Saturday, April 22, 2017

Special Offer!


Free ebook!

Starting Saturday April 22 for FIVE DAYS ONLY (Amazon time) you can get a free Kindle download of my latest chapbook, Settles Tab, Enters Scrum.  After that the price reverts to 99 cents but I will also post a free PDF on my website:  www.randystark.com






















Saturday, April 15, 2017

Chapters 10 and 11

Chapter 10:  The Cunning Little Linguist

IF WORDS TOOK OFF FOR THE SEASON

Sound would be clip art.


SAID THE CUNNING LITTLE LINGUIST

Enshowered.
Exfoliatively so.


I HAD JUST GOTTEN SOBER

So it was 5 years ago.


REALITY

Super silky.
Super soft.


THE SOLAR SYSTEM

Hey go with it dude.


LATE GETTING HOME FROM WORK

Schemata No.8-21.


BLURB

A terrific sort of
Debut
If you like
In a sense
To me.


I KIND OF WENT HUH?

It’s just the one page.


HE CALLED IT A PLEASURE AND A HALF

He asked me if I knew anybody.


THREE PAGES

Edited down to one.
Which was blank.


IT’S AMAZING

And so.


WELL I DID IT

But I don't know.


Chapter 11:  The Chambray Shirt

RAIN TRAFFIC

Bassinets of spray.


REST STOP

Hauled millions of washers and dryers over the years.


MATTRESS BONFIRES CRASH A DESERT NIGHT

It brings a lot of things to your head.
Hell I don’t owe frickin’ nobody nothing.


SO YEAH OK AS I SIT HERE

Remembering back in the day
New Mexico.


THE WALK TO THE MECHANICAL GARDEN

Tswee tswee tswee.
Snicksnick.
Whistle, peep.
Tseep tseep tseep.


THE CHAMBRAY SHIRT

It gives me mixed feelings.




Saturday, April 8, 2017

Butterfly Canyon

TENNIS IN DUBAI

I can’t even touch the ball
Without it going out.
Erghrgh.


A YEAR

At least a year.


CROATIAN CULTURAL WORKERS

Celebrity lookalikes.


MOBY-DICK THE BIRD

It’ll make you tingle.


TWO PEOPLE

One works for the Peanut Council.


FARM 1915

Donkey.
Two horses.
Junk in the yard.


ADORERS

Like knives to sheep.


NAKED GARDENING

Got your mind right, Adam?
Got your mind right, Eve?


MY BABY

She left me.


SCYTHE

If I’d’ve had one
I’d’ve been unable to wield it.


WRAPAROUND

Five people five days a week for five weeks.


TURKEY BREAST

Premium shaved.
Oven roasted.


PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS

Within minutes.


TRAFFIC FINES

Doubled in
Construction zones.


GUILTY CONSCIENCE

Carrying a plastic bag filled with dog shit.


GUSTY WINDS

Ahead.


ALASKA

Very.
Uh.
Outdoorsy.


THE CATHOLIC RELIGION

Which I am.


BUTTERFLY CANYON

White utility truck.
Ladder racks and built-in sideboxes.


TIME

The Devil’s footprint.
That bitch Lucifer.


PHOTONS

Throw them in your salad.


MODERN LANGUAGE

Prefix = work.
Suffix = beach.


LICHEN GROWING ON ROCK

Scatter plot of happiness.


POST COLONIAL AND QUEER THEORY

A fair amount.


STALL #480

Sundials.
Censers.
Sconces.



Saturday, April 1, 2017

Thane of Valle Vista

HUMMINGBIRD BREWERY

Growlers and squealers.
Swedish meatballs.


I WAS THINKING

You might want to take a run out there with me.


I LIKE BEING STUPID

Flapping my gums
About fucking nothing.


A WHOLE SORT OF

Sequences and definitions in the original tongues.
Management reserves all rights.
The coincidences are not coincidental.
Type thing.


RANDY STARK

Returns to his seed and nut house upbringing.


HIT UNLIMITED SKIPS

I was raised in a commune.
A sect dedicated to unfinished business.


I’M GOING LIKE THIS BECAUSE

That’s the way it’s shaped.


