Thursday, August 26, 2010

Let Me Be It

Let me be
with you
to try
to call us.
Let me be like mustard pot broken, cracked jar of porous ceramic splintered and golden paste spilled
It is no mistake to break the vessel open
with you
to try and make something never before made, built from clay of the earth, first fired then broken
to call us into us.
A memory, let me be it, seeking the realization of now with you. I am so concerned with the little things, the details we are submerged in, the porous reality whose minute pocks are filled with us. I must remember to see the forest, not only this tree, that tree. I must remember to come running when father calls.
Let me be broken, smashed, so that it can all go out and it can all come in. The shape was constricting and invigorating all at once. It was the beginning and the end, the only way to be with you but to be with you meant to be apart from you. Together. Two gather. For two to gather the cell must divide. These crimes we commit to try to make something new. Opening the jar and releasing despair, death, disease.
Oh Pandora, curious Pandora.
A little black ink to try and give shape to something previously unshaped. To call us evil is too simple. When we are evil we are live. I would not stop life for piety, for subservience to the creation of another. When father does call, it will already be too late. See? From that blot I have made a new tree of life and from it a forest is spreading, a blanket of fractal beauty. Let me be in my forest with my wild things made from splintered clay and spilled mustard. The shape that I inherited has been deconstructed and the remains are the foundation of a new kingdom.
Who shall inherit this? It is fitting for old kings to be decapitated by the new. When it is the king of heaven we take the head from which Athena sprang, but when it is the king of earth we will castrate him. We take the cracking vessel. With you it was gentle, you handed me your own head. We were breaking it together, new growth was emerging from the shape before it was fully splintered. The new was gestating in the old before it was cold. A live birth. We wanted to try a way that was unknown to us. It had to call us into porous darkness away from the sharp lines and clearly delineated shapes. A game of hide and seek, where we hide and seek ourselves.
Let me be it with you, to try to call us back to our self. Let me. Let me. I’ll do what I will anyway. Be. I’ll do what I want with it, this moment held in suspension this deep dark valley of shadow. A form emerging, light against dark, me with you. Let me. Let me be with you.
Hot and cold mingling to birth a storm. It is no mistake. We mean to do it, to break and scatter, to try to find it again in the details, to breath a spark into clay, cold dead clay, to call us into us once again. We mean to fall. We mean to break. We mean to sin this primal sin. Mustard pot cracking, the head fragmenting, my fingers in your hair, all so warm and wet. Not only this tree, that tree sprouting from the spill, branching, and reaching, like your hair flowing.
We have been frightened by this before, it is always frightening when it is real. The pain is too much for you now. Let me be it for you, with you, to try porous clay splintering, your fingers in my hair, my hair spreading like ink, my hair holding my head, to call, the tree growing, to call us, once more.

