Friday, November 30, 2007

Poem #334 of 365

Pops paces casually
through the kitchen,
sipping from an opened
cold can of sauerkraut.

Rose has just issued a
complaint, which is
forwarded to me by
another client, and I'm
not sure how to respond,
what action to take.

"Pops is doing sieg-heil again."

I'm not sure if he's a
Nazi sympathizer for real,
or if he's temporarily
homeland sentimental
for distasteful German
foods and fascist regimes.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Poem #333 of 365

synonyms for sin:

you look away as loving words are spoken to you.

you keep windows closed when the air is fresh outside.

you forget that food tastes best when it is shared.

you stifle a hum, a song, a whistle in your mouth.

you disdain your body's scent and mask with store-bought smells.

you avoid learning the burn of your muscles working hard.

you greet strangers sternly until you start to need them.

you ignore your dreams when they are boats for your journey.

you believe that curiosity is only for kids and kittens.

you live your life without living.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Poem #332 of 365

Discussing the future of one's abdominal muscles
with a
is an exercise
in futility.

"And, speaking of exercise,"
she murmured
to her yawning

as she clenched
at her dinner,
which intermingled
with a hastily-sipped
Shiner from the
1am Chat Room
station stop.

Silence after that.
Such a non-conversant cat.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Poem #331 of 365

The film buff boys spoke her name
as if she were a desired nymph
of the Hill Country,

and I found myself jealous of
this virginal ingenue
of a French-language classic.

What did she have that I
didn't have, and how could
I get it, if I didn't have it?

My neurotic compulsion to
be equal, to make Austin
men revere me as much,
swelled into obsession.

What she had? She had
a director, Robert Bresson.
And her creator, Georges Bernanos.

And her name?
Mouchette. She was
the uniquely captivating
French girl Mouchette.

I had never seen Rick
and Brecht and those
other film boys so smitten
as with that threadbare teen
in the muddy clogs.

But tonight, we met.
After all those years, I
dared to see her and study
her gaze.

I was enchanted, I am enthralled,
She is that muse I had
once wooed. I now give her
breadth with my imagination.

Her stride has changed my walk.
I wear a skirt like the rural French.
Her mystery smokes in my dark smile.

Mouchette has finally entered into my life.

(after seeing the film "Mouchette" by Robert Bresson)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Medical research study - Men needed

Here's another call for research study volunteers from the University of North Texas Health Science Center. I get wind of these ever so often, and I actually participated in one study (lower back pain was the focus) this summer, and was compensated to the tune of 30 bucks for every time I went in for "treatment". Not bad, considering I was lucky enough to not be in the control group, and so I actually did get back (manipulative medicine, as well as ultrasound) treatments. Contact info about this particular study is included below.

MALE RESEARCH VOLUNTEERS NEEDED: Healthy men who exercise regularly, ages 18-35.

Adult male volunteers are now sought to participate in a research study entitled: "The Effect of Fitness on Cardiac Work and Cardiac Efficiency with and without cardio-selective beta-adrenergic blockade."

The purpose of this study is to investigate whether blockade of specific proteins located on the heart, called ß1 adrenergic receptors, effect how hard the heart works during exercise. Participation in this study will include administration of a drug that will inhibit the ß1-adrenergic receptors. In addition, we will measure various cardiovascular variables such as: heart rate, blood pressure, cardiac output, oxygen consumption, and thoracic impedance. These measures will be made while sitting, and while performing moderate and strenuous cycling exercise.

We are recruiting men who are of average fitness or are competitive runners, cyclists, triathletes, swimmers, and other athletes.

All subjects must be disease-free, drug-free, and between the ages of 18-35. Total time involvement in this study will be about 8-10 hours over a total of two days. Participation in this study is completely voluntary, and if you are a student or employee of UNTHSC your participation in this study will in no way affect your academic standing or employment. All subjects will be compensated for their time and effort.

