Sweet is the revenge that lies low for a quarter, just to halve the impact and doubleth thy forgiveness one fair apple to the next. Then we can talk of oranges, the P.I. and the azimuth of the infamous cirling return, where even the unlearned know a straight line when they see it...
...yes, when they know it, touch it, smudge it, recycle it, mix it, integrate it, nix it, bury it, junk it, kink it, mash it, describe it, lick it, hunt it, nick it, favor it, spoil it, suck it, trash it, pool it, race it, fake it, bend it, skirt it, agitate it, arm it, highlight it, track it, sack it, flatten it, extrapolate it, measure it, seed it, keep it, check it, click it, whack it, pop it, finger it, poke it, register it, forget it, erase it, seduce it, increase it, grab it, market it, nuke it, appeal it, loop it, win it, clear it, educate it, irrigate it, irritate it, masticate it, sweat it, drag it, report it, support it, post it, float it, flavor it, torque it, jack it, pack it, surprise it, smote it, stab it, crack it pull it, push it, smack it, suggest it, sink it, disarm it, flag it, rip it, emasculate it, rewrite it, tighten it, choke it, read it, slap it, cut it, slice it, nose it, lose it, wipe it, kick it, steal it, inflate it, climb it, hold it, rhyme it, blow it, soil it, give it, charm it, choose it, hack it, wing it, wag it, squeeze it, eat it, work it, confuse it, compute it, type it, stereotype it, punch it, forsake it, repeal it, threaten it, reject it, trust it, hose it, wreck it, portray it, smash it, betray it, emphasize it, peg it, chuck it, supersize it, navigate it, inhabit it, feminize it, pirate it, save it, swallow it, juice it, hook it, shelve it, salvage it, handicap it, buck it, book it, articulate it, swear it, love it, color it, marry it, flip it, seize it, raise it, break it, police it, kill it, mark it, rule it, school it, fool it, outsource it, voice it, match it, hang it, swing it, fuck it, verify it... so that we each get a taste of the good life.
And we understand that we have no need of extenuating concrete or abstract nouns, when we know all the action resides with the verbs no matter what nouns exist, or don't exist. The most common metalanguage to name this concept is nominalization.
At least then you would have only one woman in the family aiming for your head next time they pick up a Louisville Slugger. You’re outnumbered buddy, and this ain’t China…
That brings us nappily to the "n" word. In a process called juncture loss, the "n" has wandered back and forth between the indefinite article and words beginning with vowels over the history of the English language, where for example what was once a nuncle is now an uncle. The Oxford English Dictionary gives such examples as smot hym on the hede with a nege tool from 1448 for smote him on the head with an edge tool, as well as a nox for an ox and a napple for an apple. Sometimes the change has been permanent. For example, a newt was once an ewt (earlier euft and eft), and in the other direction, a napron (meaning a little tablecloth, related to the word napkin) became an apron, and a naddre became an adder. The initial "n" in orange was also dropped through juncture loss, but this happened before the word was borrowed into English. Props to Wikipedia for juicing the jam I was having on toast with Richard Nix, the pirate flag and number twenty-two...
Okay, dude, say I, “Let’s hope she doesn’t become so bright she thinks she’s an artist…”
With a beating heart ancient cold to starry eyed zoology students, weather-crunched cracks in the sidewalks of America, and all this dead language I still must bury, I suppose this concrete noun is as good a dump as any. This writer has nothing but the utmost respect, and can boldly admit to hoisting a torch for well-placed zingers and pickups of nearly every load I can carry, although I'd be hard pressed to name one outside the '84 Chevy Scottsdale monster block, all-black & chrome short bed Mauler I steered up and down the I-95 corridor for about six years until its transmission finally cringed out, needing an obscene over-priced overhaul for such a shiny truck, bleeding me dry. Voices in my head now school me in strange German accents, "You've only got yourself to blame." Laughter, my response, laughter borrowed from another era, another purse I used to have. Nice touchthat personal Airplay technology, my own 18K track streaming like magic through high-woof Pioneer speakers scattered about Die Librahausen on InkFlower Hill. I am indeed never alone. And just in the nick of saints everywhere, into my depraved decaying eardrums the secret programmer comes, this time as Rotersand, and I have nothing but instant amusement for that lyricYou've only got yourself to blamebut I don't dally to dissent. "That wonderful machine was programmed to fail," I retort. A mere 78K on the odometer, never went four-wheeling. Never clocked her out. Junker, whore on lemons. Loved her while she clawed my road, my straight-away road like an iced-out black-lipped steampunk, DRI and Motorhead slamming naked eardrums and tapedeck against the walls of the leather cab like homeboy sailors about to trade life for a watery grave, but I ain't sentimental about static scrap metal that refuses to scream down the naked road, that won't buck the screaming naked wind, that won't deliver the screaming male naked, the same naked, naked as he came in, ink optional, and now it's high naked time for her to meet her makerthe spirit of the whale, naked. Sentimental. I could be, but I ain't. I'm no seized up gearhead. Get the drift?
