Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Travels, a piece from close to the end, macular degeneration.

Macular degeneration becomes a way of life after awhile…the willing desolution of sense power…becomes a faith, a philosphy, a warm place in a cold storm of reality. Remaining ignorant and myopic in a world of sensual over indulgence keeps a soul feeling safe…keeps a person feeling at home in an ever changing and difficult world. I watched the moon light bend and slowly cover the clear clean windshields of the perfect clean beautiful cars all lined up in rows in the sweating cooling parking lot. I counted the streetlights reflecting. I followed the headlights rush by and warp in the curved glass. We stumbled upon this reality. This is all there is and there is more of everything here than anywhere else on Earth. My mind lying to eyes…telling me that what I see is not what I see…what I see is the end…all around me the end colliding with what little there is to do.
We stood around in the parking lot, our feet sore, drinking. Some of us sat, backs broken from the weight we hadn’t yet carried. The drinking was done because of absence of other intoxicants. A horrid wicked liquid…clear…hot like pure fire…vodka flavored cheap drunk…80 proof…guarnteed distilled yesterday. Awful stuff that numbed the inside of the mouth at first contact, and drowned every living cell still clinging to the sides of our rattled heads.
Looking up into the dark sky, the stars blinked, light pollution kept the sky’s beautiful canopy obscured…never a problem in our parent’s day…a central theme in the lives of us and others like us…a world filled with things lost and taken away and replaced with terrible scary things…unfixable…we were never given the tools to fix these kinds of problem. Most everyone simply gives up. Quite a few of us climbed inside a bottle or a pip and remain there to this day…or they are dead…tired of beating themselves to death trying to remain alive in all this twisting and turning. Looking up at the star starved sky, you can just barely make out where the fantasy of things stops and the calm evil of reality soaks in…leaving a stain. Up where science’s civil disobidence becomes apparent…where the moon light twists and turns and what ever hell, heave’s hands has built shines completely in the pale lights accidently left on by reckless selfish souls who came before…showing in the shadows the things never met to be obsevred. I see them. I watch the headlights buzz by and dance in the clear windshields of the cars waiting overnight for their owners.

Monday, July 26, 2010

The Prophet

The Prophet

Across the river, the bone eaters bang out rhythms and chant. They beat out their music on wood and bone and stone. They dance together in wide circles, their flowing robes spinning and trailing behind them, throwing sparks and dirt up into the night air. He sits on the opposing bank covered in mud and ash. He sits cross legged and staring blankly into the empty air. He lets the night’s cold numb him. The small fire he lets smolder, he needs it only for the light. The music from the camp comes rushing at him in waves. His hands sweaty and shaking, he writes…coercing the letters forth to form words and words into statements, with the greatest effort. He sits wrestling with language, with his thoughts. He writes the black letters, writes them like fire on the scraps and strips of liquidy white paper before him…black fire on white flame. He lefts his eyes up and holds out his hands and prays. The mournful sound of a lone man chanting prayers in the desert night becomes mixed with the primitive music flowing from the camp. He gets caught in the sounds. His eyes go blank and he stares at the rivers water rippling and rushing. The Labbok, the river, muddy before him pulls his attention deep down into it. He finds himself in a trance. A hand comes up out of the water and he watches it come closer and closer to him until it grasps him and pulls him down into the waves. He sinks into wet cold river and sees before his eyes a morbid mirror reflection of himself. The reflection puts his hand over his eyes and blinds him. The reflection swims behind him and pulls him down down towards the bottom. Fighting and gouging and struggling, the water gets into his lungs. He coughs or tries to, he struggles to get free, biting and poking and punching and pulling. He fights for his life. The blood of both beings bubbles up to the top of the water and stains the surface. What seems like hours of battle ensue until he pushes free of the reflections hold and kicks his feet hard in the zombie like reflections face and eyes and swims sightless to the surface. As his head comes to the top of the water, he can faintly hear the music from the camp. He climbs out of the water and lies down without a sound on the muddy bank. He lets the cool rushing desert wind dry him as the bone eaters bang out their rhythms and songs, as they dance and tell tales. He lies barely alive, barely awake, all down wrestle with gods and men.