If you are interested in participating in this study as a research subject please contact Megan Hawkins at or 817-735-2088.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Poem #330 of 365

As the bottle empties, my belly expands,
and I am pregnant with suds
in the sleek dark night, and I wonder
about trade-offs and
more significant siphonings
and apportionings,

as when the mailbag empties and becomes
less burdensome on the postman's shoulder
while our mailboxes swell with bills,
and the gasoline fuel burns out of a car to
exhaust to zero, and as the refrigerator,
once well-stocked, now holds two jars
of pickled things--and camera film.

But an open book, in the hands of a
studious child, only the book can
feed and fuel and give and emit,
filling a mind, enlarging an intellect,
without itself thinning, emptying, lessening.

It is the vessel that stands fresh with
water for the brain, every day, every page,
like an ever-youthful generous sage.

A book forever fruits.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Poem #326 of 365

Lazily cradled in colorful hammocks,
Zack and I swung in the midafternoon shade.

I had just finished a slice of cake, home-baked
and sold by a barefoot local who peddled her
wares, from palapa to palapa, to the turistas.

I was one of those, for the moment.

Humming Billie Holiday songs and
lamenting no lost time.

Zack offhandedly asked what day today was.

I don't know, I replied. November something.

You know, he continued, I think that Thanksgiving
is someday this week. Maybe today, maybe yesterday.

Oh, really, I hadn't thought about it.

Yeah, he said, as he stared at the Pacific, lulled
back to another relaxed day of not talking much.

Well, happy thanksgiving, if it's today or even if it's not.

The rhapsody of the cool blue waves tranquilized,
and I drifted off to more thoughts of being
completely content with where I was,
what I had, and
who I was with.

(about that endless day around Thanksgiving, 1990, Zipolite, Mexico)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Poem #325 of 365

"dying uncle in Abilene"

i've never written that configuration
of words before,
i've never ever seen them
together like that on a screen.

somehow, a finality.
and i wish i'd not typed them
flat-out like that, wish i hadn't
been cursed to
read them on the screen,
looking so official and certain
this afternoon.

how do i undo this, that which has
been written and
allowed to set in as factual truth?

maybe i can scramble the message,
make something new in these words
to discern instead:

"uncle in dying Abilene"

"Abilene dying, uncle in"

or further, mishmash the letters
to quite distance myself from cancer
and suffering, familial loss and pain:

"lean, ying, nun, Abe"

"undying clean Nile"

but, ultimately, cuz it's
best that i face fully what he
has already known:

"in u lean. i end cling. bye."

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Weirdest List contest / deadline is November 30th

I generate lists constantly because they help keep me on track as shorthand for: longer lists, future things I want to write, and images and events and conversations I want to implant firmly into memory. I am constantly writing on small pieces of paper, receipts, unpaid parking tickets when I'm in the car. Usually, it's to capture some nuanced impression--with just a few written words--that's been made on me by a song or conversation on the radio. I imagine that drivers in the next lanes over think I'm a kook for scribbling behind the wheel, using the dashboard as desktop--but only when the traffic light's red.

On that note (no pun intended), I want to spread the word about a very cool contest created by Sasha Cagen, whose many "jobs" also reads like a laundry list: writer, editor, quirkyalone-movement- leader, and world's leading to-do-list-ologist. Sasha maintains a very quirky blog called the TO DO LIST BLOG, which evolved out of her zine about to do lists. Sasha's quite the darling of sub-cult community-making, with big-name contributors to the book (including Nick Hornby) and big-media (Anderson Cooper, for example) attention to her to-do-ology.

Okay, here's the info, as excerpted from one of Sasha's blogposts:


"To celebrate the book's release, I'm sponsoring a contest: The Weirdest List. Send in your weirdest to-do lists (real authentic lists that you wrote or found in the course of everyday life, please, nothing constructed for publication). I'm interpreting to-do list broadly for the contest, just as I do for the book. . . so this could mean life list, ideal mate list, possible goldfish names, etc. Weird can mean the entire list, the title, or a single odd item on it. Sometimes the most intriguing lists are entirely banal and mundane until the eye gets to that very cryptic item.

