Let the Angels Reign

 

A deep deep sound gravity awakens night tickles day lays upon her night and leaves. Corrosion explosion notions of nought cannot doom reality or her graces final musings.

 

A ticket to space is not the same as being there. When we wake we realize our dream has left us, but we do not wonder where it has gone. Why?

 

If our motions considered us we would never be able to move. If our sounds sought us after we made them we would be harried and run from city to city like some Cain unable to forget Abel.

 

I would make my world a centerpiece rather then give to it a stone that may or may not bring it luck. Give it a reason to make glitter from the passing moon and the stationary stars.

 

If love could visit me tonight I would sit down first for tea with it. If it could not make itself known to me completely I would go to sleep with the one that I love and dream it to me and it would lie upon my breath afloat for hours.

 

The star’s son has been commmitted to knowing less tonight. The boys and girls who dreamed they would someday know how to dream have fallen asleep again, put off play for something higher again only to wake up wondering again.

 

If music were my master I would bow down forever upon an altar of moon. I would not consider myself less if a smile were given to me by a friend. I would die if it were taken away, but usually I need not fear either and that is a sadness that I bear.

 

If women could only understand men they would know that our hearts too have pulse. I’m tired of being called unknowing by those who think that they know. I would choose no battles there however for no curve of cheek or hue of skin can predict from where love can arise. Not even mine.

 

I love to love and fear losing the love I have known. What valleys have been riveted into my being by my experiences with love. What sounds have coursed through my skull because I have wondered at the loss of love. To have loved even for a moment is enough to make you restless for a lifetime until you know such a moment again.

 

I give nothing to you tonight. I take all for me. The world is mine if I am to understand the concept of the scope of reality. I cannot think less than within that sphere whose boundaries I defy anybody to make in front of me. I confuse light with dark and sound with silence only because I refuse not to be open to the experiences of all or none.

 

Fourteen years have passed since I last looked into the circle. Two thousand years went by before I realized that nobody cared anymore. Who am I to say what is being done is not proper? Nobody. I say it anyway. What is not proper. I do not know. That is the mystery of my pursued quandary.

 

I will sell the dust on my shoes for a million. Take a beanie baby and hang it by a tree and snare a citizen as they come and steal in the night that which cannot be taken except under the eye of God. Adam and Eve. Well, it’s not as though they’re dead, you know.

 

I take my liberty now, but accept the price tomorrow. I, by knowing I do not know and yet exclaiming anyway, will pay the price in looks of knowing that I do not know that you will all give. For if I know, how then can you know if what you know is different from what I do. I laugh and then hide, knowing the argument silly.

 

John Emmons was shot in the shoulder because he thought a conversation silly. Was it an angel that made him jump away at the last moment that extra inch further that mattered? An angel is song, known in body and soul, and therefore let the angels reign…

 

Published in: on May 27, 2016 at 6:57 am  Leave a Comment  
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Neville, Wilma and Charlie – Albert

Charlie stooped down to pick up a multi-colored pencil. Just then a bullet flew over his head. Right where his head would have been. A man stared at him holding the gun. He still pointed it at Charlie who simply looked up.

-Can I help you?

-You stole my Wilma!

-Your Wilma? What the hell is a Wilma?

-My wife!

-You must have me mistaken for someone else…

-No, you’re the guy.

-What’s his name?

-Who?

-The guy who stole your wife.

-I don’t know, but I know you’re it.

-How do you know that I stole your wife if you don’t even know his name? What if my name was Ron, but the guy who stole your wife’s name was Stan?

-I saw you coming out of that building.

-That’s my building.

-224 sound familiar?

-I’m 222.

-Do you know Esther?

-Esther?

-224.

-Mrs. Williams?

-Yes. That’s my sister. She seen you.

-Seen me?

-Yes. Seen you. She seen you going in and out of the apartment with my wife.

-How? From where?

-The laundry room.

-How do you know your wife and I hadn’t perhaps come to the same point in the same hallway at the same time and entered the two doors at the same time. They are right next to each other, and it looked like we entered the same room from the laundry room which is a good ways away down the hall, I might add.

-She said it was you.

-Were we in my apartment or Esther’s?

-Yours.

-Didn’t she go back and find your wife?
-She was gone. She was in your apartment with you.

-I see.

-Well, I guess you better shoot me, because that’s some pretty heavy evidence.

-I’m not going to shoot you, the gun just went off.

-Well, you almost shot me.

-I just wanted to scare you. I don’t want to go to jail.

-You don’t think there’s a charge against waving a gun in someone’s face even if you’re not planning on shooting them?

-I guess so, but I didn’t care.

-Because I’m cheating with your wife.

-Right.

-Well, why would you think she’s cheating on you?

-She doesn’t like me anymore.

-That doesn’t mean she’s cheating on you.

-I’m soft.

-Soft?

-Yeah, soft, weak, filled with fear, afraid I’m going to lose her, obsessed. Stupid, stupid!

-Don’t take it so hard. So, you’re soft. Everybody goes limp now and then. We can’t all be superman all the time and as for your relationship, maybe she chose you because she was having a fight with a mythical mother in the distant past or a father who hated her or something and realized that she got into a relationship with you because she was afraid of turkey or something.

-She ain’t afraid of turkey.

-I didn’t say that. What I mean is, what if she loves you, but she doesn’t love you the same way anymore, but she still loves you and you guys just need to figure out how you love each other as you both keep changing in this world. I’m sure you’re not a total shlep. I’m sure you’ve got some good qualities or she wouldn’t have married you in the first place, but I have to tell you, you’re blowing it with this gun bit and all.

-I’m sorry.

-It’s okay. Sheez! Will you at least put the thing in your pocket or something.

-Sure.

-Okay. Good. Well, now, have we got it established that I didn’t cheat with your wife?

-Yes.

-Good. Well, then. I’ve got to go. I could call the police, but I won’t because I can see that you have had a setback into insanity and I’ve had a few of those myself, not quite like you, but I’ve had them and I won’t call the police.

-Thanks.

-Well, I’ve got to go.

-Wait.

-What?

-What’s this?

-What? What?

-This picture.

-What is that. Give me that. Jeez, porn.

-Not porn. That’s you.

-Let me see.

-That’s me?  Are you sure.

-Positive.

-But he has red hair, reddish brown hair and my hair is black, dark brown.

-Same cut.

-But you can’t see half his face and that is definitely not my nose. A button. See?
-Close enough.

-I thought we’d established….

-Look, you talk a lot. I can respect that. But I know what I know and I know that you slept with my wife.

-But I thought you said…

-Forget what I said. That was to shut you up. Get the fear out of you. Now you got to pay.

-You are going to shoot me.

-Probably.
-Great.

Pause

-Oh well. Okay, I might as well fess up. I did it. I don’t know you’re wife’s name but if that’s her in that picture then I certainly must have enjoyed it. I think I’ll always remember our night together, the way that she weaved and bobbed for me and then insisted I take her laying down from behind…

-Wilma. I told you. Wilma.

-Then she said that she couldn’t stand it anymore and then I really let her have it…

-Fear…

-Fear. You’re filled with fear. Everything you do is filled with fear. From the way you hold that gun to the way you stand there looking at me right now. Fear. Fear fear fear fear fear. You’re filled with fear. I’ve never met your wife. Definitely never fucked her if I never met her, although I’ve heard such things have been attempted.

-You never met my wife…with your clothes on…

-You can’t learn can you? You don’t get it. I didn’t fuck your wife!

-Then who is that in that picture?

-Some guy fucking your wife.

-You!

-Who looks like me!

-Who is you!

-Who looks like me.

-Who is you.

(removes gun from pocket)

-Oh, so now you’re going to really do it aren’t you?

-I don’t know. You look like him.

