14th & 15th June, 2010



















Boots & Rod. Photographed by Edward, May 2010. ©2010 By Stanyan Music Group. All Rights Reserved

A Thought for Today

All of us are in the same boat, guys; let's not tip it over.



Mid June already, hard to believe we are this far into the not so new year. We’ve had a bit of overcast weather here in Southern California – mornings and evenings, but the sun seems to get through in late morning and last through the afternoon.


One day you wake up sure beyond all wondering that deadlines are the food of stress. Other people's stopping places. Other people's deadlines.. Other people's No, you can't. Yes, you must.. If you are of good fortune or among the favored few, somewhere between the last pay check and the head exploding, you come upon sweet solitude in all its joy and finery. It is then you understand at once that here is finally friend and lover you went seeking long ago. If not true friend then compliment to same. And no less a lover than the last your arms go 'round as God administers the final count. Stress by any handle, tension or tomorrow is the enemy of reason, betrayer of each confidence and harbinger of every trouble laid at the feet of time. Who can sing of solitude enough? Why do we fear the word? Perhaps the answer is the question. Must there always be a why and a why not? Only if within the blood there is no sense of daring-do. Stress will always be the chain that holds us back from solitude, the great adventure.

- from Folio #40 , 1983

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notable birthdays

Monday 14 June

Alois Alzheimer o Rod Argent o Gene Barry o Yasmine Bleeth o Edward (Major) Bowes o Cy Coleman o Boy George o Marla Gibbs o Steffi Graf o Che Guevara o Burl Ives o Rudolf Kempe o Jerzy Kosinsky o Gil Lamb o Lester Lanin o Lash LaRue o Jorge Rivero Mexico o Dorothy McGuire o Pierre Salinger o Harriet Beecher Stowe o Donald Trump o Sam Wanamaker

Tuesday 15 June

Yuri Andropov o Courteney Cox Arquette o Jim Belushi o Robert Russell Bennett o Robert Cohen o Mario Cuomo o Brian Eno o Erroll Garner o Terri Gibbs o Edvard Grieg o Julie Hagerty o Neil Patrick Harris o Xavier Hollander o Helen Hunt o Waylon Jennings o William McFee o Dina Meyer o Harry Nelson o Harry Nilsson o Geoffrey Parsons o Thomas Randolph o John Sample o Ernestine Schumann-Heink o Morris K. Udall

Rod's random thoughts Failure is as certain as success, but neither final.

I could be saved by hearing you say no as surely as salvation lies on the velvet forehead of yes. Not knowing is a nod toward damnation.

Some oceans have been known to come again to their mother country and wash ashore more brilliant treasures than they took away.


What I can see beyond this wall
                        is greenness
nothing more.
Not children or a house
only trees and greenness.

And as I walk about the yard
content with only green
I hear the sound of summer
coming once again
in the sky and on the hills.

It's summer in the city too.
You're dancing with yourself
and sleeping with your pillow
            or so I tell myself.

My microscope eye
can see beyond this wall
but there's another wall

Still like the phoenix
one day I'll rise up singing
from the ashes of your body
                       once again.

- from the recording "The Single Man," 1978. First print publication in Flight Plan 6/18/1999


Today it belongs to my friend Wes Fish:

As a bagpiper, I play many gigs. Recently I was asked by a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man. He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a pauper's cemetery in the Kentucky back-country.

As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost; and being a typical man I didn't stop for directions. I finally arrived an hour late and saw the funeral guy had evidently gone and the hearse was nowhere in sight.

There were only the diggers and crew left and they were eating lunch .I felt badly and apologized to the men for being late. I went to the side of the grave and looked down and the vault lid was already in place. I didn't know what else to do, so I started to play.

The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around. I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family and friends. I played like I've never played before for this homeless man.

And as I played 'Amazing Grace,' the workers began to weep. They wept, I wept, we all wept together.. When I finished I packed up my bagpipes and started for my car. Though my head hung low my heart was full.

As I opened the door to my car, I heard one of the workers say, " I never seen nothin' like that before and I've been putting in septic tanks for twenty years."


As usual Wednesday comes after Tuesday and before Thursday and it’s Webmaster Ken’s day of the week to write in this space. I hope you’ll join me in seeing what Ken’s up to with his “This One Does It For Me” feature. I’ll be back again on Thursday.

Sleep warm.

RM Holmby Hills, CA / 6:55PM PDST 13 June, 2010

© 1968, 1974,1978, 1983, 1998, 1999, 2010 by Stanyan Music Group & Rod McKuen. All Rights Reserved
Webmaster: Ken Blackie • Birthday Research by Wade Alexander • Poems from the collection of Jay Hagan •
Sound & Fury Dr. Eric Yeager • Editor at Large: Bruce Bellingham • Emeritus: Melinda Smith
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