Here's how it works: Send a scanned jpeg of your list to todolistblog AT by November 30.
Please write "WEIRDEST LIST CONTEST:" in the subject line before the title you give your list.
Readers of will vote on the winners in the first week of December.

The top three vote-getters will win signed copies of To-Do List: From Buying Milk to Finding a Soul Mate, What Our Lists Reveal About Us (published by Fireside, November 6, 2007, 256 pages) and limited edition copies of "To-Do List," the print magazine where this project got started. . . in addition to bragging rights for having written or found the weirdest to-do lists ever."

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Fort Worth Police Officers endorse Juan Rangel

Tonight, at a "fun-raiser" event at the Embargo Club downtown, an officer representing the FWPD made it official: " unanimous vote, the Fort Worth Police Department endorses Juan Rangel for City Council, representing District 9." Sal Espino, current Councilmember, was on hand for the announcement and pronounced that, because the Fort Worth Professional Firefighters Association also endorses Rangel, "he is THE public safety candidate".

I approached Rangel a little later to ask him if he thought that urban gas drilling was as much a "public safety" concern as having well-compensated and -trained firefighters and police officers protecting our neighborhoods. You think he was gonna answer 'no' to that? I sincerely hope that Rangel can walk a little faster, to keep up with his talk about his opposition to gas drilling in our 'hoods. He did unequivocally state that he will do "everything" he can to keep gas wells away from schools to "protect our children."

Thanks to stellar Embargo bartender Jem for the custom-designed mojito-esque margarita he freebied me. Owner Andrew is sporting a big bushy beard which I've dubbed "his winter coif." He kinda liked that.

Poem #324 of 365

Leave my Aung San Suu Kyi the fuck alone.
Leave my Benazir Bhutto the fuck alone.
Leave even ole Hillary the fuck alone.

(written the week that the world kept messing with these women who are trying to stand credible as political leaders, and yet are being affronted by government manipulations, outright violent aggression, or sexist bullying)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Monday, November 19, 2007

Poem #323 of 365

He pulled a pointy pepper
from his pocket
and offered it to me,
and as I ran off to
finish my walk
I wondered what
kind of cooking
would I stir up
with this pepper
in my pot
stewing so hot.

And would my
mouth burn?
A lot. A lot.

(with thanks to DO for sharing from his garden harvest today)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Poem #322 of 365

Mari, Tania,
bring us your
bring us your

Mari, Tania,
tan apasionadas
tirando tantos jaras--
hitting my heart
with voice,
hitting my heart
with dance.

(Mari Carmen, an amazing flamenco singer, and the sublime flamenco dancer Tania Malagon, were my personal favorites of the "Estampa Espanola & El Cafe de Chinitas" dance performance presented by the Daniel de Cordoba Bailes Espanoles ensemble on Saturday, November 17, at the Rose Marine Theater. More info on them at

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Poem #321 of 365

I took issue with my tissue,
which reeked of a strong
chemical smell straight
out of the package.

So I had a talk with Brandy,
and she responded
with professionalism,
no bathroom humor
for her.

So now Fed Ex is picking up my bathroom tissue,
in a special envelope mailed to my house,
and I wonder if the
world's going to the toilet
if flagrant saboteurs are
dousing toxic fragrance
on my Angel Soft rolls.

[From "Brandy", a consumer response specialist, Georgia-Pacific, Atlanta, Georgia:
"Thank you for contacting the Georgia-Pacific Consumer Response Center. Georgia-Pacific places tremendous importance on the opinions we receive from our consumers. We have recorded your concern in our database as having detected an unusual scent or chemical odor in the product that you purchased."]

