from wine book..

09:08… have to set up tasting room.  Have coffee and notebook with me.  All wine writing today.  Still in shock over promotion possibility yesterday.  Can’t get too detailed, sorry.  I can do it, right?  Imagine the testing ground ability and capability of such an assignment.  More money, for sure.  Closer to financial and vocational freedom… stay creative today, Mike.  Be in-scribble all moments, even when you don’t have a pen in hand.  Okay.. to TR, where the story is.

11:29.  Lunch.  13 mins in.  Tried a couple wines in TR, one standing out to me most redolently is the Rosé… can’t figure it out, and I can’t figure out why I’m not liking my words today.. feel like I keep using the same ones.  Wish I spoke French more fluently… had time to skim through and shop for words in Thesaurus, but no.  Je suis au travail.  (I’m at work).  These thoughts where I worry into some worried cyclone are counterproductive and do nothing to get me to my travels.  Now over 15 nearly 16 minutes in.  Have to write VLJ newsletter tonight.

Wrote last night, “To grow a brand, you have to be its language, not just speak it ‘fluently’.” My brand is ME, first.  Then wine.  The writing.  Or maybe I am writing, like Faulkner said.  Was it Faulkner?  Should stay up later tonight, get some work done and not just the letter but other project in which I cartwheel and create and meditate.  Lots on the mind as I’m back here at the desk I sat at this morning.  No clouds now, or fog.  Just sky and mountains, vineyards curling over hill like they’re running away from me.  My inward jots collect.  I need to collect them.  Speak my wined language better.  All poetry, rowing us stream and sea, searching for words in either english or french, I don’t know anymore I just need new words and now I notice the wine I sipped in the TR is colluding with this coffee.  For sakes me reciting, getting ready for seated group at 12, if they show.  And if they don’t, I’ll keep reading to self, be my own audience and become a prominent linguist in my own tongue.  That will be my “brand”.

Funny wine descriptions—



Pavement chips

Like sugary water…

Vixen kisses in a small room… (Love this one.)

Zip circles after you swallow… (Have no idea what the fuck that means.)

from 30 days…

Day 15, 6/24/17, Saturday:  Here at Foley Sonoma a little early.  Ready for the day as I said in a video I just shot.  Brought coffee with me, and now I look up at the vineyard, I can’t stay away from the vineyard, ever.  An office will one day be me, but MY office, and on my terms and everything mine the way I need certain specifics and certainties situated to be creative.  Last night’s wine, not proverbial, but still engaging.. character driven with its own sort of character and Cabernet charm.  Can’t remember the last time I had a wine from Sebastiani.  Want to say it was, maybe, over ten years ago.  Like an ’04 Cab, or something.  Know it was Cabernet, but, anyway…. Quiet.  Love this.  The others don’t show till 09:30 or slightly before but I’m one who has to start setting up tasting room and property at 9.  I’m like that.. I need at least an hour to be at-ready for day, for people coming in to taste and pick up their shipments if they’re club members, all the funny questions that I write in my little book….  08:51.  Will clock in soon.  Today, I’m changing my wine life.  Intensifying what’s already in place for me, with wine and poetry.  Sell wine by reciting it, not selling.  There will be no selling today.  There may be sales, but no selling.  This is not a used car or any kind of car lot.  And it’s about more than wine.. I don’t seek to be a wine writer like others are…. I don’t come from the wine world, I come from the academic and literary waves.  So I could never be like them.  But, I tell myself, don’t think about them.  Think about you, your day, telling people about the wines— reciting them.

Wine notes–

Talking to tongue in strangely beauteous tongue– illustrating its spell and sensibilities, intention and instruction– shapely berry hits with enthusiastic blips of chocolate and cedar, soil, and rain-soaked river stone– its language lands and fades, rematerializes and flirts and vanishes, I’m charmed and coerced, lovingly forced to tilt the glass again.  I’m sent, where I go is where I went, reward by receptor-dent.. pen down, just sip, listen to texture stretch across glass-side…

from 30-day project…

Day 13, 6/22/17, Thursday:  Trying to motivate myself, this early afternoon.  Ran, but only 5 miles.. I know, you’re going to say “Only five miles…” so not-so-slyly sarcastically, but I wanted something north of 10.  Got hotter quicker than I measured.  Have books for semester, finally.  Want to be on campus by 16:00, so I should get in the shower in about 30 minutes, if not a little less.  Not having any more iced coffee… no.  Much I’m tempted, I’m not doing it.

Tomorrow, pay day.  Still waiting to see if I go see clients in their office.  Tentatively… tomorrow’s about photography.  Wake early and workout here in home, then after babies are gone, head out… Russian River area.  Want to go through pictures on camera later in adjunct office.

