No nap, today, fought against pull and push to do so. Thanksgiving over, wife out shopping at one of those shopping special eve whatever’s. Me, home. Wine. Just finished glass of Claret. The night passed with such cruel progression. Indifference. Babies asleep upstairs. What movie do I watch, my dilemma. My life’s trouble. Think of how fortunate I am with my family and to have such family, to be sitting where I am, here on this we seek to shed, new one one the way… Day of giving thanks, I need to show more giving of thanks, being thankful.

Tonight, I do intend exploring more wine. No aim to wake at 4am or 4:10 like this day. No. I may actually just sleep in. I will. What do I mean, “may”? May have to punch out. Take the night as it approaches me, describe and translate it, or in such order reversed… then wake tomorrow with more thought. More story. More ME. Tired now, forgetting I’ve been up since 4-something. Think 4:10. Has it been that long? Yes. It has. Me, that writer. Now. Time to Self and I sip wine and be here, writing. A writer.

Does the writer want apple pie or Chardonnay? Both sound like they sound, their own precise appeal and connection. I’m not torn between both but urge to be curved by both, somehow. 9:08. Feel like bed but I won’t. I can’t. But more, I refuse. Why can’t I be a human, just have dessert or drink wine. Is it that complicated? Are my thoughts the hinderance, the block and or impediment? I think it may be just that. Not in any kind of a writing swoop, and I can’t figure anything of it out. How does pine figure. What type a figure be me, I, this writer.

I feel like I’m not doing a thing, while doing too much. A mess. Should have taken a nap.

Wine, Literature, Me and There

img_69121A meeting went excessively better than I forecasted.  Hoped or thought, or wished.  Now home, sipping some Nebbiolo from a friend’s winery, and thinking about how tomorrow is my second-to-last day in the industry.  I’m sipping slow, partially watching some writer show.  Can’t get my thoughts away from this wine, what it’s saying to me, how it congratulates me on re-write of my relationship with wine itself by leaving the bloody industry.  By leaving, I get closer, with distance, I’m even more THERE.

Don’t know what I’m tasting, wouldn’t know how to describe it to someone in the tasting room, and I don’t have to anymore.  Described it to friend managing the winery as  a charismatic and convincing character.   Wine… wine will always have me, in some way.  The words and the stories, the sipping and the sensory elevation and atmospheric promise…. Anyway, I’m sipping, after my lecture, or first meeting with the students, I’m more coherent and convinced of my mission.  To blog everything.. the wine and the lectures, work and this Room.  I’m closer to There.


And 39 just treks and trudges toward me. I have the wrong attitude about it, age 39 and it being mine, I know. At least I’m up now, gathering whatever thoughts are left from yesterday’s close of the semester. Now into Summer where I don’t teach but have only the wine and its industry to write about. Last night, a Chardonnay and Syrah. Think the Chard spoke more to me than the funky Rhône. Or maybe not spoke to me but showed me more of the language and a side of Chardonnay I haven’t seen before. The wine keeps me motioned, keeps my writing, young. That’s what I tell myself. It’s not the wine, it’s the writing I’m after. Truthfully, I only see so much in wine, can speak about it in verse for so long and have something to post on this blog. Last night’s offerings had a way about them, I’ll say…. the Syrah with its unfettered jumps and locomotive-like presentation and palate pummel, then the Chard with its instruction. A new induction, for me, wine… write more freely, as I told my students yesterday. Care less, be fearless, be free… wine’s distant inquiries and immediacies are for me, this summer and beyond that. If I seek to leave the tasting room and write more about wine and travel and speak wherever about my missions, then I need study my essays on wine, my notes, consider the meta of meta’s meta. 39 is nothing, I see now. Just a number and I would dispute even that. It’s a lose concept of quasi-reality.

Thinking of that Chardonnay, again. More than the Syrah. I remember going to Burgundy in ’09 with family, tasting more Chardonnay than I thought I could ever handle. Same with Pinot. The trip showed me I need more trips. Longer ones. Writing escapes where I don’t escape but self-station in new stages and scenes, thought mazes.

06:21. The winery…. the winery…. Have to find something new, there. Either in the cellar or out in the vineyard. Something about wine’s place and character, sense and way. Why have I been blogging about wine since ’09, at someone else’s suggestion. I got away from it, wine as a singular address, here and there, but would always come back to her and lean on her for ideas and a pulpit for me to speak my verses and translate and deconstruct her as a metaphor. I’m a bottled ox as my prowess and visible formidability generate in and from and for wine. People ask what I write about, what I blog about, a question as you might know used to send me through all roofs. Now I answer. WINE. That’s it. That me. That’s my best. Age 39 or whatever. Wherever. Typing next to some varietal, some glass, to a vineyard visual, the thoughts that from there compose. Wine as a symbol, an image to interpret and explore, defines and redefines composition in so many ways. So many that I don’t have time to catalogue and calculate, narrate. But, going over student essays yesterday and speaking on composition, the essay and what it does, structure and support, introductions and summations, I see wine as a foremost expository piece.

More later, I promise my aging self. But here I am, my thinking, at 06:29, 12 days before 39.


Not even seeing wine as wine, anymore.