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Friday, November 16, 2007

Poem #320 of 365

a december forecast:

i long for something
i never knew.

i miss someone
i forgot to meet.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Thursday, November 15, 2007

District 9 run-off candidates address Chicano Luncheon today, 11/15/2007

With a rep from the League of Women Voters moderating, Juan Rangel and Joel Burns faced a standing-room only live audience of mostly Latino/a professionals at the Chicano Luncheon this afternoon at La Trinidad Methodist Church in the Northside of FW.

For a not very riveting 45 minutes, J & J kept measured expressions on their faces as they responded to prepared questions, with Pastor Flores (of La Trinidad) keeping time cards at the ready, pre-empting any longwindedness. Nothing really surprising in the presentations/responses by J & J, except for the fact that they professed to agree on a couple of issues, particularly urban gas drilling and development along the "Hemphill Corridor."

Both seem to have finally woken up to the troubling potential of gas drilling rigs in urban (near schools, football stadiums--as in the case of TCU, public parks, and future passenger rail lines) settings. Both called for a scrutinizing second look at and possible rewrite of the city's ordinance for gas drilling in FW. This is one issue that J & J know they cannot ignore during this election. 'Bout time.

Today's candidates forum was videotaped for repeated broadcast on FW Community Cable Television. I suggest you tune in--i think it's Cable Channel 31 (for Charter and One Source subscribers) and Cable Channel 36 (for you Verizon customers), starting as early as tomorrow, Friday, November 16th. It's worth watching, at least once.

And on December 11th, it's definitely worth voting.

Poem #319 of 365


he rocked her to death
he rocked her to death.


my mother is in the doorway
and my eyes have just opened
to the day
i think she wants a hug
but she gives me a skirt
and coerces me to try it on

as we make a little conversation
and i try to elevate her spirits
while she repeats

5th and morphy
5th and morphy.

he did it it to his own mother
he killed his own mother

and i remind her not to dwell
on the tv news, especially
when it can drown in despair
along with you in it

but she is stuck on repeat
and so i hug her, admonish
her, figure her out in my
half-waked state of


there is seaweed across his cheek
and the tide is moving in and out
lulling them to slumber,
she wears a tight cardigan, faded
mustard, over a flower-patterned dress.
she may have been taken over with
a deep cough, bubbles in her lungs,
and her toes keep floating up to
be tickled by the foam. he is her
son and silent, staring at the horizon
where the greying sky meets the sea,
but briefly lays his lips to her head,
filling with ocean and fins of the end.
as the waves pull and push, their dance
becomes a steady lullaby of teetering,
a little to the right, a little to the
left. he is rocking her, he is rocking
her, he is rocking her to death,
he is rocking with her to death.


that ocean laps so close sometimes.
rocking me to reality.
doorways and cryptic visits
from mothers happen in morning time,
and i live two blocks
from she who was rocked to death.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

[Police Arrest Man Suspected Of Killing His Mother With Rock - November 15, 2007

FORT WORTH, Texas -- Forth Worth police said they arrested a man Thursday morning who they suspect was involved in the death of his mother.

Police said they suspect Erasmo Herrera, 24, beat his 75-year-old mother, Juana Herrera, over the head with a rock in front of her home in the 1400 block of Fifth Avenue.

Neighbors called 911 and the mother was taken to JPS Health Network, where she died just after arriving.

Herrera ran away, but police caught him a short time later.]

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Poem #317 of 365


kissing and hugging - I and You


You and I - hugging and kissing

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Circuses feature abused animals - Friday & Saturday protests in FW - Shrine Circus

[Molly Fallis and Ramsey Sprague sent along the following announcement about upcoming protests at Will Rogers Coliseum, where the Shrine Circus is currently presenting shows. Some of my own thoughts can be found below the announcement.]

