29 December 2015

Postcard 44

It pains me to send a dark thing into the world, to release a raven, not a dove. My fantasies are to put forth the end of a thick red ribbon, satiny and substantial in the hand, however briefly. That you would receive it unexpectedly and give it the sudden tug of apprehension, and that tug will pull into your grasp my subtle little gift, as this one here could be. But the high holy days are here and the banners', trumpets' and T.V.s' tantara and tintinnabulations blaze beyond my abilities to equivocate peace. As the world about us continually crumbles and regenerates, we have locked arms with the cult of death, that is the cult of fear in man. The indifferent world issues growth as soon as decomposition. No, this is not natural inasmuch as nature is a silent negotiated balance of paradox. This is a creation of the will of man, and when I say man, I mean men, the phallic center, the apprehension of light, piercing and direct. The male animus that would destroy rather than embrace or bypass. We store up goods. We drill where only previous drilling lets us go. We consume what only previous consumption allows. We waste because kill is in our blood. But soldiers should not be the core of any cult. Soldiers rejoice in their own expendability so let us too. Give them their laurels and move on, move onto the place without fear. Out into the dark where the only answer is there is none -- the cult of death and life.

03 December 2015

Postcard 43

Here is what you are missing:

The seeming near miss of an inattentive dive-bombing sparrow.

Sitting in the center of a busy room -- a restaurant, coffee-shop, a bar, bus station -- and overhearing the conversation next to you: the floating unmoored references, the blind peculiarities of relational histories. Letting the discussion from your opposite side drip in, adding a third. 
You are missing the pleasant disorientation of forty people's conversations sloshing around in an enclosed space, echoing off the walls and each other.

You are missing holding eye contact with strangers -- giving to them kindness, indifference, lust. Receiving eyeballs occulating in flesh intrigued, confused, hostile, desirous.

You have missed the two hookers on the train platform gamboling with a wily transient who is listening to madonna and says, My name is Randy cause I like Candy, I'm going into the city to let the hookers sit on my face. My name's Saul and I eat it all. Where's the money? they ask laughing. Oh Honey, I'm just joking. 

You miss the sky's golden boundary, given miserly between clear-bright and cloud-dark.

All the people passing to and fro, each filling in, with unique intention, all the equivalents of walking. They stroll, amble, patrol, troop, roam, promenade and mosey.

I just looked up. I almost lost the glory of a woman vivid, framed in a warm pane of glass taking off her sweater and hiking down her shirt, riding up over a beguiling sliver of creamy skin. And then seven smiling firemen traipse in, to the delight of the dancing happy barista.

How generous and innocuous the world is with joy. Peer over your bad-newspaper, set down your disquieting phone. From reading, from writing even, don't miss the present moment, where joy is as prevalent, as light and meaningless and fleeting as Autumn leaves.

