Thought Maps

I’m always experimenting with new ways to actualize my thoughts and emotions using creative outlets.  Many martial artists have lost sight of the great capacity for martial arts to re-kindle their essential humanity but I continue to trust the path.

Some of my acquaintances have forged their own paths, emphasizing extremes.  For them every trip to the supermarket or mall or theater is like a sojourn behind enemy lines.  They go loaded for battle and stare down life with  faces olten molded into permanent frowns.  Guns are their new idols, the more deadly and intimidating the better. At parties they like to flash their high capacity bananna clips, augmented magazines, laser sights, etc.  When gun talk starts to wear thin they drift off to video games and talk trash about who’s dominating who on the mixed martial arts scene, or about each other.

A long time ago, when I started in the arts, compassion and empathy counted for something.  Ego was considered a distraction.  There was great joy in our path of ongoing discovery and our relentless striving to become better persons through focused dedication.

Sometimes, I worry I am becoming extinct.  Then again, I enjoy my path.  Always have, hopefully always will.  My explorations, particularly in the martial arts, have provided a center or platform from which other creative energies freely engaged.  In that sense, I am satisfied and have no regrets.

There have been many creative outlets, music, photography, art, writing, miscellaneous adventures, all while responsibly (for the most part) caring for and raising a family and nuturing a business in very challening times.

Whether extinct or not, even today, that counts for something.  I exist.

These “thought maps” are images I’ve created, formed by encounters and experiences I’ve had in coursing through life.  There are no answers or complex thoughts here, just first impressions and images they evoked.

Click on the thumbnail to see the full sized image


They roamed with winded dust
and rolled the seventh seal
rested on day seven
felt the serpent’s zeal

Look ... still ... they are heard today

They know what sits within
and measure all accounts
their force of melody threads deep streams
reflecting all be bobbing life seems

Look ... still ... they are heard today

Life’s grinds and anguish pour them through
crowned obstinate delight and jubilance
spinning plates on tips of fingers
to the wonderment and delight of all.

Look about ... still ... they are heard today.


Jerry Ricks and John Cephas (both now deceased) were major influences on my guitar playing.  One night I came upon them jamming together.  Jerry usually played solo, John was usually with his partner Phil Wiggins.  Seeing them together was a pleasant surprise.  Instantly they were in the moment, each deeply in contact with the other. This was how I found them.

Jerry and John

It was my first time at the Pt. Townsend blues week.  I was very much outside my comfort zone.  I parked my car bewildered and trying to get some bearings.  As I turned and looked toward the old barracks where I was to stay, someone called from behind, “Hi, I’m Art.”  I turned and saw  he was already toting my guitar and suitcase.  It was the beginning of a very special friendship.

Harp Art


His name is John.  He singlehandedly sheds light on the mysteries and artifacts of traditional music, making them accessible for all modern explorers.  He is sometimes affectionaly referred to as “the Buddha of the Blues.”

Buddha of the Blues

The Blues is the truth ... if it ain’t the Truth, it ain’t the Blues ... if it ain’t the Blues ... it ain’t the Truth. Try this on for size. Black lives matter.  Don’t try to weasel out of it.

Blues and Truth

Bob Dylan once said, you can listen to the songs of Woody Guthrie and live your life by his words.

Woody Points

St. Bruno.

Saint Bruno


 ... from the land of unclouded day.


Lonesome Song
All it needs is you.
Words and music.
Who would have thought it reduced to this?

Lonesome Song




Woody, Cisco and Pete

Woody Cisco Pete

There are good reasons
for doing what we do

A mused

Shadow Studies
Click on the thumbnail to see the full sized image

Hera Fumes ...
thinking of David.

Hera Fumes

Spirit Jam
Spirits jamming while the moon is blue.
Shadows awaken in dreams.

Spirit Jam

Always a work in progress.
It has its frightful moments.

Love is Work

Ghost Dog
Best friend and eternal companion
 of the unknown.  Pet carefully.

Ghost Dog

Be Happy
It comes from within


Breaking Free
Astral dreams resting on not so formless carpets of imagination.


Tweren’t Me
I Was Framed ...
Reacting to Life's Challenges

Twerent Me

Eyes of March
George watches ...
with concern

Eyes of March

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