The Devil-Dancer of Kandy

The Devil-Dancer of Kandy

While the things that turn, shift and stutter,
Dance and move, and begin to break down.
While the things that howl
Make their shrieking devil sounds.
While the things that march,
Pull hard on the sides
Of the things that still can dance.
The Duk-Duk Men in Borneo,
Make their movements,
Tell the futures
And whisper sorcerers’ secrets
To the cloudless skies
With stars afloat on
Tongues aflame.
Neti, neti, neti, neti and the forest come alive.
Forests of wire, forest of sand,
The Ashram comes alive
The Asuras make their moves.
Sadhus and Fakirs
Imams and Dervish
\spin and whirl
And a sacrifice is made at a spirit-pole
In Mandalay
The screams get carried on the breeze and the muffled moans of the woman of
Fade fade fade away.
The colors that hold the hands together,
The colors they are blinding.
The steps that hold up the thin parts of reality,
The movements remain

Tuesday, July 20, 2010


I waited eyes blurred under the gas station awning. The heavy, slightly off balance glass door swinging open just to the left of me, blowing a crisp air-conditioned air all over me, the door creaks, the sound is sickening, the smell of the fake air frightening...the baseness of it all leaves me numb. The fake sunshine yellow tungsten flame of indoors spills out and washes up my sweat soaked back and mixes with the ethereal blue of the long fluorescent light bulbs above my head…my halo…the lights and colors mix and cast special shadows all around…barely perpectible…but I see them out the corner of my eyes. Grey green shadows…phatoms haunting the periffall sides of my vision. Out in the open air of the natural humid bug chirping, dog barking, thick terrifying scent of parking lot, the car sat waiting as driver and friends fumble along in the dim light for incriminating articles. I keep watch on the streets. I keep watch of the patroling police cruiser. Up and down the streets next to the conveince store…like a shark…patrolling…hunting…bar lights like a dark evil fin…giving away its movements. There is no way in hell that we are going back on the road until that thing leaves…until he is tired of trying to spook us. We all know his and his types game by now. Now we just have not to disturb the traffic of commerce coming and going in a steady stream in and out of this convience store…two lines revolving like it is a bizarre Escher Illustration. We just have not to disturb the exchange of money and not disturb the clerk. We are sure to upset the cart eventually…now it is just a waiting game. Let that cop make us a hole and right though it we will go…running hard right though until morning or at least to the next stop…no one knows where we are. No one cares. No one anywhere knows what we are up to…no one cares. Ripped out pages from phone books blowing out the open car window when the stiff nearly storming air kicks up. The sky above crackles and thunders…but no lighting…no light at all to brighten up the wicked starless sky. No navigation possible here...only hopeful and dreaming. Over my shoulder is the heavy black canvas bag filled so full it barely buckles. The bag is filled with a copy of “Cat’s Cradle” by Vonnegut, with a cracked spine…I have duct taped it up so that the cover barely shows…a have a copy of “A Season in Hell” by Rimbaud, with water marked cover and pages…pages trying to fall out…clothes…a old super 8 camera…two cartages of film…and a half full bottle of Dr. Pepper. I repostion the bag on my shoulder as the tar soaked tobacco smoke from my Camel Menthol burned my eyes. The rub my eyes and put my glasses back down and look and see the police car run up close to the waiting car and look inside at my friends. He pulls to a stop a block up out of their sight. He picks up his radio and starts to voicelessly speak to some other official far away.
“We need to go.” I say running up to the car door. I pull open the handle and ease inside. Jeff puts the car into the neutral and we slide down the parking lot and back out onto the road. Without turning on the light, we begin the compustion process that is exclusive to the internal compustion engine and in a brief knife like cut of pure American automotive power we tear down the road…we blow right by the police car a block up and wave…and then we turn on the lights.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Travels in the Chevy (Oldsmobile) part 3

