Wednesday, November 25, 2009

An interview

I NEVER saw myself as a hotboy, SL or otherwise, but apparently I got the thumbs up by Bubbles Komachi, one of the six or so SL'ers whose company I enjoy immensely and who has tried over and over again to make me a more posh avatar. Despite the fact that I deplore prims (I'm known for making my head smaller so I didn't have to edit my hair), she has tried to kindly persuade me to upgrade my tastes from freebie clothes to a couture, and I have encouraged her to continue exploring her poetic voice; she is a budding SL star of spoken word. A self-proclaimed "gansta" (yeh, right), she has become an SL blogger worth noting.

Finding Bubbles' previous articles entertaining, I gave in to the interview request and subsequent photoshoot. Although, not surprisingly for me, I rate low on the "meter" (a 8.3 compared to the other hotties who have gone as far up the chart as 9.7), I had a blast. Bubbles took in account my religious convictions, and my faithfulness to my marriage, and was very tasteful with her questions. According to one of my raters (the girls and guys whose votes determine the meter), I expressed quite a bit of "snark" which I think people in RL would say I'm full of as well. All in all, I had a great deal of fun, but Huck, Hadley, and all the other SL true hotties out there are perfectly safe. I ain't stealing nobody's cred. :)

You can read of my hotness at

Thursday, November 5, 2009

It Only Breaks Along the Cracks

As he sat there, Freud-like, scribbling on yellow steno paper, He remembered—or he thought he remembered, maybe he just remembered the stories— when he was two and was locked in the car the faces of giants at every angle trying to set him free his mother screaming silently just outside the glass— fear, confusion, heat— they broke the glass but it didn’t shatter— put your head down cover your face baby— all the pieces stayed together a transparent jigsaw puzzle the man punched it and broke through the air came in cool.
He remembered it for only a second at the sink —I’m cracking up spinning out— metaphors come to the insane there was no logic here —hold my breath, no breathe— all he had to do was the dishes he fell to the floor plate after plate fell hurled their china shards in a spiral across the yellow linoleum red dots across the sunny yellow— he had wanted hard wood, but— Someone had to get in past the panic punch through —insignificant so major— come, cool, inside
She held his head to keep glass from shattering
not knowing it had to break to let in air.
Because it only breaks along the crack
And you may fall in the mire of madness
with only the little dwarf pills to join hand to hand to pull you back
and afterward the shame—
there will always be the shame—
the how can you do this to your family shame

and he must say to the sinking soul lying on the couch beside him,
“you can learn to swim from two types of teachers,
the one who always perfectly split the water
and the one who almost drowned.”

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Doctor's Prescription

You said, “Not ideas,
but in things.”
Like wet farm tools,
or the last plum,
or white chickens pecking at the dirt,
shards of my teacup
on a wooden floor
in a lake of amber tea.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Around the Square

A vampire walks every night past the inns in Savannah's Lafayette Square, rumor says, down the sidewalks looking for its prey.

"Pray each night before you go to bed," the nanny tells the pajama wrapped boy," that you are forgiven of any darkness." She turns the nightlight on and looks out the window over the square. "You must be filled with light."

"Light weights can't be balanced any more than heavy ones." The student is sipping his tea when he should be doing his homework. He looks out the coffee shop on the square and feels metaphorical. His eyes play with the cracks in the pavement. College restrictions fit tighter than black plastic bracelets. "We all do our best to walk the line here."

Hear the sounds of the man with the briefcase as his Italian leather footfalls click on the sidewalk. He works at the courthouse. He thinks over the face of the little girl victim he saw today, and thinks of the eyes of the woman he is defending. On days like today he wonders if he is a vampire.

spanish moss shadows
dance across the gray pavement
worshipping the moon


What led me to agree,
to leave my bath and my commitments
and follow the servants to the castle
was not his handsomeness, the mixed magnetism of poet and warrior,
although I once told him it was.
And no matter what you have been told,
I did not bathe purposely for him to see.

The force that drove me to dry the moistness
of my body and apply
the most alluring perfumes my husband had purchased for our bed
was not an obligation to the king
although that is what I once said when I was old.
Converting selfishness into patriotism is a common, if not forgivable,
act of the aged.
When they called me to see him,
I knew what he wanted.