THANE OF VALLE VISTA

Working on a ten-ton couplet.
A happiness manual.
Surrealism in an indoor hammock.
A concordance of minstrels and danseurs.
Shapes and colors I’ve come to trust.
Birdsong as navigatory delight.
Sales and marketing in battle rattle.
Solar powered lubricants.
Say hello to sunset and tangerine.
Love just walloped me.
Her grace rocking leathers.
Dividing the waters from the subatomic rugby.


SHE WAS ELECTRA AND SALOME

And one of the amazing Brunhildas of our time.


HOW YA DOIN’ BABY?

You look kind of pale.
I hear it rained hard the last day of the fair.


WAITING FOR THE PROVENANCE TO BE VERIFIED

In my complete lobo-ness, lobo-ocity,
A crisp visage,
But a heart of Kevlar,
Unaccommodating to
Young and gorgeous experimenters,
Stopping not at singularity,
Exploding beyond,
Like wild salmon,
Cans and cans and
Cans of wild salmon
At the food bank.


ULTRA METAPHYSICS

Where why who what how.
The fuck.


THEY HAD LIKE A MODEL

Sleek lines.
Organic textures.
Warm wood accents.
High-tech touches.


DO YOU LOVE ME?

Yes.
No.
(Check one.)


DO YOU LOVE ME?

Head on.
Rear end.
T-bone.
(Check one.)


GOING GREAT

Already been a year.


AND YOU KNOW AND DAMN

This stuff is chingón.


Saturday, March 25, 2017

Today at Habitat for Habitués, a Local Hangout


CAN I TELL YOU SOMETHING?

This is incredible.


I LOVE THEM GUYS

They’re out of Europe somewhere.


I THOUGHT YOU KNOW WHAT

I’ve always wondered.


I’M LIKE YEAH

That’s what I did.


WELL THE ONE GUY

It turns out.


WELL I SUPPOSE

Oh I’m sure.


I’VE ALWAYS SAID

And look how it’s.


THEY GO BEYOND

They never stop.


WE SAID THIS WAS MAYBE

And we were just sort of you know.


ONE OF THOSE THINGS WHERE

OK so.


SOMETHING HAPPENED

I don’t know what.


THAT’S EXACTLY WHY

Right there.


NOT AS MUCH

As you might think.


THERE’S NO

Wait yes.


ME AND MY WIFE

We just sat there.


IF YOU THINK ABOUT IT

I mean.


RIGHT SO YEAH

I don’t know.


IF EVER THERE WAS

This is that.


WHICH IS FINE

But uh.


NOT AS MUCH

As you might think.


IT MAKES ME WANT TO GET ONE

Just to have it.


AND THEY’LL BE ADDING CAMPUSES

In Tokyo, Cairo, and Mumbai.
But don’t say anything yet.



Saturday, March 18, 2017

Cocktails on the Verandah: Vetting the Mystically Inclined

JOY RODE

And put away whetted.


THIS COULD BE YOU

Tell your doctor.


BIRDY BIRDY YOU’RE GOING TO LOVE ME

I just dropped something for you birdy birdy.


GET IN THERE

Right now.


I MAKE THE MAGIC HAPPEN

I’ve been the West Coast guy for the past what?


ALWAYS A PLEASURE TO SEE YOUR WORK RECOGNIZED

My whole being is involved.


IT’S HOW I’M BUILT

It's who I am.


TWO DARK-EYED FEMALE JUNCOS ALIT IN FRONT OF ME

Hi ladies.


I WAS MAKING REAL GOOD TIME

So I’m like OK.


NO HEAR ME OUT

OK so.


I THOUGHT ABOUT GETTING

A 24-footer.


ONE OF MY FAVORITE THINGS

Growing up.


I MEAN REALISTICALLY

I have shitloads of work.


WHATCHA GOT BABY?

And that?


BECAUSE I MEAN

At this point in our careers.


LOOK

French-Japanese cuisine.
Is that new?


FUCKERS KNOW HOW TO BRAND

I give them that.


YOU DON’T JUST ORDER

You explore the selections.


IN MY HEAD I’M LIKE

Yeah yeah of course.


NO NO NO

Yes go.


LIKE I TOLD HIM

It’s good luck, right?


AND MAKE IT VERY CLEAR

Once you start.


NO I KNOW

But it adds up.


YEAH NO EXACTLY

Everybody.


I FEEL COMPRISED OF FLIGHT

For some reason.