Quiet here in house.  Not even my usual Bobby Hutcherson or Miles Davis, or John Coltrane stations playing.  Just myself, this laptop, some ice-water, and a book of Kerouac and Ginsberg letters, and a collection of Emerson writings.  Would be more than up for a glass of that Andrew Murray Syrah I opened last night, if I didn’t have class that is.  So I sip this water, which is actually nice ‘cause it’s oddly warm in here.  Why isn’t the AC igniting?  I’m too busy with my thoughts and this sitting, not sure it’s going anywhere, to get up and turn it on.  Why am I so flat, so without propulsion?  “…the new prospect is power.” Emerson writes.  The prospect, not so new, of me traveling and writing and taking pictures and teaching from my experiences, or at the very least sharing them… something there.  For readers and myself.  I have to throw myself further into this zen here in home, this quiet and this water, the books and this chair.

AC on.  Where’s my camera?  There it is… drawer, right, right there with cord.  I’ll play with pics in a bit.  What’s for class’ lesson?  How about this… when we’re in a “funk” without our writing or ourselves.  How do we work our way out of it?  Just with that, WORK.  Be busy.  Don’t stop writing or doing whatever it is you have to do— work for your job, a run, some project around your house.  Anything.  I’m working my way through it with this keyboard and Mr. Emerson.  My inner conversation finds its way to page and I find myself in rewarding circles, where Newness awaits.  If I’m to be free by the end of this project, both financially and vocationally/avocationally, then I need these moments more and more.  Get up earlier, plan more, take more pictures and more walks in the vineyards— be where you’re the most YOU.

The wine from last night… Syrah… so strong and confident, but still displaying its inner and most honest of artful urges.  Interesting in all sip spectrums, frankly.  It painted its own picture… so animated and colorful and energetic, spontaneous.  Should have a glass— no, don’t worry I won’t.  Actually, need to dive into these pictures.  My vineyards.  Always calling me, this needy writer… pictures from years ago, even before babies.  Then the recents, the most near to this Now.  Time reminding me that I don’t have time to be in any lulls, “trying” to self-motivate.  You just have to leap, and do so fearlessly and in the same ravenous manner a child opens a gift, as all these moments and days are exponential gifts.

And just like that, a loudly exciting idea slams into me with meteor thesis.  Here I go…. Still running…

30 pages, excerpt (no edits)

…drive to Kenwood, run from Kunde to Lawndale like I used to, then further from that… maybe to St. Francis, up into the mountains, but then I’d have to run back to KFE.  OR do I do the same run from here, from the Autumn Walk studio, maybe I get creative and find some new route on spec… yeah.. a plan for the write, the in-the-moment prose-ist… need more of this Syrah, need log my notes, my findings in its Personhood—  Dark torrential, plausible anything—  Freedom in its form, talking to me like I need to be talked to with its maple-thrown bacon brawl of a blackberry escalation; life in a bottle that I’m not used to, structurally and with its after-sip song and reverb, just feeling what’s being narrated in this enclosed space— the bottle tells me to defy distractions, ignore messages and emails and ‘pings’ and anything not related to art.. sip, sense, found, sound—

How does time do what it does with such shove?  Doesn’t matter, nothing I can do to stop it.  Tonight Had students, or offered them to, consider the different approaches to verse, from Kerouac to Shakur.  And of course me being the selfish penner I be think of me.  How am I in the arena, what am I writing about?  Are that many interested in wine?  Fuck— the writer’s a-mess, amiss, but still with his sipped bliss.  It makes me think of my run come morrow, my story and my hope it carries some duende weight.  Quiet… bottle in kitchen, Syrah.. when was the last time I wrote to Syrah?  Not sure.. but the death of a family friend has me even more sans peur (fearless) in what I’m doing, how I interact with certain certain’s…. The Syrah speaks, and speaks for me— this be the beat but a collaborative rhythm that I have no intention of tempering.  Time… just a gorilla, that I have no chance against in a fight.  Have to wake early…


On lunch….

Edit VLJ newsletter, loosely, sent email to clients.  Crackers and cheese for lunch, which I paid an arm and a leg for, and am not too enthused about.  Staring out at Cabernet blocks from this second floor, wanting heat.  It’s like a meat locker in here.  What’s the temp outside?  Should find out.  Working and not stopping… will get newsletter out later.  Have to.  And plan on enjoying wine tonight, make not. mistake.

What to do next… have a tour and tasting at.. what, 2?  Then… class later.  4 minutes left on lunch.  Should start packing up.  Have always said that 30 minutes is never enough time.  And I’m sure managers would say, “Well.. that’s plenty of time to eat.” Yeah, well, some of us have projects, are writers, have dreams and goals and push tirelessly toward what we want and where we see ourselves.  Don’t worry, readers… I’m not in a mood, or grumpy, just quaking with ambition today, especially after hearing a family friend passed away.  Life is short, and I’m going to make it do whatever I want. I won’t give it a choice.