Nothing is a very important aspect of our concept of something, anything, everything, and the lines of demarcation which separate us all, bring us together, ignore us in the end, so don't fear, just don't neglect to trace one's own importance back to nothing. Have a good day, Robert.
I think this could have been more strategically written, "Good thing Regan turned out cute, or Ita would be in BIG TROUBLE right now..." At least then you would have only one woman in the family aiming for your head next time they pick up a Louisville Slugger. You're outnumbered buddy, and this ain't China...
You say when you read stories about how some children are not going to be very bright adults, you think, "that's less adults my daughter will have to compete against and it brings a smile to my face." Okay, dude, say I, "Let's hope she doesn't become so bright she thinks she's an artist..."
Soup's boiling on the glasstop. Slice, then dice the leftover roast into rosy chucks, making a tomato-vegetable based brew, with lots of juice, always lots of juice. I can't seem to drum this "lots of juice" meme into the wife's head. She's clearly no cook, will tell you that herself in an English Fog, nearly completely illiterate in the kitchen even as she's about to reach retirement age. Lots of juice. That's why they call it soup, silly. Best part of the soup, if it's done right, I tell her. That's what my Pops always said, and I've lived long enough to realize how right he was about that one thing, at least. Yes dear, that's cabbage. And potatoes, peas, corn, carrots, okra, green beans, onions, oregano, black pepper, and a little red to curl your toes. Carrots? Oh come on, baby, it'll put hair on your chest, as the Pops used to tease my sister when we were growing up. Illiterate. What can I say? She's not really a literal bean counter, only a metaphorical one, a bean counter more comfortable shoveling numbers and slinging hash about whether her company, Always & Forever, is currently still in the red or in budgetary black. She'll be home soon. I'm surprising her. Always love to catch her off guard. Love is that way. Always spotting the cracks in the sidewalk. The potholes in the street of any relationship requires everyone to lend a skill, apply the requisite pitch, and mix in some jolly good cement.
Afraid of demons with scratchy voices,
eat your vegetables, carve your meat,
take your vitamins, drink your success,
I see you've eaten everything on your plate
except Yahoshua pushed to a corner
sanitized, sold with lies,
what a simple shame
this incubus of your hate,
this collective exampleyou cheat
from bank to bakery to butcher to color
making your choices, icing on your cake,
never the twain to meet.
Cross-breed my gasoline my corn, fuel donkey
bake your bread, your cherry tree disguise
working in office of twelve daughters
a day, long hours in point, bigger
higher, longer, thicker, richer,
faster, smarter, safer
meaning it's not this way
but that, unauthorized tongue, you say
what you read is authorized and perfect,
but you, still armed, RU authorized,
made perfect just because someone else
unauthorized and not perfect
broke a crowd long ago?
Pick up tree to follow me,
prepare, verify gnosis to name
the claim, the value, the power
ride, sit, walk, fly, win, thin
must be a better way to stalk
barely sure you can cut it
that shame you claim you lost
generations ago, look it's back
got the knack, took me back
moving from palace to shack
better to be seen not heard
in lion's jaw, days of old
breaking dove, the bird
the very meaning
of my word...
urge may take or leave dot women
drunk before malicious identity
essential pedestrian shakes
against pagan blue vision
rock shadows beat to boil
burn and beauty shock
black rust dream lilies
old men crowded minds
cancel this stop
a spoiled fuss
two years ago free agency
she sweats as she pockets
below the previous rail
to standardized poverty
a typographical error
the deliberate cinema
we can't discriminate, silk
soft asphalt, hard styrofoam
reloading ten eligible goals
not on my highway says Ned
just easier leaves eyeball
rolling upscale bouncy
seekers without likes
to cowering experts
drowned in fact
an addiction to friction
abundance of ordnance
always in the airspace
progressing past pulse
draft free weight
spend up girls
purchasing resistance care
vague trust critical zones
education irreducibly slow
we digital tongues
ignore the door
The following excerpts are from an essay cast by poet Marjorie Perloff as excerpted in Nothing to Say & Saying It, the online blog by John Gallaher.