Saturday, March 11, 2017

Chapters 6 through 9: Big Reality

Fearlessness, humor, detachment, is power 
-----Gary Snyder



Chapter 6

THAT’S THE END

Not the beginning.
See the problem?


CAUTION

Sequence stops and backs frequently.


ME, MY OTHER BOAT

But you weren’t in that boat.
I was just I.
It was a little nineteen footer.


THE CONCERTMASTER’S TRAMPOLINE

Panga, proa or canoe.
Trucks, boards, bungee cords.
Top fuel, funny car, pro stock,
Tae kwon do, taxes, nails.
Fingers, fins, infinity.
Gloves, handles, blades.
Pears, plums, apples.
A dozen roses, a pair of tickets, a million skiable acres.
An A-list firecracker, rear dual wheels, but she never answers.


I LIKE THE OPEN BOW

The grandkids.


SEALS EMERGED FROM THE OCEAN AND BECAME

Humans trained to play volleyball.


WHAT?

They're returning their bikes.


Chapter 7

SERENITY

A steady smattering.
First meltwaters of spring.
Polite applause.


INTERPRETIVE AREA

Telltale tih tih hehs.


DAY OF THE FINE TOOTHED COMB

Splendor and elegance.


MICROSCOPY

A copse asway of lava lamps


FROM GLASGOW

Now in Bolivia.


AH SHE’S BEAUTIFUL

Yeah.


ALL THE PRETTY SPECIAL ASSISTANTS

Sparkling and spectacular.


WE’LL BE OVER THERE

Probably about 9:30.
Quarter to 10.


Chapter 8

PIMPING UNDER THE INFLUENCE

Entree with three sides.


DOGS WEARING SUNGLASSES

Oh that's funny.


AUDITIONS FOR THE EIFFEL TOWER

Being held after school.


CAN’T LOCATE YOUR CRITIQUE?

Let us help.


MAGIC 8 BALL SAYS

In a world where
Vipers crave tuna
And vases have zippers
And jumbo peanuts ski into turnbuckles
You’ve got to change your evil ways, baby.


BLAMETH NOT ANOTHER’S LUTE

For thine ownst foule stinke.


SETTING MY SIGHTS ON

Up, down and strange.


O THOU THING!

The word on the street.


Chapter 9

DOES HE HATE IT?

Is it too edgy?

AND I UNDERSTAND

And I said.

I THINK IF YOU THOUGHT

I don't even think.
I know.

YOU HAVE TO CELEBRATE THE PEOPLE WHO LOVE YOU

Even if they really don’t.

AND IT

You know.

THE REAL THING THOUGH IS

Fatty acids.


www.randystark.com

Saturday, March 4, 2017

Going Like This With the Mustard


Two book cover updates by Neil Novello. Much obliged.









O clap your hands, all ye people; shout! Hear this, all ye people; give ear!

The elegant movie about the eloquent James Baldwin got me thinking about the early 1960’s, I was an impressionable youth in those days who also followed sports. We lived in Albuquerque, and the University of New Mexico at that time had one of the great track teams in the nation. One of the stars on the team was Adolph Plummer. I idolized this great athlete. He competed in individual events and as a member of a relay team. Adolph Plummer set the 440 world record of 44.9 seconds in 1963. He won an NCAA title at that distance a year earlier. I tried out for the junior high track team thinking I was going to be the next Adolph Plummer. He seemed to me elegant and eloquent and fast.

Been trying to jump start Spring, and there are buds and blossoms on the peach tree and the apricot tree, but I proclaim this the coldest and dreariest Winter in several years. 

I compiled a paragraph of threads from an online discussion board.

I’m reading Solzhenitsyn. It is depressing. Russian literature is wonderfully depressing, yes? Beautiful but depressing. I really like Solzhenitsyn, but there's more depressing books by other Russian authors, yes? Dostoevsky and Tolstoy, for example. Notes from Underground by Dostoevsky almost destroyed my mind with how depressing it was.  I'd say that's the most depressing book I've ever read.

And when I get in that heavy mind, I write things like this:

ARMAGEDDON BOIL-OFF

Noisome pestilence infects my lungs.

Or:

I COULDN’T SEE SHIT

It was scary as fuck.

Or, when I really stretch:

YESTERDAY WENT LATE AND HARD
.
Not sure what was accomplished.
Scaling the Polymentality
To change the art form
Not just to get more sensitive
Not just tweak the existing
Duct tape on stalagmites
Hospice for fish
Skidding on jazzy rays of bird-blest
Epistemology
From pre classic to post neo late
Which helps make me
The cold blooded creator
The lighter of the harpsichord bonfire
That I am.

