Thursday, November 30, 2006

160 Versions of Cake (click here)

Most amusing: Mike Doughty's (of Soul Coughing) multiple versions of "Cake" along with a couple versions by 3 year-old children (scroll way down on the site). Thanks Kenneth Goldsmith!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Justin Theroux Reporting From Poland!

Don't his photos make you want to be there?

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Trapped in a Lamb Pasture

The whole world seems mysteriously cranky and illusive, distant, motorized, metal on metal, urgent and detached.

The quaint mistakes of delayed decisions, the thoughts that have become thoughtless, mealy, gangrenous, maybe.

Hand paddles, tingling hands--swimming in a world of water--wanting to swim all the way to work.

Cherry-picking my favorite mortals.

Look at it this way: I'll always have you to talk about.

She was even enthusiastic about being depressed.

Daydreaming near your machines.

Who let go of you?

Some kind of edible instance of memory, yo.

As I tried to turn the nut, the pliers went mushy.

That's what they get: strong features.

The world's most beautiful people are starting to care, a lot.

Something I say to myself: I'm only here for the time being.

Here's where sleep doesn't come home with a big grin.

A dog barked at me as I reached for a box of shoes--that said--I felt the need to touch a woman's shoulder and say "oh my God that scared me."

There are some people that you will remember as being clearheaded and uncomplicated while you will recall others as being perched on the lip of utter chaos--with their hands outstretched--reaching for the neck of your shirt before they dive in.

Smooth black morning--the small comfort of a desk, a chair, a cup of coffee in a favorite mug and a new pen.

Not being certain if things I see on my body are real or not--until I see photographs there's no real way of knowing--and yet, even then, there is a sense of doubt that envelops me as I look at what appears to be another body in a photograph. That's very troubling to me.

I manage a retail store.

I think what might be needed is the small of my back with some rain slicked evening--screened in porches, glazed, the portico and slow machines oozing by.

Words meaning so little at certain times--like trying to make too little air go around. Too little air makes the head light up.

I'll always have you--I said.

A couple showed me some photographs of gorillas on their cell phone. Close-ups of enormous gorillas. "Wow, those are big gorillas," I said.

Butter is moving into jelly.

These are the tokens that allow me into yesterday and tomorrow.

Monday, November 27, 2006

Melissa, Elizabeth and Todd

Melissa is a dear friend. She lived upstairs from us when we had the terrible fire on Monitor Street in '03. We've been through a lot together, that's for sure. Here we are during our annual special Saturday Thanksgiving Dinner at our apartment.

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Ridiculous Celebrity T-Shirts by Todd Colby

Melissa is coming over for dinner in half an hour. I just made this t-shirt (American Apparel) for E's dinner shirt. Hey, she asked. If you'd like me to make one for you, let me know. Click on the photo to enlarge it.

The Elimination of Silt

Call someone up that you had a "falling out" with years ago, announce yourself by saying: "hello, this is __________, and I forgive you." And then hang up. This is especially effective if it's you that needs to be forgiven.

Thursday, November 23, 2006


White comb on the monster
white tablet on the lower spine
of the master curled
in loops of furious hair

Orange glow on the tip of the pen
lucky pimple makes the star gift
a low punch and grill pomade
clanky and forested with deer

Red rubber at the piston's point
of pumping oxygen into the revolver
shake and thump gills kiss
a measure of fear to boot

Blue function in the artery
blasted open deep roofs quake
this guest room is bare of news
littered the gift of paper is resolute

I love the clank of buttons
on a metal blanket my phone
is under water on a table
with some skin ash and salts

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

A Ship is Not a Metaphor

A ship we all know about is still shipping or floating.
The people work on it, or entertain themselves, or drink
the milk of various animals on it. They have conversations
about stuff and then they listen back to the tapes
of what they just talked about so they're always
catching up with what they just said.
They scoot around on it and play these
little games on it. I know a lot
about it, so if you need to know
more about it, feel free
to ask me all about it.

Thank You.

YAY! Jim Behrle (CLICK)

David Lantow and Me "Function" (click here)

Sunday, November 19, 2006

Elizabeth's Trip

I asked Elizabeth's to take photos of her trip to Tracey McTague' s book party tonight at Zinc Bar (Elizabeth did the drawings for Tracey's book and it's gorgeous). Here are the photos:

Elizabeth Angry at the F Train part 1

Elizabeth Angry at F Train part 2

Tracey McTague (holding her new book) and Boni Joi at Zinc Bar

Thanks Elizabeth!