The lust that later birthed love,
that caused me to leave one kind of nobility
for another
and anger a jealous God,
began for me
as I gazed at the bath water
once more before leaving for David’s bed
and saw the curve of both firm breasts
under the silhouette of my hair
and felt,
for the first time in a very long time,

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


It is the stuff we buy.
It is the need that is not quite a need.
It is the hollowness filled with chocolate.
It is the landfill on which I build my playground.

The plastic bag reads,
"Caution: Keep away from small children.
The thin film may cling to the nose and mouth and prevent breathing.
Atencion: Mantener alejado de los ninos pequenos.
Se puede adherir a la nariz y boca e impedir la respiracion. "
But the Spanish version adds,
"Esta bolsa no es juguete,"
a fact not given to English speakers.

No es juguete.
No es un chiste.
Se puede adherir e
impedir la respiracion
even for adults.

Sunday, July 5, 2009


White, smooth, weather polished stones.
My grandmother and I collected them in the park
behind my house. Or rather she watched me
as I chose each one, somehow instinctively,
and placed it in my pocket.
I’m not sure on what merits I made my choices,
which to leave by the gnarled oak tree
and which to plant on each side of me.
I felt sorry for all the orphan rocks and wanted to take them all.
But choosing one means leaving another,
and perhaps they chose me anyway.
Some were tiny like bird eggs.
Some were larger like the cobblestones
used as ballast before paving the downtown streets.

With these, I would fill my pockets until I could hardly move,
almost doubling my weight with rubble.
I would sway with the weight of the mounds.

I have kept these stones since that day,
lining my pockets with their heavy affection.
Sometimes they have kept me from floating away.
Sometimes they have caused me to drown.

Wedding Blessing

This is a blessing
on all the forgotten days,
the normal days,
the Tuesday in January days
when nothing is really happening and
there is nothing springing eternal.

This is a blessing
on all the angry words,
the “you’re just like your parents” threats,
the fleeting “I should have never done this” doubts,
the fear he will never understand her,
and the horror when she does him.

This is a blessing
on the bad breath moments,
the haircut mistakes,
on the time when her hips grow as quickly as his belly,
when hair recedes or relocates,
when the back is stooped and the grasp shaky.

This is a blessing
on the “we can’t afford that” moments,
the loss of money or pride,
the denial of self
that doesn’t feel like denial when the two are one,
the nights when holding is the only touch desired.

This is a blessing
on the weeping so strong
it shakes the body
and matches to the beat of the heart
of the one you are cradling,
on the fever at midnight and the glimpse of final goodbyes.

There is much to be treasured in romance
and the candlelight specks in sparkling eyes,
but this blessing is on the deepest roots
that burrow far below a kiss
through sickness, sin, and madness
to the nurturing of tears.

Friday, July 3, 2009


This is the spot where SL and FL meet.
For those of you who have followed my FL blog,, you have put the pieces together and discovered that I struggle with mental illness, specifically depression and an anxiety disorder. The thing that has helped me tremendously has been my medication. Lately, I've developed some difficulty tolerating the medication. It's a lot like having a friend that suddenly drives you crazy. :/ Because of this, I will have to figure out exactly what to do in that regard. I'm already feeling the old struggles creep up again.

Poetry-wise, this may be a good thing because the creativity increases slightly when the episodes do. Personally, it's a nightmare. Since this blog is mainly about SL, I guess the reason to post this is to say I apologize ahead of time for disappearing for a time.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Readings at the Criss

Poetry events are the highlight of my sl week, and I definitely love the time I get to spend at the Criss Museum of Contemporary Art each Tuesday at 5SLT. Tonight we had fewer than last week, but that didn't stop some wonderful poetry from being read. Bubbles, House, Costello, and Amindigo all read very good, but very diverse pieces. Rafe appeared for awhile, but left after I started reading (I'm not offended *sniff, sniff*). Interesting conversations on the nature of poetry too (both before and after the event).

The readings are good for me, but less for what they do for me as an artist, and more for what they do for me as a person.

Sunday, June 28, 2009


I know you didn’t mean it to me directly,
but in one poem (exceptionally read), you stuck a huge stick of dynamite up in me and
blasted everything I believe in,
and I don’t know how I feel about that.

Although I applaud, from a place as deep as my doubt, after everything you do,
I sat there silent, and then left the room.
I didn’t have anything to say.
I hate feeling stupid.

I felt like a fourth grader when the cool kid walks up to him
and says, “You’re stupid,”
and then punches him in the face.
That puny little guy goes away and pretends it doesn’t hurt until the swelling goes down.