But that’s not the tone I like to set.

I’ve been entertaining audiences for more than 50 years. 

And the tone I want to set is more like:

RIDING THE HILLCREST MOUNTAINEER

Window seat in the parlor car.

And:

THIS YEAR IS LIKE

A year of crazy changes.

And then, stretching out, one I started, called "At the Deli":

HOW’S MY BABY GIRL?

How’s my sunshine?

PEOPLE TELL ME

I talk like I’m singing

A WHOLE NUMBER NINETEEN

With everything.
Easy oil.

MY PIECE MOVING AROUND THE BOARD

Positive languor.

HOW RAD IS THAT

Right?

THEY’RE LIKE

Super cool about it.

IS THERE A WAY

You could go like this
With the mustard?







Saturday, February 25, 2017

Stranger in a Land Dedicated to Superheroes


RESTLESS SLEEP

Dreamettes.


THERE’S THIS SORT OF

Butterfly garden.


FIVE SENSE MORNING

Touch and sight: fire.
Hearing: dueling roosters.
Taste and smell: coffee.


WTHOUT I

Magne.


FOOLED

Into thinking.


ECHO

If you call he just runs away.
And I don’t even own a dog.


SPEAKING OF STRING QUARTETS

Like an opossum tripping the motion detector
My love of Russian literature and music
Gets tripped by cheap vodka
And food bank cranberry juice.


TWICE I DRANK THAT OTHER STUFF

And ended up in Emergency.


THIRD TIME’S THE CHARM

But I’m not that lucky.


CELEBRITY DEATHS

What are we at, a million six, a million seven?


BUT HE DIDN’T HAVE

The cough or the sneezing.


MASS GRAVE AT TIMES

Earth.


BUT I WILL TELL YOU THIS

Laughter is the best medicine.


ADDICTION CAN KILL

But not fast enough to do any good.


TURN QUANTUM THEORY ON ITS HEAD

Take and go like this.


CHALLENGE BUTTER

To a duel.


I JOKE AND I KID

But seriously.


WALETOWA

It is?


THE VOLATILITY IN SOYBEANS

You've got to kind of see this.


A FEDERAL JUDGE IN LOS ANGELES

Came upon a little pocket of slowing.
And her daughter Qiana is going to swim this year.


LIKE ELLA AND F. SCOTT FITZGERALD

I’m feeling positively fauve.


HOW MANY TIMES HAVE YOU HEARD SOMEBODY SAY LIFE’S TOO SHORT?

Well it’s not.


THIS IS MY REWARD

I’ve already went to it.


HOORAY!

Hip! Hip! Hooray!






Saturday, February 18, 2017

The First Five Chapters

Chapter 1

NINE JET AIRLINERS IN THE DESERT

Three tamales and six eggs on the plate.


REALLY

Still?


BIRD ENTHUSIASTS EATING

Beef stew.


HOW THEY GONNA PAY?

They ain’t got no job.


Chapter 2

I’M HERE TO TELL YOU

It was quite something.


I SAID THAT’S IT DEVIL

You ain’t touching me no more.


HE SAYS WELL

You know I was talking to a guy.
I thought shit.
I’m starting to hear that everywhere.


Chapter 3

HAVE I BEEN TO PARIS?

I was born in Paris.


WE DELIVERY

I welcomed the New Year at home with a two-item combo from Little Beijing.


IN THE KAZAKH SECTION OF MEXICO CITY

I remember nests of exotic birds.


IN CASE YOU FIND ME NOT HERE

I’ll leave a key.


SOME WOMAN IN MOZAMBIQUE

A fixture on the Maputo scene.


Chapter 4

OUR LADY OF SURFING

Expressing wave behavior.


PERSONAL PROMO CODES

Be.
Shi.


EZ ADVANCE

Used her legs as collateral.
Walked out with a million bucks.


CALL YESTERDAY

Supplies are unlimited.


YOUR ORDER DOES NOT REQUIRE SHIPPING

Your order does not require billing.


SUPER CONCENTRATED

For a better clean.


Chapter 5

GUY PAINTING A GREEN LINE

The paint is talking to him.