-I’m not him.

-Esther saw you. Wilma was gone after.

-She wasn’t anywhere near me. She may have been near my apartment, but she’s never been in it.

-Charlie!

(Charlie turns)

-Charlie?

-Neville, what are you doing here?

-What are you doing here? And why are you calling this guy Charlie?

-Because he’s Charlie. God, Charlie, I missed you.

(She snuggles close into him)

-Excuse me!

-What!

-Who are you!

-Oh, God, Charlie, what?

-Wilma!

-Oh, God, Neville. I forgot for a second.

-Forgot what?

-God, I’m so sorry. I just forgot.

-But we’ve been married five years!

-I know.

-And why did you lie to me!

-I’m not lying to you! I’ve never seen this woman in my life except for in that picture.

-Charlie, just tell him.

-My name’s not Charlie!

-Charles.

-That either.

-Chuck?

-No.

-Oh, Neville…it’s you.

-You’re drunk!

-I was at Esther’s. How was that Charles?

-Great. I guess I’m Charlie after all. Good enough. I’ve got to go.

-Wait. I’m not going to shoot you. It wouldn’t be right and I don’t want to go to jail. But if I ever see you around her again I will do it and next time I won’t be kidding around.

-Great. Awesome. Groovy. I’ve got to go.

-Just a warning to you.

-Bye, Charlie.

-Bye, bye, “Wilma.” Bye “Neville.”

-Remember the warning.

-Roger that.

Charlie exits.

-So, Nev. We going to go home and make love?

-I don’t know. I don’t feel it anymore. You make me weak. I don’t feel strong. I feel full of…fear. Fear. That’s it. I am full of fear. I can’t do anything anymore.

-Why?

-I don’t know why. I don’t trust you or myself or something. I don’t trust that you love me anymore and maybe I’m seeing too much into things and you’re drunk and you’re not usually drunk and that guy and why did you just melt into him like that…

-I don’t know. I just did.

-That’s what I mean. You just did. You just did. And I’m weaker for it and fearful and cold and, I gotta go. C’mon.

-Okay, but I can’t go yet. You go. I’ve got to get my stuff at Esther’s. I’ll be right there. Make me a bath, okay?

-Alright. Okay. Be quick. I gotta go. I’m sick of this. Sick of this fear.

-Just go and make me the bath and it will be alright.

-Alright. Fear. Fear. All this fear.

Neville walks away. Wilma walks into the building when Charlie meets her.

-Christ, what a bastard. Almost killed me.

-Just kiss me and get me upstairs. We only got a few minutes this time.

-This is getting ridiculous.

-I know. But what are you going to do?

Published in: on May 19, 2016 at 5:30 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Fargo Kantrowitz’z Literary Campsite -Law After Law- Joey Kantor

 

2010

Law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law….freedom in America? Yeah, right.

 

If you make a directional driving mistake on the streets of the country a money hungry black and white will roll up on you and, if you are poor, take everything you have, literally.  Happened to me yesterday. Saving every penny from being a substitute school teacher and authentic Christian and for what? Now I have zero so Police Officer Assistant Debbie can have her salmon at Chez Louiee on Saturday night.

 

It is preposterous that money from traffic tickets should go to the people giving them out. This is almost as ludicrous as putting the control of hard narcotics into the hands of the people that the rich people have crushed and tossed to the street to practice necessary crime. (crushed by pricing and culturalizing them out of existence and neglecting the fact that we are emotional and psychological beings who, when defeated, will self-medicate).

 

When you are poor, I mean really poor, not the kind of poor where you can’t buy another fishing boat or have to drive a Kia, but poor poor, you look at the world around you and everything and everybody you see is just cruel. Everybody is holding on to what is theirs while forming barriers around themselves for fear of losing it. They look at you and see someone who wants what they have. It doesn’t matter that they don’t carry cash. They know what they have. What their worth is, so to speak. And it seeps into them and they glance at you sidelong and wonder: is it in the tossed aside poor where the justice (that even they feel deep down)  is going to show itself – in the destruction of ME?

 

Paranoia. What a wonderful thing paranoia is. It is spread throughout the world, passed on to everybody, but it has its birth by people closing down, not because they have not, but because they have. They need to protect themselves. And they really have good reason for this paranoia, because of their ill thought out protection methods, most noticeably, “the drug war.”

 

Then there is paranoia on the streets driving (oh, as long as I have money in the bank, but did I just make an illegal turn…oh…oh), paranoia on the news: actual quote (Glenn Beck) “Gaza….Gaaaazzzaaaaaaahh.” Ooooh. I’m so scared of those philistines. Pass the corn pone Stupila. Okay, Dupus. Stupid Americans, the same ones who keep us in paranoia because they believe in killing everything just to sort of get it out of the way.

 

Back to our idea of paranoia and how paranoia is part and parcel of a deep need by those who live good, fearful little lives to kill everything that is Not Them. The Drug War. My own personal hell in this drug war comes from having gall stones. I have been hanging at the beach in sunny southern california before going back to my illustrious gig as a substitute teacher in Nevada when I had a gallstone attack. Now, in California you can get a card that says you can use marijuana if you have a physical ailment. I’m not from California. Well, gallstones go something like this: you eat that bowl of potato salad because you just had to eat it and eight hours later you are curled up on the floor in a fetal postion for another good six hours before you come out of it and just wonder what the hell you’d been through. The Only thing that alleviates the pain is pot. No, I went to the doctor once. He gave me a narcotic. It didn’t work. Nope just pot.

 

Call me a stoner. Take me to jail.

 

Anyway, it’s seven in the morning and it’s coming on. I’m not yet in the fetal position (I’m a 46 year-old-man), but I will be soon enough and I’ll welcome it. The fetal position remedy is better than the standing straight up or sitting remedy in my professional opinion. I’m poor. Don’t tell me to go to the doctor. Anything to take away the pain.

 

I go out to the beach boardwalk area where you see the people who know the real carnage that the drug war has wrought (the actual patients, I mean addicts, I mean criminals, I mean…) These are the beaten down homeless people who are necessarily scammers and thieves, some of them, or just good souls who have lost faith. Don’t say that they need Jesus. They don’t.  Jesus is the last thing that they need. They need You!

 

But getting back to the story, it’s coming on. The yuppies are on the streets. Their equivalents, the down home country folk from Missouri, won’t be out for a few more hours. But the yuppies like to walk and breathe the nice fresh air. They live in nice houses that cost thousands of dollars a month. They’re good people too, generally, but the butter crust of humanity doesn’t see them like that. They’re just more rich people (everybody is a rich person compared to them) who are seeking their morning comforts.

 

I go up to an African-American fellow whose chances went away a long, long time ago and chat with him. He’s off his rocker, but hey, I live in America, Everybody is off their rocker. I tell him straight up because of the knife trying to carve its way out of my insides: I need a joint.

 

My new friend has been around just long enough to not give me too much of a “you’re not a cop are you” stare. I feel that he will help me. Now, this is the lowest of the low. His face was so punched in that his nose actually looked kind of cool because of it. Distinguished in a way. He’s the guy you would steer your kids around on the sidewalk. He helped me. He was the only person in the world who would help me.

 

I can’t help but think about Jesus (my mother owned a Bible store for 25 years), how Jesus talked about the “least of these.” That if you help the “least of these” that you help HIM (Jesus Himself). Well, I was the least of these and was helped by what you would perceive as the top qualifier for “the least of these” title.