Language poetry, together with its related ‘experimental’ or ‘innovative’ or ‘oppositional’ or ‘alternative’ poetries in the U.S. and other Anglophone nations, has often been linked to the two Steins—Gertrude Stein and Wittgenstein (as I myself have argued in Wittgenstein’s Ladder), to Guillaume Apollinaire and William Carlos Williams, the Objectivists and New York poets, Samuel Beckett, the Frankfurt School, and French poststructuralist theory. Those who denigrate Language poetry and related avant-garde practices invariably claim that these are aberrations from the true lyric impulse as it has come down from the Romantics to such figures as the most recent Poet LaureatesRita Dove, Robert Pinsky and Stanley Kunitz. But laureate poetryintimate, anecdotal, and broadly accessible as it must be in order to attract what is posited by its proponents as a potential reading audiencehas evidently failed to kindle any real excitement on the part of the public and so decline-and-fall stories have set in with a vengeance. Great poets, we read again and again, are a thing of the past: a ‘post-humanist’ era has no room for their elitist and difficult practices. Accordingly, the main reviewing media from the Times Literary Supplement to the New York Times Book Review now give ‘poetry’ (of whatever stripe) extremely short shrift.
"The Language poets (or L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poets, after the magazine of that name) are an avant garde group or tendency in United States poetry that emerged in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Language poetry emphasizes the reader's role in bringing meaning out of a work."
But what if, despite the predominance of a tepid and unambitious Establishment poetry, there were a powerful avant-garde that takes up, once again, the experimentation of the early twentieth-century? This is the subject of the present study. Designed as a manifesto, it makes some of the polemic claims we associate with that short form even as it suffers from its inevitable omissions. Because I am here interested in foundational poetic changes, I shall have little to say about many of the poets who have been most important to me and whom I have written about again and again over the yearsEzra Pound, William Carlos Williams, and Wallace Stevens, Guillaume Apollinaire and Blaise Cendrars, George Oppen and Lorine Niedecker, David Antin and John Cage, John Ashbery and Frank O’Hara.
‘To imagine a language,’ said Wittgenstein, ‘is to imagine a form of life.’ This book studies such key poetic ‘imaginings’ both at the beginning of the twentieth century and at the millennium, so as to discover how their respective ‘forms of life’ both converge and cross.
: The Language poets (or L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E poets, after the magazine of that name) are an avant garde group or tendency in United States poetry that emerged in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Language poetry emphasizes the reader's role in bringing meaning out of a work.
: "Let us undermine the bourgeoisie." So Ron Silliman ends his contribution to "The Politics of Poetry" symposium in L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E 9/10 (October 1979). Writes Gabriel Thy in response to Silliman: "Better as discard than trump. It's no accident the truck feeds millions, ignoring the silly man crammed with errors."
If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
But make allowance for their doubting too;
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:
If you can dreamand not make dreams your master;
If you can thinkand not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breathe a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with Kingsnor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
If all men count with you, but none too much;
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
And—which is moreyou’ll be a Man, my son!
Anvil Booker was no guarantee,
Nimrod's son, wide awake, my generation,
not what you wanted, not now not here
coy, once upon a time nickels and dimes
one way or another one of these days out of time
Mrs. Brown's lovely daughter,
broke paperback writer,
only a pawn in their game, swallows peppermint twist
open all night, parade of the horribles,
Nadine Brown put 'em on the glass
like old fashioned love songs
"My brain is hanging upside down, neat neat neat"
a few observations, sunspot backyard garden party
forsaken fragments of fresh flesh must of got lost
met privately with their lawyers, guns, and money
fortunate son sitting to my right in submission,
no sanctuary, superstition, surrender,
none but the brave,
Mrs. Robinson snatches Mr. Tambourine Man,
and the one they called Mr. Integrity. Ooh la la. Each other's bad company,
girl gone wild, night moves, sultans of swing, mother and child reunion
only the good die young in Oliver's army,
Mother's little helper not faking it,
one man's a gang, one headlight.
One tin soldier on the sea of Galilee,
Arial Sharon still in his coma after seven
years of plenty, on the road again,
one way out, not a trillion dollar golf game
peace minus one, pay you back with interest
one step into the light, one of us, Obama's presidential rag
people who died, peeling back the foreskin of liberty
for the piano man Pee-ro Juan Valdez Sam Quixote
parasite host, pump it up, it's a political world.
