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A California writer whose dreams are more vivid than his waking life. Poetry, Humor, Sexuality, and Short Stories.

My spirit animal

Photo by the author, Mark Tulin

Every morning upon sunrise, I am greeted by dozens of corvids clinging to the trees and balancing on the utility wires. They serenade me in their own style, waking me up to a new day.

I sit by the edge of the bed, mindful of their spirit. Crows are here for me symbolically, to encourage me to stay in the moment and view the world from a unique perspective.

I channel the crow in my poetry and stories, becoming a keen observer, using plain and simple language, and, above all, being honest.

The crows now recognize me…

Looking for Neil Young

Photo by N Kamalov on Unsplash

I’ve listened to Neil Young forever and often thought what it would be like to meet him. Would he be a cool, groovy guy? Would he invite me to his crib and sing “Cinnamon Girl” — or would he be aloof and give me the brush off?

I often wonder what runs through the minds of people I admire. If they are what I’ve made them out to be, or a figment of my imagination.

I’m not a star chaser by any means, but one Saturday I got on my Yamaha 500 and headed to Santa Cruz. Neil Young had…

A roommate story

Photo by avishek Udas on Unsplash

State College, 1977, was the setting. I shared a two-bedroom apartment with Les and Ray, two guys from Pittsburgh. Both had their flaws. Les had body odor and Ray used to clip his toenails in the living room while we watched TV.

The problem. My roommates were potheads.

I knew they smoked pot before I agreed to share the apartment, but I didn’t realize how much. They smoked around the clock. Getting high was a priority; going to classes was something they did when bored or by accident.

I was not against marijuana. I smoked pot throughout high school, listening…

A poetry collection

Photo by the author, Mark Tulin, at E.Cabrillo Boulevard, Santa Barbara.

The process of writing a poetry collection began for me on a May morning in the year 2019. The time was about 11 a.m. I was sitting in my parked Mazda on Cabrillo Boulevard, gazing at the Pacific. Cabrillo is a boulevard that runs for miles along the scenic shoreline in Santa Barbara, California.

Then the sun turned to rain. What a beautiful image, I thought. The raindrops sliding down the windshield making the palm trees in the distance a soothing blur.

I wrote a poem about what it was like to experience that moment.

Rain on Cabrillo

I pull…

Gray sands of Ventura Beach, California. Photo by author, Mark Tulin

Five of nature’s creations found on the beach

I find a feather stuck in the sand. How beautiful, I think. I don’t remove it, just take its picture, admire it like art, and wonder what kind of omen it portends.

I go to the beach every morning. It’s a ritual I got into when Covid-19 sidetracked my life. I used to drive to East Beach when I lived in Santa Barbara. Now I’m only a few blocks away from the Pacific Ocean in Ventura, so I’m extremely grateful. …

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