 

A little Christian charitable act, also known as a misdemeanor in modern Christian America, as the joggers jogged by and the sleepers from Tennessee slept with their doors locked dreaming of new laws to take money away from those who make innocent mistakes, and the “fundamentalists” (as if they were doctors or something) blocking themselves further and further into their fearful shells while the Karl Roves (non-Christian, college-educated) of the world hover like the vultures they symbolically are and pick and scheme ways to tie in their love of safety with their love of Christ and come up with the idea that “War is the Answer.”  (Thanks, guys, you killed hundreds of thousands of innocent people in Iraq.)

 

But let’s get back to the real criminals: poor people who are destroyed by road confusion tickets and gall bladder attacks. Well, I have one friend in the world. He got me a little weed. Just enough to get me through six agonizing hours of pure pain. Thanks criminal homeless dude who should be off the street and is what is wrong with everything in this country today and Mr. why don’t you go get a job and do something with yourself and get off drugs and you loser and law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law after law.

 

Good luck with all of that you “christian” (small c, quotation marks intended) fundamentalist, protection-loving fearful ones in all of your red states And blues. Don’t worry. It’s not just Republicans, although they are the most fearful and heartless in this world (and most gullible) {Ooh, was that politically incorrect?}  It’s everybody who goes day to day in this morass of laws without thinking about it. Some of us do think about it, obviously, but most don’t and you’re the ones, the non-thinkers (Saytan creayted yooniversitees where they learned too HATE Jesus {bravo, semi-educated Glenn Beck. Bravo!}) who keep it all alive.

 

Smile! Smile! Everything is good, because deep down you know that you would never give your life for another, ever, that you would seek a second amendment remedy before you did anything like that.

 

…but you give your life to shysters, to Presidents who say they are “born-again.” You killed hundreds of thousands of human-like blobs in Iraq because you didn’t want to think for yourselves. It was all over the place, the signs. I’m an idiot and by following responsible, non-biased journalists even I could see that Bush and Cheney’s whole thing was fishy. I don’t choose my journalist via religious affiliation. I am not a Fox News christian.

 

Now you’ve brought Jesus into this thing so, like John the Baptist (off with his head), you have earned my wrath and I therefore proclaim: Repent Fundamentalist Killers or God will spit you out of His Mouth.

 

Thank God I’m not a fundamentalist or you would have to fear that I mean that literally, that I’m a kook who is going to become the “mouth” of God. I don’t roll that way.  But you do. Your Tea-Partiers do. You are right up there with other famous “fundamentalists” who I will name now: Osama bin Laden, Mullah Omar, The Shoe Bomber, Mohammad Atta and some others who, like you, their names I can’t pronounce. Wake up! Law after law after law after law after law after law….(pharisees).

 

Legalize all drugs now so that doctors can dispense them and America can lose the paranoia that disturbs the average American peace of mind by nurturing violent criminality. There is no better combination for mayhem than competition and paranoia and that’s what you are sensing on your streets or at night when you lock yourselves in your homes.

 

Let’s give our country back to the people and stop this policing industry in its tracks once and for all. Give all monies made by arrests, confiscations and tickets to charities, anywhere that is not the pockets of those giving them out. This is Ludicrous, as is the drug war (just let the doctors be El Jefe, that’s all I ask), as is hoping that anybody is reading this or even cares. Good day.

 

 

Published in: on May 5, 2016 at 12:18 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Product

Dave, Jenny, Marta, Johnny, Peter, Brenner and Janey sit together in a storefront.

 

Dave

Okay. You, Brenner, you’ve got the existentialist shit, you know, the cloud of unknowing, we’re all going to die, but don’t worry be happy.

Brenner
Why do I have to be happy dying and you guys…

Peter
Because Peter will be handling that.

Brenner
You know I asked that before Peter even came along.

Peter
Look, Dave, I can give up hedonism. I could go with Epicurianism or something.

Dave
No, no, you’re covering hedonism. How the hell else are we going to…

Peter
Be bad?

Dave
Exactly. Look, some of the coolest cats in the world have tackled existentialism and come out okay: Sartre, Camus, Kierkegaard…

Brenner
I know, I know, okay.

Dave
Jenny, you’re the rationalist.

Jenny
Are there a lot of numbers?

Dave
Sometimes, but you can bring to it what you got.

Jenny
Can I make my beads?

Dave
Ask yourself.

Jenny
No.

Dave

Good. It’ll work then. Marta, you’ll be covering the darkest night thing, way beyond existentialism. This will make you ultra cool, though. Can you handle it?

Marta

I’m not sure how my mother will feel about Nihilism.

Dave
She’ll love it. Rather, don’t tell her about it. It will be okay.

Marta
Okay. I feel depressed.

Dave
Good. Johnny…

Johnny
I know. Idealism.

Dave
That’s right. It’s a sunny day. Everything is going to shit, but it’s a sunny day. We’re all going to be okay. The meteor isn’t going to hit. Cows will eventually talk to us and tell us that they like us.

Johnny
Do I have to smile.

Dave
Yes.

Johnny
I’m going to end up wearing a nametag a lot, aren’t I?

Dave
I’m afraid so, but we need you. We have to smile when Marta pipes in.

Johnny
Okay, I can see the importance in that.

Dave
What are we missing?

Jenny
What about Janey?

Dave
Janey, you’ve got all religious ecstatic motivation, got that? You got the ear of God, that sort of thing. Totally effulsive, mind blowing God exists type thing.

Janey
I feel like I’m getting bigger.

Dave
Don’t talk in tongues. At least not yet. This thing could blow out of control, but you will exist in this form. You know that you know that you know. Got it?

Janey
Hallowed be thy…

Dave
Keep it. Now. Everybody. Go!

They all sit silently not knowing what to say.

Dave:
Jenny?

Jenny:
Oh.

Jenny runs to the window and turns the open sign around. She returns and all sit once more in silence. Then the door opens. A man, Robert, walks in.

Robert:
Hello?

Dave:
Come in. Come in. How can we help you.

Robert:
I was walking around outside and I saw your sign.

Dave:
We have no sign.

Robert:
It says “open.”

Dave:
You’re right. We have a sign.

Marta:
We can’t really help you.

Robert:
Why not?

Johnny:
(stands) Of course we can help him. Come in. What’s your name?

Robert: Robert Mayhew.

Johnny:
(Shaking his hand) Gosh, it’s good to see you, Mr. Mayhew. Isn’t it wondrous how things work out? Here you are. Here we are? The world is out there. The world is in here. But, in here, (he points to his heart) all things are possible. Wouldn’t you agree?

Marta:
That is if you believe that this turning world is not a diseased soon to be corpse patiently awaiting self styled annihilation. You see, Mr. Mayhew, we are on a downward spiral and it’s going all the way down this time. Corruption, sin, evil ways produce enough ugly corroding acid to assure that this world, including the one in your heart, will not last the millennium. Have a nice day.

Robert:
Perhaps I should go.

Dave:
Go? No, how could you go? You came in, did you not? IN has nothing to do with out and…

Robert:
Just what do you do here?

They all just stare at him with blank looks.

Dave:
Do?

Robert:
Yes, do, what do you do here. Why am I here?

They all look at each other.

Brenner:
May I respond?

Robert:
Of course.

Brenner: Look, I can see you came in here looking for something. I’m afraid that you’re not going to find it. There’s too much to find. Ultimately, and I know because it is a universal thing, you’re probably looking for answers, meaning, maybe even “God,” universality, foreverness, whatever. Look, how do I say this…

Robert:

Do you have a product? Maybe I’ll take one. Sure. I’ll take one. Give me one of your product.

Silence again.

Brenner:
Okay…Look, as I was saying, maybe you came in here looking for something. Maybe a “product” or something. Something to hold on to. Something tangible that will let you look at your life and feel good inside, some lasting promise about something good, some sense, maybe, that this life is not the only life we’ve got.

Janey starts to speak, but stays quiet.

