Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 37

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A Movie Review

A higher up with an unintentional pimp’s swag to his gait strides up to the cube. Unknown to Chalice Sinclearly is that this higher up has broken away for a tad from his crafting of a report in whose title he’ll need to, legally, hang the word “Quantifying.” Arriving at the underling, the higher up asks all hush-hush-like and with a darty eye: “Coffee?”  

Sinclearly looks back over each of his shoulders all suspicious-like before whispering a “Thanks, kemosabe, but I gotta pass” up to the higher up—pass because he promised the wife he’d start saving a little moola here and there, and he wants to keep some word of his because, God knows, he ain’t doing so well with his word to stop sneaking cigarettes. “Besides, there’s coffee on in the kitchen. Company bought, bro.” But the higher up won’t have any of that, and responds with a “Fuck that, the coffee sucks here; it’s on me,” proving as he has on different occasions in the past to be a man of little conceit.

Watching a higher up with an unintentional pimp’s swag to his gait as he strides away from the cube, Chalice Sinclearly tries to remember if we ever even saw up on that Arty Farty silver screen a scratched-out, circled, or arrowed-to word within Jarmusch’s Basement Poet’s tidily handwritten poems of long-lined populace and double-sided commonplace. (Since Saturday’s matinee, Chalice has been stewing over how now because of Jarmusch’s composed, motif-filled love poem to poetry he probably won’t be recognized as the original 21st Century Basement Poet – as the genuine unreal Ron Padgett behind the scene.) And while watching a higher up with an unintentional pimp’s swag to his gait stride away from the cube, Sinclearly understands the Lone Wolf Poet in each of us understands how there ain’t cohesive enough words sometimes to throw a simple and quick “Thanks” at someone’s back.


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 36

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Smarmy Wings
The tale of the night I told my wife I was stepping
out to attend a published poet’s public reading

~or, why the Women’s March on Washington mattered

Relax. Who cares? She gets back, we’ll get us a beer, order our wings. It’ll all be good. I’m freakin’ starving here. Why d’ya think we came here anyways? … A couple o’ beers, get us our wings – relax. All’s good.

“Screw that, Hoz. No. I did not come here to be waited on by a pregnant waitress. No way, Jose. This is nowhere in the goddamn constellational agreement of why I’m being here. Nowhere!”

In the agree— … in the wha—?

Chalice Sinclearly storms up from the table. I watch his back as he flies towards the Hooters exit. I am disgusted in his reaction. Then, right when he’s about to smack his face against the pane of the door, the sheen of a distant table’s waitress’s hamstring distracts my condemning attention.

The End.

Literally, I’m a pig.
Sadly, literarily,
Lone Wolf Poets don’t fly.

So, no; now
The End.


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 35

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“The Day Is A Poem (November 9, 2016)”*

This morning Facebook spoke at Friends, we read
Its voice of genius: that is, of capital-lettered debility,
Anger, finger pointing, cored on a MFA emotion’s soul
Read clearly through Gizmobation wrath, a student loan debt
Wailing behind Posts; invoking the unread and wailing at it.
Here, in his cube in a Chicago Loft-style office, Sin-
Clearly has made a reservation for two at an old-school
Steak joint downtown where he will have three martinis.
After a Broiled T-Bone Steak (32oz), a French Onion
Soup and appetizer of mussels, as the waiter (who will be
Tipped near 17%) pours coffee, the Lone Wolf Poet will
Strike up a cig, inhale and exhale in painful excess. Until,
Alas, the Republicans and Democrats, alike, bitch him out
With bitchings crusted with blood and barbaric omens. So
Chased out, waiting on the valet, his wife will flatten his ass.


*A revisioning, with an extra line, of “The Day Is A Poem (September 19, 1939)” by Robinson Jeffers.


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 34

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“Pontius Palette”

The time of the day seeks to be repaid by a Sin
-Clearly view, no matter his
Color blind take on that time’s prescribed hue,
Prescribed because that time’s been always due,
Due its hue long before scribed-at by a Sin
-Clearly color blind view,
Thus his take on sake – for God’s sake – is his
Faking on our take of the hue he can’t break
From the gray of this day whose exact time’s now again a tick’s stray
Away from the stay of this exact color of this exact day,
As foreseen to have been

Repaid by a Sin-
Clearly view, which is his faking take
On the day’s time’s exacting hue, a hue due –
For his sake, for goodness sake –
The risk to break an exact gray away from the over-gray,
And in this scribed-at say sake the time of day,
This time of day seeking repay –

Sake this exact tick’s stray away
From this exact stay of the color of the day
Now again in the wake of this exact take
On gray by a Sin-
Clearly view, a color blind view now clearly overdue
Our break – for Christ’s sake –
From our take on his stake in our unsettled juju


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 33

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The Short and Curlies of the Work

Chalice Sinclearly receives the daily email newsletter from Literary Hub. He really enjoys this. It has on numerous occasions opened his eyes to new works, to authors with whom he had not been familiar, and it has also introduced him to fresh ways of seeing a few authors that he believed he had a solid grasp upon.

