Author Archives: Jim McCurry

Jim McCurry

jim mc curry, b. 10-3-43 in hawthorne (los angeles) california, has taught at carl sandburg college since 1980, in poetry & philosophy; since recently going online, his links include Big City Lit, Cyber Oasis, Drought, and Snow Monkey—ten poems in all, four of which now appear at the websites of the first two zines just named. His philosophical interests center on nonduality: especially maha ati, dzogchen, or madhyamika. (David Loy's recent study, NONDUALITY, is a convenient handle.) For example, "the man" includes Huang-po, Yun-men, Dogen. The trouble with What Is Enlightenment is the dubious assumption that we can think our way to enlightenment, or that there is truly conscious evolution, 'progress,' rather than recovery of primordial innocence/happiness. In this respect, contrary to some of his best friends, actually, Jim is somewhat skeptical of Andrew Cohen's work, and Ken Wilbur's—not to say the work of Eckhart Tolle, let's say. The literary interests include V. Woolf, B. Cendrars, Lydia Davis, Knut Hamsun, Carlos Drummond de Andrade, Casares and Borges, Marquez, Neruda, William Carlos Williams, Jack Collom. I think that's enough indication. O yes, Pessoa. Jim has a granfalloon of masks, some of whom are becoming heteronyms, mebbe: Baron Axel Angst, Ramadooly Foofoo, H. Pumphrey Smogrove, and the most fully realized of all, Dogwag Bummerstead, PhD, aka Old Dog. email:

early March, 2003: A Poem

say sheaths. Perhaps Narcissus. I go to pick up my typewriter, the smell of clean oil, it’s raining, a few intermittent drops a Sidney Greenstreet could walk between. Yesterday I drove the Interstate to see Beulah, in the Lutheran rest home: "They’re driving me bananas." What enigma– dame, woman, babe, lady, commuter, brave shotgun rider […]

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ESP: A Poem

The next table must be   talking about Bushy’s State of the Union last   night– "the Joint Chiefs even        jumped up and down" * the arbitrary            spur         of             excitement * Academic Lunch Women have more subtle         antennae . I’m "working" on my salad        greens.   Not even a glance at her ambiguous        ring finger alerts […]

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Scattered Elegy/Eulogy for Philip Whalen

To zap the demons of attachment you told your premature mourners to place your corpse on a table strewn with frozen raspberries * Today is July 18, 2002, and the last time I sat in Boulder was summer 1975– you arrived, and I was reading your novels & poems and saw no more need to […]

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Ship of State

in barbecue smoke making chin music– madras warrior, what do you think? do you find yourself elsewhere? – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – Last night in my astro recliner, a lawyer highliting certain ossia pons asinorum portions of writ to enlarge for a […]

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On What is Proper

One should enjoy flowers in the company of beauties, get drunk under the moon in the company of charming friends, and enjoy the flight of snow in the company of high-minded scholars. –apocryphal, Chinese Born, bored by conflict taught by degrees to believe we must contend, find some purchase, gain the edge, you put on […]

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i’ve got logic class

cxk             ive got logic class ,cmxlo     [ sez   old dawg ]    o             sez  old dawg old  ?????            ?          ????  ::_::)864]4 ssubmitted by jim mc curry at carl sandburg college /       butttttt                                      but               but             /    so whut?          =        _    but_         ___  `         ________________            like,     […]

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First of all, I like this [says my email pen pal, K And I tend to I agree]: I guess I’m beginning to accept the idea of trimming down my voices to the ones I like, and I guess I’m beginning to accept the idea of trimming down my voices to the ones I like, […]

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Wit: A Poem

[there’s] something to be said … not much, for the idea that everyone ought to commit suicide once in a while Hayden Carruth Listen to the hiss ­ zigzag aggressions, depression, graphs ­ while calmer heads ­ shake their souls — stirred in sadness do the best they can? Who wanted to be the kid […]

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CODA: A Poem

The fit seizes me—I drift— tearing sound of shot silk— plosions below. Gray sun changes to pale yellow wash. Milt bops. Duke downshifts. Bessie kneels from midnight to sun        in golden chains. Thin hipped, thin lipped, you come trailing your bluest India, weeping to any night switchman, tickling his crotch— Sex, you sing, is just […]

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Je Ne Sais Quoi: A Poem

To snooze? Two gaunt men–the one I visited yesterday with bones older than mine; the other, today, my age. I wish to make a gift of my fat. I have more than I need. Yes, but the mysterious laws of this planet, do not permit it. If masters there be, in India, or in the […]

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Female Bodhisattva: A Poem

When you die, you will look back
upon the motley, hurley-burley carnival
with a tiny pentagram of wry compassion
in your open, trusting eye

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