26 November 2015

Regarding Favorite Books

My favorite books reside, generally in unmarked cardboard, or if they are loquacious, are marked 'Free' on the side of the urban street. Otherwise they hail from basement-like bookshelves near the backs of used bookstores and thrift stores. I rarely pay more than a Dollar.
Death in the Andes by Mario Vargas Llosa This book has become mythological in my mind. I return to it in visions, grotesque and violent - intimacies of what I intend of life, my place in the violence of oppression and resistance, my violences, my relations. I should probably read it again. Its been a while.
A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter M Miller Jr. A surprising find and a somewhat forgotten sci-fi classic in the modern pop-sci-fi world. Most likely for its religious undertones. It's perhaps an examination of a search for meaning where meaning may not be, but as well the improbable creation of meaning there. A sort of abiogenesis of will.
The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durrell I found and started the first book of this set on the weekend of my wedding at the Henry Miller Library in Big Sur, which is interesting for the close relationship between Miller and Durrell. These books are so well written and so capture the tension of living as colonizer in a colonized world (which would he prefer?). Nothing so linear and concrete, because what he is really addressing is the convergence of western and eastern metaphysics and the tension of inhabiting that space.
Wind, Sand, and Stars by Antoine Saint-Exupéry It was originally called 'Terre Des Hommes' in the original french. This is the first of the slight, back pocket books I will recall. The print was at least forty years old and my reading it literally destroyed the copy, till by the end I was grasping at a rubber band strapped dog-eared yellowed out of order copy with perhaps, most of its original pages. This one is just a parcel of contemplation at the far reaches of (then) forward human achievement, over, with and at the mercy of timeless and static human achievement.
All the Kings Horses and Other Stories by Anthony C West. Oh, a collection of shining little pearls of growing into adulthood and out of pure communion with nature, of the disreputable who never quite do, of growing back into it with death, and sex. Sex in the pure way of half guilted desire that pulls like that lost free connection. This reads like D.H. Lawrence condensed.
The Favorite Game by Leonard Cohen. It is not great, maybe not even that good, but it points toward an embryonic great with intensity. It is a more sexually deviant Catcher in the Rye. I get the feeling the title character (Cohen himself) is more likely to flame out brilliantly through vague egoistic sexual sub-violences than through the end of a gun. In that way, aside from having that specific New England type class assertions, I feel an uneasy pride in my affinity for this early attempt
The Temple of the Golden Pavilion by Yukio Mishima In my mind Mishima is often dancing about a conversation: the reply to ideology from the real and the often violent answer back. Knowing about his life and having read his later works, I can know that this was a very real tension within him and his Buddhism, japanese nationalism and sexuality. But this was the first piece I found and the theme shined through and onto me at that stage of life (about the time I saw the film based on his novel 'the sailor who fell from grace with the sea'. A very good and under-rated film)
John Dos Passos USA Trilogy, because its about a hundred years old, its is about industry and labor, the strenuous age, it is about every sad ultimate end of our Horatio Alger myth, it is about the seeming individual inevitability of the first world war and just because its as good as Fitzgerald and Hemingway and no one seems to read it anymore
It may be noted, and I have, that the list is primarily white and is all male. I have attempted to rectify this with mixed results
this year came into my hands:
The Man who Cried I Am by John A Williams About an erudite and cosmopolitan black novelist in the sixties. It stands on its own as a powerful work of male ego-centric postwar literature like the Phillip Roth, Saul Bellow Norman Mailer et al., yet has the distinction of probing the africa american experience through modern history within and without the borders of the US
Soledad Brother the letters of George Jackson At the same time as above, a friend handed me her copy of this book that changed her life. It is truly a heartbreaking work or staggering genius with no tongue in cheek, no hyperbole. Reading a man finding his nobility in being and his intelligence while simultaneously discovering the system's antagonism and valued disregard of him is a real and modern version of any of Camus' works. All within the walls of California's prisons with a de-facto and eventually carried out death sentence.
The Dark Night of Resistance by Daniel Berrigan is the journal of a priest in hiding in the seventies after his protest action of the vietnam war. It is a good primer for an understanding and engagement with an idea of a true religious conscience in action. Not a black man, but a timely accompaniment to the above and I found it at the same time. So it goes with the universe.
Finally, not a find, but a rare and rather expensive purchase: Poems for the Millennium in two volumes. Not much has done more to shatter and splinter my assumptions of language and reality, to cause me to purposely disregard rules (so called), to leverage time and history within a creative voice and to improve my writing than this collection.
There are always more and always changing and the classics are always worming around (Moby Dick is probably my actual favorite, Mildred Pierce, Mother Night, the Colossus of Maroussi, ... ) these are favorites that have found me rather unknown, and certainly unspoken of and unread by most of todays younger literati. I know because I have spoken enthusiasm to blind eyes and whats? I know there are no women on this list. I try and struggle to find women authors I connect with but don't beat myself up over it too much. It may be I prefer male authors the same way I tend to prefer female radio DJs and songwriters/musicians/bands. I'll keep up the search though, internal and external.

23 November 2015

Postcard 42

I am working today with a pristine hangover. The clouds are gently scrubbing the grimy bay sky and the rain is around me like cool steam. I am gazing out at the world from behind my eyes, from the back of my head. I am behind and through myself. Last night, someone hanged themself from a tree on the low hill between the lagoon and the bay. Hopefully our local homeless man will not have the blame for that imposed upon him. He seems to catch the rest. He is a nice guy, singing and smiling, friendly until he gets enough spray paint cans to huff. then he is irrational and aggressive. Whoever proposed that human beings are rational actors was a victim of their own fallacy. 

My understanding of karma is the connections we refuse to let go of as we move through life. Like velcro hooks, or threads with the spools spinning and smoking till the line is spent, then -- ouch, Karma.
Hmm. Imagine a much more holistic experience: pain is intergenerational, transferred through our genes, so that we are born scarred and in pain. So that you imagine a child composed almost entirely of infinitesimal scars, fading as the violence fades. Among us, the most damaged would have the most concern with history. 
How did this happen? they ask.
We know, and we must remember, they reply. 
Where are the scars of the perpetrators, who's actions are a deadening cancer? 

I came upon a homeless man, unfamiliar in my park.
He had all his belongings, sensible and esoteric, spread out carefully on a table. 
How are you today? I asked. 
I'm just here for some peace. 

Why doesn't pleasure and joy leave scars?