Now, Janey may have a different opinion on the matter and I can respect that, but in forming the business we, I think, and I don’t know how it could be refuted, it is evident that the product that you seek would not make you happy because attached to every product is the promise of that product’s demise. Do you see? You are really, I’m sorry, wasting your time here because, really, nothing lasts. But that’s okay! That’s okay!

Robert:
Then I guess I’ll go then.

Peter:
Wait!

Robert:
You have no business, you have no product, yet the product I would have purchased here had you had one would not have satisfied me anyway. So I guess I’ll go…

Peter:
Wait. Wait. You can’t take his word for it. You cast aside something that does not work, namely, buying a non-existent product and what do you have left? That’s right…a reason to totally party!

(Dave, Brenner and Peter break out in guttural laughter. Janey, Jenny, Johnny and Marta remain silent)

Robert:
Right. I gotta go.

Dave:
Wait. Wait. We’ve got something for you.

He scans the people in the room and then nods nervously to Janey.

Janey:

Thank you (relieved). Hello, Robert.

Robert:

Hello.

Janey:
Robert?

Robert:
Yes.

Janey:
I love you.

Dave:
There’s something. We’ll find it guys. We’ll find it. There’s gotta be a product somewhere that we have. Something.

Marta:
Prostitution is as good a way to go as any, I guess.

Janey: I love you with my width. I love you with my height. I love you with my morning. I love you with my night. I love you when all love seems withered. I love you if you don’t love yourself. Imagine a universe of holy love. By being here you are inside of this universe. Your soul floats on the starwagon hitched to eternity.

Marta:
Oh, Christ. You think, guys? You think? What are the odds…wait for it…

Janey: oh lalabadanallallapoalapolafolawalaoshkalasa…(speaking in tongues)

Marta: (singing) and we all go down together…

Dave:
Janey….Janey!

(Janey wakes up from her trance)

Janey:
Do you see, Robert? Perhaps you can call almighty universal Love the only “product” that you need. I can.

Peter: Here here, as long as you share it with your friends.

Marta: You holdin?

Peter: Hell yeah!

Peter goes for his stash, but notices the stern disapproving look of Jenny. Instead, he and Marta run offstage together.

Robert:
Why do I feel…

Jenny:
Confused?

Robert:
Yeah, confused. That’s it.

Jenny:
That’s normal. If you think of the amount of confusion that you deal with on a daily basis you will soon come to realize and see the threads that if you follow will lead you out of your confusion. Regardless of what some people think, there are things to know. The basic process of living is enough to keep your mind occupied happily throughout a typical day. You really don’t need much more than this: Life, Love and Happiness. But you’ve got to start somewhere. You’ve first got to get your ducks in a row. Make sure everything you do is going to get you somewhere. If you don’t you’re going to get stuck and then if what Janey says or anybody else is true then you will have come to it on your own. Just keep your eyes open, Robert.

Robert:
Miss…

Jenny:
Jenny.

Robert:
Jenny, you make sense. Can I ask you then, what exactly can I buy here?

Jenny looks at him with a blank stare in her eye.

Dave:
That’s not important right now, Robert. There is something to buy, I’m sure of it.

Peter and Marta return. Stoned.

Peter: Sure we’ve got something to buy.

Dave:
We’re selling, Peter.

Peter:
Selling now? Oh. We’ve got something to sell. Imagine it, Robert. Starting with a nice 1972 rieseling to compliment the Oyster Marmaduke in a slightly reversed onion and tangerine sauce. Beef Wellington and asparagus tips sautéed or braised, your choice, in an eastern Ethiopian frame of which I could speak all day followed by a port so influenced by the French that the Italians after years and years of trying finally outdid it. Of course I’m talking about Dell’callabrezia, oh 1982, possibly 1983, followed by hand rolled spliffs from seeds imported from Holland and grown in cat feces, I know, I know, it sounds horrible, but the high…

Marta:
I can attest to that.

Dave:
Robert, of course we aren’t selling drugs.

Robert:
You’re a restaurant then?

Dave:
No.

Robert:
He’s high, right?

Dave:
You got it.

Robert:
Then what? What! What am I doing here? I’ve gotta go.

Dave:
Wait!

Dave jumps up and does a quick dance number before sitting back down.

Dave:
You like? You like?

Robert says nothing.

Johnny:
God, Robert, it’s all right here! The future starts now as they say and the heights that you can climb if you only start when the world wants you to start! Instead of doing this or that, battling that thought against that thought and always spinning your wheels, just accept that life is Good. Got it! Life is there for you. It’s as high as the sky and this future does not need a nice meal or a good joint to make it a real fact as long as you embark. Take off! Go! Be with You and all things will come. Your loves will appear to you and the next step will always be followed by another and one day, one day, Robert, you will quite simply, be sitting on a cloud.

Marta:
Or in burning embers.

Janey:
And his Eyes will behold you and His demeanor will state to all that you are worthy for the entering of the light and once the light is shining upon you the world will bow to the goodness of your soul until you disappear into the light and all questions will have been answered. Nothing else will ever be needed again.

She closes her eyes and is about to speak in tongues again.

Dave:
Janey.

Janey opens her eyes, smiles, and acquiesces to the request not to speak in tongues.

Marta:
So, your sitting on a cloud, right? Robert, listen. So you’re sitting on a cloud and God comes up to you and sees you. You maybe masturbated earlier that day and maybe cursed your neighbor because your neighbor is brain dead and deserves to be cursed and then suddenly it’s like wham! Off you go. No more. Sayonara. No more high-rise cloud living for you. Down you go. Falling. Falling. Seven, eight, nine miles until you land flat on your back in the land of the doomed. It was nice to think that you could make it to the cloud planet but ultimately you’re just like the rest of us imperfect specimens avoiding points from a pitchfork and watching full time the type of things that got you in hell in the first place.

Brenner:
Hell is other people.

Marta:
Not for Robert it won’t be. For Robert it will be full time anguish. Gnashing of teeth. Ticks, electric shocks, abject fear, blackness, death fucking death fucking death. It’s not going to be nice.

Brenner:
Robert, at least you don’t have to believe in fairy tales while you’re here. We may not have a product.

Dave:
We have a product!

Brenner:
Okay, maybe we don’t know if we have a product.

Dave:
We have a product!

Jenny:
Well, technically, Dave, while we have a lot of desire to have a product we don’t really, as of this moment, anyway…

Dave:
Sssh!

Brenner:
Okay, we have a product, but right now…anyway, if you want to listen to Nihilist Nancy over there I can go get you a rope from the store right now and you can answer all of your questions yourself.

Janey:
Go on, Brenner, testify.

Brenner:
Or if you go to Saint Janey’s school of perpetual elation you’ll end up being as dumb as an ox. No, listen. There is a product, but it isn’t what you think. The product is…Now. Eat, drink and be merry la la la for tomorrow we die.

Peter:
That’s what I’m talkin’ about. But it’s a science, man. A goddamned science!

Marta:
I need a new rat.

Robert:
I see. I see. Well, thank you. I really must be going.

Dave:
Wait!

Dave jumps up and goes off stage. He comes back with a dirty rag.

Dave:
Here. Here it is. Here’s our product, Robert. Thank you for your patience with my salespeople. It’s a rather new staff that I’m still mostly training.

Robert:
You’re joking, right?

Dave:
No, no, not at all. This isn’t what you think it is.

Robert:
It’s not a rag with oil stains on it?

Dave:
No, not at all.

Johnny:
It is an emblem of all that you can be when you wipe clean your past and start anew.

Brenner:
It is a testimony to the fact that you will not be a victim to nothingness after you have asserted yourself into the truth about life, that you are born to die, but that shouldn’t put a damper on things now should it? You will still have this as soon as your personal assertion is made. There are really very few, if any, products like this one.