BRUSH

China hog bristles.
Beavertail handle.
Lambskin cover.


GUY BY THE NAME OF SAGER DASH

Wore a parka, ate flapjacks.


THAT’S BASICALLY

That’s basically it.


OH RIC ELAN

A super virtuoso from a family of super virtuosi.
Naked in the psych unit restroom.


IT’S REALLY WEIRD

How that happens.



Saturday, February 11, 2017

Namaste

TODAY

A morning plush.


FAITH IN BRIEF

A petal floats to the ground.


THE SOUND OF HUMMINGBIRD LIFE JACKETS

Tumbling in the dryer.


WHEN I FIRST STARTED OUT

If it wasn’t for the.


UM YOU KNOW I’D SAY

Definitely.


I HAVE A TRICK HEAD

My brain pops, locks, catches, sometimes just gives out.


I OFTEN LAPSE INTO REPRESENTATIONALISM

Cooked in bacon grease.


AND I’D FIND IT ALMOST IMPOSSIBLE TO CALL MYSELF

Zucchini or basil.


WHEN I WAS A KID

I noticed that like my brother.


AND EVERYTHING BECAME

“Foggy.”


NEAR THE LATRINE

Hi baby.
Hi sweetheart.


OUR TRYSTING PLACE

The anti-itch aisle.


WOUND UP BEING SPATIAL

And a charming scherzo.


OUR KIDS WHEN THEY WERE LITTLE

They always.


THE SIGN AT THE COMMUNITY POOL SAYS

“All are welcome.”


THE ZEITGEIST IS BUSTLE

Rotate, revolve, gravitational, electromagnetic, strong, weak.


LANES

Leap to their feet.


TERRIBLY HAPPY

“Terribly free.”


TELLING THE PETS

Be good.


YOU REALLY FEEL AS THOUGH YEAH

But in a way that makes you kind of want to say hey.


I’VE SEEN IT

Well not the exact thing but.


AND YET THESE KIDS

Everybody says.


ROOT STOCK

A note of underlying anguish.


FOR BEST RESULTS

I close my eyes.


OR LOOK IN THE MIRROR

And simply pay the difference.




Saturday, February 4, 2017

Good Taste is Never Extreme: Throwback Sat.





REACH OUT TO ME

This is to advise that a parcel addressed to you is currently being withheld from delivery as there are reasonable grounds to believe its contents are, possibly, in violation of Federal law, specifically, the “Uniting and Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism Act.” If you want to claim the parcel, please reach out to me so mutually convenient arrangements can be made for this purpose.


LEAVE HIM BE

Jesus. I do, I love him too. But I also love duck pita with hot mustard and cheese, and you don’t see me keep bugging him to buy me one.


OUT BY THE HIGHWAY

The evening darkens ahead of the storm. Birds juke for refuge through the stuttering wind and debris. Big rigs pulling flatbeds stacked with tree trunks are parked outside. After a week of regeneration felling they are on their way home. Elevation 7 feet. Population 10. One recharging station. And Abigail’s Custom Milling. Wearing matching windbreakers with the logo, they sit beside each other in the booth, talk, check messages, maybe play a game “characterized by randomization for replayability, permanent death, and turn-based movement.” They look forward to a few days of relaxation, romance and fantasy, pajamas made from silk-eared sows, slippers from wings of poesy. Every word is prelude, like actors talking about how they have to “dig deep” inside themselves for their roles, and how “amazing” the writing is. Saving the world one country at a time. Paradise in their blood. They laugh with their noses. The dinner special is the lunch special repurposed. All substitutions cost extra. She sees the doctor on Monday. It’s always kind of there. In the back of their minds: stick to the plan, understand and perfect each sequence, celebrate, step to the next, until:  behold the result!


STEWARDSHIP

My head is the alpine hotel where journalists and anthropologists gather. I need to get me some universal trimmer line. I don’t own the mountain. Voices in the cafe are lower than the water level at the lake. Not much is fishable anymore. The old feed store is now a multiversal media technology distribution center. Kiki’s Bikram Yoga and Dry Cleaners is calling it quits.


BISON JAW COUNTY

Grandma is in the kitchen, clinking and stirring her coffee. The kids are already podcasting from their tree house, two brothers, their two sisters, plus a girl cousin. Scrapped tires tat the edges of the blue tarps covering the oxidizing cars and trailers and camper shells and kayaks in the yard and along the side of the house, a decrepit backboard and distended trampoline.