17 November 2015

Postcard 41

Movie studios often used to keep a person on set called a Wildy, who was often drunk. The Wildy's job was to come up with what happened next. An example is: Laurel and Hardy are moving an upright piano across a ramshackle rope bridge is the Swiss Alps. The planks break and physically comedic misadventures ensue. What next Wildy? A gorilla emerges. Wildy brings it from the left.

In the first World War, battleships were painted with garish colors -- pinks, emeralds, turquoises -- in disorienting patterns of broken stripes and asymmetric plaids. It was designed to disrupt the visual estimation of the ship's speed and bearing, and it was very effective. The camouflage was called razzle dazzle.

Bernoulli called it Spira Mirablis. It is also called the golden spiral, or more generally the logarithmic spiral. At every scale it persists in the created world. From space to the subatomic, nature approximates it. It is tempting to take a pythagorean view and ascribe a mystical pre-existing formal reality to the mathematical description we call Φ. Reality, though is much less elaborate, I feel, but no less profound. We say that the shortest distance between two points is a straight line, but we don't account for friction. 
The universe has determined that the most efficient way to respond to the hazards of movement through its own laws is to deflect, to bend, to deviate, to curve, to parry, sheer, slew and slip, to swerve and to whirl.

10 November 2015

Postcard 40

Three quarters of people report having had a transcendental experience. Many say that, though it was the best moment of their lives, they did not wish to have it again. Perhaps this is a heartening aberration in a culture of excess. After all, even transcendence can be gluttonized. Our life expectancy has, in recent years, been ever expanding. There are men of science, taken quite seriously, why say we can conquer death, through medicine, replication, or by becoming androids. This only proves that science does not make one wise nor cure the existential fear of death. I will only briefly mention the so called revolution that brought us the hand held computers we call phones. These ever-present miracles of design keep us forever in the future. We are alienated from the present and ignore the past. The future has no room for thought or nuance. The future has only room for desire and envy. Now the most recent magic offered us is gene splicing. It has become incredibly efficient to design genes and moral boundaries are crumbling or ephemeral. The fear is a Gattica-like situation, a designed elite and an undesigned hoi polloi. What can't we do with the human body! never mind that each of our bodies is capable of extraordinary feats of strength, endurance, compassion, tenderness, intelligence, interconnectivity and transcendence -- extraordinary feats to which most never reach.
Life and death are integrate and compose each moment. Living and dying is hard and so is reaching. Trying to eliminate one decomposes and disintegrates the other. 
When has what's promised been better than what is?

05 October 2015

Postcard 39

I am looking at a map of the world. Every inch is claimed and each infant opens eyes to a contract it will never sign. We can walk across borders but we cannot walk off -- an easy stroll into our own sovereign self. I am looking at the Earth/Sea from space -- from the pinnacle of humanity's breaching the breastworks of geology. When the carbon consumes and the biome is returned to the margins -- a chemical epoch -- will the great male/female tension be released? What other ways? 
I am looking at my two hands in front of me. I call them my hands as if I possessed them but I do not. My hands are the intrinsic me in each moment. If one were gone, I would be a different person -- no, I am each moment a different person. I would issue into the present along a different trajectory. I don't know if I look upon any part of myself more than my hands, or anything more at all. They are so often in and readily available to my field of vision. What measure of my desires comes through my eyes and my hands, I wonder. The clock I am looking at gives me an estimation of my perpetual rebirthing, as if I could count the sixty unit measure of myselves in each minute. That is a false perception. The clock is modeled upon the world I stand on, and at the same time, see from space. Its roundness bulges like the Earth; its arbitrary boundaries are analogous to those invisible grids upon the globe. All analogies are as false as borders. The Earth is not male, nor the sea female. The hands of the clock point up toward space: 
A blue face. Eyes winking.

18 September 2015

Postcard 38

Have we ever been at peace? Have I? The spinning world would spin us off into the shrugging of space. Maybe at peace, we get sucked into a star. At peace a glow worm elysium. At peace the cicadas' rotting clock. At peace a loose nail in a board. At peace no longer waging. Can that even be? If we are to go on we must go on as action. There is no word that holds more action than 'wage'. We wage wars, the most magnificent worldwide affront to the created. We wage and wage. Dams are built, channels cut, bricks and asphault laid, matter stacked higher and higher, we thrust out and into. I'm sick of action men, the great ones, the doers. Men who must know an answer -- the gauge of a pipe, the speed, the right screw. The value of a thing. Men who step upon and pride themselves at being stepped on. Can a man do nothing but wage? Build and destroy? What about life, the created? Man can be nothing but barely superfluous, hunting and fighting, waging because of his disposability. Who can do the opposite of wage? Not dead peace,  Who can do creation and annihilation?

What is more incongruous than a woman with a gun?