From Molly:
"This is something I feel very strongly about and wish I could attend but I'll be out of town....PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD!!! At the very least, please don't support animal cruelty and exploitation. Going to this kind of circus IS NOT some childhood right [sic] of passage! There's a zillion other things you can do with your kids for fun! Don't take them!!! I went as a child and figured out on my own that this shit ain't cool! Peace! Molly (thanks Ramz)

I've added a couple of links...tell me if it looks like these elephants are living happy lives and having fun...

ever wonder how they learn all those tricks???"


WHAT: Peaceful Educational Outreach at the Shrine Circus

WHO: ALL COMPASSIONATE PEOPLE in the DFW Metroplex (If those who care about animal abuse don't come, NO ONE will speak for these frightened and abused animals). Isn't this worth 30 minutes to one hour of your time?


Friday, November 16, 6 PM, (doors open 6 PM, circus starts 7PM)
Saturday, November 17, 5:30 PM (doors open 6 PM, circus starts 7PM)

WHY: Animals in the circus are tortured, not trained, into performing.

Animals do not naturally ride bicycles, stand on their heads, balance on balls, or jump through rings of fire. To force them to perform these confusing, physically uncomfortable and often frightening tricks, trainers use whips, tight collars, muzzles, electric prods, bullhooks, and other painful tools of the trade. Educate the public that intelligent, social animals are deprived of ALL their natural behaviors and forced to perform silly tricks for humans.

Speak up for the animals who have no voice!


Will Rogers Memorial Coliseum
3401 W. Lancaster Ave.
Fort Worth, TX 76107
Look for us leafleting along the sidewalk at each gate and at the ticket counter.

CONTACT: Margaret Morin at dogs_good (at) or 972-578-0370 or 972-571-9603 (cell # for day of circus use only, please)

DIRECTIONS: Take I-30 to Fort Worth, Exit University. North on University. Turn left on Lancaster and look for tall tower.


Parking: Free Parking across the street from the WRC at the Kimbell Museum.




To ensure you get such announcements in the future, if you are not yet a Vegetarian Network of Dallas member (free), please join now by going to:

Thank you.
Margaret Morin
Vegetarian Network of Dallas

++++++++ my thoughts: +++++++++

Just a few days ago, I read that Nazi officers, as part of their training, were given live animals to feed, care for, play with, and name. They were eventually forced to kill these animals that they had bonded with, without expressing any emotion. No wonder the Nazis were able to callously perform the heinous torture and murder of thousands of human beings.


As a child, I was taken to circuses now and then. I often felt queasy during these shows, and never quite understood why. The clowns scared me, with their garish antics and exploding devices. And to see the animals lumbering and galloping in circles, through hoops, or into nets made them seem like heroes to me--surviving the crazy challenges that their handlers were subjecting them to. It was a metaphor for survival in an illogical, uncomprehending and unsympathetic world.


An Austin poet named Kevin used to perform a poem titled "Smashing the Butterfly". It was profound. The poem was about Kevin's experience as a horse trainer, working with a veteran who knew the tricks of "breaking" a horse. Through the course of the poem, we learn that this experience was very traumatic for Kevin, and certainly for the horses. The upshot of the poem is that, as you smash the spirit or will of the creature with which you are working, you are--at the same time--killing something within yourself. Doomed to be broken. Amazing poem--I wonder where Kevin is today?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Poem #315 of 365

A betrayal from the other room
looms on the tray and
you are asked to swallow

something you would
never care to taste,

and your throat
feels clogged
with the pain
and embarrassment

of a decision
forced upon you,

but the bitterness lingering
now in your heart
will take much
longer to digest,

breaking bread together
fatefully changed
a full-course meal
into the rotten bite of
trust breaking apart.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Save Sunday for SHE: BIKE/SPOKE/LOVE - November 11th in Fort Worth

It was standing-room only on September 22nd, when we unveiled this show in FW. Come see what Fort Worth theater critic Mark Lowry calls "extreme theater". Basically,
it's hiphop/spoken word at the intersection of theater & bicycling. Is that complicated? Well, not really, but it sure makes for a helluva fun ride to watch. Make reservations at TODAY !