I wanted to say, “Hey, I hated it like you.
I doubted it. I kicked against the wall of human suffering.
I wandered into churches at night and shook my fist at the stained glass above me.”
But it got stuck in my throat.

I have fought this fight before with
Sylvia Plath and Charles Bukowski,
and a hundred other poets—like you­—whom I love,
but who—like you—would hate what I am if they knew me.

I don’t feel the hatred you say engulfs my beliefs. I wanted to, but
I hear your words ricocheting down the halls of my mind,
and I can see down that hall because of the sparks made by your mastery of sound.
And I love what that has done for me as an artist.

Some would say, “I feel pity for somebody that doesn’t believe in God,”
but that’s just arrogant,
and I don’t feel particularly proud of myself right now nor condescending.
I definitely don’t want to be the sole representative of a two thousand year old religion.

I don’t feel wounded
because I know you weren’t angry with me;
I’m not sure you were angry at all.
I feel a little novocained right now, and I have to come to.

Maybe I love you
because you shook the tree I sit in
and if a tree is strong enough to sit in,
it’s strong enough to shake.

I guess I did take it personally
because I have read the book cover to cover
and took it in, like a lover memorizes a face,
and I actually thought it out instead of just accepting it
in a ribboned box at Christmas.

I guess it bothers me that sooner
or later we reach this fork in the road—this diversity fork—
and we can look at each other and be tolerant just so long before separating into different paths.
I see you getting smaller in the distance.

I guess I wonder if two people
build on different foundations, that are,
to the other one, invisible,
can they ever really see the other person’s building at all?

I guess I wonder
if you knew what I actually believed,
and that I bought into what you see as lies,
if you would still respect me.

And I hate that.
Because I really shouldn’t care.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Finding Me

I wish I wrote my poems with such style
That everyone that heard would be amazed
At how the syllables danced, all the while
Enchanting readers helpless, listening, dazed.
But I don’t do that.

I wish I could make love to the erotic poem.
One that slowly slips the blouse of disinterest off the shoulders—
shhh, don’t resist--
to fall carelessly on the floor,
and holds each curve of metaphor adoringly
before worshipping their perfect creation.
The one that licks around the edges of intent,
pulling gently with the lips,
and guides open the legs of entendre,
exploring and savoring each drop of response
as it probes the mind of the readers
slowly, rhythmically
looking up at them,
until it forces them with consuming shudders to come
to understand exactly what I intended them to feel.
But I don’t do that.

I wish I was a master of spoken word
demanding my message be heard
or I’ll knock you ‘side the head with my diction
the prediction in my fiction
forcing you to grab on, hold tight,
spin around,
shaking you,
breaking you,
making you
love the mouse that roared
in my house that soared higher than anybody
ever thought poetry could take them.
I could throw in an “ation”
like syncopation
with the nation
of anticipation.
I wanna curse
and be political,
maybe even Democrat.
But I don’t do that.

All I can do
is stand
on white tile
and bleed
and cry as I try to clean the mess
and hope
that someone who hears me
feels somewhat warmer
knowing that the coldness of the world
is shared.

Starting Out

Well, this is the first day of blogging for ol' Jeff Lowbeam, and as the poem above suggests, I haven't quite figured out the whole Second Life thing. I came to this world to increase traffic to my poetry site. So far, my SL self has become better known than my RL self. For those of you who are saying, "I don't know either of you..." I do a regular reading at Criss Museum of Contemporary Art at 5slt on Tuesdays. So far I've done just one, but my line reader broke, and ToryLynn had to save me. House, Sabreman, and ToryLynn were responsible for getting people to the event better than I did myself, and we heard some great poetry. I also read at the Blue Angel on Sundays which, thanks to Persephone Phoenix, is just about the high point of my SL week. I feel fortunate to have met so many very artisitic people on SL. If you read this, add me as a friend. I love meeting people from around the world, especially creative ones.

LIfe in a Second

What is this other life I live?
Do I take on divinity
and create an image
of what I wish I was,
carefully selecting the items of me I
like and forming out of digital clay
only what I find tolerable?
Starting from scratch, do I
throw away the original blueprints
and build the new stronger,
version of Poet 2.0?

Or do I merely
birth a crying babe
into pixilated life?
A form released from molecules and age.
A man more like meThan I could ever be myself.