16 September 2015

Postcard 37

I Must Decline the Invitation I Will Not Receive (Country song)

Well, its true I know the groom
But I used to know the bride
I can't feel his fists no more
But I'll always feel her sighs

To be a man's a solid thing
Two quiet paddles in the sea
I for him and him for me
Always, but for once, we took each other's side

He was my best friend, I knew the groom
But just that once, I knew the bride
A man don't change. Still, I know his voice, his smell and his broad figure
But a woman, well I hear you never can swim within the same river

It was the wine. No, that's a lie
It was the darkness always there
A wild dark moon, dark stars, wild eyes, wild flesh, wild hair
Sometimes you must destroy a thing, or at the least, you try

Yes, I still know the groom
But I truly knew the bride
No bride deserves a whiter dress
No groom should have more pride

There'll be no seat for me, no toast
I'll drink at home to their celebration
But I've sent one gift, no box or card, but just an invocation
That they'll have an absence never filled
                              -- I've given them a ghost

15 September 2015

Postcard 36

Oh woman -- into the world through you; your legs the masticating swallowing mouth of the world. And it hurt and bruised that little death, but your lips embraced each inch of me. The stargate, the eternal return, the cant never go home again. I spent all life trying for that again and again, can't I just crawl inside? Masticating legs, stretched hips like an ash white bow. Stretched hips like mountains pushed up in mantled eons. Melted stone, warm magma. A little death and a clean bright world. A bright cry out. Its no wonder you moan, its no mystery. Its no wonder I cry out. Its nothing but mystery, new! Hold my head in the cusp of the new world, hold me supine upon your dark breasts and morphine mother's milk for the too much new world. Nepenthe nipple, a tender but violent lotus flower taste. A  new fissure ever unfillable. Oh woman. Woman when I gaze, it is all because of you. Oh woman, how did you feed my navel? Glory Glory Glory, every pain is birthed from you. The new world, the bright new world, is from you. The desire is from you. The end the end is for you.  When I finally return will your legs embrace me, will you crush me again between your hips, will I swim within you again and cry out through my navel? and will there be a new bright world to wound us?

13 September 2015

Postcard 35

I work best
a) 15 percent
b) more than 15 percent
c) Man, be real. Be real
d) when I'm juggling several projects at once
e)under close supervision. Despots.

After a client hires me and we agree on a deadline, I
a) Hey, look what came outta my pen!
b) You cannot be fucking serious. Fuck with the bull, get the horns
c) You're pretty much messing with me and
     I'm convinced its not your intention but you confuse me.
     I'm trying so hard
d) copy anything; this stems from the idea of not copying,
     but actually using the elements as your design

My last big mistake was
a) men would rather have their fill of sleep, love
    and singing and dancing than of war
b & c) Is so dated and in our qualified opinion may have been executed
     at about this date
d) made because I had too much on my mind
e) I believe that I'm viewed as very expendable and the large agencies
    are interested only in keeping more profits

My office and/or drawing table looks like
a) nature provides
b) a layout for architectural digest
c) llll llll llll llll llll llll llll llll llll llll llll
d) just total bullshit
e) ?

My Motto is
a) the moving finger writes, and having writ, moves on
b) can't get under it. so wide, can't get around it; you must come in
    at the door of earth: nobody wants you when you're down and out!
    ...of mamie's sins and sorrows: if you can't give a dollar, give me
    a lousy dime. I wanna feed that hungry man of mine.
c) pressure and chaos are midwives of creativity
d) in short, this is just capitalism at work. Supply and demand.
e) What you do will never be good enough

Please fill out and return

Postcard 34

"There is a human heart on the beach!" The california sea hare is the largest known gastropod. It lives in shallow salt water. It is herbivorous and takes on the hue of whatever it eats. It has an organ that produces a poison that makes it inedible to al but the most voracious of predators, the starfish anemone, which will just eat around the offending parts. When frightened, startled or unexpectedly stimulated, the sea hare emits a pungent purple dye. It is unlikely the sea hare experiences fear; it has only a rudimentary nervous system. The sea hares that I see are all red and dying. They live in the eel grass beds and wash up on our gentle beach. They can be the size of a dinner plate, but most are the size of a fist, or a heart. They are washing up en masse, a dozen or more with each tide. Are they dying because of global warming, pollution, ocean acidification...? Quite the contrary. They are dying because they have over-succeeded. As I stated, they are the size of a human heart, the hue and texture of a heart as well. Before they expire they respirate gently and rhythmically. The human heart also lives in shallow salt water. The human heart is also incapable of fear and responds instinctually. On the beach the sea hares eventually die and putrefy -- food for the flies until the tide takes them back out. Alive and in the water, the sea hare un-chambers itself and can swim, translucent and graceful, rippling and beautiful. Swimming freely, they resemble nothing so much as the human female sex organ, the labia. The labia, too, is connected to tidal rhythms and cannot experience fear. No one has yet complained of disembodies labias in the water.