Janey:
It is what you will use to wipe the feet of the Universal One when your time comes. It is the flag of surrender that you will need more than anything else when all spiritual embodiment comes to compliment your hereafter. It is a valuable lifeline.

Marta:
It could sop up your blood when I kill you.

Dave:
Marta!

Marta:
Oh, never mind.

Jenny:
It’s a rag…

Dave gives her a stern look.

A very nice rag if you ask me.

Peter:
It’s a start, you see, when you harvest there needs to be a certain amount of moisture held within the soil and by placing this over the cat mixture essential nutrients will remain. This is how it is done in the casino districts of Somalia.

Dave:
There you have it. It’s only a dollar.

Robert:
You sold me. I’ll take it.

Dave hands Robert the rag.

Robert:
Thank you, Thank you. I’ve so wanted a rag just like this. Well, gotta be going. Appointment at four. Thanks again. Bye bye.

Robert exits. The group sits around and says nothing

Dave:
(to Marta, disgusted) I need a new rat

Published in: on April 26, 2016 at 9:17 am  Leave a Comment  
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The Cog

have to drink out of glass.
carry it everywhere and it dangles from their wrists
like a god. a little water sloshing at the bottom,
always there, just that little bit of water, not enough to drink,
but there like it would matter eventually and yet it is lost,
the lost water, the nothing warming water useless
because in too small a container. always more water wanted,
but it must be in glass and therefore never enough water,
but the dangle and the message and the belief
that it is healthier because of it all, but is it? Is it?

the texting hipster who doesn’t know
that the texting device makes him uncool
in the realm of former hipsters, but not caring.
the interview with the rock star: what apps do you use?
the lost generation, the t.v. dazed text starved supra socialized now gents and ladies
of uncoolness. get it now, the moment, catch it.
remember when it was just at parties they would bring out the photo albums?
now it is always. how old we’ve become in our youth.
little old scratching melters into each other
where warmth belongs to digitalized mommies fast screen daddies and you.
waaaa. mama papa we are the now generation, the new generation
where we can watch tv all day, motherfucker!

the guy who made it in academia.
matters while the rest of us flounder and forget
and remember that we don’t matter because we weren’t vetted
and we can’t wear ties and fedora’s and flowers in our lapels
but we can sport the floppy boots and the red nose
and we can cry and eat shit and remember that our past is as gone
as their future is in front of them
because they have a whole lifetime of being known
as the ones who matter in the art that you suffered through,
got caught through, burned through, failed through,
asked for everything through and got nothing through.
daft you. wise they.

america wider knowing it’s got nothing on this,
the land where ideas matter, people are trying,
innocence has been celebrated and innovation praised,
no where out there compares. it is all death delight and long views
fetid streets with locals and no entry no money
and suspicion of strangers.
only in the mountains or the liberal seas can a wanderer find a home.
the rest is for the short view and the flickering light
in somber houses late night.

the smart one who knows 1s and 0s and can code
and can know and is young and is the future
and is living inside of the box and we don’t know him
and he doesn’t know us and he is math and we aren’t
and the way the world is to work he will speak and we will not
and it will not be language that we know, but that they know
and transactions will take place because of it
and our food will become cold because bad and theirs will stay hot
and will go fast and taste great because they knew
and it all had to do with the simple fact that nobody, nobody,
nobody talks or even looks at anybody on the street anymore.
it all comes down to the creation of methods to eliminate you
and everyone you know away from me and vise versa.

the woman with the hitler mustache made of a band aid
walks in the sun with an umbrella and a stern look
while vaping a cigarette, a long black one that looks like a real stick
and when she looks up she sees again the world
and her feet keep her walking and there is no rain
and even the sun is not that burning
it’s just that there is no other way to be.

the past, the very recent survival mode, is in you in a stolid sad way,
making the world of the inner become something slow
when the inner isn’t slow, making the world seem dull
when the world is not dull.
it has no color, unless grey (greenish) is a color
which I guess it is, but it has nothing to it.
it is wasted time in exchange for money. it is like a shit.
it must be released and soon.
They will try to convince you that it matters, but it doesn’t.
it matters only to them and you do not play a part in the equation
except in the basest of ways.
The cog.

Published in: on January 16, 2016 at 4:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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absurdity- king saint finnerty the festive

absurdity is when the bad guy wins and everybody then laughs at you, the bad guy’s nemesis, because they didn’t understand either.

absurdity is when nobody understands but you and you are actually right and not the standard fool they expect you to be.

the world is absurd when your idealism destroys you

absurdity is when the world insists that you stand in the wrong line

absurdity is the victory of moral wrong

absurdity has no patience for the elimination of the status quo

absurdity wouldn’t mind if you die

absurdity is insane and always right and earless

absurdity is brushed off as protocol

absurdity often is protocol

absurdity is mean

people accept absurdity to get what they want

absurdity says black may as well be white if that’s what everybody wants

absurdity is an easy ride for many, but not victimless

if we do not see absurdity as a powerful force then we will be its victim eventually

the law can prove that the absurd is not absurd which is just another example of absurdity

god, if loving, is the grand master of all absurdity

is absurdity pure evil? perhaps, but only if it creates casualties

absurdity is like a toxin that debilitates its victim. in this way it is used as a weapon since there is no way to respond to its brash, forceful assertion. it is the equivalent of its progenitor saying : my way or the highway, end of story. it’s a coverup most of the time, a ruse, a weapon closing off all debate because you are made to believe that you just don’t understand and will never understand because you are INEPT.

builders of absurd paradigms don’t believe what they are saying. they are simply building citadels of power that will not be contested. in this way thievery is made easy.

all it takes to create absurdity is to insist upon it

we all live within the strictures of absurdity

absurdity is most keenly felt by the highly moral

the fact that most of the paradigms we inhabit are actually games ruled by sensuality makes fools of even the smartest of us.

our many hungers as humans create many absurdities, flawed arguments based only on the fulfillment of that hunger instead of the fulfillment of a higher need benefitting more people. we dance in absurdity and swim in it.

that the strong gather everything and the weak nothing when the need hierarchy is exactly the other way around is an example of absurdity.

the victory of absurdity creates hopelessness

a sense of absurdity arrives with the end of eras in a person’s life. coping is needed. new vistas must be discovered. the vision must be reapportioned. reality must be heeded. new happiness must be found and it can be.

the fact that absurdity defeated you is what leads most to regret. regret is deep sadness.

gather here all ye who thought they knew and did know but were told they were in error – king saint finnerty the festive

Published in: on April 14, 2015 at 1:18 pm  Leave a Comment  
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The Crash of Nazi Robot 21224 -a short film- Albert

