make friends with a contortionist, turn my pens into pretzels, and finally live like a real man.

I have become a student of the query letter and kick-ass synopsis. (Eight years of practice makes us good at something.) Anyone who thinks this business is about just good writing needs a group intervention. “Charles, we all love you, but we are here to tell you, you have a problem. You have lost sight of reality. You will never be published! We’re taking your pens away. Please put your pen down slowly. You need to get a life!”

Life! Schmife! I have something better then a life, I have a novel! It has everything: love, mysticism, folly, resurrection, laughs, and the guy gets the girl. It’s a moneymaker; I just know it.

Dear Diary, I have been re-evaluating my existence. It seems I have been created to work, go to the gym, drink Starbucks non-fat, no-whip, extra-hot mochas and obsess about my writing. I’m a do-aholic; flawed for sure. People born under the sign of the twin fish are pathetic, restless dreamers. I’m having doubts about the quality of my writing. I got four rejections yesterday. One day God will run out of rejections, and bingo—I’m in. I just have to hold out. But to make things worse, recently I’ve been haunted by visions of a muse wearing a black, full length mink coat. Mink really gets me going. She’s been following me everywhere—even when I scrub the kitchen floor, feed the birds, vacuum the house, and feel pathetic about my writing. There she is, in mink. Scary how she haunts me, loves me. Me, unlovable, useless, pathetic me. Yes, poor pitiful me.

Yes, pain and rejection are often the food of rambling prose poems that we called our “journal” in high school. But then we all rose above high school angst and heartache and turned it into art. We became writers. We left the comfort of secretive journals for the adventure of rejection. Yes, rejection. It’s not quite cancer. But the other day I got a letter from a publisher telling me the manuscript I’d sent her wasn’t avant-garde enough for her. Why didn’t she just send me a letter bomb instead!

Dear Diary: I’m not avant-garde. I knew it! Maybe I’m a closet Republican. I guess it doesn’t matter that I wear blue jeans, black t-shirts, write poetry, and have a goatee. Elaine suggested I start to view myself as “Nonvant–garde” and build a movement around nonvant-garde poetry. I love Elaine, eternal keeper of my diminishing confidence.

We make chicken soup out of chicken shit until the gravy train arrives. I recently wondered aloud to a friend, “Am I the guy who is thinks he is creating art, but who (after waking from a dream) realizes he has been banging his head with a lead pipe?” The Aztec high priests gleefully ripped beating heart after beating heart from the chests of their faith-filled followers after convincing them (talk about true believers) that this life was just a dream (easy for a high priest to say). So is my hope of writing fame only a dream? Is my persistence just an addiction to an impossible goal?

My girlfriend, Elaine accommodates my periodic writing crisis like Mother Theresa. She hugs me and says, “Look Charles you could have worse obsessions than sitting around endlessly writing funny, weird stuff. You could watch the ESPN Sports Classics channel and drinks beer all day. Who cares if you ever get published?” She’s right of course – she’s always right; but the other day when I got e-mails from two agents (TWO!) who wanted to see the full manuscript of my novel. I danced with eternal hope. I pranced anew to my computer ready to continue creative battle. It only takes one person to believe - just one person to open the door for a manuscript to be sold. How could I ever have thought of giving up writing to join a circus? But... maybe an Aztec High Priest! I could get it going with ceremonial dress of feathers, gold and turquoise. Sharpen my sacrificial knife and invite a few agents over for dinner.


Charles P. Ries lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. His narrative poems, short stories, interviews and poetry reviews have appeared in over two hundred print and electronic publications. He has received four Pushcart Prize nominations for his writing. He is the author of THE FATHERS WE FIND, a novel based on memory and five books of poetry — the most recent entitled, The Last Time which was released by The Moon Press & Publishing. He is the poetry editor for Word Riot ( He is on the board of the Woodland Pattern Bookstore ( and a member of the Wisconsin Poet Laureate Commission. But most of all he is a founding member of the Lake Shore Surf Club, the oldest fresh water surfing club on the Great Lakes ( You may find additional samples of his work by going to:

Sunday, July 20, 2008

well shit

The cat hasn't returned, my back is so bad most of the time I just stay in bed, I'm trying to put together a budget that includes rent, cell phone,and internet. Actually that works but the food has to go. Food stamps think I have enough money to eat, said get rid of the cell phone but to be on the transplant list I have to have one. And the internet is the most fun I could ever have for $31.00 a month. One good thing, my car is paid off.. wahoo.. sure looks pretty in that same parking spot its been for weeks with no gas to go anywhere. But I can walk, always a delight when L1 and L2 have severe arthritis. Goes well with the not eating thing too. Mostly I miss my cat but being she gets it about being a ferrel and she can count her lucky stars she won't have to worry about having kittens to care for, it really is just my selfish desire that gets in the way. I know how to be a ferrel too, and again it's just my selfish desire getting in the way of pitching a tent. I'm not really sure where I got the idea I need to have all that crap in my life that costs so much to house. Hmm my brain is starting to rock and roll again. Gotta keep that hope card in view. Just sure do wish I my laptop had more than 2/3 of a screen. Hauling around a 40 lb monitor just really zaps the portability factor. Well until next time, as Dale Evens would say,

Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin' until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we're together?
Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.
Happy trails to you, 'till we meet again.

Some trails are happy ones,
Others are blue.
It's the way you ride the trail that counts,
Here's a happy one for you.

Happy trails to you, until we meet again.
Happy trails to you, keep smilin' until then.
Who cares about the clouds when we're together?
Just sing a song and bring the sunny weather.

Happy trails to you, 'till we meet again.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

just so much

I moved into an male gay friends house last week. I'll spare you all the asinine shit that makes up the jist but it did end up in cops and a back ache.

Then I moved Lucy over to my new house and all seemed to be going well until she disappeared on evening when I wasn't home. We think she fell out the window with the bent screen. I have been so blue and grief stricken.

I had a cat disappear for 10 days once and made it home. theres always a ray of hope.

I've been making necklaces. I think they are quite charming but that doesn't constitute a sale.

today would have been hunter s. Thompson's b'day hand he not blown his brains out last year.I thought I'd throw this in, pulled of Garrison Keillor show:

In 1971, he published his most famous book, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, about a trip he took to that that city, how it almost drove him crazy, and his realization that idealism of the 1960s had disappeared for good.

He said, "I haven't found a drug yet that can get you anywhere near as high as a sitting at a desk writing, trying to imagine a story no matter how bizarre it is, [or] going out and getting into the weirdness of reality and doing a little time on the Proud Highway."

That's my man. * >())))))


I never was much at ASCII art

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Well the shift has started. I'm moving in with one of my good friends from where I used to work. After Lucy Blue gets her stitches out not to mention the cone. He has 2 cats ya got to know there will be some cat snits goin' down in the beginning. They are both boys so it should work it self out toots sweet. They don't get much more cute then little ole' Lucy Blue. At least thats what I'm hoping. I am gonna have to leave Pete but he's happy here. As soon as I can though, I WILL find a place for my whole furry family. Funny how he knows somethings up. Hangen' close. It's so sad but I just can't stay here any longer. Done is done. Packing is really overwhelming me. Maybe I should have a bond fire.

here's a funny little fellow I happened on during a back country walk