Private Idaho went M.I.A.
planet earth 1988, police story pretty vacant,
plastic bag, picture this, get a grip on yourself
perpetual personality, the pied piper,
please push no more, the power genocide
gunpoint affection, this year's prophet
get back, get down, get ready, get up,
golden shower of hits, going going gone
get your body beat, get off, harvest
halfway to crazy said Avil,
the happiest days of our lives,
hate to say I told you so
growing up the children
of dust, groom's still waiting.
The church of the holy spook,
cigarettes and citizenship
packed into an old blue chevy van,
made it to oh Atlanta and back then died
after that singular trip from Corpus Christi,
sold it back to the same gypsies I paid on eggshell.
Elvis is everywhere, a field of opportunity
Eli's coming, eminent domain, embryo dead, Elvis on velvet,
fire on the mountain, flowers on the wall, civil war
face to face, remarks Eve, of destruction, Ezra's Cantos
fake friends fading fast, long as I can see the light
pipes Anvil, looking for a leader lost in America,
a brutal planet, every picture tells a story,
every grain of sand fighting in the streets,
Cleveland rocks, Detroit City falls,
drops into the night, city baby
attacked by rats coast to coast
cold professional, common people
coal miner's daughter, glory days
claw at idiot wind,
as somebody screamed give peace a chance,
others bellowed they would go down fighting,
same fate, no regulation, no legislation
prepared the goon squad, the goody two shoes
troops of tomorrow, red shirted radicals,
the queen of the silver dollar,
rabbit fighter, punk rock girl, the righteous ones,
or the green shirts of the green green grass of home
for the grinder, the grey seal.
Richard hung himself,
the rhythm of the rain was
a major contributor. Famous last words,
return to sender. Over my head. Pablo Picasso
never had to paint it black, use magnum force,
just his lyin' eyes, mandolin wind,
and maybe I was a golf ball,
quips Anvil, adding
Massachusetts was his favorite nation,
miles from nowhere when you live in sweet home Alabama
especially when the Medicine Jar
still owned Maybelle's guitar.
Now it has always been mate,
spawn and die (probably of mind games)
so the show must go on,
but things smell a bit fishy,
Shirley, should I stay or should I go?
The silver dollar forger is a Shi'ite punk,
Master Jack, you know Sister digs the sharpies;
Modern Romans haven't a clue, have no momentum
again miles from nowhere when Michael rows
the boat ashore itchin' for action,
the memory of Mesopotamia not lost
in the air that I breathe
the age of consent
blindhammer in bikini
red between the lines
or the defenders of the faith,
deep one perfect morning
because the night principals
of the death & resurrection show,
are dedicated followers of fashion
moving in stereo,
ignoring my back pages no matter who you are
as the age of quarrel plus outsider sacks
our comfortable lives. Anvil
with his never say never
lonely teardrop Mike Twigger ax
admires the question.
Why are you so paranoid, they accuse. Anvil's quick
to point to territorial pissings, then indigestion.
So my pal Joey Higgins invites me to stay at his house in Boynton Beach, FL. We do a demolition-construction job for this guy who has no permits. We get our first check before I've opened a bank account. So I sign it over to Joey.
He takes off for the weekend...goes shooting on the other coast. I watch the house. Feed the dogs. Feed the fish. Brush the pool. When he returns, he doesn't give me my money from my check. Next week no money. Then he wants me out. I say okay, give me my money so I can pay for my greyhound reservation back to DC. He says he paid the bills. All $262.12 of my money to run his house. My laptop and two external hard drives are not sucking that much electricity. Plus there was no discussion of expenses. At least give me the opportunity to offer. Don't just steal my money. Plus what about the food I bought that he ate... saying that doesn't help out the house... so he doesn't want to give me my money from my check. I start earning money for 3d art done for Tom Howell's steam punk comic. So Joey lends me the car keys to go get beer. Then reports the car stolen. i spend a weekend in jail. Then have to walk the streets of Boynton Beach till my reservation date with Greyhound comes up. Money comes in from Tom Howell and Ashby and Seamus to answer my distress call. I spend last weekend in Miami. A $5.00 tri-rail to Miami, $12.99 a night at the Miami Beach hostel. a bed, jaccuzzi, bar, and bath. Refreshed I get to the Greyhound Station in Fort Lauderdale and arrive in DC. Quite an adventure. All in all. But Joey Higgins in no rasta mustafa. All of those at Dupont [Circle] back in the day who warned me of this wannabe were right. just another wannabe. Thanks all for your friendship.
"You DO seem to have quartermaster issues, Roland..." I wrote three or four entries below this description of one Roland Currie, a six foot six giant of a man and virtual reality graphics expert with whom I have been acquainted for about twenty years, although our relationship was nearly entirely accidental or second hand, a byproduct of a mutual friend, Tom Howell, or Howellnymns as I like to refer to him in print.
