Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Tale of a Man with No Teeth

A friend of mine once remarked that it is his opinion that the smartest people on the planet are the ones with crooked teeth. Ever since then I have made a note to check out not only a person's shoes but the alignment of their teeth. White, bright and straight for me almost becomes synonymous with a washed out character, particularly if one is looking at the dental evidence of talking heads on television or a local politician. The whole crooked perspective sort of goes along with the understanding, gained from another friend, that the most interesting bars in the world are the ones with no signs out front.

Ohioan caver, Larry C. Simpson is author of “The Lost Cave of the Jaguar Prophets”, a book that is a delightful read of a Yucatan mystery adventure. He is also a poet that knows about concrete. I am not sure if his teeth are crooked, or not, but I sure like this video from Cincinnati that he recently sent out:

His comments on this video are as follows:
“A little background. It was written in the 1980's. There was some centennial or something of Cincinnati, and they were going to pick a poet from each neighborhood and put out a book. It was going to be edited by some NY writer who wrote a biography of Marilyn Monroe. There were some big time movers & shakers involved. So I gave them a little history lesson on Reaganomics. I guess they weren't amused. I didn't get picked.

The Army surplus store is no longer there, and a storm knocked the steeple of the church through the building destroying it. (Different church in the video.) One building, the gray frame house, was torn down about a week after I shot it.

My musician friend, Gary Woster and I have been putting poems to music since the 70's so we did this one a few years ago. At first it was about a homeless guy walking around the neighborhood, then I put it in the bar for the music. For the video, I had to morph both. Now I think of the character as a ghost.”
I delight when art and politics meet head on.

For a fine example of a collaboration of poetry and music check out Iguana House Music and Poetry at JukeboxAlive. Larry is the poet/author and the voice here.

I really like the crow caws in The Glass Canoe. Words can be found here.

And if you are into caving, or curious, check out Pushing the Dark, twenty two miles of friendship and adventure underground.
"We would wait patiently while stories were told, about an outlaw who hid in a cave, a lost silver mine, confederate gold, bottomless pits, and a haunted cave that once expelled a fireball, all the while eager to get the locations and get underground, but also fascinated by the stories themselves. Mr. Barnes, who presided over this tobacco-spitting forum, told us about a big cave that led all the way to Buck Creek until Lake Cumberland flooded the exit. Before we left he gave us two onions in case we got hungry. Then he showed us something in a matchbox."