Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Blackthorne Episode 136

image from


Cinemagenic 136

Death Song

“To the well organized mind, death is but the

next great adventure.”--J.K. Rowling.

1(sound cue) the Bukkehorn (ghost horn) Viking

War Horn.

2(close-up) the flames danced across Buck’s

raw retina; his eyes becoming fire, his cones

glowing hellish red, from the wounded core of

him, and still he did nothing.

3(sound cue) violins and French horns.

4(medium wide shot) He watched the long

bunkhouse burn, knowing it was the last

structure, the last vestige of a dream that

his father had created.

He watched the brigands put up the wide

tailgate on the lumber wagon, and ride off to

the north, their foul flesh swirling into pale

shadow, then submerging beneath the rim

above the ranch--Antlered Buck that was no

more, replaced by piles of hot ash, like the

brimstone foyer to Hell.

5(sound cue) branch flute and cello.

6(medium close up) He rested his sweaty chin

on his crossed arms, allowing leather’s sweet

pungence to chase away all others. He closed

his eyes, extinguishing the flames of wrath. He

watched the sun through his eyelids, letting a

cornucopia of colors, wild chive green, pond blue,

mustard grass yellow, blood clot red, and angelic

white spots frolic before him, drifting like 

cottonwood spirals on the breeze, the afternoon

sun hot on his neck, floating, weightless, flying,

before settling into a pool of darkness, a honeyed

abyss, an ebony stillness where he might find

temporary harbor, succor and rest. Floating more

than falling, with the wind in his hair, intensifying

as he descended, yet still a soft whispering wind,

wounded, mournful, into a nothingness of ink,

black blood without flesh, falling fearless for the

first time, faster, faster--then suddenly a deep

chill, and someone calling his name,

7(sound cue) Buck, B U C K !

frighteningly clear, and then for an instant,

his mother’s face, Buck,

and then a sweet voice calling to him from a

great distance, Buck, clearly Buck,

and then a cavalcade of faces, his dead wife,

his dead father, his dead brother, and again

his mother, and the visages of the hundred men

he had slain, all dead, all beckoning to him

as he was a dervish in the darkness,

accelerating toward a powerful pinpoint of

light a hundred thousand miles beneath him,

Buck, bombarded by a bluish light, brilliant,

blinding, seeming to sear the flesh from his

bones, until the bottom, all the way down,

serene, at One at last.

8(one shot) a gentle breeze churned the grass

and embraced him.

9(sound cue) birdsong and insects over a seed


He awoke hearing voices. The Thunderer leaped

into his right hand. Bristling with alacrity, he rose

and looked around. Four people sat in a circle in

the grass near the family graveyard. They sat quietly,

their eyes twinkling, all holding hands, staring right at

him; a beautiful fair-haired woman, a fragile tow-

headed boy, a thick shouldered older man, and a lean

well-muscled Indian--they were there, and then they

were gone.

10(sound cue) timpani drum and coronet and cello.

12(close-up) Buck’s eyes, weeping...Johnny, Johnny.

Buck stood up straight, and raised his arms and 

clenched fists to the sky...the Eagle has fallen.

13(wide shot) the sun of blood was setting over th

top of the trees to the west. Night shadows began

snaking off of things. Faint gray-blue smoke curled its

up into a red sky from the smoldering bunkhouse.

From the ashes, hot coals blinked like fireflies.

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over at  d'Verse Poet's Pub OLN

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Player or Putz

Glenn on stage at the Seattle Rep  1974

 Player or Putz

“Do not saw the air too much with your hands thus,

but use all gently, for in the very torrent, tempest,

and whirlwind of your passion, you must acquire

and beget a temperance.”--William Shakespeare.

I remember

when the director

of my Acting Conservatory,

lectured to us

regarding auditions,

he told us,

For a while, or for most you during your whole

career, auditions will be the key to your entire

livelihood. Keep in mind, the producer, director,

or agent you are performing for, he or she will

not know who you are, and will see two dozen

actors who look just like you for the part. So you

need an edge. Wear a brightly colored scarf or

shirt. Use your energy, fill the room with who

you are, command the space and the moment.