BLISS POINT

A turbid fog roiled larger than the wings it flew in on, a consciousness slogged like a queenless chessboard, a queenless colony, and if hearses were U-Hauls, redwing blackbirds would ride sheep. Nneka and I spliced inside on the sofa, evolving from numeric to alpha, she reading Chester Himes, me staring at the sledge hammer and the power washer, birthday presents from her, resting in front of the fireplace window like pets who’d had a busy day.


AVERAGE NIGHTLY RATE

And then I remembered bringing ice up to the room. And why. So I rose from the chair.


DESIGNATED TAKES

I am the designated head in the clouds, the designated heart in the throat, the designated pain in the ass. I am the designated eye peeled, the designated lips sealed, the designated nose bent out of shape. I am the designated foot and the designated door it has gotten in. I am the designated bended knee come begging on, the designated hat in the designated hand. I am the designated driver, the designated hitter, and the census designated place that I live in.


HIGH DEF

Fouled straight back. Ball came right through the TV. No chance to get out of the way. She dropped like a sack of wet cement. We’d been together 26 years. Married for 19. I built a large patio on top of her. She left behind her Barbie collection. Ken?  I’ve got a Ken for you.


GOOD TASTE IS NEVER EXTREME

Our languages are English, Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, Korean, Tagalog, Armenian, Russian, Japanese, Farsi, Punjabi, Khmer, Hmong, Navajo, Arabic. We believe in passive acquiescence or total resistance. Normal presents itself as a vase of flowers, a family photo and some optimism. Over the top are hanging planters and wind chimes and birdfeeders. And there’s no point in talking down to us because it won’t be remembered, or it’ll be ignored, or the wrong thing will be latched onto. We are not immoral, but we will white lie a little, when we need to. We respect everyone’s journey, every dawn a hot red vertebrae. Our stink bugs are antsy. Ants walk three abreast. Bees wax nostalgic. There’s a pharmacy of barking, a small airplane grousing overhead, and several double helixes of butterflies.


HOTEL INCA REAL

Every niche of the still ornate lobby profaned by the must and muck of wild asses whose carts have overturned in culverts of wildflowers. A concierge emerges from a restroom holding the cardboard center of a toilet paper roll as though it were a dead bird or a toy airplane, a couple of strips of tissue like feathers attached to the fuselage. The cocktail lounge is quiet. A prostitute sits at the bar watching TV, a rerun of “Little House on the Prairie,” with the sound off. Tired makeup betrays flow states and kill streak rewards—each eye a different shape and color, like an apple and a lemon side by side in a rachitic fruit basket. A party of four in mute multiplayer mentality has spread over a loaf of green chairs:  Rug Doctor, Diaper Genie, and a pair of two by fours. A quire of foolscap, blunt light love.  Who’s got the next round, the Dutch marabout as seen on TV, down to his last gris-gris? Mooi, dank je wel, and with superhuman strength in one motion propels his wheelchair backwards and out onto the street.  A cry goes up and his groove suite give chase, back in the hunt, caparisoned in cardboard box helmets with cutouts for eyes.


REBUTTAL

Your grandfather, on the other hand, hated it and often went to the porch and stood on his head and shot farts into the spy planes that wore out the sky over our house. Other times he sat in a chair and by rubbing his legs together recreated the sound of a tree filled with cicadas. His life dedicated to lepidptry and the study of kelp ecology, he once circumnavigated the globe using only the butterfly stroke.


A THIRD HAND LAUGH

I zombied through a morning flush with doubt and fear congressional, questions I’ve no answer to, charges I cannot answer for, and equal parts anxiety, helplessness, and paralysis. I’ve been an incomplete person for most of my life, so why am I taking on a person and a half’s mental anguish? Was it only a week ago, entitled to the ensconcing arms of nostalgia preventing me from throwing myself into oblivion, I’d been working the banquets for extra money, things had been cool. But at the last minute I was hurdled over the railing and into the rainbow abyss. In the descent I heard a third hand laugh. And this is what the way down looks like.





Saturday, January 28, 2017

And Figured Hey

WORLD

California.
Baja.
Canada.
Other.


NOBODY KNEW

So we looked it up.


THE FRANKFURT SCHOOL

Has moved to Chino.