Today, December 19, 2016, Literary Hub put out its Best Books of 2016. The first book that Chalice found of interest was within Emily Temple’s (Associate Editor) choices. He highlighted the title and author’s name to copy and paste them into a Word Doc, so he could then have a print-out of interesting titles in his pocket for his upcoming visit to the bricks and mortar bookstore. He needs scraps of paper, Post-it Notes, with things written on them in his pockets all of the time these days – decades of the good medicine have wreaked havoc on his ability to forage crisply and undistractedly through the ol’memory bank.

To paste that first book into the Word Doc, he chose Paste Special > Unformatted Text.
     The Lonely City
Bam! When this appeared on the page, so too did the scale of our entire Western, civilized, free and hip culture’s Gizmobation-lured reality. The design of it all appeared right there, in blatant coded perspective—right there before his four-eyed vision, this same vision that was last night toiling over a final revision to the long toiled over “Life Assemblies”* (months of switching between “real” and “true” came to an emphatic end as he finally consented to a notion of slighting sympathy), and he gasped aloud – loud enough that a fellow cubicle-dweller felt the need to ask him from her station on the other side of a small wall if everything was alright. Chalice Sinclearly was in the midst of the realization: It’s whenever when an author’s name is made out to be more, to overshadow, the work—it’s whenever when the singer’s more than the song—it’s whenever when this when it’s all so seemingly really done for. He didn’t miss a beat, however, and answered his coworker with a snappy, “Probably shouldn’t be gift idea-ing while on the clock.”


Sundays root their libraries in an amount of enough
               time to survey the dislocations
                                             of a music needled under
The crackled repertoire of the platitude playing back-
               drop to the staved off surround
                                             of a role-play archived
By the affable fear of a hushing harmony: Sunday
               Nights – reading nights, jotting
                                             down marginal insights
(Coursed by a choosers-are-the-beggars simulation)
               inside paperbacks damaged in
                                              the comfy hands of an awe
Piled into without any true vision for the experiential
               reality of possession made anti-
                                             Yet by the crave of material;
Before there was even enough volumes of words
               to be lagged under by a brain-
                                             trusted polarization pansied
In the pre- of preferences pined for by a polite
               radicalism and the propaganda
                                             of a pay to play Monday.


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 32

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An Appeal for the Mafia

“Who in his or her sound and reality-based mind, striving toward the promise of a civilized culture, would not ardently applaud that such a judicious syndication exists?”

He does not ask this in jest; he is not posing the question as a hyper-ironic Sopranos fan. He does not wish to be patted on his pig-skinned back for having the gall to side with an outlaw element. Believe it or not, even amongst us who’ve been zoned-to-dismay by the post-truth-bolstered sense of civility prevalent here upon this devaluating subject matter that is God’s “trusted” America—believe it not, Chalice Sinclearly does not wish to be profiled by the FBI.

“Any true poet of the dying working-class character should thank his or her lucky fucking blessings that the mafia poses an actual menace to the rats and the FBI within the confines of our baseball-caps-left-on-at-the-dinner-table culture; that the mafia acts as a tangible guiding spirit towards how to purposefully possess the old school mentality of a pitcher who knows how to protect his hitters.”

For Sinclearly, the nucleus of the mafia’s secretive craft roils within a blind faith in nostalgia. He has long held great expectant stock in nostalgia. Long before he applied it to the mafia, that nucleus – a blind faith in nostalgia – came into focus for him the year he acquired a mortgage with his wife, when his eyes self-servingly sucked up the words Don DeLillo has his character Murray speak within the novel White Noise. He read,

I don’t trust anybody’s nostalgia but my own. Nostalgia is a product of dissatisfaction and rage. It’s a settling of grievances between the present and the past. The more powerful the nostalgia, the closer you come to violence. War is the form nostalgia takes when men are hard-pressed to say something good about their country.

as being:

I don’t trust anybody’s nostalgia but my own. Nostalgia is a product of dissatisfaction and rage. It’s a settling of grievances between the intellect and the imagination. The more violent the nostalgia, the closer you come to poetry. A Lone Wolf Poet is the form nostalgia takes when poetry is too comfortable placating its poets.

