All posts for the month May, 2022


Published May 25, 2022 by Nan Mykel


Nineteen elementary school children and two adults in Texas were killed Tuesday by an adolescent with a gun after shooting his grandmother.

Welcome to America?  Where is love, compassion, empathy, care, conscience?  My journalism professor Buddy Davis at the University of Florida used to frequently refer to the milk of human kindness.  It has been souring rapidly.  The Age of Aquarious didn’t blossom as hoped for.   A U.S. Representative has called on the “dark MAGA” to respond. to his defeat.

What went wrong is now less important than what to do about it.  The Climate Change may humble us, but at what cost?  What has the obscene scrambling for booty cost us?

A young boy teaches his little brother the art of lying while his parents feed the embers of distrust.  It’s my understanding that we continue to be born with the same potential, although down the road our forced appearance on the scene may be increasingly resented.

I tuck away my fleeting suspicion that a great sense of masculine inadequacy feeds the attraction for guns.

The remedy is unclear.  Any hopeful solutions?



Published May 22, 2022 by Nan Mykel


In my next life I want to be a fungus.

Fungi are more like animals than plants,

Distinctively in a kingdom all their own.

Some form the largest organization on earth*,

But others are microscopic, too tiny to see.

As a fungus I could be almost everywhere:

As spores in the air, in food, on our skin,

And underneath the soil we all walk upon.


As a truffle  I’d be a culinary delicacy.

As yeast I would be highly prized for

Making beer and bread, wine and cheese.

As mold I’d be a medicine or a poison.

As a mushroom I’d cause hallucinations,

Or glow in the dark as a bioluminescent,

Or mesh with hyphae* to become mycelium*,

Already in use as a bioconstruction material.


Best of all, I’d be part of the Wood Wide Web*

That vast underground fungal information highway

That allows trees and plants and fungi to interconnect

And to symbolically aid or lethally harm each other.

As a fungus I’d push thinkers to consider more deeply

The astonishingly intimate interdependence of all things.

Nothing on earth is autonomous, able to stand alone.

Nothing exists by itself. Everything connects to everything.

Felix Gagliano  March 2021


***I swear, no connection between this poem (or the following) and any money-making scheme (shudder):

*The largest living organism is a fungus!  A honey mushroom called Armillaria solidipes in Oregon was found to be over  2,000 years old and growing through the soil in a forest to cover 9 square kilometers  (over 1,000 rugby fields).

*The Wood Wide Web: Millions of species of fungi and bacteria swap nutrients between soil and the roots of trees, forming a vast, interconnected web of organisms throughout the woods.  It is also called the Mycorrhizal network.

These networks can transport carbon, phosphorus, nitrogen, water, defense compounds, and chemicals from plant to plant.  Trees linking to the fungal network can assist their neighbors by sharing nutrients and information, warn about enemies such as insect attack–or sabotage unwelcome plants by spreading toxic chemicals through the network.

For a  superb look of the expanding fields of mycology (the study of fungi)                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               see: Entangled Life: How Fungi Make Our Worlds, Change Our Minds and Shape Our Futures (Random House, 2020), by British mycologist Merlin Sheldrake.

Sheldrake uses these key terms:

Mycorrhizae: a mutual symbiotic association between a fungus and a tree or plant.  The plant makes organic molecules such as sugars by photosynthesis and supplies them to the fungus, and the fungus supplies to the plant water and mineral nutrients, such as phosphorus, taken from the soil.

*Hypha (plural,  hyphae): each of the branching filaments that make up the mycelium of a fungus.

*Mycellium: the mass or network of branched, tubular filaments (hyphae)  of fungi.

Sheldrake let his book on mushrooms be devoured by mushrooms and then he ate those mushrooms.  Thereby eating his own words!

He notes (p.225): “Fungi might make mushrooms, but first they must unmake something else.  Now that this book is made I can hand it over to fungi to unmake. I’ll dampen a copy and seed it with Pleurotus myceliumWhen it has eaten its way through the words and pages and endpapers and sprouted oyster mushrooms from the covers, I will eat them.”

He mashed up another copy of his book , added a yeast and fermented it into a beer which he then drank, thereby closing the circuit.

Thanks to friend Felix for permission to share his poem and reflections.



what being without internet feelslike

Published May 20, 2022 by Nan Mykel

Lonely. Cut off. Going on 2 weeks without FRONTIER as an internet provider and carrier of my landline means being isolated — away from my blog and other friends. Probably my tv too, but I haven’t had the heart for that. (I’m still without FRONTIER–my daughter came from Atlanta and hooked me up to a downtown Athens internet at the Donkey Cafe.) Thank you, Donkey: hee haw. I missed you all. Oujr only other choice is Spectrum which I dropped due to poor service.


Published May 11, 2022 by Nan Mykel

Fruit flies sure don’t!  Nerve cells in their olfactory hairs on their antenna enable them to pick up odors up to 4 miles away.  (Flies don’t have noses).

(MMnnn, someone on the next block is cooking peach cobbler.)

Mother Nature tends to some things, like how is a good fly going to smell?  Kinda wish she’d tend to certain other things, too….


Published May 7, 2022 by Nan Mykel

Doug Shivley stepped onto the porch of the duplex and keyed in the front door. His dad was on a long haul for the bottling company, and he did not have to worry about his mom, who’d left them three years ago. He eased off his ball cap and leaned forward into the front hall mirror to check his forehead. He should have used a gun, but he had no way of knowing she was a he and a fighter…. or at least a kind of a he.

He swayed. Maybe he was drunk. Suddenly losing strength, he headed for the bathroom, grabbed a towel and climbed into the tub. He didn’t want to have to explain blood to his dad. He would have to beg off summer session finals and lie low. Bitch!  He could not go to the Emergency Room for treatment due to fear of being collared. He smiled grimly. The bitch can’t go to the ER, either! Damn conniving bitch man!


2 b continued?


Published May 1, 2022 by Nan Mykel





(SORRY– no clue in the photo.  Just a cute photo.)


A Transgender Civil War Veteran

See  more on Wikipedia, but for now know that Little Al Cashier was a Transgender Civil War veteran.  She worked as a farmhand as well as performing odd jobs in Saunemin, Illinois.  Albert Cashier can be found on records of the town payroll.  Her employer there, Joshua Chesebro, built a one-room house for her.  For over forty years she worked as a chuch janitor, cemetery worker, and street lamplighter.  Because she lived as a man, she was able to vote in elections and later claimed a veteran’s pension under the name Albert Cashier.  Birth name was Jennie Irene Hodgers….


Published May 1, 2022 by Nan Mykel


The man with the power.

What power ?

The power of Hoodoo!


          YOU DO!

What did I do?  What did I do!

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