The Lover’s Almanac 25 August – Want – Maybe – art by Dorothea Tanning

Dear Zazie Lee,  Here is today’s Lover’s Almanac from Mac Tag.  Maybe love?  Maybe not?  Maybe he is a fool?  What do you think?  Rhett

The Lover’s Almanac

Dear Muse,

as he was a bachelor
& in nobody’s debt,
nobody troubles their head
about him anymore
“Is that what you are afraid of?”
it is what i want

“Is that what you want
or is that a play for attention?”
touche, mon petit chou
how did you git to be
so damn observant
and so pretty

“Well I always know
I am getting somewhere
when you engage your
flattery or humor
self-defense mechanisms
So answer the question…”

“What do you really want?”
for you to read my verse
“That’s it? That’s all you want?
To spend your life alone
writing songs and poetry?”

well there is what i want
and what i will have
the one i know
the other i do not

and i am not the only one
usin’ self-defense,
you know what i want
“I want to hear you say it.”
i want you, damnit!
and that scares
the ever lovin’ life outta me

© copyright 2017 mac tag/cowboy Coleridge all rights reserved

Here is Jett’s response to Adele’s letter.

Dear Adele,

So, could I have loved you had things been different?  I could wax poetic and write:  How could I have loved you, let me count the ways.  Wait, let us throw some more questions out there.  Are there degrees of love?  Did I love you?  Do I still love you?  Was/is it lust or love?  And one qualification; nothin’ but honesty between us, right?

The easiest question to take off the table is the lust question.  No surprise here; I could have so easily fallen in lust with you.  The moment I saw you there was a part of me that started thinkin’ about how good it would be to have mind alterin’, body shakin’, life changin’ sex with you.  (And it would have been the best ever, I just know it.  I know what I can do when properly inspired and I have a hunch the same can be said of you.)  There was not a day that passed in our time together that I did not think about makin’ love to you.  But that part of me was constantly overruled by a stronger part of me.  The part of me that is a gentleman (or a fool some might say).  The part of me that still believes in chivalry.  The part of me that wanted whatever we were gonna have, friends or lovers, to be pure.  A married man (no matter how unhappily married) havin’ an affair with one of his employees would not exactly be pure and would have tainted what we had.  So my feelings for you went beyond lust.
So what of love?  Could I have loved you?  Without a doubt.  You are beautiful, sexy, bright, fun, smart, you know how to waltz and you have strong character.  Everything a cowboy could want.  Had I been single, I would have tried to sweep you off your feet.  Would we have rode off happily into the sunset?  Would you have been happy with a cowboy poet?  Cowboys are not easy to love and they are harder to hold.  A cowboy poet may be impossible to love and hold.  A cowboy poet would rather give you a song than anything else.  A cowboy is so fiercely independent he has trouble lettin’ anyone do anything for him.  A cowboy would rather do without than admit he needs help.  Cowboys thrive on honky tonks and cold mountain mornin’s.  Cowboys tend to be wanderers.  Since I graduated from high school I have lived in eight cities.  In those cities and between those cities, I have moved over 20 times.  Poets thrive on inspiration.  Poets tend to wander mentally.  So keepin’ them inspired and understandin’ where their mind roams can be a challenge.  Think you could love this cowboy poet?  Well, keep readin’.
Did I love you?  Do I love you?  Yes, no, maybe; I do not know.  Is this where degrees come in to play?  Do I say a part of me loved you/loves you?  No, that is a cop out.  The answer is…… yes.  I did.  I do.  But the real issues have not changed; I cannot walk away from my kids and I am scarred and scared.  Yes, you read that correctly, Superman is scared.
As for the kids, if I left, things would get so ugly I would have to give them up completely and their lives would be unalterably changed.  There would be no other way.  I have abandoned one family.  I will not abandon another.
As for bein’ scared, (here comes real truth) every woman I have ever loved or tried to love was crazy.  So, are all women crazy or do I have that affect on them?  I think it was partly, if not mostly me.  I have so much baggage from my crazy mother that it makes me too scarred to love someone.  She was manipulative, controllin’, vindictive, and unstable.  I spent a lifetime tryin’ to make her happy and it was all for naught.  My relationship with her is a deep, swift movin’ river that would take more than this email to explore.  Did growin’ up with this unbalanced woman give me a knack for findin’ unbalanced women to fall in love with?  The point is, I have left a wide swath of broken hearts and altered lives behind me and  I am afraid it is a pattern that I am destined to repeat and repeat.  I now think, may God have mercy on my children’s souls, that I never should have married.  I am not the marryin’ kind.  David Lee Roth wrote; “Love ’em all I say, let Cupid sort them out“.  I say; I should have tried to love myself instead of tryin’ to love ’em all.
Or was my problem the fact that I never met the right woman?  The one who could have helped mend my warped heart.  The one who would have taken my hand and helped me understand that it was not my fault.  The one whose love would have been enough to let me forgive her, forgive myself and let go of the pain.
So this deeply flawed cowboy could not give himself completely to you, so he has given only part of himself to you.  I know you knew some of this.  Maybe you knew it all.  Maybe in another time and place we coulda had it all.  Maybe someday?  Maybe I am amazed.  Maybe I am a fool.  Maybe all of this winds up in a poem.  Maybe.  Helluva word maybe.  Full of nothin’ or hope dependin’ on how you look at it.  Maybe my mind has been in a flurry of Southern Girl passion since your letter.
deeply flawed
cannot give completely,
only partially
you knew some of this
maybe you knew it all
maybe in another time
and place we coulda…
maybe someday
maybe I am amazed
maybe I am a fool
helluva word maybe
full of nothin’ or hope
dependin’ on the point of view
maybe my mind has been
in a flurry of Southern Girl
passion since your letter
© copyright 2016 mac tag/cowboy Coleridge all rights reserved
The Song of the Day is “Maybe I’m A Fool” by Eddie Money.  We do not own the rights to this song.  All rights reserved by the rightful owner.  No copyright infringement intended.
George Stubbs
George Stubbs

