Bill Friday

fictionary… 8 megapixel artist… bloody awful poet

Turn Your Head And Drive



Here it is.  Day 30.  The final day of NaBloPoMo, 2015.

No holding anything back for another day, another week… another year.  It’s all-in day.  Go big or go home.  Ride or die.  All clichés on the table.  A way for a writer to leave an impression that lasts for 11 more months.  So what are you getting out of me?

A song.  A blues song, to be specific.  With music and lyrics, and vocals, by this guy…

Bill Friday

So here it is.  For the last day of November, this is…

“Turn Your Head And Drive”



Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

29 out of 30

nablopomo, nanopoblano

Nano Poblano 2015


29 posts in 29 days.  29 out of 30.

This is day 29 of NaBloPoMo 2015.  My first, and quite possibly, my last.  And after today, just one more to go.  So, since it’s my right to do so… and because day 30 is going to be so freaking epic that I need an EXTRA day to get ready for what will go down as The Post That Destroyed the Internet… Day 29 will be NaBloPoMo in  review.

29 posts in 29 days.  29 out of 30.  Poetry.  Photographs.  Essays.  Prose.  Stories of human existence.  My human existence.  And if you stick around for one more day, maybe a special toy surprise.

And because of all you who have stuck with me this entire time… and you know who you are… I have slapped together one post with ALL THE LINKS to the entire month of November, so far.  Something short and sweet to say “thank you” with before the big finale.

29 posts in 29 days.  29 out of 30.

With one more tomorrow.

So, until then…

November 1, “This Is An Actual Blog Post”

November 2, “Today Was A Day”

November 3, “Colored by Neon”

November 4, “Morning Breath”

November 5, “8 Megapixel Artist”

November 6, “The Hot Dogs You Will Eat”

November 7, “Stumbled”

November 8, “With This Muse You Lose”

November 9, “To Recapture My Humanity”

November 10, “The Notebook”

November 11, “LAX Confidential”

November 12, “Bukowski”

November 13, “Debts to Pay”

November 14, “DIY Life Coach”

November 15, “Changing Things”

November 16, “A Lament for Children and Trolls”

November 17, “Love Unwitting”

November 18, “Through a Cell Phone Darkly”

November 19, “Holes”

November 20, “You and She”

November 21, “Bloody. Awful. Poet.”

November 22, “Changed”

November 23, “Planet Oklahoma”

November 24, “Talisman”

November 25, “20 Inch Black and White Portable TV”

November 26, “With Baggage”

November 27, “Je Suis Zombie”

November 28, “The Straw Man”


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday



The Straw Man



I think
I’ve said my peace
now that
the past
isn’t changing for
the future

You’re going to do what
you’re going to do

I say
hi every day
when you don’t
so you don’t think
I’m some kind of
bad man

You’re going to do what
you’re going to do

I am
the opposite of
a good man
I am
the straw man
you made up to describe me


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

Je Suis Zombie

nano JE SUIS ZOMBIE 03 by sighchotick


I wish I wrote with

a pad and pencil

like the poets

who gargle with scotch

and espresso

wrapped in causes like

flags to be burned in

camera-ready protests

Fixing the world one

endless march of

rotting corpses

at a time

Insensate herd

well-meaning as

children selling cookies


while the enemy marches

and believes

does not matter what

Masses moving forward

in silence and

in darkness

where good corpses

fear to tread


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

With Baggage



“What do you want?” I asked.

“I only want… you”, she said.

“Do you?” I replied.  “Do you want… me?

I come with baggage…”

“…I come with baggage, full of the existence I knew before you.  Of adult children and their mother, and enough sorrow to ruin lives to the third and fourth generation.  I come with highs and lows that swell and crash like waves on broken rocks in the middle of winter doubts.

“I come with failures reminiscent of the taste inside my mouth, the morning after a night of beer and whiskey on the couch, and the smell of my sin-soaked soul.  I come with an unfulfilled need for acceptance, never once embraced in the affectless arms of another.

“I come with a misguided sense of right and wrong, that clouds my reason and draws me to hopeless causes until my strength is gone, and I quit without warning.  I come with all optimistic insanity, born of a faith that has since died, but continues to grow like the hair and nails of a corpse lying unclaimed in the morgue.

“I come with blind eyes, wide open to the faults in the one to whom I choose to give my soul, and I come with hearing ears, straining to understand, hanging on every word of the one for whom I wish to lay my heart down.

“I come with passion and desire.  I come with tenderness and care.  I come with strength and force, infliction and remorse, but most of all I come with the belief that if something is yours, no power invisible or other, can stand against it.  Most of all, I come with love…”

“Do you?” I replied.  “Do you want… me?”


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

20 Inch Black and White Portable TV



I disappear.

It’s something I have always done, even from my earliest days.  In the late ’60s, when most kids didn’t have a TV, I had one, in my room.  20 inch, black and white, portable TV.  No remote.  I can’t remember the brand anymore, but that’s just one invisible detail in a story about becoming invisible.  With that TV, I watched Japanese monster movies, and re-runs of Gilligan’s Island.  With that TV, I watched local news with anchors nobody remembers.  With that TV, I watched the Dodgers and the Giants.