INT. DAY
Close up on head of Nazi Robot 21224. VO screams and mayhem in background. VO of children being removed from mother. Voices of Nazi Robots barking commands. Furniture being toppled, etc. Title/Credits.
Typed words on screen:
2014.
North American Annex – Tennessee Sub-Quadrant – of The Greater German Domain.
Sixty-nine years after The Great Vanquishing of the United States of America by Adolph Hitler.
Screaming crescendoed. Total mayhem.
CUT TO:
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Digital numbers multiply ultra fast.
CUT TO:
EXT.DAY
Robot close up. VO mayhem.
CUT TO:
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers accelerate even further, even faster. Volume meter in red. Word: “prohibited” underneath.
CUT TO:
INT.DAY
Close up of robot. VO mayhem continues. Children being taken away. Woman Screaming. Children crying. Gunshot. Only children crying.
INT. COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers suddenly stop. They stay there frozen a moment and then begin to go backwards until it is merely the alternation of the numbers 1 and 0.
INT.DAY
Close up of robot. Robot goes into motion amidst children crying and the commands of other robots behind him. He exits. Sunshine is on his face. He continues to move, soon leaving all sounds behind.
CUT TO:
EXT.DAY.ROAD
Robot walks alone down road.
CUT TO:
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
1 and 0 with 0 staying on longer than 1.
EXT.DAY.ROAD
The robot stops as he hears an approaching car.
CUT TO:
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers roll again. Volume goes up. Words: 2004 BMW sl44 model, registrant Cara Anderson, Millsville, Tennessee, sub-quadrant, 20, two brothers, Layne, 23, Michael, 26, mother, Tiffany, 49,Father, Gabriel,51, single, Junior Class, Goebbels Institute of Mass Communication, Art and Design. 2016.
CUT TO:
EXT.DAY
Close up as he stands there.
INT. COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers replace words. A brief coordinate outline of car and then the word: Disable.
INT.DAY.CAR
Cara’s car suddenly goes dead. At first she is perplexed, but when she pulls over the robot is standing there.
CARA
(Groaning)
Oh,God.
Cara gets out of her car. The robot stands there.
CARA
Well?
No response.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers pick up speed and roll at calm pace.
EXT.DAY.AT CAR
CARA
Well? You obviously need my help. Aren’t you going to get in?
No movement by robot.
CARA
Look, I mean, look at it this way, sir, I’m not going anywhere unless you get into my car and let me take you where you need to go. Are you in trouble?
No movement by robot.
CARA
You wouldn’t have disabled my car if you didn’t need my help…sir…and by law I must take you anywhere you want to go. So, where do you want to go?
INT. COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers rolling fast again. Volume control. Audio replay is in red. Arrest number ac5563876245axs, Janet Miller, 30, deceased, bullet, NR63869 induced fatal capture, children received for re-education, Terry, 8, Jason, 6, Tia, 3. Eighth infraction from quota. 3:23 p.m., Tuesday…
EXT. DAY.AT CAR
CARA
Well?
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Words suddenly replaced by fast numbers. Then numbers slow down, stop, and then begin to go backwards until, once again, they alternate between one and zero.
EXT.DAY
NR21224 gets into car.
INT. CAR. DAY
They sit there. Cara looks at him like she is waiting for him to turn the car back on and then tries the ignition. The car starts and they pull out.
EXT.DAY.ROAD
Car pulling away.
INT.DAY.CAR
Silence. NR21224 faces road. Cara is young and curious and keeps looking over at him.
CARA
I’ve never really driven before with a Nazi Robot, I mean, are you guys all as…diligent as some people say you are? Oh, I should just shut up.
Silence.
I mean aren’t you going to even tell me where you want to go? I mean, okay, please, sir, where may I deliver you this fine sunny day?
No response.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Nothing but the slow alternating 1 and 0.
INT.CAR.DAY
CARA
I don’t get it. Why won’t you answer me? If there is one thing I know about NR systems it’s that they are very good at speaking up when it comes to commands. Are you broken?
No response.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
The 1 and 0 slows until it is just the 0.
INT.DAY.CAR
CARA
Oh, my God. You’re broken.
Cara laughs.
Well, then, this an odd turn in the proverbial road of life, isn’t it? What should I do with you? Should I just drop you off with the Gestapo somewhere? You’re supposed to tell me, you know. I could get in trouble here.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
The numbers begin to roll fast again. The word “Drive” appears.
INT.DAY.CAR
NR21224
Drive.
CARA
Drive. Okay. Drive. We keep doing that then. Sounds good. Drive.
Silence.
So, that was some Blood Flag Festival,huh? Do they let you guys go to that? I probably shouldn’t tell you this but I think I had a couple too many celebratory steins if you know what I mean. You got to stop and smell the roses, right? No, I guess you wouldn’t know what I mean.
Silence.
Do you like music?
She turns on radio. Dance beat plays.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers spike. Volume goes into red. Words: Accelerated beat. Forbidden.
INT.CAR.DAY
NR21224 quickly grabs her wrist and holds it.
CARA
Ow.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN.
Numbers shoot all the way down to zero.
INT.CAR.DAY
NR21224 let’s go of her wrist. She turns off radio.
CARA
You’re not going to re-educate me for that are you?
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Just 0. The word “No” appears.
INT.CAR.DAY
NR21224
No.
CARA
No? You just witnessed a foul and you say you are going to do nothing? Oh my God, you are broken.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Still just 0.
INT.CAR.DAY
CARA
I always wondered why all the Nazi Robots aren’t given eyesight. You’re like bats in the dark, but, I guess you really wouldn’t know this, but you know people by their faces more than anything. I don’t have a face to you, but you know I exist. I always thought that was a little weird.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers pick up speed. A few computer co-ordinate images appear. The car, numbers, a girl’s co-ordinate outline, numbers, a computer co-ordinate flower outline,numbers, a computer co-ordinate sun outline,numbers, then the girl outline again, numbers. Then the words: flower, sunshine, odd pets.
INT.CAR.DAY
NR21224
Flower. Sunshine. Odd pets.
CARA
(Laughs)
Where did that come from? You’re my favorite Nazi Robot.
INT. COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers roll calmly between one and ten.
INT.CAR.DAY
CARA
I mean why didn’t they give you guys any video capabilities?
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers spike again. In one corner of screen is a new meter with a high number on it. Underneath are the words Video Code Protocol 7956jlm-4226- Emergency Activation Sequence. The other numbers continue to rise with great speed. They then slow down to a stop. They then begin to fall. The words: Highway 9-3 – Road Marked Fuhrer’s Peak. Go now.
INT.CAR.DAY
NR21224
Highway 9-3. – Road Marked “Fuhrer’s Peak.” Go now.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Video protocol number stays static. Main number goes down until it is once again 1 alternating with 0. After a moment the video protocol number begins to count down.
INT.CAR.DAY
CARA
Fuhrer’s Peak? You’re not going to kill me are you because I don’t think local Nazi Robots are programmed to do that unless you’ve done something really, really bad?
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers continue to alternate between 1 and 0. Underneath are the words: Flower, Sunshine, Odd Pets. The video countdown continues.
INT.CAR.DAY
NR21224
Flower, Sunshine, Odd Pets.
CARA
Good. Here we go then to see or whatever some flowers, sunshine and maybe an odd pet at Fuhrer’s Peak. I was going to get my hair done for the Perfection Rally, but you can’t beat Sunshine, Flowers and Odd Pets.
CUT TO:
EXT.DAY.CAR
Car drives up mountain.
CARA
(VO)
How about a little music? I’ve got just the thing for you.
Symphony by Wagner, Hitler’s favorite composer.
They continue up the mountain, finally making it to Fuhrer’s Peak. They get out of the car and look out over the world. It is beautiful.
CARA
If you could only see this.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Just 1 and 0. Countdown continues. Word: Flower.
EXT. DAY.MOUNTAIN
NR21224
Flower.
CARA
You want a flower? Yeah, sure, I can find you a flower.
She runs off and picks a flower and brings it back.
NR21224
Place on external receptor.
CARA
Huh?
NR21224
Forehead.
She places flower against his forehead.
INT. COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers spike. Quick coordinate image of flower. Corner countdown.
EXT.DAY.MOUNTAIN
Cara removes flower from his sensor and smells it. She smiles at him.
NR21224
Sunshine.
CARA
Haha! Sunshine! You’re actually commanding me to bring you sunshine! It’s all around you! It’s in the air! You can’t feel it because you don’t feel but it is here. If you could feel you would know. Sunshine is everywhere and it is one of the things that make people very happy.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Alternating 1 and 0 turn into just 0. Countdown continues.
EXT.DAY.MOUNTAIN
NR21224 extends arms. Raises palms then puts them back down and lowers arms.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
1 and 0 again. Countdown in corner. Quick coordinate outline of girl. Words: odd pets.
EXT.DAY. MOUNTAIN
NR21224
Odd pets.
CARA
There are no odd pets around here. There might be a squirrel or raccoon or something but they’re not really pets. You can’t pet them. You know, touch them, feel them.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Just number 0.
EXT.DAY.MOUNTAIN
CARA
You can’t feel them because you can’t feel. So sad.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Just 0 and countdown.
EXT.DAY.MOUNTAIN
CARA
Come here.
She goes to him. Faces him. Touches his sleeves. Gets on her tippy toes and kisses him on the forehead sensor.
INT.COMPUTER SCREEN
Numbers spike at fast pace when suddenly the countdown ends and the words: emergency video activation enabled.
EXT.DAY.MOUNTAIN
Through a fuzzy fish eyed type of lens we see Cara’s face moving back from NR21224 the moment after the kiss. She holds the flower and wears a peaceful, loving smile.
NR21224 moves forward. Cara stops him briefly.
CARA
Where are you going?
NR21224 walks past her.
CARA
What are you doing?
NR21224 keeps walking in the direction of the cliff’s edge.
CARA
What are you doing?
He moves determinedly forward.
CARA
No.No!
He moves to edge and looks back at Cara through the fish eye. No sound.
CARA
(Soundlessly)
Don’t. There’s hope for you. I care about you.
NR21224 steps off of the cliff and terminates himself.
Cara falls to her knees, picks the petals off the flower and cries.
CUT TO:
BLACK

