Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Little Pat--Parisian Boy

Le Pilote #2

Summary: In trying to fix a TV antenna, Pat finds an injured carrier pigeon carrying a mysterious message, with an address and a plea for help.   Mr. Soupe is a bit startled by Pat's acrobatics.

"You can open your eyes now Mr. Soupe, I'm out of danger.  And look, I've got a surprise for you." 


"29 Brooks Street, by car."

"Little Pat!"

"An empty house.  Closed door.  Strange...  Pat, my friend, it's time to pull out the big guns.  No one should ever climb this high without a parachute.  From what it looks like Pat, you're life is hanging by a thread!  If Hollywood doesn't hire me to play Tarzan after seeing this...  The path of adventure is littered with chimnees."

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sussi e Biribissi

Ch.II, A Cat Worth a Fortune (Che vale un peru`)

Biribissi couldn't sleep that night.  He just tossed and turned, throwing a couple of nasty kicks from time to time into Buricchio wh was sleeping at the foot of the bed.

"Wait!  Who is Buricchio?"  I hear you saying now.

I'll tell you.  Biricchio is a big, fat tabby cat that would make your mouth water.  I say mouth water on purpose, because it happened more than once that he was almost taken for a jack-rabbit by a few resatuarants.  But Buricchio, like all good little beasties, enjoyed the protection of Saint Anthony and had gloriously escaped all danger.

Overall, Buricchio was not like other cats.  He had a cat's nose and paws.  A cat's fur and tail, but he was more well spoken than quite a few chaps I know personally.

I imagine you all smirking incredulously, saying: "My dear, nephew of Collodi, no beast has ever uttered a human word, so please refrain from telling us such stories."

Actually, no, my dearest little readers.  Despite the fact that certain ideas may pass through my brain, I only want the best for you as if you were my only little brothers.  I swear to you all that Buricchio could speak, and with such good judgement, that he would have made many of you jealous.  And during such fortunate times as Sussi and Biribissi had, animals talked like people, while people nowadays, I lie not, often speak just like animals.  The effects of progress.

I told you all that Biribissi couldn't sleep that night, but threw a few kicks every now and agian into the side of our poor tabby curled up at his feet.

Buricchio finally lost his patience.

--Master Biribissi!  Could you please keep still for just a moment?
--I can't sleep--he responded.
--I am sorry for that, but could you please leave me in peace for a moment.
--Yeah, that's easy to say when you don't have a hole in your head.

Burcicchio was stumped.

--A hole in my head?  Is that what you have?
--Who gave it to you?
--The hole.
--I told you you wouldn't understand.
--How is one to understand when you speak like an oracle?

Biribissi sat on the bed and lit a candle.

--Tell me, Buricchio, do you know what a zenith and a nadir are?
--Buricchio smiled with satisfaction.
--Of course I do--he answered.
--Well, let's hear it...

Saturday, October 29, 2011


Le Pilote #2, 5 November 1959
"Why don't you have a watch...since it's your dream to have one: A real wristwatch!"
Yes, KELTON makes you a real watch that's completely unbreakable.
Finally, a watch that you can take with you every day--and everywhere--to play, to recess, and to play sports:
You'll never take it off!
Your KELTON will impress your friends, and you'll be proud!
Some good advice: For this Christmas and its gifts: it's time to ask for a KELTON!
BANG! His KELTON holds up to hits!
(bottom of page 10)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

In the backyard 1

Flakes of grass   草片
glow in the setting sun   在夕阳发光
swirling   漩涡着
like dandelions   像狮牙
and giggling girls   像女儿
behind the mower   在割草机后咯咯笑

-Siete troppo vicine-
I growl in italian   我嗥叫
then flash a smile   然后闪出一个笑容
bouncing locks   两头跳金发
haloed in gold   闪耀如佛光

The slick lawn   光滑草坪
spits green   吐出绿液
we itch the cuts   我们痒着不见的伤口
and pick the paint  剥掉绿漆
waiting for night's reason   等到傍晚的理由
to retreat indoors   回进去

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Italy thinking patriotic thoughts (150th yr anniversary)

Beppe Severgnini, one of Italy's most visible columnists, contemplating the kind of patriotic recharge his country needs on its 150th anniversary (corriere.it).

Sandra Corti writes(sandracorti@mac.com): "I've been living in the United States for 10 yrs. I have a 7yr old daughter here. Since he started school when he was 4, he has, every morning, together with his classmates, teacher, and the whole school in unison (via loudspeakers), stood up, placed her hand over her heart, with eyes turned to the American flag and proclaimed out loud "The Pledge of Allegiance: "I pledge allegiance to the flag of United Stats of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all". This is how American children begin their day.

Beppe's response:

A sacred duty of fidelity to a nation: The Pledge of Allegiance, it would be good for us to do it as well. I imagine the objections: what use is such a declaration in an empatic, incoherent, and absent-minded Italy? So many of our leaders have made a mockery of the 54th article of the constitution: "Citizens to whom public functions have been granted have the duty to absolve those tasks with discipline and honor, under oath according to the stipulations of the law." Why would such people honor yet another tenet of loyalty? The answer is easy, and I'm happy to give it on the day of Italy's 150th birthday.

We must give ourselves up to the requirement of fedelity of the elected: he who has a conscience must use it; he who doesn't, no phrase or ceremony will deliver it for him. A declaration a' la Americana might help instead a younger electorate upon whom we cast our hopes, and for new Italians, from whom we expect effert, enthusiasm, and loyalty that the USA expects of its new citizens. To choose a new country is to accept new duties, rights, traditions, and lifestyles. In order ot be good Italians, a bit of romantic love for the place is a necessity: there's no other way.

Many wishes. Something I find in my email inbox that I enjoyed: auguri.tecnova.it. That's right. Italy deserves better. Italy needs to be better led and inspired, not pandered to in all its desires or absolved from all its guilts.

P.S.: Happy Saint's day to all Giuseppe, Beppe, Peppe, Peppino, Pino, Pinuccio, and company!

Monday, February 28, 2011

For Carly

A couple of recent block prints I'm hoping to convert into T-shirts at some point...

Sunday, February 27, 2011

When I clean crumbs (A Poem)

When I clean crumbs

A dirty pan

the size of my world

and bigger than our sink

I should be cleaning dishes

but sitting in a church pew

Curling water corrals the oil

I press the stubborn crust

against the rising tide

Cleaning the crumbs from my pan

brings back Mama’s tears

Fried corn bread on a Thursday morning

that’s my day

I got to say one grace

and another to myself

“forgive me for swiping the jam”

but God was never fast enough

and I snatch the first piece

That made Mama cry

Fried corn bread on a Thursday morning

doesn’t crumble like Wednesday’s freshly baked


the butter holds

I like it burnt

That made Mama cry

Burnt bread for her babies

The flame could never be controlled

And I never cared if those globs of jam

made her feel better too

I never saw her tears fill the sink

floating crumbs and memories of her Mama

Kentucky corn bread isn’t fried here

but then

I always taste it

when I clean crumbs

from a dirty pan the size of my world

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Steelers Lose

My tribute to a good team that fought with a better team on superbowl day.  This is a tussle in charcoal.