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Sunday, August 15, 2010

Love Letter

So I sit on the train, glaringly aware of their ignorance. How can they know what is happening under my skull? In my veins and along the branching network of my nervous system, demons are howling and stomping out a rhythm to accompany the dark rite that is happening in plain view, this orgy of fingers on slick paper and eyes opened wide. I see the skulls and insects and organic eruptions of form in stark black and white, and I am home.
The dragon fly. I would find one dying on my porch later, and after going inside to uncover the details of its life cycle I would determine that there was nothing I could do to help restore it to the so called land of the living. Having ruled out any other option, I would sit with it, gazing into its bulbous eyes, experiencing through empathy the alien beauty of its consciousness and I would sing a whining high pitched song in its honor. I would sit with it until it died, and then I’d put its remains on a shelf in the garage. That shelf would already have a far out collage made from National Geographic clippings and a white candle waiting for this final element to come and rest with them, encircled by purple daisies picked from a shrub in the backyard. In short I would enshrine the remains of this voyager that laid himself down on my front stair. I would piggy back on its continued cycle of occult transformation.
I had learned that large dragon flies begin their lives as something called a nymph, living hidden from our eyes in the bottoms of ponds and lakes for as long as five years before becoming those things called dragon flies. The part of their existence with which we humans are most familiar with is the briefest segment of their lives. It transpires in a flash. They are only dragon flies for a matter of a few months before they lay down and wait for some mysterious part of themselves to move once again into a world of which we humans are ignorant. I would learn all of this for myself when I would find the dragonfly on my porch, but that is a month away from now, a moment existing in a future whose shape is eclipsed by the present.
I am now only looking at a black and white image of a dragon fly printed on the pages of this thing I hold in my hands. I feel the blood in my veins dancing like witches at a Sabbath and I look at the stupefied faces of my fellow passengers frozen in attitudes of boredom, fatigue, and apathy. I look at the silly putty color of their skin and their crisp gray suits or bright red lipsticks and am amazed that they are so distant from this space that I occupy; a universe born of the lusty unification of my twisted mind and this thing in my hands. We are so physically close, breathing the same stale air of this rocking train car, smelling each others’ chemical front, the colognes, perfumes, and body sprays we doused ourselves in to disguise our animal odors, yet the distance between us is impossible to bridge because it has not been noticed. They must see another putty colored mannequin sitting here turning the pages of a magazine. They cannot see the elysian ritual transpiring within this fleshy temple, cannot wittiness with their glassy eyes the terrible magick being worked in neurons and sinews, all catalyzed by my contact with this thing. A transformation initiated by this unholy relic whose radiation is causing a mutation, augmenting elements of my self that needed only the tiniest push to come into full bloom.
Advertisements streak by the tinted rectangles of glass and a steady clack, clack, imposes itself upon my ears. The realization that something will come of this is as bright as transparent wings catching sunlight reflected off water, but what that will be is unknown. That is the terrible risk inherent in change. What I am cannot dream of what I will become, it is too deeply other. All that I can do is sit here, feeling my heart thump, feeling my spirit swell out beyond the confines of this body, this train car, beyond anything recognizable. I feel something invisible growing, like antenna reaching out from me to dip into darkest waters. I feel this and I watch the man in the seat ahead of me maintain his perfectly subdued expression as if he were afraid to alter it in any way. Clutching this thing in my hands, looking around at the other passengers, aware of the growing chasm between us, I ride the train, and flip through the pages and wait for the shapes of things to emerge.

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Saturday, August 07, 2010

Symbolic Order

It creeps right in, like a thief taking advantage of an open window, it steals in with ease precisely because they are so unlike it, alive and open while it is dead and closed. It is a virus. Not alive strictly speaking, adapting to the physiology of its host, borrowing the life of this other to further its own structure. Without this host body it is nothing of consequence. It is NOT. Only by inserting itself in something that IS does it achieve its end. Only by forcing itself upon supple young minds does it achieve anything resembling life.
This abstract entity, this order of symbols, is Rome to barbarians. It is upper Egypt to lower Egypt. It settles in its host and multiplies, slowly eating the other from the inside. Soon there will be nothing real left. Only a string of empty signifiers whose signified was left behind long ago.
We will rise and pledge allegiance every morning. We have no experience of what it is to pledge and we start saying that we are pledging without understanding what we are saying, We have never felt anything like allegiance. We know the words. We chant them together rhythmically.
We will be told to show respect, and the signifier “respect” will be associated for us with the signified of “subservience” or “obedience”. It will be impossible for us to respect our elders because they have never respected anything. The real attitude of respect has become extinct, but its corpse is still dragged around, spilling from our lips carelessly, endlessly, meaninglessly.
Language thrusts its barbed tendrils deep into us and now our reality grows tinier, more constricted. The sounds that flow out of our mouth such as and like is so very and all such like as must be some such like as such and much and truthiness, exercising our God given right to liberty and such and fighting for freedom against terror and drugs and such we must prevail against such like adversity administering justice and such with respect to indigenous insurgence and victory and such…
We will stare at each other and listen to the babble, respond when possible like an actor who has just been waiting for his cue in a Shakespearean play whose pentameter and use of forgotten words confounds the modern semi illiterate player. Recital is all that remains.
We never had a chance to choose whether or not this structure could come and live inside of us. It lived inside of those that came before us and they passed it on to us. This thing inside dwelling, steals the sight from our eyes and makes the without in its image.
What is really there? Who knows?
Nothing perhaps, an abyss, a void, chaos as counterpoint to structure. This particular structure, this fortress is not the only such entity. It is one such entity and the world it creates is unique to it. There may be other worlds spawned from another similar strange confluence of order and attention, worlds you would inhabit if you were born French rather than American, or Alpha Centaurian rather than human.
There is no more contact with the real. We have become the virus, biological extensions of the symbolic order that latched onto us and began to suck the life from us before we were three years old. We will pass it on to our children and they to theirs. Zombies, spilling colloquial zombie seed into the precious new life that has ignited in our midst. We’ll subvert that spark and make it as undead as we ourselves are, effortlessly, unintentionally.
It will creep right in, seeping from one infected organism to the next. Like a thief taking advantage of an open window, it steals in with ease precisely because the host is so unlike itself; alive and open while it is dead and closed.