Off postcard note: The california sea hare is hermaphroditic, and participates in sexual congress as both male and female at once, forming sex chains of up to twenty animals, lasting for hours or even days, even though the mechanics take only a few minutes. 

01 June 2015

vulnicura, reviewing the experience of listening

vital and mature, a woman who is lover first mother first wife first woman first, making love one desperate time moments flashing like red behind eyelids each a whole -- thinking being too linear, this is pineal reasoning. her lover an oblivious coagulated ox, her husband rendered -- rendering slowly  -- will go will be gone will never be a stranger. the death of our, the death of a place carried whole, the last heartbeat of the shared coordinates -- moments of lyric reason bound by a beginning and an end. affirmation of the me being between two skins. beats and strings, music is secondary, blood and nerve.

she has written a novel in the ephemeral rise of the sad wave of orgasm, the descending crush, the crestfallen return to the greater body. ocean beats on land, rocks as passive as oxen. secondly there is hopefulness  -- the somehow wishings of all unscarring futures.  maybe he will come out of this loving me? somehow somehow.

nownownow we are together so familiar so naked. hearts rattle against each beat trying, finding synchronicity -- it all compresses now like atoms ready sucking in the past to a finepoint. can we capture it can we explode together make a new universe in this womb this room

this is an exhale afterglow, a break apart moment, an abortion -- you did this here, you are the fuel of this explosion. she is the projectile burning it up. murderer

let me say who you have murdered: the meyou (the man woman), the mechild (the mother child), the youchild (the father child).

a swarm of sound, an Icelandic Saga, rolling ars, wintry flourishes, stark emotion.
this is a savage cry on a blank ice sheet tundra -- a curse, this is the pain pleasure orgasm spoiling clean sheets with organic anguish.

grinding grinding, peeling off hopelessness regret, grinding hips together like hemispheres, grinding to hope. there is no hope. Hopelessness is safe from death.

in pain she is giant, a goddess radiating thorns of light, ice splinters. I am broken when I am whole, she declares, I am whole when I am broken. I speak finally and roar like arctic winds and landslides. roar like implosion.
Is the fusion? No this is fission.

"we are the siblings of the sun
lets step into this beam
every time you give up
you take away our future
and my continuity and my daughter ́s and her daughters'

and her daughters' 

This novel is a difficult read, the chapters only hold as the whole. this is a difficult read and not enjoyable at times but immediately necessary. Plug this story in, wrap it around your ears and hear the story told around a cold hearth of the dying embers of family broken, the immediate emotional viscera spilling out from a wound like the afterbirth of a scarred crone, illuminated and born again. If you are a man in this world - this is woman, if you are a woman add this to your sagas, so long unspoken, so necessary.

30 May 2015

Postcard 33

I am a great screaming incoherence. Are you too? I am desperate for that perfect womb, when all my cells were one, again and again and again. How do you feel? I am a planet mighty -- my plates grinding, my core liquid iron. I can only push and pull with weak gravity -- I am dense and I am empty, says the gravity. I feel the tension. I feel the friction of a billion bolts of lightening. How are you today? I am held here by only the pushes and pulls of so many loves. Held right here, moving but still. Goddamn, I want to be free. I am flying apart and cooling. Goddamn, I want to be held. Would you like anything? Sometimes, I am clear purpose without meaning. Sometimes, I am nothing but desire. Sometimes, a stone stirs up and turns to life. Sometimes, life settles to a stone. What are you up to? What is more, I am built from a magnificent past unwitnessed, and greatness stretches out from me like dust. But I am now, and I see now and there is no terror like the terror of now. The almighty terrible and meaningless power of now, coming from who knows where and going to...? Hope this finds you well and dancing.

29 May 2015

Postcard 32

There is a future possible where everyone is well balanced and healthy and happy and content. There is very little pain, perhaps  -- somehow -- less death. I don't know, computers maybe. 
Many people want this.
There is of course, no art. There is no pursuit nor striving. There are no desperate attempts: 
to capture motion and breath in clay; to bronze a horrible and shared destiny; 
to shout! shout! shout! that we are here and that we matter with crushed pigment and oil on a flat stretched canvas that can be carried and dropped; 
to slam a pen to blank sheets again and again trying to suss out meaning from meaninglessness with feeble trapped words that can all burn; 
to fling sound at each other relentlessly;
to push hips and chests and lips together tight pathetic.
There is no need for any of this is a well balanced world. Out of all the infinite possibilities, I am glad I do not live in that universe.

