“I’m On It” – a sonnet… by Herbert T. Schmidt Jr.

Bump and riff and turn around Sue

There ain’t nothing burning that I won’t do

You can make your own shoeblack back beat

But you can’t change the creatures in the zoo

Undercarriage torn up and dragging

Mind twisted bent and precariously sagging

I face the wind and ask for whatever it is

To show itself teeth bared and wail wagging

Bump and riff and turn around Daisy

I may be nuts but I definitely ain’t crazy

You can kill the lion you can’t shill me

I can see forever be it clear or hazy

Pile it up slash it to bits set it by the door

I’m alive and up for all the rest of so much more

Herbert T. Schmidt Jr.

© 2011

“Morning, 3 a.m.” by Herbert T. Schmidt, Jr.

I wish you away
But you return at night
You intrude
Beating on doors I closed to you
Where I shelter my heart
Where I closet my pain
Where I sit in darkness

I scream stop
The noise of your pounding
Or my heart diminishes
As I am diminished by your leaving
As I am diminished by the ways I sent you away

And you return again
You say nothing
I feel you there
My stomach tenses
My breath catches
You are a ghost
An accusation
A haunting

Where do the tears go that cannot be cried?
Where is the cessation of my sorrow?
How many nights must I endure you?
How many nights will I summon you back to torture me?

Herbert T. Schmidt, Jr.

Photo by L. K. Thayer

© 2011

“a valentine for whatshername” by Herbert T. Schmidt, Jr.

i stopped writing poems
because i dried up inside
because i gave myself away
i couldn’t feel/think/be
a poem
while the sun sank into an indifferent sea
this may not be homeric
what i scribble to you
or pindaric
or shakespearean
or petrarchian
but the sun blazes again with fire
and rises brilliantly to the awakening day
of breath
of souls
of life
a small boy composes a valentine for a girl with bright eyes
he works with little craft
only his heart guides him
as he writes
roses are red…

Herbert T. Schmidt, Jr.

L. K. Thayer’s Foto Fetish

© 2011

“Stories Replace People” by Herbert T. Schmidt, Jr.


He said something that hurt her
She reacted angrily
He raised his voice
She spoke louder than he
He told her she was acting like a child
She said he was being manipulative
He shook a finger at her
She said she was leaving without him
He said there’s no leaving in love
She said you watch me
He was overwhelmed by a sense of great loss
She slammed the door on the way out
He had seen the look in her eye
She hated him during their argument
He grew very cold and shook for hours
She did not reappear or call
He was alone
She was gone
He sent her flowers
She said thank you I want to talk to you
He was afraid of what she would say
She knocked on his door later
He opened it
She asked him if he was going to hug her
He hugged her
She sat down and began to tell him how much he had taught her, etc.
He asked her if she had come to break up with him
She said yes she had stopped loving him during their argument
He said there was nothing else to talk about and left the room
She left her ring on the table and closed the door softly as she left

He told the story to his friends
She told the story to her friends
His story stressed how childishly she had behaved
Her story stressed how he had hurt her

Where she had been in his life there was now a story
Where he had been in her life there was now a story

There is nothing in life sadder than when
Stories replace people

Herbert T. Schmidt, jr.

Foto by L. K. Thayer

© 2010

“Long Ago And Far Away” by herbert t. schmidt, jr.

long ago and far away we were all much younger

I remember eating the nutso cake in tranquilizer alley
The congealed anti-depressant stew
in shorts and suspenders before beast enhancement
I stopped wearing belts when mr. blank guy came to me after group
and sd. thanks for your share, it really affected me, really
And hanged himself with his belt wrapped around the bathroom doorknob
and what used to be his neck at 4:30 in the morning
It’s 5 o’clock where are my fucking meds?

I became the king of the crazy belt makers in arts and crafts
It helped to be heavily sedated
when focusing on striking leather with tool
Sex plentiful and unhinged: the psych tech, the anorexic physicist, the suicidal failure,
even my wife and the woman who thought I was going to leave my wife
before I bought the banana boat
She wasn’t crazy about seeing me locked up
she thought I was running a new game of crackers
I was insanely hot, sweating molten fear…
It’s 5 after 5 where is that asshole shrink?  I gotta have my fucking meds…..