Published in: on December 11, 2014 at 2:27 pm  Leave a Comment  

You’re Supposed to Be

Well, here we are once more at the campsite. There is very little happening here in Millsville today, Easter Sunday. I sit in my coffee house and think about the stuff that occurs to me, none of it amounting to much. It’s a lazy day. Not much going on. People walk in together, couples, smiling. I always sit alone. I’ve always been a bit of a loner, a loser you might say, especially as a writer. I used to want to be a writer, but then I realized that I had nothing to say.

That never stopped me, though. I wrote two novels and half of a third. I wrote a million stupid little essay type things, never able to gather the stuff up and turn them into legitimate works. My thoughts are more of the scattered variety. I will have a million thoughts and a million non-thoughts, each of these things won’t matter to me or anybody. Especially you. I get self-conscious when I write in public. I don’t have the ego anymore to attempt to write short stories. Each one is too much of a plea for attention.

My novel wasn’t like that. My latest novel demanded attention in itself. The short stories though seem like a little test I must pass in order for the world to know that I am a “real writer.” I’m sick of that scene, but more than anything, and oddly, I really liked writing my short stories.

I wish I wasn’t so fucked up in my head that I could just write and not worry about the details of it all, but I can’t. I guess I will always be a writer writing from the peripheries inward until I get to some morsel of truth and mine it.

Unfortunately I get to the truth and all of my energy is taken up by that outer morsel. I can rarely move onward and into the core which might allow me to jump track and go into the short story mode or the non-philosophical mode and directly into the metaphorical mode where trees represent other things in some far out way while remaining trees. I like trees. I like thinking about them, their place in the world. How they look good up against a blue sky, how light through their branches look cool, how the leaves sound in the wind. I like that. Unfortunately, I rarely ever get to the place where I think it’s meaningful to write about them. Those simple days seem so far behind me now. Simple even though the reality of it is that to write of these things is not simple but complexity hidden within simplicity.

This type of physical writing is what poets do. But then I stop and realize that nothing poets write is not poetry and that includes thoughts on not being able to write about trees. When I stop worrying about what I write then I am free to express what is inside of me. If there is no form, no title or label like “short story,” “essay,” or the like, I still have the words which have acted as a salve to a too rough exterior membrane, a pair of eyes hurting from too harsh a sun.

I need this meditation. This is what writing is. It is not always or should it ever be just a way to make money. When you come to it from that door there is no place to enter. It’s like opening a door on to a brick wall. Nor is it any good to go the route of writing thoughts that are supposed to sound wise that aren’t wise, which are actually just blowoff, steam. You’ve got to do a lot of this type of writing to get to something meaningful or rather, to get to a trail of thought long enough for the reader to accept it as potent, rather, for it simply to be potent. If it is potent the reader will have no choice. A lot of words must be shed to get to potency.

The skill in writing is often knowing which part of the mass to cut out and which to leave intact and, once you’ve cut out the fat, how to weave it back together again so that the reader thinks that it is all just one long coherent thought, a pure lie, of course, misleading to the highest degree and a secret that writers don’t tell one another except by screaming that you must edit, edit, edit. If writers really understood their process they would explain why you must edit and the reason is simply, like I said: we must write a lot of words to produce a few that limited space in publications will allow.

Sometimes I wish, though, that we weren’t so blocked by
the need to look good on the page. There is something to be said for messiness, truth in mistakes, sloppiness providing better lines to read between which is what good writing provides. If we published more good writers’ sloppier writing maybe we could free people up to attempt the meditation. Instead, we’re all so “great” through meticulous editing that people see the final product and say,”Oh, I wish I could write.” I just want to say: “You can!” If you can edit.

In other words, my message is you must lie to the world that you are a genius in order to become a genius. It’s a sad yet true fact. Just remember that the lie comes after you’ve written the original thought, a thought no greater than any thought belonging to any non-writer. We must accept that we are all in this together, that writing is an exercise that can be extremely therapeutic. We must lift from the ground rules the notion that to “really” write you must be great. This is simply the notion of a bunch of bullshit-headed college dickwads who believed the critics with standards so high above the average that they too were most likely among the “non-selected” and therefore punched down those below them. It’s a pecking order, Shakespeare on down, but a pecking order un-ordered by true writers whether Shakespeare or me or anybody else who believes that the words that you say aren’t quite as important as the fact that you allowed yourself to say them at all.

We are all going to die along with our memories. To allow yourself to write is to allow yourself to live vividly. It is
merely a tool. If the words are “great” this is merely a by-product of having become honest enough with yourself to allow your pen to say things that are truly inside instead of creating a style or philosophy that fits some personality that is not so true to who you are than to who you think you’re supposed to be.

Published in: on November 15, 2014 at 5:38 pm  Leave a Comment  

You’re Ninety

You’re Ninety

Once
-above the beginning-
there was
now.

I wondered
for three years
about what I should do.

You have to understand,
I wondered what
what to do meant.

It’s always the idea
that you are something
-other-
than what you are
that trips you up.

Usually a word happens
and you go to it
and you stick there
like some object
stuck to
a gluey wall.

You never know
if what you are going to do
-or say-
will matter in the end.

There are so many
examples
out there
of people
who have done well

and you should take it
as a good thing,
that they came through
and succeeded in the end,

but it is all about life
-ultimately-
and along the way
you always hear
that they had
-trouble-

They couldn’t do the thing
they wanted to do,
couldn’t move an inch
closer to it,
in no way, ever.

Lost, they were,
just like you are now.
-lost forever-
but ultimately successful,

like some story seeking
an ending
and finding itself.

I was born a seeker,
more a dreamer.

A lost cause
to anybody
who knew me,

but as you age
you learn
the code
and realize

that to be
a lost cause
is a found cause

in the game of
the eras.

The eras are all that matter
to people like me,

because when you have
something to say
to the eras
you feel as though you
came upon something
-true-

and that means
that there
can be
something
true,

that it is possible
at all,
and that life has meaning.

We like to think that this is the case,
that we are not just here
by chance,

another conglomeration of cells
coalescing
so that “life”
can make it

in a
biological sense,
Darwins “success.”

What is it all for?

Ask an intellectual
and he or she
will tell you
that it is in finding
-truth-

Ask a married man
or a married woman
with children
what the meaning of life is
and they will say
Life.

