Saturday, December 31, 2016

Thoughts at New Year's Eve

Artwork by Nicole Eisenman.  An astonishing artist.

Guiding Spirit

Clayton Eshleman: "I greet what I cannot account for..."

The Year in Sports

  • I heard this from somebody: What’s a Gordie Howe hat trick? Goal, assist, and ten minute major.
  • Cubbies.

The Music Manor

Got tired of the xmas music pervading the public airwaves, so I opened my vault:
  • Tchaikovsky string quartet #1
  • Brahms string quartet #3
  • Prokofiev piano sonata #7
  • Prokofiev violin sonata #1 
Dreams coming true left and right: Lou Harrison, Evelyn Fung, Anne-Sophie Mutter, Ligeti the Hungarian and Soro the Chilean (Sinfonia Romantica in A major 1920), Count Basie and Duke Ellington and the Modern Jazz Quartet and the World Saxophone Quartet, Charles Mingus, Dizzy Gillespie and Oscar Peterson, Clifford Brown, Thelonious Monk, more from the 1950’s: Cannonball Adderley (joyous playing, controlled lyricism, fractal placement of notes in speedier pieces); Art Pepper and groups from the early 1950’s in Los Angeles; Gerry Mulligan also mostly LA recordings from that period of time. Voices start and stop with Sarah Vaughan.

Recent Reading

I love language.

Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Side Chicks (N'Dia Rae and Chanel Q)

  • Men can love you and still want to fuck other bitches.
  • Once he left, I let out a sigh of release.
  • This whip is fly.
  • I ignored him because what reason did I have to speak.
  • He had a sophisticated thug appeal to him that made me wet. He was def the type of nigga that brings out your inner hoe.
  • This my shit.
  • She laughed to the top of her lungs, causing rage to run rampant through my veins.

The Tin Drum (Gunter Grass)

  • I am at home in neither the sacred nor the profane, and in consequence am housed on the fringes, in a mental institution.
  • I still contradict my keeper Bruno, who flatly maintains that only men can be proper nurses, the patient’s addiction to female nurses being simply one more symptom of the disease; while the male nurse conscientiously cares for the patient and sometimes cures him, the female nurse follows the feminine path: she seduces the patient toward recovery or toward death, which she imbues with a tinge of eroticism that renders it palatable.
The Laughter of Women (Lisel Mueller)

The laughter of women sets fire
to the Halls of Injustice
and the false evidence burns
to a beautiful white lightness

It rattles the Chambers of Congress
and forces the windows wide open
so the fatuous speeches can fly out

The laughter of women wipes the mist
from the spectacles of the old;
it infects them with a happy flu
and they laugh as if they were young again

Prisoners held in underground cells
imagine that they see daylight
when they remember the laughter of women

It runs across water that divides,
and reconciles two unfriendly shores
like flares that signal the news to each other

What a language it is, the laughter of women,
high-flying and subversive.
Long before law and scripture
we heard the laughter, we understood freedom.

Anything Between Us Becomes Money and Manners (Bill Berkson)

“Thank you.”
“No problem.”
And if there was a problem?
Pas de quoi.
Je vous en prie!
You’re welcome.
My pleasure!

Poem (Hanshan) 

My father and mother left me a good living;
I need not envy the fields of other men.
Clack—clack—my wife works her loom,
Jabber, jabber, goes my son at play.
I clap hands, urging on the swirling petals,
Chin in hand, I listen to singing birds.
Who comes to commend me on my way of life?
Well, the woodcutter sometimes passes by.

She Gotta Be The Dopest To Ride With The Coldest (Kellz Kimberly and Kyoshi)

 “You know I don’t see nobody but you bae; it ain’t shit another nigga could offer me, cause I ain’t goin nowhere,” she said, getting serious.

  • I quickly lotioned my body,
  • I walked back towards my building feeling some type of way.
  • I was starting forward all four years of high school; shit, a nigga could’ve even went pro, but the streets were calling a nigga.
  • Bitches were feenin for my attention,
  • We were close but she irked my nerves.

 Poetry Notebook: Reflections on the Intensity of Language (Clive James)

  • One of the characteristics of a work of art is to drive all the other works of art temporarily out of your head. 

And finally

The holidays, and every night was a salon and symposium: critical theory and wine and art and music and cuisine, laid in thick, Africa from the early 1960’s to today, dramatically presented, breathtaking and sweeping generalizations.  Re Hanshan: The woodcutter. Keeping it real.

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