The con men

When poets proudly said fuck you in this city, they betrayed its’ sacredness
and beauty as a place of hope, as the place to come to purify yourself,
scale the heights, face your darkness in this divine and intense light.

Photo by Pixabay on

Against the elders’ claim any fool can be a drunk, a sex hound, poets
screeched drunks and sex hounds have a right and duty to be profane, to
lead San Francisco’s youth away from demanding vision, to create heights
as selfish and false as skyscrapers to come.

Copyright © 2023 by David Vaszko

The philosopher

Chadwick thought baseball would get the nation outside,
Help those who play it develop manly pride,
Playing a game for boys that would challenge them to be men,
Learning to control that temper which rises again and again.

When you use your power and test your skill,
Things don’t always go your way.
You often want to kill.
Henry C was saying that along with passion their must be good will.
Whether you win or lose you must be king of your spiritual hill.

Copyright © 2021 by David Vaszko

Friday, June 29

Dear Jim,

It’s a hot morning in Sacto. I’m writing to you at my favorite coffee shop where I’ve written to you so many times in the last year.

I need the place. I’m lucky it’s here for me to regroup, or to smile on the world when I’m inspired.

That’s the way I feel about you. You were there when I was down. You were proud of me when I was up.

A guy just sat down at my table. He has an 8” x 5” x 11” bible. We looked at each other. I said hi. He didn’t. I’m sure he feels he is on a spiritual path.

I’m trying to be on one, to be the passionate truth seeker I was as a kid, to be born again, this time without arrogance.

So I’ve sought you with these letters. I needed you to help me make changes I ache to make, to feel great before I die.

It’s been an incredible year. I don’t know what I would have done if I hadn’t written to you.

I’m scared. Next year I have to make it on my own. If I become great, you won’t be here to laugh with as we sit on the lawn in the back of Sis I’s breathing the country air.

It will be sad for me. It will be sadder for you. You always admired me – your younger brother with unforgettable passion.

There’s lots of regrets. With all our pain, I wish I had prayed for you, for us, for me.


Copyright © 2021 by David Vaszko

Friday, May 4

Dear Jim,

It’s a sleepy afternoon in Sacto. I think it’s going to start being warm. It’s about time.

Elections are coming up. I was thinking of going to the debate for my City Council District, but I already told the incumbent I will not vote for him. At least he knocked on my door.

The woman I want to vote for hasn’t knocked on my door yet. If she doesn’t, I will vote for the guy who doesn’t have a chance.

I would like to go to the debates. But they aren’t raucous. The people who attend have to write questions for the candidates on a piece of paper, then hope the old ladies who host the debate are not offended by your question.

So if you write, ”There are an increasing number of the homeless population, what proposals do you have to improve the situation,” the question will probably be presented to the candidates. But if you write, ”Are you going to get the slobs out of the alleys,” your question won’t get asked. Too emotional. Too direct.

That doesn’t mean I don’t squirm or get uncomfortable when I’m at a City Council meeting or something. I do. My discomfort at a lively and angry meeting or march is good for me. I have to ask why I am afraid of the people I don’t like and their opinions.

But these wimpy ass genteel debates don’t challenge my fears. It’s not that the candidates don’t get mad at each other. It’s that there won’t be any passion between the listeners – no fuck yous, no potential fist fights – nothing that challenges me to keep my composure and be an adult. I want to scream, ”How come I don’t get to ask a surprising uncomfortable question? This is too easy on the women and too safe for the candidates!”

Now for the state. Governor Moonbeam is in the last year of his second term. What a great career! Two eight year stints as governor at least twenty years apart, plus mayor of a famous city, and attorney general of the state.

I don’t like him, but I respect him. What skill it takes to wear so many hats.

The leading candidate for governor is Mayor Slimeball from San Francisco. His hair looks like the hair of those guys in the Vitalis commercials when we were young – That greasy kid’s stuff. He makes me ill.

Well Jim, it’s a nice day. I’m going to put my pencil from the art supply store down and enjoy the peace.



Copyright © 2021 by David Vaszko