A self-portrait by George Stubbs

Today is the birthday of George Stubbs (Liverpool; 25 August 1724 – 10 July 1806 London); English painter, best known for his paintings of horses.


A Lion Attacking a Horse, oil on canvas, 1770, by Stubbs. Yale University Art Gallery

In 1756 he rented a farmhouse in the village of Horkstow, Lincolnshire, and spent 18 months dissecting horses, assisted by his common-law wife, Mary Spencer.

Whistlejacket. National Gallery, London.



Mares and Foals in a Landscape. 1763–68.
Dorothea Tanning
AAA inverobe 11954-2.jpg

Max Ernst and Dorothea Tanning in 1948. Photo by Robert Bruce Inverarity in the Smithsonian Institution collection.

Today is the birthday of Dorothea Margaret Tanning (Galesburg, Illinois; August 25, 1910 – January 31, 2012 Manhattan); American painter, printmaker, sculptor, writer, and poet. Her early work was influenced by Surrealism.

Birthday, 1942, oil on canvas, 40 1/4 x 25 1/2 in./102.2 x 64.8 cm, Philadelphia Museum of Art. ©The Estate of Dorothea Tanning

After an eight-year relationship, she was married briefly to the writer Homer Shannon in 1941.

Julien Levy gave Tanning two one-person exhibitions (in 1944 and 1948), and also introduced her to the circle of émigré Surrealists whose work he was showing in his New York gallery, including the German painter Max Ernst.

Tanning first met Ernst at a party in 1942.  Later he dropped by her studio to consider her work for an exhibition of work by women artists at The Art of This Century gallery, which was owned by Peggy Guggenheim, Ernst’s wife at the time.  As Tanning recounts in her memoirs, he was enchanted by her iconic self-portrait Birthday (1942, Philadelphia Museum of Art).  The two played chess, fell in love, and embarked on a life together that took them to Sedona in Arizona, and later to France.  They lived in New York for several years before moving to Sedona, where they built a house.  Tanning and Ernst were married in 1946 in a double wedding with Man Ray and Juliet Browner in Hollywood.

In 1949, Tanning and Ernst relocated to France, where they divided their time between Paris and Touraine, returning to Sedona for intervals through the early and mid 1950s.  They lived in Paris and later Provence until Ernst’s death in 1976, after which Tanning returned to New York.  She continued to create studio art in the 1980s, then turned her attention to her writing and poetry in the 1990s and 2000s, working and publishing until the end of her life.  Tanning died on January 31, 2012, at her Manhattan home at age 101.

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