… Bearing this mindful mis-reading in mind, I will here nonetheless provide Sinclearly with a podium from which he can express his beliefs as to how in this day and age the mafia (if this underground organization actually exists; I am not as convinced as Mr. Sinclearly is on this matter) might more awakenly enrich its endurance – survive. … So without further adieu, won’t you please welcome to the podium Mr. Lone Wolf Poet himself. … Chalice; all you:

“Thank you, Hoz, you little piece of chickenshit. … That’s it, that’s it little man, get over here; get up here all tucked up behind my back. … Fucking wuss. …

“Anyhoo, let me begin by saying my intent here is to articulate a sincerity-weighted counsel. Your very best interest is in mind here. You must trust me. There is absolutely no sarcasm here. …

“A) Speak amongst one another within your organization only in the motherland’s language. Not that that would camouflage the criminality embedded in discussions – no, of course one’s blood is easily translatable by the authorities. I promote this with a great appreciation for the feel revealed by the Orwellian suggestion that ‘If thought corrupts language, language can also corrupt thought.’ So then, it’s my hypothesis that by keeping hold of the mother-tongue within your organization, each member’s cultural identity, his needed sense of being centered, of feeling he is an indispensible tick within an ancestral pattern, will remain unbound by a righteous conscience. It will infuse each member with the very much needed attribute of trusting nobody’s nostalgia but the mafia’s. In this, you’d have to have your offspring visit the motherland often, spend time upon that land to soak in Italy’s culture, away from Chicago’s, absent of America’s.

“This naturally transgresses into B) Do not let anyone begin being a soldier until the age of forty. That’s right; do not let anyone begin his life of criminal activity in association with your organization until the age of forty. Sure, he can practice a life of crime up until then, but his apprenticeship must have no ties to you, must bear upon the mafia no jeopardy. By the age of forty hopefully enough life lessons have accumulated to have sufficiently maneuvered one’s sense of humility into a more constant than not state of being the settlement of grievances between the intellect and the imagination: it’s called being honorable; honor, the grande dame by-product of humility. A vow has a greater value, presents a more tangible sense of consequence, to one at this stage of life. Besides, with life expectancy rising, you’ll get say at least ten to twenty good years out of someone – plenty of time for that person to rise from Associate, to become “Made” and more. And here’s the “Aha!” moment: imagine how fucked up the FBI will become if you start allowing only those forty or older to become a member of the mafia. The FBI will need to completely rethink their thinking to try and nail you, get to you.

“Oooooh shit. Take a look at this, paisanos. Show your face, Hoz. Poke out from behind me. … Look at this look on our man Hoz. …

“Hoz, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking of that one passage we came across in our unending study into our hero Sherwood Anderson, aren’t you? The one where that smarty-pants said: ‘To me the most important fact about his career is that his first book appeared when he was forty. It was difficult to learn after forty. He needed badly the apprenticeship which most writers go through in their twenties and thirties. After forty, men do not usually write because they are writers. They write because they are bothered, upset; because writing offers an escape from a disturbing reality or because it seems to provide a method of clarifying their personal problems. Thus the softness and sentimentality of Anderson’s work is not that of youthful confusion—which may be succeeded by clarity and order—but of middle-aged bewilderment, the bewilderment of a mature man who has suddenly been forced to think.’”*

“I know that one scares the shit out of you, Hoz. Eh? The whole thing about not being a writer after forty, not learning, just becoming an old fart who’s perpetually bothered by something. … Kind of sounds like the whole Lone Wolf Poet thing, eh? Bandwagoning on about ‘real’ poetry, what it means to be a ‘real’ poet. … Well fuck Mr. Smarty-pants, Hoz. We got Chandler, Bukowski, Miller; we got Clinch, Pollack, Fountain. We’ve got those who truly shined after the age of 40, 50 even; we got Wallace Stevens, Twain, Iñárritu, Frost, Cezanne, Williams Carlos Williams.

“GAY! William goddamn Gay, period. …

“Late bloomers, baby. Late bloomers, their art is in the search, not in the find.** Late bloomers probe; they do not satellite. Didn’t you have me write something to that degree before? Smarty-pants got it all wrong, brother. No way, man. No way. I absolutely stand behind my proposal to the mafia; stand behind all my sincerity-weighted applause for the mafia.