Saturday, November 18, 2006


1) Arthur Russell
2) Daniel Higgs
3) Marisa Monte
4) David Yow

A New Way to Wave Goodbye

You think purchasing a new pair of shoes is a waste of time and money because you won't live long enough to wear them out anyway.

Friday, November 17, 2006

At Alexland Studios

I've done hundreds of drawings while recording at my friend Alex Edward's studio over the past 14 years, to say nothing of the hours of tape I've filled. Alex finally put a bunch of the drawings in frames (or at least matted a bunch) which I got to see today. I forgot I'd done so many. Coffee and music gets me drawing every time.

Here I am looking at the drawings while Alex looked at me today:

Robert Creeley Reading "For Love"

I remember hearing this recording years ago in the library at Naropa Institute in Boulder, Colorado. I couldn't stop listening to it again and again. It changed me. Changed the music in my head. It taught me new methods and levels of meter, breath, and meaning. Robert Creeley was a above and listen.

"...into the company of love it all returns."

Thanks to Stephen Mitchelmore ( for the link.

Here's an excerpt from Liz Colville's excellent review (click above for the whole tamale) of Joanna Newsom's recent show in NYC:

"Ys is an example of how nature transforms and helps our understanding of inward problems with which nature might have little to do. The album is richly visual, and in a live performance Newsom’s lyrics are louder, are more substantive. It’s the same effect as being taught something in a classroom, if only one were drunk and standing in a sweaty crowd in a classroom. At a Newsom show, you’re listless, adoring, attentive. There are glimmers of meaning you didn’t hear before. You finally get this or that. And every subsequent listen of the album will yield more meaning."

I suggest you visit Liz's site daily (I do).

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Mark E. Smith & Some Kids Blowing on a Computer

Fishy Paws by Elizabeth Zechel

The Fall's great song "Clasp Hands" is now a soundtrack to a Mitsubishi car commercial. Uh, yay.

Another John Ashbery Morning

"I thought that if I put it all down,
that would be one way. And next the
thought came to me that to leave it
all out would be another, truer way."

-John Ashbery, "The New Spirit" from "Three Poems."

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Joanna Newsom

Click above to read Jessica Hopper's spot-on review of Joanna Newsom's lyrical and musical masterpiece "Y's." Here's a favorite photo of Joanna:

Boys Paws by Elizabeth Zechel


is for listening to
late at night, in fact, it was
constructed to sound like
the ocean of the future
only the future I exist
in is unraveling faster
than I can look for a new
life, sweetie.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Stop the Bleeding by Elizabeth Zechel


"I love you" on the back of an envelope from the government.
"Buy toilet paper" at the bottom of a love poem and self portrait, by E.
Mixing genres in an effort not to be detected as a "poet."
Cendrars, Michaux, Spiegelman, Schneiderman, Burroughs and the NY Times.


A critic is someone who is adept at forming categories.
He's got charisma (a wooden helmet) so he can
do anything he wants--he's protected by the wood.


She packs a baggy full of grape jelly in her purse--pulls it out
at the right moment--puts it between herself and another person.
"I'm just going to put this here while I ride this train."


"It is terrible to be with people who are intelligent
and can understand, yet who cut themselves off with
a high wall of indifference. It is far better to be with crude people
who do not realize what they are saying or doing. One is
not so lonely or lost." --Denton Welch "The Diamond Badge"


"And if her green elegance
remains on this side of my rain ditch
puss lizard will lunch on some other t-bone."
--Ezra Pound/The Cantos LXXX


"Little by little the contradictory signs of servitude and revolt
are revealed in all things. The great constructions of the intellect are, finally, prisons: that is why they
are obstinately overturned." --George Bataille, "Lugubrious Game" in Visions of Excess.


This wish: that I might be okay.

Monday, November 13, 2006

Wet Earth

Nap time
sweet cake is sublime
and a chatty egg
skill set: zip

All the endless
talk thus speaks
the words that signify
nothing but the breath

I'm out.

Friday, November 10, 2006


In heavy rotation:
the 1988 re-release
by the great unheralded
band UT
"In Gut's House" (i-tunes!)
the song: "Evangelist"

"going down down
to the marketplace
going to learn to lie
like an evangelist...
gonna stub a cigarette
out in front of some dog."

