Monday, October 31, 2016

The Literature of Crime

My short story "A Case for Muriel," published in the Hawai'i Review's Literature of Crime issue, may finally be read via free download at the HR website: It's one of the two latest issues featured on the first page of the site; other digitized issues can be viewed under the Issues tab.

Friday, July 22, 2016

A Poem and a Story

Another poem of mine, "Show Time,"  debuted today on Bookends Review.

And my story "The Secret Carer" has just been published in the UK journal Riptide's latest collection, Volume 11: Carpe Diem

The new, improved Village Voice

After years of diminishing content and quality, the Village Voice is beginning to look more like the former self that many of us relied upon for in-depth investigative reporting, local political news, and cultural coverage.   The Voice used to be one of the few places that regularly reviewed off-off Broadway theater and dance--now there's hope that it may be again, with former staffers Elizabeth Zimmer as lead dance critic and Michael Feingold once again heading the theater department.

The July 6 issue featured a gripping and disturbing investigation by Nick Pinto into the new LinkNYC network--a must-read that you can still find on the Voice's website.
The Village Voice still comes out every Wednesday.  If you miss it in the kiosks, you can find it online:

Monday, July 4, 2016

A Poem

Today, July 4th, one of my earlier poems, "Shelter," was published in an online journal:

Their format is to post a new poem each day (typically at an appropriate time) but if you don't actually get to it the day it's posted, you can find it later by the contributor's name.

Thursday, May 12, 2016


For those of you who don't follow it already,  Defenestration is a lively online humor magazine.  Check out their April issue--and in particular my short piece "Pitch Meeting: Election 2020: Running Mates":

Defenestration: April 2016 - Defenestration

Friday, April 22, 2016

Three Poems

You can find three of my poems--"Giving Up," "Flypaper," and "The Secret of her Pickles" in the latest issue of Badlands Literary Review--a literary magazine published by California State University San Bernardino Palm Desert's writing program.

Go to

and click on Issue 6, for a downloadable pdf

Why aren't the Berrymans famous?

Well, Peter and Lou Berryman are famous among folkies who've heard "A Chat With Your Mom"--better known as "The F Word Song."

But that's not enough of us to fill halls that hold thousands.

Lucky for us--and maybe for them.   We get to hear them in intimate venues--coffee houses,  church halls, etc.  They get to see their fans up close, meet them,  chat with them, stay with them.

Last weekend in Princeton,  perhaps a hundred of us got to hear them do an assortment of their terrific songs, old and new, including "Cheese and Beer and Snow," "Artiste Interrupted," "Your State's Name here," "Djver?" "You Gotta Do More," "When Did We Have Sauerkraut?" "Dupsha Dove," "Acme Forgetting Service," and one of my all-time favorites, "Why Am I Painting the Living Room?"

Once briefly married to each other, the Berrymans have been writing and performing together for decades.  Lou, who plays accordion, writes the music; Peter, on guitar, the lyrics.

Brilliantly original, deep, and clever views of our lives and times; usually funny, often satirical/political, sometimes touching, full of insight--their songs are like no one else's.  

On May 11, says their newsletter,  they'll be back home at:

Madison, WI  Olin Park Pavilion, Free Concert sponsored by Friends of Olin-Turville Park tables & chairs provided; bring a picnic!  6 - 8 PM  Rain or shine (or snow?)

Eighteen of their albums are available for download on their website, and they usually offer a free song or two as well:
Their Big Songbook is currently sold out, but they're updating it.  I can't wait!  And I can't wait for a chance to see their music-in-progress, More Later.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Talking Band's back!

The Talking Band just seems to keep getting better and better.  Each year, I end up saying their latest show may be their best yet--but, remembering Delicious Rivers (2006), The Walk Across America for Mother Earth (2011), and Marcellus Shale (2013), among others, I should qualify that as "one of their best."

Martin Luther King weekend through the first weekend in February seems to be one of the Talking Band's favorite times to bring us their latest.  This year, it's Burnished by Grief, which despite its name, is, as billed, a romantic comedy, albeit with some dark and scary passages amid the whimsy, romance, and slapstick.

Like last year's Golden Toad--the three-hour ambulatory wonder that the company gave us for their fortieth anniversary--it's a great show about New York City, deeply rooted in real life.  But in contrast to the Toad, Burnished by Grief whizzes by in 85 minutes, on a single set--a minimalist backyard garden overlooked by windows from adjacent buildings, and exercise bicycles within shouting distance of a street corner where a musician plays tuba.

It's inspired by playwright Ellen Maddow's experiences as a mediator in Brooklyn Civil Court, and as always in a Talking Band show, a few lovely, quirky songs and other music (also written by Maddow) add emotional resonance.

Though I try to see everything the Talking Band does, because of their limited seasons in New York, I sometimes miss a show.  I'm so glad I didn't miss this one.

Burnished by Grief is playing at LaMama, 74 East 4th Street, through February 7. 

For information go to:

Friday, January 22, 2016

A story set somewhere warmer than here

One of my more experimental short stories, "San Felipe but not Alone," can now be read online, in

Vector Magazine

Waiting for the storm

Back in the days when the only warnings of serious weather came shortly before the event from sky, air, or movements of animals, John Greenleaf Whittier wrote what may have been his masterwork, Snowbound: A Winter Idyll.

After a dedication-- 

To the Memory of the Household It Describes
This Poem is Dedicated by the Author

 --and quotations from Agrippa's Occult Philosophy and Emerson's poem "Snow Storm", the poem itself begins:

The sun that brief December day
Rose cheerless over hills of gray,
And, darkly circled, gave at noon
A sadder light than waning moon.
Slow tracing down the thickening sky
Its mute and ominous prophecy,
A portent seeming less than threat,
It sank from sight before it set.

Snowbound was published in 1866, soon after the Civil War and, with its vivid descriptions of a powerful storm and the contrasting warmth and intimacy of storytelling around the fireplace, proved hugely popular.

It was one of my favorite poems as a child, and these days its themes of memory, loss, and changing times mean much more to me than when I first read and loved it.  But it's been years since I read its many verses all the way through.

Tomorrow--as a storm blankets the East Coast with the kind of snow that may one day be only a distant memory--will be a good time to immerse myself in Snowbound once more.