“And by the by, idiot, that’s you mis-reading DeLillo. … All you. Get off my back about it already. It’s all about you serving you – you servicing you. You. All about you. DIY, self-publishing-blogger, you. You, you, you, you, you, you, you, you—”

[Well, I have nothing to say here after Sinclearly’s piercing outing of my ever-mounting paranoia – after being side-swiped here, mugged really, believing for days now while working under this episode’s title that I was going one way with the Lone Wolf Poet, but then without warning being bulldozed over from an entirely unexpected direction by the Lone Wolf Poet himself. … Damn. … I can’t speak over his “You”-ing me; I won’t. … Eventually, I imagine, the Energy Saver will dim this world before me. The Energy Saver’s Plugged In settings are too conservative, I sense, but I’m not techno enough to feel I should ever really give a flying fuck about them. Besides, why?]


* “Sherwood Anderson: The Search for Salvation” by Clifton Fadiman, Nation, November 9, 1932.
** This sentence’s origin is based in the Malcolm Gladwell article “Late Bloomers: Why do we equate genius with precocity?New Yorker, October 20, 2008.


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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Lone Wolf Poet: Episode 31

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The Scene Behind Your Proverb
Para mi Nemesis

Much Madness is divinest Sense –
To a discerning Eye –
Much Sense – the starkest Madness –
’Tis the Majority
In this, as all, prevail –
Assent – and you are sane –
Demur – you’re straightway dangerous –
And handled with a Chain –

― Emily Dickinson

Cracks my shit up, man. … Look at him down there. Look at the doofus: shimmying his little tush off. Dude ought to have on Go-Go Boots. …

But that really ain’t Chalice Sinclearly down there; that there’s just the pinnacle of all of my wishes for what he could be. Look at him shaking it up like some mid-‘60s post-teenage pot-smoking ex-Mouseketeer-worshipping future MILF; shimmying his frilly little heart away and taking yet another wild elbow in the cheek bone. Look at him down there. Bloody lip and all. If he wasn’t wearing that elastic eyeglass band – giving ol’boy a disturbing kind of dark-alliance-to-model-glue look – he’d surly be without his right sight down in there. … But shit, again, Chalice, like me, ain’t even really here at all.

We won’t even hear about this gig until after the weekend – until now, actually, when we’ve gotten together for Monday evening brewskies with some of our pushing-50 Motorhead-loving peeps and they’ve started talking about how they was leading the pit’s flow and tension, and they’re showing off their bruises and bragging on about their aches. And right now as one of our friends starts derisively alluding to Chalice’s ever-solidifying fondness for the hush-hush insurrection that is the mail-bomb acoustics of a basement-dwelling syntax—alluding to how Chalice has become more and more of a reclusive Unabomber-type these past years. And the sucker don’t stop there, as he’s now begun to tease Sinclearly for his absence from the fist fights department for over the past almost-decade. And with that all the guys’ve now started jibing in, ganging up on Chalice, basically giving it to him as far as why no one invited him—giving it to him for allowing himself to be given a bedtime (9-10ish) all because a couple of handfuls of years back he yielded to the thinking that he ought to keep a solid count of brain cells intact and undiluted for the ongoing challenges of married life, the cubicle, and for the forthcoming confrontations of all those reasonings that will always be provokingly – tauntingly – right there out beyond the basement’s reach.

And Chalice’s wife is right here even! And as they continue to give it to him for becoming in their eyes a huge-ass wussy, using crude language, showing no decorum – not that they ever really had some – and not that Chalice’s wife can’t handle it, because she can; it’s just there’s a measure of decency I thought even these jagoffs knew how to practice—and I can see the whole mythologizing bullshit that’s the idea behind the artist living hard and dying young start to fill in the white-heats of my man’s eyes: Sinclearly’s going all I’m not what I believe I want to measure up to be; I’ve got to rise from the basement and live – boo hoo hoo on my ass.

Well, shit, I yank his ass right up out of here, and mind-drop us right on over back to Saturday night’s gig. And here we is all up in the mind: me banging out in the balcony while watching Chalice take to the dead center of that pit and start up with his badass, should-be-wearing-Go-Go-boots shimmying. … Look at him down there.  Look at the doofus, taking each blow that comes his way like the godsend each wicked blow is. … Cracks my shit up, man.


This is wannabe John Hospodka’s bi-weekly instructional blog.

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