So let’s have dinner on depression glass…
the minute steak and mixed up vegetables right after
we all take a psychotic break for backgammon in the pod
Cheryl stole my goddamn diet pepsi my diet pepsi
mine is that the way it is here?
where we’re supposed to feel safe
no anyone can do anything at all to us and it’s ok
Because we’re cuckoo
and the rest of the drano gargling drug addicted population
is bat shit crazy or trying to duck a murder rap after blowing a girl friend’s head off
while higher than Sears Tower on yellow jackets and cocaine
It’s 7 after 5,  Alice, you gotta help me here
Keep the anti-depressant… Just give me the fucking valium.

Goddamn it, I’m about to do a Superman here and rip off my skin
transform myself into NoDerm the Magnificent
the most manipulative man on the planet
just don’t ask me for help…the Lord helps….you know the drill
Herr Doktor Freudian Whatshisname says if I spend an hour a day three days a week
Fifty-two weeks a year for eight years at $160 per
I’ll be cured of whatever it is I have…he doesn’t know just now
There is no diagnosis three and half months into my vacation on fantasy island
But some fast math tells me if I agree to buy him Switzerland I’ll be all better
Fuck, it’s 8 after 5, I am losing it big time
Cheryl, get out of my goddamn Diet Shasta Chocolate
Can’t anyone control that half-dressed whacked out frizz headed tongue chewing twinkie?
Alice, where are my meds?!! I’VEGOTTOHAVEMYMEDS!

And Joel the bus driver stands at his water fountain altar
intoning to a god of only his understanding:
We are the champions, my friends…and we’ll keep on fighting

Till the end….

herbert t. schmidt, jr.


“Waiting For Jack” Tonight! Sat. Oct. 16th Encore Performance


John Densmore producing play Waiting For Jack

  • September 24th, 2010 7:59 pm ET

It looks like Oct 16th is shaping up to be a date for poetic remembrances of literary hero’s. In Nashville on the 16th will be A Night to Remember Jim Morrison In Poetry, Film & Song. Now we have a John Densmore produced (along with Michael C Ford, Eve Brandstein, and Rex Weiner) play, Waiting for Jack.

Waiting For Jack is described as a rough recreation of the famous Gallery Six Reading in 1955 in which Allen Ginsberg first read Howl. The original reading wasn’t a staid polite poetry reading given to sipping tea, maybe smoking of tea*. It was a raucous affair with jugs of wine being passed around with Kerouac exhorting the poets from the audience much as a Jazz fan would encourage a solo.

In Waiting For Jack, John Densmore plays Gary Snyder, and along with the poetry Densmore plays the bongo’s. The play is the brainchild of Rex Weiner and Michael C. Ford and seeks not a literal reenactment of the Gallery Six reading or the poets that were there, but seeks the spirit of the night. The play recreates the raucous atmosphere of the original Gallery Six reading with off stage commentators adding punctuating remarks to the poetry in the form of heckling, flirting, bickering much like a Greek chorus or perhaps a beat “Our Town.”

The 90 minute play also features Eric Trules as Allen Ginsberg, Doug Knott as Charles Bukowski, Eve Brandstein as Diane DiPrima, and a whole host of others who on any given night of the performance may participate. Waiting For Jack has previously been performed in August of this year for a three night stand at The Short Stop Bar in Echo Park. You can see photos of the performance on their website. Producer Rex Weiner is hoping in the future to find the show a permanent residence so the show can be held regularly. Early next year they will take the show to college campuses around the country.

Waiting For Jack is a one night only affair Oct 16th, 2010 at 7 PM, $7.00 donation at the door. It will be presented at Tom Landau’s Studio 1520, 1520 2nd St., Santa Monica, CA, 90403.

*At the time tea was the euphemism for marijuana.

Read previous related articles: Jim Morrison A Night to Remember, Elektra Records 60th Birthday Party, International Jim Morrison Appreciation Day

Thank you for reading The Doors Examiner!

Jim Cherry

Cast includes:

Stephen Kalinich (Jack Micheline), S.A. Griffin (Lawrence Ferlinghetti),

Lisa K. Thayer (Ann Waldman), Elkanah Burns (Frank O’Hara),

Theida Salazar (Bob Kaufman) Herbert T. Schmidt, Jr. (Kenneth Patchen),

Doug Knott (Charles Bukowski), Eve Brandstein (Diane DiPrima),

John Densmore (Gary Snyder), John DiFusco (Lew Welch),

Bill Duke (LeRoi Jones), Eric Trules (Allen Ginsberg)

and  Susan Hayden (Bobbie Louise Hawkins)

with special surprise guests… and your hosts, Michael C. Ford and Rex Weiner.