All women in the band
prickly guitars with
meaty swirling swing
perfect for walking around
the song provides a heart rush swell
every time those
opening chords start.

Thank you UT!

Trick after trick after trick

Click above and listen.

Thursday, November 09, 2006

Tiger Baby by Elizabeth Zechel

This is one of the illustrations that Elizabeth Zechel recently drew for Tracey McTague's forthcoming book of poems entitled "Learning Instructions." You can click on it to enlarge. It should be out by the beginning of the New Year.

I Welcome You!

I cannot regret what I cannot express.


Warm tastes sweet and sometimes bitter; cold can seem salty or sour.


I can count aloud odd numbers to 1000 in 23 minutes.
World record: 22:34


One source of anxiety: the inability to tell what people
are thinking about you as you walk past them.


I came home to reason.

My tangerine valentine.

Orange purse in my face (corduroy).


I wanted to hold you, but I was uncertain how to hold you. I held you
gently, with uncertain tenderness.


"I go to bed thinking about waving, I get up
thinking about waving. But now I don't want to
get up. That's the whole thing in a nutshell."
-Joseph Charles, Symbol of Street Corner Friendliness


Let me have some of what you need me for.


Keats lay dying as he was sketched.


"Clearly, he writes, the gist of the whole thing
is to make endurable, with a modicum of art,
a way downward, at the end of which stands,
with no art at all, death." -Gert Hofmann from
"Casanova and the Extra" in Balzac's Horse.


I'm losing my impatience to be nothing to anyone.


The heat transfer years.


Q: What is left unaccounted for after representation reaches its limits?

A: The real!


Wednesday, November 08, 2006

The Top Three Poems in the United States

1) Gold Grease (you put it all over your body and roll down a hill to collect gold dust).

2) Garbage Bear (you fall asleep during the election and dream of bears eating dirty tissues--for the saline content--from the silver garbage bucket next to your desk).

3) White Sulphur Spots (on her face).


#1 Song: "Westworld" by Valley of the Giants (i-tunes).


"Things close down with age, like stores, like lights go off, like a world disappearing in a vacancy one had no thought would happen." -Robert Creeley

"My religion won't allow me to stick my fingers in my shoes." -woman in shoe store


Dream little shit flower
your earthling smell is
death to us
wet little mood wicks--all the oceans
score the parade of scuttles and blows
I'm alone without you, sensational
progress is simply a distraction

Garbage Bear! Come and clear the garbage!

Todd Colby

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Remember to Vote!

Another innocuous cat picture:

Monday, November 06, 2006

NYC Marathon

I completed my 4th NYC Marathon yesterday in 3:22:24 which made it my 2nd fastest marathon ever. It was a nearly perfect day with temps in the low 50's and very light wind. I suffered plenty but I always feel like I gain something that I can't quiet explain out on the course--perhaps it's simply a deeper realization of my favorite three words when it comes to enduring anything: patience, humility, and fortitude.

Here's a photo our friend Melissa took of me racing down 4th Avenue in Brooklyn (I'm just in front of the guy in the orange hat):

Here I am looking tired while eating "homemade soup" at the Prospect Park Track Club hospitality room after the marathon:

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Click Here

What the hell?

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Knock on Light

My arms clash with all they can't bring back:
the darling light, the really great years,
the pout of living beings, the hesitation of workers. The thick
line of blue is dawning on us. I'll harbor disdain
for the powers that be while looking across the desk at earth:
I don't know what you're doing but at least getting to know
you makes me care a lot less about what you know about me.

Thank You

1) For being honest with me during our discussion over breakfast.

2) For letting me know there are people who will pretend not to breathe just to get out of troublesome situations.

3) For ampoules of chlorine.

4) For letting me drive the Poetry Bus.

5) For puppy hair on her head.

I remain,
Todd Colby


Pretty Much Non-Stop:

Four Tet
New Buffalo
Broken Social Scene
KC Accidental

I'll be running in the NYC Marathon on Sunday

This is me finishing Ironman Lake Placid in 11 hours and 45 seconds on July 23, 2006

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Lillian Vernon Catalogues

"I look at Lillian Vernon catalogues and imagine what that kind of a life would be like. Then I get sleepy." --Sharon Mesmer


I remember this was broken, and I'm not sure if this is how it was broken, but in any case it's broken.