we saw a bobcat on the ridge. i do not wish to write with a clear subject in mind i wish to unravel the threaded sculpture of my thought patterns and let loose the harmonies of those strings plucked individually. no music tomorrow. listen to the rhythms of traffic in the city. regret drinking. watch a movie and be an insensitive critic. see what is there. see what is needed. where do these inflatable nights take us? what of the magnets on the refrigerator or the tears in the bedroom or the tweakers in the alleyway or the heirloom citrus or the speed of walking down the street (and about the functionality of shoes). is this comfortable to be surrounded by what you don’t own always and losing days so the gym membership has already bumped up exponentially for daily practice, only been once and, regretfully, only figured it out one time, watching birds fly in blue skies on a screen in someone’s apartment across Mercer street and babies laughing and the soft hum of moving buses moving people in doppler affect, in straight lines predetermined and chosen by the people. we are not scientists. we are philosophers with lungs. we are the living breathing engine of caregiving to the self though we are almost always bombarded and strangled and coaxed by free radicals by desires beyond the edges of skin and chemical formulas for high points retraced and reenacted like an awful play and an awful play would be to let the windows close before they were known to be open. you cannot let those bastards take you down.
early this morning there were dreams of creativity
i was stuck in some kind of rut
failing to achieve goals i promised myself and others
passive and frozen when it is required to be active and fluid
so some kind of respectable man, a teacher came by
and told me he was going to pop in to my studio
unannounced and if i was caught doing anything but writing
i would have to throw myself into the icy lake nearby
and so i got on to writing poems and songs immediately
with a head full of anxious ideations and suspense
the teacher kept popping in it seems right when i was about to give up
move on, watch youtube, waste the minutes
and so i worked furiously and dished out beautiful lines
a fluid fully healthy and creatively responsible human being
then he disappeared and i woke up
after jumping into the lake for fun.
Conversations on the bus are limited by a quiet decency to get along – to make no one any less comfortable than already and the tactic includes going deeply internal, into the glowing screen and headphones – put off an I get along alright vibe, thank you & thankfully not cold enough to blast the defrosters and make us sweaty, make us more uncomfortable than already.
This feels familiar and uncomfortable – anonymous, surrounded by people who care for each other, love like a credit card kept open, “enjoy your promotion.” What is doing the feeling is a sense of suspenseful unwelcome. I know I can expand within Seattle and become an interactive body among the other connected bodies…. (?) …. clearly not enough. Do you know who is hiring around here?
For this to work best it requires cleaner edges, and consistency in font size. Style must be constant enough – it is the same night confined and tessellated here after-all. Consider this a timely prototype and later patterning colors and statements and font size variable based on the importance of what is said.
We are deep within the season of edges, a thin channel walled in by socked-in coasts, like I’m in a rowboat with you and you are unaware of the dangers. Fins multiply, wind picks up – so drink up, have fresh hop while it lasts, love your freedom, assert your empathy, we will be alright, this boat is endless. I did not mean to frighten you with what you avoid.
The choice between noise-punk and indie goddess is decided with a vegan blt. It is ten past 8. Both shows start at 8. The noise punk National play last, giving me time, plenty, while they chop and slice and pile fries, toss dirty knives into a bowl of soapy water, change the radio station, shoot the shit for a minute… it will be a longer show in this manner. It will take me deeper.
(something weird happens here supposedly)
Jesus, I’m not going back there. Instead heading up to see noise at Chop Suey while this prose snowflake unfolds. If you are reading this, understand it as meta, and know this electric navy blue as the beginning of an idea. To fill little spaces, folded, of a full piece of paper, lined, torn out of a notebook, once straightened out and framed, what a nightly kaleidoscope it will make.
Disconnected to the mechanical metaphor of interlocking parts of the city with fiery clarity, this is something I know too well, this disconnection. It will take great effort to enact redemption – moxie, art. The visuals are all there, the substance is out or not quite in – the beauty of a dissociative soundtrack – a glitchy silent film – an anxious pull toward meaning, toward fulfilling work (no one is hiring, the (…?…) is violently competitive.) “Keep up your spirit,” says a whiskey label.
I refuse to conceal how sadly present I am in this writing, not freakish, but – the reactions here keep a tone of total indifference. Swing hard, Merrell. It is the bottom of the 9th. Even still, not engrossed by that or what’s happening on stage. In the fog a striped shirted man hollering and strutting, like a Mick Jagger on lean. Classic punk style but vacuous of meaning now that ‘punk’ has illuminated itself elsewhere.
Standard human hearing. Comfortable socially. There is hardly a method you know, getting neglected in the chain of shots. I wasted it on myself for transient holy feelings when the rest were made uncomfortable with their tasks for closing… you moved nowhere closer to your goal.
Does that place exist? No, and it was in San Diego. Might be a rush of waitstaff from other places coming in. That’s my temporary. I am sorry for keeping you up – move into an uncrowded bar – but with too much gain on the cymbals – punk with a miscue in. Painful production (with that high gain) – we capture emotion with intent to make it reach the frequencies of Standard human hearing.