But more so, time. Some narrating seraph that wants a writer to see more. Now sitting on floor of home, downstairs with everyone asleep, I’m into the story set. English Professor or whatever having to be in a tasting room, come morrow. Much on mind, I’m told in and by time. She, wine, saying don’t look at those numbers anymore. Breaths, deep and meaningful, purposed. Tired from the 8 miles I submitted on treadmill. Force self to continue. I have to. WE have to, she reminds. Placement on this planet, more than abbreviated. More than cruelly curt, as I always say. Gone before it’s here. So… live sans fear.

Life… like new life in the vineyard, new life in me. 

img_0741In all of us.  Driving here, thought about how many dreams there are in the wine industry.  How many visions that became tangible and .  Sped to their horizon and just actualized, making it the real, the Now.  Today I’m in that mode, with wine and writing, and everything in yesterday’s frantic richness that still me steers and motivates.  A group of three girls, out from Washington, DC, talking to me about their love of wine and what wines they drink back hoe, how amazing the weather is out here, and how they can’t wait to go to the next place, taste more wine and see more of Sonoma County.  All of them commented on how I spoke about wine and I tried to get them off the praise train, and I did.  But, I know that’s where my focus need be.  All day today… every wine deconstructions and narration, to be recorded.

Last night opening that Rioja I bought from K&L, finally.  Not that I wasn’t impressed, just not moved, not commanded, certain not coerced to write.  Now that I’m here at the Windsor ‘bucks, on whatever street this is, right ‘cross the whatever-street from the Hampton Inn & Suites, I’m writing but not about the wine.  Now, this Now, speaking wine, empirically, intrinsically.  Everything that wine is to me and why I’m here right now… why I’m spending my Sunday morning at a winery and here before the winery, before the tasting room and all the customer types I’ll encounter and talk to, be talked to by… why am I here rather than with my wife, babies.  For the definition, that persisting song of the Cabernet, the Pinot, Chard’…. Even the Pinot Gris, one yesterday I continuously touched and re-touched, kissed and let speak to me.  Not much said, but I in my act of habitual visit, re-purposing in the strange varietal, I saw something.  I was there for wine, for the exploration, for that language… the definitive exploration and explanation of her immediacy.


Seeing more this morning, like Emerson after a walk through the woods and some inward dialogue and chat, consultation and study.  That’s what and where this writer is this morning, waking later than he wanted, no surprise, but not fixating on that, at all.  More than a matter of “scaling” as so many other marketers and bloggers, vloggers, even some writers now repeat.  I’m actualizing the cumulonimbus significance that wine and the vineyards circle and motion in my narrative.  Every day in the tasting room, new language and tongue, images and poetry, haiku and paragraph storms.  New notes in each glass-tilt and further illustration and pedagogical pulse, teaching me to not overthink.  Just act, actuate as you always boast, Mike.  So I do.  This morning.  Like those buds in the vineyard, where I walk at lunch and think about where I am and why I’m there.  Further defined, further furthered.  Interested while being tested by wine’s vestige, past and present I’m amassed and trenchant.

Now to my sitting.  Here in Windsor again.  I’m not giving last night’s wine enough time, consideration, attention, enough of me.  What was I looking for?  Forget about the price-point, I always say, though that’s something here that can’t be shoved to perceptive side.  Want to say it was less that $20.  And if that is the matter, then there’s definitely nothing the matter.  The texture was softy and self-syncopating, like rhythmic climates passing and returning.  Fruit, red and black, but any color designation not withstanding the pulse and character was eased, pleasing and promising.  Dividing my attention the sowing it back to oneness.  Any wine that can do that is present, mobile, worthy of page.  The type that doesn’t reveal its role so immediately.  You have to not so much decode as you do deconstruct, like a piece of writing.  Then, more musings igniting, insightful delighting and in flight in my newly wined sight.


Uncomfortable in chair so I lean forward, typing with elbows resting on quads.  Not into this sitting as I’d hoped.  But I continue, move on the page like the vineyard crews, like wine itself when in the bottle.  Just ‘cause it’s contained doesn’t mean she’s contained.  There’s movement still and that peripatetic pattern.  So me here in chair, with a little ache of stomach.  Not sure what that is but I’m ignoring it and writing way through it.  What I want, till I reach a thousand words or more.  This is wine… this is why I write about wine, as wine and I are the same… expressive characters and poets, musicians, beings with wandering musings and beats… our beats align then divide then abide new ides— take new rides.  With out respective stories and chapters, we fly.  Swim, new chapters begin… I grin this morning even with this odd stomach thing.  Staying connected and dedicated to my keys, this sentence and the one that follows.  As a writer, I need stay in chair, not move, not be distracted, not be overly invested in any one direction but talk with complete and encapsulating devoutness to that address.  This morning has me, this day, the wines I’m about to pour and what people say in reaction to them I’ll just observe but do more than listen, watch for certain expressions.  Study them, and Self, like Emerson.  This stomach ache takes more of me… was it something I last night ate?  Not sure.. but I’m doing everything I aid I wouldn’t.  Get pulled from this pulse.  Wine never does so.  She’s always into her intuition and intonation, oration.  I breathe, meditate, think about the eight, more, hours before this writer of wine… the Pinot Gris, the Spanish blend I last night had in the stemless plastic glass, cup, what say. 

Only 15 minutes left for this Mike Madigan, the one this morning, trying for the last however long to finish his wine piece, but….  Life.  Taking me where it wants.  Wine, she assures, promised and sings through each sip and shift in palatable presence.