25 May 2015

Postcard 31

The old man on the mountain, or had she been a woman? Anyway, it did not matter. It had ceased, with all things, to matter. That being kept one fat toe on the mountaintop and stretched the rest into the astral plane. That was one transcendent mountaintop. Some climb mountaintops. Some build cabins in the woods. Some bury their writing in jars. Some wrap their women in fabric black as the astral plane. Some love every and all the same. Some sell no booze on Sundays. Some say everything is pain. 
Here, have some holy book quotes from the scrolls: 
"If you suspect you have achieved transcendence, go to a family reunion." G.B. 
"You have got to come back from the desert." J.C. 
"When you think you've got it, it slips away. When you know you do, you don't." L.T. 
"At least I know it." S.A. 
There is a razor thin silver thread and you can pick it up and turn it onto a spool and follow it straight out of the maze and off the face and on and on. Each turn of the spool will make the thread more sharp and brilliant. You could slice case hardened steel. You could trim a carbon diamond. You could split an atom. Onward you can follow it -- a blazing purity across the planes. On and on. But every thread has an end and you will find yourself with a spool of dull wire in one hand, an un-frayed radiance doused by your other hand and darkness all around. Not many ever think to lay a blood red thread back into the labyrinth. Though it has walls and other frightened frightening beings, it has light and shadow, life and death. Out there at the end of that brilliant thread -- nothing. 
So I vow to dig up my work. To call something a possession. To grab another heart and hold on tight. To cast pearls among swine. To get angry and sad. To let any light shine.

23 May 2015

Postcard 30

Well, here we are in the slight lee of a vast scatteredness -- walls, stones, a bit of liquor. If you stand up the wind will catch you. Have you ever felt a wind like this? It does not buffet like a normal wind; it is not strong like wind. It does not sweep and scythe off the top layer of everything. Not this wind. It does not pass straight through the soft tissue of fat muscle and sinew. This wind has held more bones than any soil -- and…
Stand up past the meagre parapet, stand into it, the flow that pulls. At the highest peak in the range, sun cooked, snow swept  wind climbs to you in a sheer and unbroken buffeting -- an ice bath. This is the wind of cleanse. No matter what, we are naked in it, swimming. Every pore is open, our eyes burning in clear sky sun. Open your ears! Standing there above the crown our minds are swept open and free. Nothing nothing nothing coming from toes or fingers, hands or feet, legs or arms, faces blow clean off. Only one of us must be wise enough to pull us down before we're blown away.

05 May 2015

Postcard 29

<  0 - ∞ >
The Cosmos sure can give a person a sense of the infinite. I am of course speaking of the television program. The stars these days rarely suffice. Consider the many infinities that time and space afford us. The infinite of the many, the infinite of the divisible, the infinite of the negative and the infinite of the nothing. A brief look at numerical history shows what is obvious. The Chinese stopped at the ten thousand, the Romans st one thousand, the more ancient cultures refused even zeros. What is obvious is that the concept of the infinite -- so apparent there and there and there -- is outside our understanding. We see that it is there, but what is it? Even more astounding is that anything that holds the property of the infinite, holds the properties of all the infinities or at least the potential. So an infinite is really a thing (t) T∞∞∞∞.
Does that change anything? Since we are the apprehends of all this, lets make it subjective. (two aphorisms I've heard recently are: 'We live abbreviated lives' and 'we finally get life figured out, then we die.') First, we are the creatures of boundaries and each boundary we apprehend is of our own design. The universe contains no numbers or words other than what we force upon it. There are only things that are themselves systems, and many things that are contained as systems of other things. Only very rarely are those systems 'closed' systems. Truly, the only closed system is the cosmos itself -- maybe.
A person, a thing that is a system that participates n many systems, that is an assemblage of points in time, does contain the infinite as all things do -- and follows that a person contains all infinities.
You, as a person, are a multitude of infinities, limited in quantity only by the boundaried units you use to contain what is beyond your understanding. Try then to apprehend yourself without those tools, loose meaning and see that only time, entropy, is a limit. You then imagine yourself out of even that -- free.

04 May 2015

Postcard 28

The girl at the coffee shop is unknowingly a champion of literature. She excels at a single thing -- the ceasing of my pen. And who knows what else. There is a person on the other side of the back that faces me, but it is not concerned with me and does not concern me. A slim and specific young woman, perhaps a bit awkward  and unsure in the world. Maybe frightened of potentialities or cracked by a violence or a series of acts done without consent, with aggression. She moved from a small town, a family confounded by parochialism, patriarchy, provincialism -- a family that answers an uncles penetrating hands with disbelief in her, with belief in dead men gods. She came to the city where an acquaintance beckoned -- a girl she had admired for her power but here she is, that girl is a hot mess. She keeps it together but cannot figure what for. The boys here are worse -- at least back home it was an honest violence, a clear hatred of the unknown or unplumbed. Sometimes she gives them what they want, sometimes not and they tantrum. But she goes on, a feather caught in a tree's autumn leaves.