Let’s talk about dad and mountains. Practice environmental consciousness and think with the M.S. Merwin poem about the names of trees they grew up with and never knew, I don’t know, and I don’t know (cut off the serrated edges next time). I am clearly engrossed and alone, but alone in a place like this, the house of $2 PBRs, looks like waiting, waiting for a beloved friend to show up out of the fog.
The weather for last call might prevent and influx… “Play like a champion, leave no doubt.” Can you close my card whenever? I’m sorry but who are you. Little cues, rags thrown aside while harmless patrons sip slow last calls or play pool without adding to their stamped cards. You moved nowhere closer to your goal.
The jealousy can’t be mutual. For me it is a weight I think I can ignore, no matter how many knots form in my shoulders. No longer in the house of $2 PBRs, and cars zoom by the Florida ceiling windows, enjoy yourself angel… enjoy your baseball – share your mouthwash, forget the aux cable, etc. Forget the rest of the World.
Waiting Along With Others Waiting Also
There was a cutthroat, bottle-neck traffic
threatening efficient Arrivals pick-up –
like a fleet of ships in a bottle trying to get out
all at once – this is the meaning
of the bottle-neck. A constriction
where an open vista and the open movement
through the landscape
funnel together like a draining tub.
The flight was short and turbulent.
The cities seemed like other cities
from halfway between them and the jets.
All attempts at sleep were shaken awake
“like a baby in a crib,” she said.
When we hit the highway north
we were quiet
pinned down by unsayable things.
the light today. the light felt right. there was something in the quality of the light. something magic in the light which gave the birds, the mountains, the green fishing boats heading home to harbor, the irises of the guests, the hanging flowers, the shopwindows a positive identifier : the green ships were aware of how perfect their green hulls flowed greenly through the reflective mountainous hemlock forests who, enjoying their participation in the scene, reflected on other stages in their growth, back before they allowed green ships to pass through their wavery watery underworld.
even the clouds seemed proudly unashamed of what blue skies they concealed. the blue skies, blissfully unaware for the moment of the infinite void of cold, soundless space only a few miles further away from them and the green ships and the hemlocks, seemed happy to engage in the harmony of light concentrated on this first day of August, 2017, albeit intermittent.
the lake was moody when the brilliant blue skies picked out patches of spruce tips and hugged their sharp branches with a golden light. I felt a ripple forming.
the red salmon. the sockeye. the mispronunciation that stuck to the history books. (sock-eye is a kind of onomatopoeia for a Coastal Salish word suk – kegh and the italics, of course, are a translation as well of a spoken-only language into the English alphabet).
the salmon seemed content in their retirement. their dehydrated red fins waving above the surface like flags of defeat. the swimming dead. the final phase change. the home stream. the magnetic influence. the biological impulse. the nutrients in the trees. the core samples. the this and the that about the salmon on this fine day. pick a metaphor and hold onto it.
the swimming dead. these fish fortunately are close to their home channel as they phase change and take on a negligent diet. however, once the circle is met, the spawning occurs, there is nothing in them to keep them alive. they must flip and flop around until death comes by claw or talon or net. their spirit warms the hibernation chambers of a female bear up above 3,000 feet, getting her ready for the birth of her litter of cubs. their spirit rides the thermals higher than the mountain peaks with an 8 times magnified binocular vision zooming in and out of the landscape and providing the energy to swoop in for another kill to feed the young. their spirit fuels a fistfight at the fisherman’s bar over a game of shuffleboard. beer spilled everywhere.
the light made everything aware of itself to me. everything seemed confident in it being what it was. today, the water and the mountains, the movements they make… occurred to me as a correspondence. a long, slow decision making process. the light opened a window into this exchange. the light led me astray in the perfect direction, the noted observations, the new realm of seeing, the opened mind in the light of its own opening, like an iris acutely aware of its height above the buttercups yet jealous of the yellow light emanating from them as reflected indirectly in the diffuse light of the jagged clouds. the clouds held the light back and handed it out liberally to everything I set my mind to today.
saw the spout from afar, the sun glittering on the sea for the first time in weeks, whatever was off yesterday is erased in this drenched light, no sun for weeks, a humpback whale out in the harbor, see that spec? yes, larger than a bus. otherwise only overcast. light mist. now just light. fair light. clouds rolling in from juneau, whales underneath. a few boats. yesterday didn’t work out the way I planned. no microphones on account of whooping cough. different story. could’ve played unplugged and fought with the sounds from mainstage. navigational difficulties. directional sound. a busted up piano. cut fruit. green room wax hits. last piece of pizza. when are you playing? at the klondike, 4. we put our boots on and marched across the mud. carrying whiskey and a guitar. trim from an old hoodie duct taped as a strap. did it sound okay? are you sure? the first sunlight hit that guitar, those nylon strings shrink up and play detuned. the presence of a whale in the harbor means a pause in dredging up the small boat harbor. sunshine for all. I am having a good day. tell a joke and you’ve got em. says Jim. tell em’ a joke. we don’t need more news we need more humor. the whale breaths and leaves a rainbow in the sunshine for a moment. something like that into a microphone. punch line. the ferris wheel operator had a screw loose.