Alex Caldiero on Michael McClure and Little Richard

Reports last week of the deaths of Beat poet and playwright Michael McClure and musician Little Richard moved Alex to these lines influenced, in MM’s case, by the full moon:



To think / this has been going on since / forever 

an event! / an experience! / an action! 

and even my indolence / cannot make up for / what imagination conjures 

nothing going on here that / did not start forever ago 

it’s the moon / who makes us see in sky / what the sun / can only bring in dream 

thus this is the it that / makes unmakes masks unmasks 

the real / transient / untenable 

at the jugular / a life a death 

Some times the moon is/ a crystal ball! 

Tonight, for instance 

the moon is singing / and then / displaying a face within / its face, almost recognizable / a woman? a young man? 

a movie star or an / acquaintance /

     who is it? 

Some nights the moon is

       silvery, as in that song—

who can see it 

     can say it 


8:23 PM 4 May 20


You ask 

you answer 

silence / in the interim 

tolerates neither / question or answer 

who are you / that you should / say? 

what you know / is self-contained 

this need to / be let out 

off course / free &


9:34 PM 4 May 20



Tonight / Moon Full / Light 

Silvery / Crystal / Face 

Look / See who’s / There 

What / Brings it on / Nobody knows 

Who knew is / Nobody known / Forgot 

a face like / any other / but yours 

Yes you say / a part of it / already with you 

Found the lost still / still about to / unless another says it first 

10:15 PM 5 May 20



Last night’s moon

& Tonight’s moon 

A passing 

into Fullness 

And Last night’s 

Face of a beautiful 


Tonight has a 

Name: Michael 


10:41 PM 5 May 20 

PS this morning I found out McClure died yesterday

A couple of pages from Alex’s notebook, writing about the moon, drawing himself drawing himself.


Rhythm / Knows / What / Melody / Will never know

Words / Reach / And / Still never reach

Beat / Hits / Time / Beyond the line

Song / Pulse / Ever living

Not prayer / Not tribute / Not form

Past Blood / Heart Lungs / Open Breath

What mind / Will not name / Leave be

Gone / Back / to Miss Molly!

PM 9 May 20

alex caldiero

About Scott Abbott

I received my Ph.D. in German Literature from Princeton University in 1979. Then I taught at Vanderbilt University, BYU, and Utah Valley State College. At Utah Valley University, I directed the Program in Integrated Studies for its initial 13 years and was also Chair of the Department of Humanities and Philosophy for three years. My publications include a book on Freemasonry and the German Novel, two co-authored books with Zarko Radakovic (REPETITIONS and VAMPIRES & A REASONABLE DICTIONARY, published in Serbo-Croatian in Belgrade and in English with Punctum Books), a book with Sam Rushforth (WILD RIDES AND WILDFLOWERS, Torrey House Press), a "fraternal meditation" called IMMORTAL FOR QUITE SOME TIME (University of Utah Press), and translations of three books by Austrian author Peter Handke, of an exhibition catalogue called "The German Army and Genocide," and, with Dan Fairbanks, of Gregor Mendel's important paper on hybridity in peas. More famously, my children are in the process of creating good lives for themselves: as a model and dance/yoga studio manager, as a teacher of Chinese language, as an ecologist and science writer, as a jazz musician, as a parole officer, as a contractor, as a seasonal worker (Alaska and Park City, Utah), and as parents. I share my life with UVU historian Lyn Bennett, with whom I have written a cultural history of barbed wire -- THE PERFECT FENCE (Texas A&M University Press). Some publications at
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