Or more likely that stranger to me is an artist with a firm view and a nuanced hand, who treads lightly only to conserve an electric strength, who turns fear into action, compassion into care.

She breaks my pen -- I cannot turn a person to character. And the man that I am, her lines like a long horizon.

30 April 2015

Postcard 27

You must remember the origin of life is still a complete mystery
You must remember that your short life, fully chronicled, would fill more books than ever printed, would wreck the internet
You must remember that birds mostly fly for pleasure; envying them is the only healthy envy
You must remember that every work of art, every creation, every piece of scientific fact, every formula, every word, every thought is an imperfect reduction of what actually is
You must remember to stand at the base of tall trees and look impossibly to the top
You must remember pain and its eternal bond with the creative
You must remember the instinctive creature going ahead or left or right for no known reason
You must remember you must die
You must remember (in order) complexity, paradox, unintended consequences
You must remember that unease, anxiety, striving, discomfort are your birthright - marks of evolution's vanguard
You must remember forgetting is ok
You must remember that finally, you are your only judge; endeavor to be a worthy, prudent and forgiving judge -- charity is your watchword
You must remember that charity means love, the glad giving of what is not deserved
You must remember that shit is the richest soil
You must remember to fear the dark, but fear is something carried, not a wall (and to fear the light)
You must remember to laugh in the face of the absurd
You must remember…its all absurd

28 April 2015

Postcard 26

The trajectory of life: is it contingent on being perceived? Is it linear -- an arrow careening among potentials and impossibilities? Are those discarded realities broken -- do they shatter and dissolve or careen off to other lives? 
Perhaps that is too limited a perspective, the deceit of time and proximity. We move through a harmony of waves, redundant but for our place in the wave and we are the harmonic vibrations of the fingers of time across space as a harp! Likely this is the limit of what is measurable -- an infinity of harmonics -- projecting in undulating spiral of expansion and contraction…a respiration.
Is it even important? Does it matter when for each individual living is the forever plunging into the viscous from the clear -- always approaching, always penetrating, always submerged.

26 April 2015

Postcards 24 and 25

I often refer to the limits of reason, to the paucity of our tools to understand the space-time in which we are immersed. Imagine having never left the mother's womb. We would be able to tell many things about that womb and its contents, but not nearly all. We would be able, with our mighty intelligence and reasoning to infer a few things about the world outside that womb But would we know that world was another being, itself moving in a world of apprehending? We could infer that the umbilical cord extending from our own being to the "outside" was somehow sending somethings back and forth -- perhaps communicating, but we could not know what and how. This analogy can apply both to our limitations in knowing the context of our own movement through space-time and to the difficulty in discerning and communicating what I call the sub-rational and the supra-rational with language which is itself a limited tool of reason! What umbilici stretches to us from the outside?
Guard against the hubris of knowing.

Guard against the hubris of 'knowing'. We are familiar with many indicators of the sub-rational and the supra-rational: intuition, paradox, analogy, dream, the joy of animals -- things the dogmatic, the many-trapped-in-the-world would find uncomfortable if not objectionable. I say trapped quite intentionally for trapped by reason we may be. Reason, you see, is a system of boundaries. The building block of reason -- the hearthstone, the lodestone and the cornerstone - is definition. The more powerful the system of reason -- logic, math, scientific method (I should add philosophy) -- the more rigid the definitions must be. Here I am not attempting to discredit these tools, among our most powerful, but to identify their limitations and by striking a mark upon those limits, then to step across them to see what else there may be. If space-time is the limit of our reasoned apprehension, then let us look beyond space-time with our other means and let us reason to deduce what space-time exists within is likely a reality that does affect and inputs into space-time what is not space-time. I call our experience of these sub-rational and supra-rational, but those would be arbitrary boundaries from outside. Science itself, at its most penetrating and acute, seems to be perceiving dimly across those boundaries.
So why is this important? Why do backflips in the amniotic fluid? Because it is important to know when you are using a tool, to know the limits of a tool and to not confuse the tool with the task. Returning to earth we must abandon reason when answering questions like "Should we torture people?" We must because the answer must be No, though reason would equivocate. We must abandon reason's limits when we look to other human beings and move to relate to them not as measurable inputs, but as beings to love -- deserving and underserving at once!