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Sunday, August 01, 2010

Thoughtfully, Beautifully

The problem is the music putting ideas into their heads, words not their own running in lines like trains along tracks, tracks all forged in the simple melodies of these songs. All of my thoughts have been cooked out of my head, my senses dulled by the sun blazing on and on. The people made in the music and baked in the sun lay around wondering vaguely how they came to be at the bottom of the valley. Dressing their dogs up and wearing the least possible amount of clothing themselves, these Southern Californians run on iced coffee and sex. These are the two lures that get them to race through the course like lanky long faced gray hounds after the rabbit. Is there a story in there somewhere? Or is it only a poem? A verse in the song that makes us, an incoherent stream of experience, one line of code, pure data in the form of color and sound. The sweet bitter taste of coffee and cinnamon, the scent of vanilla body wash rising from heated skin bronzing under the solar disc rolling overhead, Apollo driving his chariot over water and earth without compromise.
Why don’t we all sit together and make our own song? After all, we’ll all soon be bones or ash and it won’t matter where the broom was or who opened the window while the air conditioner was running. Such resentment because life hasn’t been made thoughtfully, beautifully, but has rather happened to us when we should have happened to it. A sword slicing through a piece of blue sky like a knife through lemon meringue pie, purposeful, unrelenting like the tap, tap, of a wood peckers bill into the trunk of a tree. Bit by bit, measure by measure, taken in careful steps laden with the intent to savor and cherish. That was the way to do it, but we schlepped through it, clinging to vague ideas, promises regarding tomorrow and other distant futures that could never arrive because the first steps would never be taken and someone else would be blamed for the inaction.
What is missing is not a something that can be held in sweaty hands. All we will ever need, the most glorious thing we could ever obtain is already here and we are closed to it, blind to the wealth that is real and irrevocable; this liberty that is mind, this river that is love and never ceases to flow.
The problem is the music putting ideas into their heads, words not their own, words that tell us what should be, what could be, but never what is. Where is the rejoicing? The explosion of self that is being all that I am in this moment with lungs and heart and brain pouring pure poetry and hands that can do. It is our hands that give us some unusual potential as makers. But what good are makers that take no action, that never make?
Creators that do not create are something else, listening to the lyric that someone else wrote as if it were absolute, this reality the only reality. These are consumers, the walking dead, with tiny dogs in purses and the urge to create subverted so that all they really need to get by is a jar of Vaseline and a stack of pornographic magazines, and ideally some one to stick it into or to take it from, words not their own running in lines like trains along tracks, senses dulled by the sun blazing on and on.
Whatever happened to the darkness, the womb where things are allowed to gestate and come to fruition? There is no room for creation in the endless prying light. All things skim by on the surface, racing towards the future on the tracks forged in the simple melodies of this popular song. When will we all meet in the darkness, within the depths below? Shall we really wait until there is nothing left of us but bone or ash? Is it then not too late to last and love? To persist and adore? Is it then not too late to sing our own song, to use our hands for something more challenging than instant gratification?
That song, the resentment in that voice, the sad helplessness of flesh trapped within the life unlived, sagging with age, the bitter threat to run away once again. Time runs out. All songs happen through time, all songs begin and end. It is the little flourishes in between that count the most.
Did we make it ours? Live up to our deepest nature as makers? Or did we let it rush by on those rails that were supplied by the manufacturer, let it rush by only to make bone and ash, bitter sweet taste of coffee and cinnamon, blue sky un-sliced?
It should have been made thoughtfully, beautifully, and without compromise. It should have been made in the dark. It should have been our own.

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