VivTown, Population: 1

text, images, poetry, miscellany, marginalia

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Vinalhaven Morning

Polly Cove

posted by viv at 8:50 am  

Monday, August 20, 2012

Terrible Beauty

Out walking at lunch I came upon a garbage patch in the Fort Point Channel near Gillette Headquarters. I thought: here’s the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in miniature, but no less terrible.

One of my coworkers commented on the incongruous beauty in the photograph I took: a well-composed conglomerate of shapes, colors and textures — a trashy abstract expressionism.

For me, the sight brought to mind a beach I visited a couple of years ago in Cabuya, Costa Rica at the tip of the Nicoya Peninsula. There, the sea had artfully deposited plastic scraps and plastic bottles at the high tide mark,

and smooth warm beach rocks crammed the shelves of a refrigerator door.

Always one to state the obvious, the obvious dawns on me: we are living and dying by the ubiquitous cap and applicator and storage bin. But we can change, must change.

Further Reading on Plastic Pollution and Breaking the Plastic Addiction:

posted by viv at 4:58 pm  

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Asphalt Workers are Lovers Too







posted by viv at 4:44 pm  

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Nantasket Beach, 1983

Photo: Jennifer Badot

posted by viv at 5:40 pm  

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Ruth Stone, Dead at 96

Ruth Stone ~ June 8, 1915 - November 19, 2011

On November 19th Poet Ruth Stone died at the age of 96. Her body was buried under apple trees on the farm in Vermont where she lived and wrote for over 50 years.

Meanwhile, I feel the need to publicly bow my head and say thank you. 

Thank you, Ruth Stone, for your  devotion to poems — for obeying them whenever they called to you to write them down.

Interview with Ruth Stone in The Drunken Boat


In the Next Galaxy
by Ruth Stone

Things will be different.
No one will lose their sight,
their hearing, their gallbladder.
It will be all Catskills with brand
new wrap-around verandas.
The idea of Hitler will not
have vibrated yet.
While back here,
they are still cleaning out
pockets of wrinkled
Nazis hiding in Argentina.
But in the next galaxy,
certain planets will have true
blue skies and drinking water.

posted by viv at 9:25 pm  

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Elizabeth Willis

A few weeks ago, in need of a poetry fix, I wandered into the Woodberry Poetry Room at Harvard and heard Elizabeth Willis read poems from her new book, Address. I was glad to have stopped in. Willis’ poems struck me as austere, precise and direct, but built upon a smoldering fire. Her delivery was beautiful: pure, quiet, committed.

From the reading, the most memorable for me was the anaphora-driven The Witch. Hearing it read by Willis live was worth the price of admission (despite the fact that admission was free!).

Kathleen Fraser read with Willis, but I left before hearing her so that I could literally run up the street to hear Wendell Berry and Bill McKibben.

An inspiring night out on the poetry town.


posted by viv at 9:58 pm  

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Bukowski’s Depression Cure

As far as I’m concerned, Charles Bukowski was a sexist drunk with a knack for words. He was that big loud mouth at the end of the bar trying to pick up women while weaving an entertaining beer-induced commentary on, well, everything. I admit it: Sometimes it’s f***ing great to listen to that guy! I understand and appreciate his cult status even while I’m wincing and slamming his books shut (and then peeking back inside).

But Bukowski is so right in this clip: Sometimes going to bed for three days is exactly what a human being needs.  How uncomfortable our culture is with indolence!

posted by viv at 9:23 am  

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Sylvia Plath – (10/27/1932 – 2/11/1963)

Sylvia Plath’s birthday. Also on this day thirty-two years ago I left home and landed in Seattle with little money, my notebook, and no plan except to meet interesting people and write poetry.

In honor of Plath’s birthday and in honor of Seattle, a truly mycological wonderland, here’s her amazing poem called “Mushrooms,” written/published in 1959.


“Overnight, very
Whitely, discreetly,
Very quietly

Our toes, our noses
Take hold on the loam,
Acquire the air.

Nobody sees us,
Stops us, betrays us;
The small grains make room.

Soft fists insist on
Heaving the needles,
The leafy bedding,

Even the paving.
Our hammers, our rams,
Earless and eyeless,

Perfectly voiceless,
Widen the crannies,
Shoulder through holes. We

Diet on water,
On crumbs of shadow,
Bland-mannered, asking

Little or nothing.
So many of us!
So many of us!

We are shelves, we are
Tables, we are meek,
We are edible,

Nudgers and shovers
In spite of ourselves.
Our kind multiplies:

We shall by morning
Inherit the earth.
Our foot’s in the door.”

posted by viv at 8:50 am  

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Video Exercise: Breakfast. Yum.

Thanks to sendai77’s tenacity and amazing brain, many video production mysteries were solved during the making and publishing of this video.

This knowledge will now be applied to the video I have been tasked with creating for work.

Thus, my risk of failure has greatly diminished.


posted by viv at 12:46 pm  

Friday, October 21, 2011


posted by viv at 7:55 am  
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