With everyone piled inside of the primer grey solid iron battle ship of a late seventies Oldsmobile, we balled up and held on with all mighty as Jeff turned the key and the fire inside this vile beast breathed to life and all the air around us chugged into a frothy rapid swirl. When the “Falcon” was started your knuckles immediately turned white and your words turned to prayers of any kind and your eyes sparkled and shone and danced with absolute joy. It was that kind of event. Jeff barely touched the wheel when he steered. Turning it carelessly, if caution were an issue it had long ago been torn and ripped and wadded up and tossed away in a bunch along with handfuls of multi-colored pills and sugar packets and cigarette butts. The interior of the car smelled thick and sweet, like kicked up dust and spilled soda and clouds of marijuana and wisps tobacco smoke…the air barely breathable hit your nose with a force unknown to me before or since.
Jeff’s face looked in a perpetual stoic non-grin grin of perfect Zen like satisfaction…the sounds and sights and everything moving and turning…everything chugging and bumping…his very reason for existence. I sat in the front seat usually…staring blankly out the cracked windshield at the orange yellow glare and watching the sun revolve down the sky away from us. Between a Boba Fett statue with a bobbling head and a sun faded crack running down the dashboard…I focus my hand to steady myself…there is nothing safe about riding in this vehicle. The shaking causes the glove box to unexpectedly pop open and vomit all of its contents on my lap…lighters, little square tins filled with weed, old rags, wadded up plastic bags with traces of all sorts of powers and dusts…food wrappers.
Behind me in the fire damaged backseat (months ago the backseat was set ablaze by a wayward cigarette ember and oblivious young idiot…the idiot was me…burned down completely to the steel springs and covered it all up with a old thread bare American flag), but directly behind me sat Dan and to his side behind Jeff sat Doug…rattling off nonsense complaints and obscure directions. We made our forgetful way down back roads and side streets through the local college town looking for the friend of ours we had earlier in the day let out of the car and jokingly pulled away leaving him…but now…now he was actually lost. The shocks of the car were long gone and each and every bump was felt in each and every part of the human body…rattling bones together and creating some of the most uncomfortable sensations known to man.
“Goddammit dude, fuckin’ learn to drive! And why in the fuck are we goin’ around this way…fuck Doolin, we were just down this street.” Doug’s face bright red now, disgusted by our foolishness.
“I know. I said I thought I saw him go down this way.”
“Just now…doesn’t that girlfriend of his live down this way.”
“What? No, she lives on the other fuckin’ side of town. Damn, dude, fuck this…take me home.”
“No, I am not taking you home. We got to find Dover.”
“Yeah, man…seriously settle down.” Dan looking up from a dusty curled up magazine or comic he found in the floorboard.
“Dude! Are you even looking?”
“What? Yeah.”
“Dude, fuck this! Slow down…stop…I am getting out.”
We don’t slow down. In fact, judging by the passing asphalt and steel street signs, we have sped up. Doug can take no more and opens the door wide in a daring gesture…meant to drive home a point. Young men, bored to death and frustrated, are not the most logical beast walking the face of this planet and this is double true when intoxicates are involved and points are to be made. And as quick as a camera’s light flashes and burns away, Doug had gingerly removed himself with a start from the speeding barreling car. He hit the concrete embankment behind the Carbondale Subway with a thick soundless thunk. He didn’t roll. He didn’t move. He didn’t spin. He just lay there. The car made a loud squeak and we veered to the left and then to the right and final slowed enough and stopped about 20 feet up the road. We all got out and walked back. I looked at Doug.
“Someone is goin’ have to tell his Mom, dude.”
“Doug is dead.”
“No, he isn‘t.” Dan said as he slowly strolled up…he zipped his coat and looked down at Doug.
“Get up, Bitch!”
Doug opened one eyes and looked up.