With that TV, I would disappear.

In the late ‘60s, both my parents worked, and they had plans in place to counteract leaving a child on his own before the age of ten.  My grandmother lived with us, but by the late ‘60s, she was in her early eighties couldn’t keep up, and there wasn’t much she could do to make interesting to a child the things she was interested in. Just like there wasn’t much that a woman born in the waning years of the nineteenth century could understand from a kid growing up in the mid-twentieth.  So, when all the afterschool sports and games were done; after all the neighborhood kids were called inside for the doing of things like homework and family dinners; before my parents would return from work, in the dark; I would retreat to my cluttered room, with the 20 inch, black and white, portable TV.

With that TV, I would disappear.

It became a habit almost impossible to break.  The retreat from loneliness into a different kind of loneliness.  One of my own choosing.  With my stunted social skills, learned well, but honed badly by the lack of brothers and sisters, or hands-on parenting, I was more at home in my room, in front of a 20 inch, black and white, portable TV, as I was in the company of other kids, or their families.  When I tell this story now, to people who think they know me… and I seldom tell it… they have a hard time believing that I’m not a lifelong extrovert.  Only decades of well-rehearsed dealings with folks… of knowing when, in conversation, to press in and look genuinely interested, or when to back off, so as to come across as informally cool… have gifted me with the ability to keep myself from disengaging, yet remaining in a soothing isolation from the crowd.  All of it reminding me of a childhood in which I felt more in control in the shadows of a room lit by a 20 inch, black and white, portable TV.

With that TV, I would always disappear.

And now, because this is a blog post and not a novella, I end with this.

Today I live in the second decade of the twenty-first century, almost fifty years removed from a time when a kid could disappear into the world of a 20 inch, black and white, portable TV.  The second decade of the twenty-first century, where listing the potential distractions for a child of this space and time would take longer to write than it took you to read this.  And it is no great surprise, except to most of my friends who think I could not possibly be anything other than an extrovert, that my retreat is still TV.

But they will always be wrong.  Because I will always have that need.  To fade into the shadows, and hear only the voices of those whose words I can turn on and off at will.  To close the door on the outside world, and let go of things beyond my control.  I miss that 20 inch, black and white, portable TV.

Because with that TV, I would disappear.


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday


nano TALISMAN png


Some people wear talismans
a necklace
Charms that dangle for the
pious crowd

The talismans I wear
a reminder
Ransom invisible
to all

Seen only by those I allow
a lover
An undertaker in
silent prayer

My life is a talisman
a reminder
like a bad tattoo
I allow others to wear

© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

Planet Oklahoma



I grew up on a moon


the planet Oklahoma.


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday




Drink till you fall asleep
Wake up and drink
till you pass out

Double scotch
Double tap to the head
Just to make sure
your soul is dead

Look at the pictures
Read the posts
Whisper “fuck you”
to the ghosts

So you didn’t move on
at the fresh light of a new dawn
upon the same old world
Silent for once

Bright morning seen through
undeserving eyes
Red and clenched against
the light of lies

I thought I’d changed


© Copyright 2015 Bill Friday

Bloody. Awful. Poet.



Once upon a time…

(I know, a terrible way to begin any story.  Just like concluding it with, “…and they lived happily ever after.”)

…there was a middle-aged man who thought he could write…  a little.  He wrote  a screenplay that he let no one read, and, for a time, he was a somewhat successful, albeit unpaid, contributor to an online Citizen Journal that now, no longer exists.  He thought he was happy in his pursuit of writing,, and considered the years he was investing in his craft as the equivalent of a fancy journalism or film school like he so often saw advertised on TV between 2 am and sunrise.

Time passed.  Years, even.  The screenplay never got sold, and the Citizen Journal fell into the hands of a disreputable new ownership group.  The middle-aged man’s words grew fewer and fewer with the years and the circumstances of life, until all he had left were poems.  Not the broad sweep of five-pointed prose, or the sharp stick of tightly wound slam.  Just the shit that popped, spontaneous and whole, into his brain at all inconvenient hours.  In dreams.  While at work.  And the bathroom.  Yep, especially the bathroom.  The words weren’t good, they were just real.  For the first time since before the invisible screenplay, the words… his words… were real.

So he began to write them down.

(One note of explanation.  The phrase, “…bloody awful poet”, for those now reading who are unfamiliar with the work of writer/director Joss Whedon, was properly, um… *borrowed*… from a character he created.  A character who, in flashbacks, was known as William, the Bloody Awful Poet“.  Click the brightly colored letters to see just what I’m talking about.)

Including today, there ten more open spaces in the November Nightmare known as NaBloPoMo.  That means plenty more opportunity to share some Bloody Awful Poetry with readers and friends.  Poetry that still comes to me, spontaneous and whole, at all inconvenient hours.  I’ll keep writing them down.  I’ll keep sharing them.

But nobody’s going to see that screenplay… ever.

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