Postcard 23

My week in omens:

  • Handle broke off car door in my hand
  • The following podcasts played consecutively -
    • phenomenology of Hegel
    • Being and Identity in 'Fight Club" and "the Game"
    • Radiolab "In the Dust of This Planety
    • Star Trek episode "Spectre of the Gun" discussion
    • Descartes meditations: What can we know?
    • Marc Maron interviews Ru Paul, discusses identity and being
      } All of these have to do with 
unknowableness and the meaningless 
of existence (or our perception of it) 
and what to do about it
  • At drawing night, I was practicing hand drawing and inadvertently drew the Sistine Chapel's hand of God
  • My horoscope this week first apologized to me then predicted: "Deep sexy darkness and sexy brilliance are conspiring to bring you intriguing pleasures that will educate the naive part of your soul"

In an unknowing way, I can perceive the intent of these omens, these markers. They are first , a verification of all that I believe through experience and induction. They are second, a challenge that I have been preparing for. They are third, a  promise that the thing or experience I think I will lose is actually a poor copy of what I could gain. When meaning is stripped and abandoned, then meaning becomes solely my responsibility and I'll only know it through living.

22 April 2015

Postcard 22

Sometimes, oh I feel like red dust tapped down by the rain. Sometimes, oh I feel so much pain. There is a name for rocks in the salt-flats, pushed nowhere by so much wind. Sometimes I wake with a stone on my chest and from there its all uphill. Sometimes, oh I lack the will. Sometimes the wind and rain just want to rest. There is a bone-white plain, its also blood-clay red. Sometimes its a pillow to lay my head. But I would be a blanket upon it, fine and pure. I was drowning but I'll be dry. Sometimes I have dreams I am flying, but I am falling I'm sure. Sometimes, oh I feel like the rain, and its all coming at me so fast. But there is a downy bed beneath me. Sometimes I don't mind a little pain. I will shatter to a mist, my body will cover the land. Sometimes I don't want to, but I know that I must. Sometimes, oh I feel like a raindrop tapping tapping down. Sometimes I'm tapping red dust, sometime I'm tapping the white plain.

20 April 2015

Postcard 21

I grew up in the Church, capital C, the bride of Christ the redeemer, sacrificial lamb washing clean the humans created in god's own image, too dirty to reside in the presence of the best god, no -- the mightiest god, no -- the one true god. Thats an important preface I believe. Jung said we should work within our own culture's mythologies rather than attempt another. I'm not sure its possible to do otherwise. I do not regret those days or the sophisticated tools I gathered there. I find, though, that I like how I am created. The church wants me to deny my flesh. I like my flesh. I love it and yours and all What is better than intermingling flesh? 
So…the buddhists want me to deny my ego. The muslims want me to deny my art, The unitarians want me to deny my beast. The capitalists want me to deny my community. The humanists want me to deny my spirit. The freudians want me to deny my consciousness. The rationalists want me to deny my beliefs. The socialists want me to deny my individuality. The feminists want me to deny my masculinity. The atheists want me to deny my godliness The patriarchy wants me to deny my femininity. The pacifists want me to deny my violence. The physicists want me to deny my agency. The evolutionists want me to deny my choice. My wife want me to deny my lusts. Money wants me to deny my peace. Reality want me to deny hope. Pain makes me want to deny love. 
So… consider the lilies. Consider the sparrows. Consider the trees. Whatever initiative furnaced those perfect creatures also did you and I. Not a root, a wing, a breath of pollen out of place. Each creature's existence is its birthright -- whole. Same with you and I and all -- whole.

Postcard 20

Hey human being, ever striving, ever dissatisfied, ever desiring! 
Its time to ignore the condemnation and judgement. Eons ago your bundle of proteins and acids pushed a lens into space and looked out, groped through the pull of chemical discomfort and wrapped themselves in a suit of life and moved restless and free, but burdensomely in a new world. Were did it come from? No one knows -- space perhaps. And somewhere in the pattern that governs it, it has a homeward beacon -- always seeking origin and outward. When your mouth runs copper and your legs rustle like dry leaves -- that is what it is. When you stare at a new day like a blank sheet, a new canvas, knowing that the promise is there but unable to will it, to harness it -- that is your holy birthright. You are alive and in your strugglings and discomforts you are a vanguard of life. All those comfortable beings in their chairs and clean conscience so flawless -- they are a dead end. They are like sharks, long perfected never changing. You though, self doubting worrying creating destroying, you are the hiding stressed marsupial, absorbing your offspring until you create something new -- gestation. You are the fish heading toward the tree -- defining the word plodding. You are the mouse-like primate on the grasslands. You are the virus and the cell.