Take a risk. Wow them, startle them, intrigue

them, even anger them--and somewhere within

your precious few minutes, make them laugh.

For years

I heeded that advice,

and although

I felt pretty good about my performances,

most often,

I did not get cast.

At one audition,

there actually was someone

I knew assisting.

Afterwards, at a bar,

she told me:

Glenn, you need to tone down your auditions.

You come on so strong, you intimidate everyone.

You are a scary sonofabitch. Remember, you want

them to love you, not fear you.

So there it was,

cognitive dissonance

and emotional conflict.


in theater and films

had always been my dream.

My career, such as it was,

was a slim decade,

but damn it all,

I had accepted the risks,

and struggled to make a living

out of my art--so for a while

I lived my dream.

I just wish that so much of it

was not rejection and heartache.

I waited forty years,

until I retired

before returning to the stage,

and this time

it was a sweet ride.

Glenn Buttkus

Posted over at d'Verse Poet's Pub

Thursday, June 3, 2021

Gone, Truth, Gone

image from

 Gone, Truth, Gone

“We didn’t land on Plymouth Rock, Plymouth

Rock landed on us.”--Malcolm X.

Loss is not my friend,

rather it is fungi, virus, and herpes,

an interloper and antagonist.

Many years ago

I returned to the Cascade foothills,.

but the fallen log bridge across

Ross Creek 

was gone,

the trail mile markers

were gone,

the rainbow trout in the creek

were gone,

and worst of all

most of the glacier

at the foot of Mt. Stewart

was gone;

even the old feelings

of joy and accomplishment

for hiking ten miles straight up

were gone.

The sense of loss

permeated everything.

Even when I got home

I had to face the sad status quo,

whereby the truth

was gone,

civil rights

were gone,

voting rights were

nearly gone,

partisanship in government

and closeness of family,

were nearly gone,

as the strength in my legs

was gone,

the dexterity in my hands

was gone,

my libido 

was gone,

even my driver’s license

was gone

and shopping

was gone,

but extremely unfortunately,

the evil,






of Donald Trump

is not gone--

it is just



Glenn Buttkus

Posted over at d'Verse Poet's Pub

Tuesday, June 1, 2021

Pear Paradigm

painting by Sergei Sarkisov.

 Pear Paradigm

“There are only ten minutes in the life of a pear, 

when it is perfect to eat.”--Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Buying fruit in the winter

is a taken-for-granted

ersatz miracle.

Most of it comes to us

from Central and South America.

Grocery experts have iron-clad

guidelines as to exactly

when the fruit is picked


and shipped north

to the buyers.

There are huge way station

warehouses where it sits

and sort of ripens.

Food dyes are sometimes

injected to make the color

more appealing.

Peaches and pears

are touchy fruits.

When they actually do ripen,

there is only a small window

of time to consume them.

The sad results are

that they may look ripe

in the supermarket,

or even the fruit stand, but when

you bite into them, they are still green.

Unless you have your own

peach or pear tree, few of us

actually remember the incredible taste

of a tree ripened peach or a pear.

In 1956 we rented a two story house

that had an old pear tree in the back yard.

Upstairs, from my bedroom window,

I could crawl out  on the porch roof

and walk right over to the nearby tree.

Those hard to get pears from the top

of the tree that ripen perfectly

were within easy reach.

For many a lunch I would sit

on that hot tin roof

and gobble golden pears;

eat them voraciously until

I would get a sugar high

or get an upset stomach.

They were so juicy

my face and the front

of my shirt would get soaked.

That was 65 years ago,

and though I searched,

I never found any pears

that tasted that good again.

Glenn Buttkus 

Posted over at d'Verse Poet's Pub

Monday, May 31, 2021

White Buck

image from

 White Buck

“Ideas are like rabbits. You get a couple, and

pretty soon you have a dozen.”--John Steinbeck.


should never have

let her curiosity

be her guide,


knew it was

lethal for cats,


she was still curious

as to why

a white rabbit


a watch.


down the rabbit

hole she went,

never to be

the same again.

Glenn Buttkus


Posted over at d'Verse Poet's Pub