words &ash will find their way– even without map, scribbled by a chinese waiter on a napkin


the birds in front the window chat//casually
leaned against a pillar, smoking cigarettes

& flap their wings against the rain

there are multilayered facettes to the everyday
touch ‘em
tender with your thumb, breathe in&
take a pen—

there’s a scent to every scene
like the painting that i finished last week
which smells heavily of coffee

“will it fade?”

“i cannot promise” i write
“if you buy it, it’s a risk–“
it always is

— the raw and unplugged
that i fall for– genuine

like a woman in the evening
her face cleaned of all make up
red spots, little veins,
uneven– beauty
in the small bumps on her skin
zooming in

i stand in the garden in my jammies, sieving ash
from last night’s barbecue
which will go into a tupperware, from there
into a painting
or a poem

or just fall
onto the raven’s nose
&make him sneeze
or smile

or both


today at dVerse we’re writing about or in the style of the poets that inspire us i love the poetry of charles bukowski and bob hicok – my fav poet though and the one who taught me a lot about seeing the specialness & magic of the everyday is my good friend and fellow poet brian miller… so i just wrote about the everyday… or so… smiles


31 responses to “words &ash will find their way– even without map, scribbled by a chinese waiter on a napkin

  1. The first poem I’ve read today…oh what a treat…your words show the beauty in the simple things around us…just a brilliant write IMHO.

  2. Brian remains one of my favorites too. I listened to his encouragement a long time ago, and I’m still writing. And your poetry to me is precious and amazing. I love all the surreal images you come up with while weaving in truths. Unfortunately, because you’re both so unique and special I doubt I could imitate you. BTW – loved today’s poem and your painting is so cool.

  3. I too think you and Brian are quite unique and inimitable! But a lovely tribute to him, nevertheless. I now want a painting smelling of coffee – and I want to see a raven sneeze. Such ingenuity!

  4. I really like the stanza with the barbecue, its ashes, and it’s scent (not mentioned in the poem, but in my head). To me, this stanza connects the poem beautifully –e.g. the ashes with the title, the poem itself, and mortal life in a more universal symbolism.

  5. I like how this poem pays tribute with such ordinary and extraordinary things: coffee, ash from the barbecue and a sneezing raven! I want a painting with those ashes. I know exactly how it will smell. Finding inspiration in another poet is a special connection and especially if the inspiration is a friend.

  6. Yes, so true, Claudia. The everyday is really the ‘stuff’ of poetry. It is there that we live most of our lives, isn’t it? So why not embrace the everyday in poetry! Indeed there is a scent to every scene, and perhaps the job of the poet is to show it!

  7. Bukowski, Hicok, & Miller; quite the triumvirate. You had me at the cigarette-smoking birds, & I like the lines /the raw & unplugged/that I fall for–genuine/. We both agree on that point, warts, pock marks, varicose veins & all. On the weekends when my wife goes without make-up, “fresh-faced” is always a treasure for me.

  8. Lovely take on the prompt here, Claudia. The everyday is such a good source of inspiration.

  9. This is an excellent reminder to wake up and pay attention to the things around us because every single thing…..even the ash from the BBQ….can make beautiful poetry. Brian is stellar and you have paid a beautiful tribute to him here with your words 🙂

  10. I love this one. The image of you sieving barbeque ash to put in a painting while in you pj’s is fabulous. There are so many wonderful lines here – a true hymn to the everyday.p

  11. There is indeed poetry in the everyday, much more than we often think. I always like how you instill magic into your expression of the everyday. I also like the paintings or sketches that complement your words.

  12. Ah.. love.. the best of flow.. in painting.. writing.. dancing.. all arts of life.. is the moment.. all emotions and senses living the moment full.. and to let the art go for another day.. is another present of now.. to enjoy more fully.. as well.. in new art for now..:)

  13. This time I am not going to comment on the poem, but rather the painting. 60% Paul Klee, 40% Wilfredo Lam, 100% Claudia! I love what you do, all round.

  14. Writing about the everyday things is the most difficult. One has to be sensitive to ordinary things that are there all the time. How to pick them out from the many! Difficult but you have the knack for it even throwing in as a bonus the great sketches. Thanks Claudia!


  15. Bravo, bravo, bravo, bravo!!!! ANd where IS Brian!? As I read I saw a bit of William Carlos WIlliams and surrealism as well as the street corners of everyday with angel wings.

  16. Claudia, there is so much to love in this “slice of life” poem. I am happy to see Brian Miller mentioned in process notes; yes, he is the best at catching a moment, but you also have that talent. I see it often. The best part of this for me was the painting that still smells of coffee. It helps us visualize you at work! Thanks so much. Amy

  17. Charles’ poetry has never ceased to amaze me but unfortunately I haven’t read as much as I would like to. Still catching up, plenty of catching up to do… 🙂 Loved your poem, especially your tone.

    Greetings from London.

  18. I’m glad I’m not the only one who has been inspired by a contemporary…and fellow dVerse poet. I’d love to be there to see the raven sneeze and/or smile 🙂

  19. Now those birds are everywhere, poor creatures might want to attract our attention: sneezing raven, smoking birds…and I heard today laughing rooster …smiles…inspiring images and colors of your painting – amazing! are they – glowing in the dark? …

  20. I love every bit of this. The second stanza holds a serious message but I like the casual way you express it…”touch ’em”. Some really fun images as well with the birds smoking and sneezing.So nice to hear a bit of Brian through your work.

  21. You do well every day with “Everyday” and “Everyman” and EVERYTHING!!! (I’ve been detecting a bit of Brian M …even in your artwork.) It is that characteristic prevelent in the attitudes of many artists: the “I don’t care WHAT you think…i must be true to my muse.” I admire that!