Two Shows
Sunday, November 11th.
2pm - matinée performance
7:30pm - evening performance

Sanders Theatre at
The Fort Worth Community Art Center
1300 Gendy St, Fort Worth
(The southeast corner of Lancaster & Montgomery)

Admission (at the door!)
$5 for those who bike, bus or walk to the theatre
$10 for those who arrive by automobile

This experimental play features poetry, lyrical dialogue, freestyle and choreographed bicycling, video sequences, and a turntablist.

"Extreme production fascinates with variety"
- Fort Worth Star Telegram

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Poem #311 of 365

Whales do wop.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Poem #310 of 365

strapped to a drip and drool napkin
i force my mind to conjure
some people,
challenged folk,
who can gain my sympathy
as i strain to forget
that i am in a dentist's chair

Aung San Suu Kyi

Benazir Bhutto

they are losing a country
they are losing their country
they are losing the battle for democracy in their country

and i am only losing a tooth.
one naturally-decaying

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Monday, November 05, 2007

Poem #309 of 365

these butterfly wings
are the on-ramps to superhighways
for chicano/a progress towards
liberation. education and enlightenment.

the tiny little sticks connected on top
are utility poles strung together,
electrical wire stitches of power,
as we get sewn together
in hopeful expression
like so many bright flashes dotting
the landscapes across tejas

con honor y esfuerza.

(considering an original artwork by Jesus "Cime" Alvarado of El Chuco (El Paso), Texas)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Poem #307 of 365

I'm wondering if this has happened yet,
or if it's merely a promise of a future shadow.

My dreams have taken place
during this changeover,
so I'm not sure if they are


to come

or verifications


(don't ever dream during the changeover of daylight savings time on sunday mornings...)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Friday, November 02, 2007

Poem #306 of 365

Delivery of nouns
happens without
the basket or the sack.

There is naming in
your mouth, and I
will read that list
when you finally kiss me.

I ordered the verbs:
caress, thrust, stroke,
and hold,

yet the market cannot
bear this love, assign
a value to this rust.

Bring me the water
to fill my mouth,
gargling to filter
distress, deny, distaste.

I make room for your nouns
in my clairvoyant sway,
opening doors to air the day.

Finally: thicket, trunk,
trust, and tremble.

I climb the noisy trunk
of your body, lose myself
in the tremble of your
heartbeat thicket, and
stretch along your length
as far as the rumor of love can trust.

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Poem #305 of 365

The quetzal feathers magically appear
in my outstretched fingers,
and as my hand closes upon them,
a force greater than me sweeps me up off my feet
and suddenly the feathers
have swollen up within my fist
to become an entire shimmering wing
which carries me higher and higher
to the land of my beginning.

I close my eyes to keep this dream alive
and to let myself release the fear,
for the winds have graciously parted
to make our flight both smooth and sweet,
and by now I can tell that
one wing has doubled to two
and soon a tail and head emerge
to form a complete magical bird.

As I climb up the muscled back
of the quetzal, we aspire to even
higher elevations, and I do not
question an uprise. I have glimpsed
down below and recognize this terrain,
a mountain place of winged fish
and fluorescent frogs, where I
have forced my dreams to take me
again and again.

We are cascading now, one feather
at a time, a shower of plummet,
and I feel my arms open wide as if
I too were a bird. We race,
the feathers, the beak, my body,
my smile, to the place of my dreams.
I will be landing soon, as the campesinos
raise their eyes to welcome what they have been
dreaming for centuries. One upon another,
our visions will blend and, when I touch Mayan ground,
my arms will remain open,
as I fly towards the deepest embrace
I have ever dreamt, ever known.

(thanks to Ozomatli for the musicial pep talk, and to my dreams which often carry me to my ancestral land)

copyright 2007 tammy melody gomez