Friday, July 9, 2010

17 Plus 17 Lost at Sea

17 years surrounding this world
Going back and forth
Making rounds
Plus 17 lost at sea
Losing all sight of shores
And dry land
Snows and poplar trees
And mountains
And valleys below and green ribbons grown out too long and ripe
And the aching sounds the dust makes
In prayer too heaven
17 years at a time
Pressed against the wall
Red eyes watching your every move
Like a Trotsky staring from out his
Hidden is plan
17 years of sin waiting
To get into the paradise
Prison built by Czars
And Princes
None of us remembers
Here lost upon the ocean
That we cannot drown ourselves in
Only come out cleaner and damper and shivering
17 years making our rounds
Back and forth around this

Riverside, CA

Losing words like aneurysm, stroke
Blood clot…falling like paint at my canvas feet…
hemorrhage, cardiac arrest
Leaving bloody stains on the floor
Words like blood soaked waves
Stains on
The mirrored floor
Reflecting back the saintly souls floating,
Breathing above my head
Kwan Yins and beautiful magic Madonnas
Paint-like drops and hot breath fog

As I sit straight back
In golden rest.
A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik
Filled with warm rushing red blood and blue veins.
Little Orange ovals dissolve under my tongue
Blue dots above.
The knowledge tree.
pill-popping fiend
Hiding the evil and wicked
Wicked things
In between sheets of paper
Paper filled with scribbles
A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik …A Tsaddik

Don’t try to hide, sleeping, a simple bhikku,
In a shady orange grove in Riverside
The police in their patrol cars
In their shiny cruisers
The police will bust you and lock you away
Even if you are a Mohawk
…they have no respect for the American Indian
Or religious expression or joy
In Riverside, California
Or Oceanside or Barstow
Or Bakersfield north.

The words fall out like fireworks and dust and sparkler ash.
Holding my breath
As I watch the inky blood fall from under clouds
Saintly sitting
Getting covered in the color
A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik… A Tsaddik.

Monday, July 5, 2010

The Dark Green - Jesse Mitchell - Open Salon

The Dark Green - Jesse Mitchell: "The Dark Green

The girl in the Edward Hopper painting began to breathe. I could see her chest moving, swelling in the yellow green sweater. She looked me right in the eyes, as I lie there, prone, not awake but neither dreaming. The smoke stumbled around my head, falling in places, flying up high in the air…just following the breeze. My eyes hot and watery. I lost myself in imagination. A new Utopia ruled by Angela Davis and Paul Newman…Steve McQueen and Carlos and Smith, fists in the air…a new strange land filled with Cuban heel boots and snap-brim hats and lunar powered neon filled lights that burn all night long. Flashing and glinting in the pale powered bright reflections…moving like waves on the water. The coffee is always strong and they always serve it hot. The new Utopia perfect and real and whole and put together by angelic hands above the seas and mountains…fit together with grace and light…placed gently down…down…down on the ever-slopping and fading ground…for you and me. Time gets by me…gets away from me. A thousand faces inhabit one thousand places…all in the very same moment. The dirty dust of slipping memory…quiet like minutes passing…minutes falling off…dying…blending into each other. The time gets away from me. I lie watching, prone, not sleeping…not awake. The moments when good is much much better than perfect. A new Utopia in my head. A new heaven in my eyes. Smiling back at the girl in the Hopper paining…she is breathing…I can see her chest moving in and out."

Protocol of History - Jesse Mitchell - Open Salon

Protocol of History - Jesse Mitchell : "Protocol of History

This is the beginning, where at first it starts
Where the mouth opens
And widens.
When newborn sound blasts out
Shatters silence
And terrible echo fills the void
And the tears the hidden parts away
From the old secrets, left veiled.
The tiny lights, tiny little lights emerge
Tiny lights shine radiance out
Into the dark.
And shadow
and shade
Plait together
And lace into the glow
High in the cloud battered sky
And the
Swollen rain burns
Into soft
And misty soil.
This is the beginning.
Where we
Weave the all long-haunting ghosts in with the
Threads of breeze that have long-tormented
the flush fiery flesh
And burning bone of passionate man.
And we will let the wind come up
And lift what remains
Of fog and haze
And icy and thunder
And never and
Black black dead of night.
In places of miseries,
new accords
And tiny lights
Bringing forth
And warmth
And rest,
And melting aways
And mending togethers
And mergings
And this is a beginnings.
This is the beginning."