There is no arguing
with that
as every intellectual knows.

There is never a way
to better
the notions
of the biological
-victors-

the non-intellectual
masters,
the ones who
-reproduce-

the ones who know all
because they replicated
their terms,

gave themselves
a second chance
and therefore doubled
their wisdom quotient
just by doing so.

The others, the me, the we,
the others,
we all sit and sink
in the face of the wisdom
we will never know.

Money doesn’t come to us,
unless we’re shrewd
and often,
we delete our shrewdness
in favor of rightness.

We lose our ability
to have children.

Failed works,
minute wanderings of soul.
Finished stuff.
-blamphed!-

Whatever that means.
Doesn’t matter.

We are not the Gods and
we are not the fathers,
but merely the trustees
of the interstices,

the places where thoughts
were bid from higher powers
To never go.

Kerouac and Wolfe
and Whitman
were all streaming live
their hopes.
How many lost words
did they utter
to unlistening populations?

How many words of theirs
have never been heard,
but for a fleeting moment
in minds of people
who needed just that
useless moment?

Supreme wasters of time.
Monumental seekers of faith,
but failures all.

Never seeking rightly
that which could give them
sustenance.

A jazz play, by Kerouac.
A New York autumn’s glee by Wolfe.
A world praising by the great Whitman,

but all to feel,
to know, to feel, to know,
to feel, to learn to think

that we are more than just
something
dour,
so easily perturbed.

We seek in order to live.
But we are asked to die.

No way could this be
in such a short span
as the almighty God gives us,

but we are asked to do so
-anyway-

It is a turn we take.

When our beauty reigns
so do our words,

but the real writers know
the difference
and they never give in to
the hype.

It is the orchestration
of death
that devours us.

It is the need to rage deeply
one more time
when all of our needs are met.

Too old is nothing but
a lie.

Too old is nothing but
a moment
when others can win
and you can lose.

It is a manner
in which new can overtake
old,
but Thomas said it best,

do not give in,
for it is a matter important
to the usurpers also,

for if you do not give in
nor will they
and into old age such rage
-will ring-

and you will know that you
mattered,

not just that you mattered,
but all mattered,

that all within biological skin
mattered,
briefly, at least,

and it did not have to do
with your age
or your decrepitude,

but it had to do with
your soul, an ageless thing,
superior to all attackers
-always-
no matter the age.

You are a maverick
who cannot fly.

But you are a God, too,
a man or woman who can live forever.

You know but you do not tell.

The others don’t listen anymore,
because you are not beautiful,
but you know,

and the fire is like lightning
that streaks wide
across reality

and where not acknowledged,
all is lost.

-You’re ninety-

but you matter.

You matter like a son of a bitch.

Published in: on October 15, 2014 at 8:37 am  Leave a Comment  

Creative non fiction

joey c kantor

Tear up your library card

The writer Phillip Roth, arguably one of the finest literary novelists of the past fifty years, recently stated that he no longer reads fiction. A study states that dyslexics make up a high proportion of ceo’s. Steinbeck said that knowledge and wisdom enters us the moment that you close the book. Reading is touted as one of the best things that you can do for yourself, the equivalent of intellectual and emotional exercise.

But what if entering the worlds of others could actually have a harmful effect on you? What if exposing yourself to elegantly structured sentences pointing to fine truths could actually cause you to go blind? I wanted to find out if this could be the case when I recently came to the realization that I didn’t want to read fiction any more, or if not anymore at least for awhile. You know what seemed to happen? I sensed the power of contemplation was coming upon me. All of those words I had sipped, slurped and gobbled seemed gone soon after I read them. Afterwards I couldn’t tell you what I had learned because I don’t read to learn. I read to experience. To translate this learning is another story. I began to resent reading. It all just started to seem like vanity, like here was a lucky author, something. Definitely not with more to say than me just because he or she had been vetted by society. I have written millions of words myself, or at least it feels like it and I still have to bow to the experience and talent of others in order to grow? Well I had had enough. I stopped reading fiction and threw my fate to the gods. Either I would deal directly with my own unexpressed self or I would experience nothing at all.

I guess I came to the place where I said goodbye to literature as a crutch. I waved goodbye to being the perpetual student, especially when all the twenty something’s were winning all the writing prizes through sheer intellectual energy. I believe I may have been sold a bill gf goods by the educators in this world. More and more I think that all of this importance of reading over doing was a conspiracy by academic elders making 200 grand per year and publishers doing the same. Everybody says they love reading and literature then they have to love it to eat once they choose it as a vocation or art form, but do they forget why? And if you are constantly shoveling more and more of this into your head, where is your own mind? Do you have room? Must you perpetually shovel so that you be like an addicted teenager to his or her telephone? All in the name of smarts? Healthy smarts? Beneficial smarts, ones that will allow you to do your work at the top of your game. But where has the contemplation gone? Where have you gone? And mostly where have all those words gone because, conceivably, by my age I should have read enough words to provide me enough wisdom to last several generations. At some point might it be just important to put the book down, to stop being a student and, like those dyslexic CEOs become a doer instead and see into what form the words have molded you?

Perhaps when writers say that you must write to be a writer they mean that you must cease to be a reader and become a doer, an experiencer of the fruits of every word you have ever read. Wisdom piles up. Perhaps they are unconsciously telling us to put away dependence on what we think we know or ought to know so that we can enter the process completely free of immediate outside influence. Perhaps a high volume human word vacuum would discover that their own expression style resembles a feather slowly lifting away through a breeze. It is important to come to a sense of who you are through what you express because you discover your limitations, the end of your belief of who you are in exchange for the real and humble knowledge of who you actually are. I’m not Einstein, but then again, Einstein ain’t me. Should you desire to be Updike or Toni Morrison there is a way but it involves cloning. Even if you read every book your favorite author ever read you would still come up against the diagram of your parameters. A beautiful novel like The Old Man and the Sea isn’t Finnegans Wake, but would you want it to be? Everybody is afraid of looking foolish. We imagine our final forms will be revealed and we will see that we were slower than this one or not as beautiful as that one so we try to capture lightning where we can, to bottle thunder in the hope that people will mistake us for that, a human being for an inanimate phenomenon whose only real use is nature’s mystery and ours a vessel for symbolism. We are afraid to look up, to look away from the words of others, like we are afraid of falling behind in a race. Read those words! Have you read this writer yet? You really should because they can infuse their spirit into you and you might just succeed as if you would succeed after the mysterious transfer of the non existent reality that we call luck .

Or you can look away. Hear the frogs croak. Look around you. How did you get where you are, why are you there? Have you stopped long enough to figure it out? Maybe you should get a move on, be somewhere else, but one thing is for sure, you are where you are. No doubt about that and if you are there then there has to be a chance that if you put your mind and animal instinct to it you might just be able to move on to somewhere else. You look around and you can see, you put away the fantasy journal of others that by your reading it will somehow initiate you into a club of other able-minded mentalists. You will be alongside the big daddies, but don’t fall behind. Don’t fall behind or maybe you should.

I always liked the vignette in Steinbeck’s The Grapes of Wrath where the retarded man liked the river so stayed there. This a symbolic statement to me. One of those wisdoms through imagery that we can only get when we put the book away and allow it to come back to us. I see it as Steinbeck’s simple nature, the simple man inside of the elegant thinker. If you go toward the unsophisticated, the boring, the droning nothingness of nowhere inside of you, then you may eventually find a perch where thoughts of change can move you, make you eventually do. It is a lot like just slowing down. The writer needs to slow down, close the book of others to open the book of himself or herself, share, and by so doing, becoming a writer too.

Published in: on July 25, 2014 at 4:55 am  Leave a Comment