I’M TRYING TO GET THIS WHOLE THING SQUARED AWAY

And figured hey.


TIDES AND MOONS

Ports and trading posts.


THE JOURNEY THAT WILL STAY WITH YOU FOREVER

“The journey itself becomes home.” Basho.


I SAID HEY LOOK

I told them.


NO HE’S MY AGE

No before.


I’M LIKE YOU KNOW WHAT?

It’s getting to where.


MORE SYLLABLES

Instantly better.


THAT’S WHY

That’s why I’m thinking.


SUPER COOL

Very nice.


NO I WAS WATCHING IT

Well actually right here.


OH REALLY

And when.
OK.


I HAVE A COUPLE

Actually I have three.
Different sized ones.


I THINK IT’S JUST SOMETHING THAT YEAH

Causes it to almost.


ERASE THAT ONE

Screw it.


NO YEAH

I just I.


GOOD

There’s plenty of it.




Saturday, January 21, 2017

Acting is Our Business Here

Even though February seems to be arriving early around these parts, and I’ve been slow out of the gate in my artsy endeavors for this year, my only regret in life remains not being born with a scholar’s mind—so things aren’t bad at all for me, not at all.

I tried to be an intellectual.  From my “unbaked and doughy youth” to the “sans everything” countdown I’m currently in, I’ve tried converting my common, country-fried mind into a cultivated scholar’s intelligence: I’ve attended college, I’ve read encyclopedically, until my eyes were raw as rain, books and posts and pdfs, but no dice.

Nevertheless, the visceral sensation derived from reading and listening to brilliant minds is fabulous and so I keep scrolling, keep searching, keep following threads. With the internet there’s no end to it, discovery is perpetual.

And it was through reading, probably an online magazine, maybe something that had Hymn to Life by Timothy Donnelly in it, or maybe a mention of this video by Sondra Perry, and there was maybe a mention, somebody might have recommended or referenced Karen Barad’s book Meeting the Universe Halfway.

In the intervening weeks since I first mentioned the UC Santa Cruz physics professor, her awesomeness numbers have gone off the chart in my head as I got more into her book, even given the (optimistically) five or six percent of her thinking/writing that I (luckily) do comprehend.

Her book is subtitled “quantum physics and the entanglement of matter and meaning.” There is a wealth of discussion of academic theories about the “nature of identity, being, meaning and causality.” She coaches me through terms like interference and diffraction, position momentum, waves and particles, indeterminacy not uncertainty, post-humanism. She combines intellectual brilliance and hard core academic writing with a teacher’s patience (compassion?) for the dense reader like me. And she goes far afield in bringing back elucidating evidence and backup to her arguments. Her erudition allows her readers to help themselves to a giant bag of eclectic corroboration, footnotes and appendices, including poetry.

She both led me to and was part of the immersion of words, a self-administered treatment that I use when my own “stuff” just ain’t coming. “We are part of the nature we seek to understand,” she writes, and as to demonstrate that I begin the immersion, the word spa as it were. Primary sources and spinoffs from her work include (but are not limited to): Niels Bohr, Alice Fulton (from whose poem comes the title of Barad’s book) and Richard Feynman and CaridadSouza and, of course, Michel Foucault.

So not only was I luxuriating in Barad’s book and the writings of some of her references, there were other sweet refreshing stars in the constellation, such as Habib Tengour, Inga Abele, and Joe Keppler, not to mention my fortuitous foray into the dramas of Shakespeare and Pirandello.

Shakespeare’s Richard the Second and Henry IV, part 1 are suffused with poetry, and the nonsense talk All’s Well That Ends Well (“First Soldier:  Bosko chimurcho.” “First Lord: Boblibindo chicurmurco.”) cracked me up.

Luigi Pirandello won the Nobel Prize for literature in the 1930’s. I skipped around the room when I came across this line in his Six Characters in Search of an Author: “Acting is our business here. Truth up to a certain point, but no further.” That seems to capture the motivation of my writing: entertainment, delight, beauty, and truth up to a certain point.

Finally, and it’s funny to me, no matter the topic--philosophy, politics, art, sex, architecture, literature, physics--it seems like, somebody is citing Michel Foucault. And through it all, he is sighted at a donut shop, perhaps enjoying drip coffee and red velvet donut, perhaps thinking about a seminar he attended earlier in the day. (His essay on rose pruning techniques remains to be discovered.)