However, I also got an "F" in Deportment that quarter, and upon my wish was sent to the principal's office on the last day on school that year since I thought it might be fun. It was, and a bit painful, also, but fun just the same. An experience, a gas, a gag, a goof. You see, I was a straight A student, and I learned to rebel early against feckless authority...
Robin Slusher, a pretty girl from the North Country I presumed, poked me gently, "Gabriel Thywhat are quartermaster issues?"
"In Roland's case, roommate and landlord struggles...go figure, I use a single world to replace several, and then have to explain the stretched single-word metaphor to the public thus defeating my original intent," I obediently supply.
"Hahaha-go figure! I retired from the Navy and we use that word often but never in that particular wayI was just curious. Just googled it; you used it in an "Army" way. Navy uses it differently. I was institutionalized; sorry.
"No problem, but as you well know, words are authentically extended from their original usage quite frequently..." I responded, with a sigh of relief that this wordslinging tete a tete was over, adding one more round for good measure, "Roland's been on both sides of this enterprise. He knows what I'm talking about even if some of the rest of you do not. And that is not a slam on any of you. You may just not be aware of the entire scenario as I framed it. But I too, am saddened that Roland is having troubles. I was hoping good things for him in Florida."
But no. Somebody else was pricked by the word I had used to describe a condition I knew Roland was now facing again as some kind of karmic swarm.
His best friend DC "Max" Hughes rushed into the area where words only have subtlety it appears if they are perceived and experienced that way by the "official" lexiconographers. He copies and pastes the following:
Quartermaster is one of two different military occupations.
In land armies, especially US units, a quartermaster is either an individual soldier or a unit who specializes in distributing supplies and provisions to troops. The senior unit, post or base supply officer is customarily referred to as "the quartermaster". Often the quartermaster serves as the S-4 in US Army, US Marine Corps units and NATO units.
The function of the U.S. Army Quartermaster Corps is to provide the following support to the Army:
general supply (except for ammunition and medical supplies)
Mortuary Affairs (formerly graves registration)
subsistence (food service)
petroleum & water
aerial delivery (parachute packing, air item maintenance, heavy and light equipment parachute drop, rigging and sling loading.)
shower, laundry, fabric/light textile repair
material and distribution management
"Well, thanks, that was very thorough. In the Navy, a quartermaster deals with navigationthat's why it confused me," offers Slusher.
I have no choice but to respond to this jolt of authoritarianism, "What's your point, Hughes? Rock & Roll hardly translates to fucking, but there it is, fucking you, fucking me, fucking Elvis...muster your thoughts if you have a point to make. I certainly am capable of defining quartermaster as stated in the military protocols (or Wiki), but I used the word as a metaphor for this material fiasco that Roland seems to find himself struggling against from the opposite side now, not so long after a fiasco involving another in which he held the controls. Uh, the simple notion of managing one's quarters, supplies, and provisions is one of man's most basic transactions.
"Got a stick? Poke me. I'm done."
But true to his nature Max wasn't done, "Quartermasters, counterintuitively, do not handle quarters; lodging/housing."
To get to the point the customer service rep said, “The invoice says returns are SUBJECT to restocking fees. ‘Subject to’ means you WILL get restocking fees”. I said no it means I “MAY” get restocking fees and that she didn’t get to decide the meaning of words; that the meaning of “subject to” had already been defined. So….I didn’t have to pay.
Are you kidding me, I thought. So, true to my own nature, I continued to beat the dead horse just to see how much snot would spray across this language cop boondoggle he seemed genuinely certain I needed in order to improve my writing and not appear to be the fool, "Is Roland Currie not complaining about lost provisions? Shower, laundry? Do puns not exist in your splendid mind? As I wrote earlier, in Roland's case, his roommate and landlord struggles cover a lot of ground...go figure, I use a single world to replace several, and then have to explain the stretched single-word metaphor to the public thus defeating my original intent. Last time I was a scout quartermaster, I was in control of issuing Army issue cots and sleeping bags, cooking pots & utensils, et cetera to my fellow scouts. Max, you just don't get it, do you man? This discussion reminds me of when I was in the eighth grade. English class. We had to write a short story. I wrote a sports story, a baseball story. I used the word carom, as in the high fly ball caromed off the left field wall. Teacher marked my usage wrong, saying it was not a word, a made up word. I told her it was most certainly a word. I had heard it all my sports-conscious life. In baseball, in basketball, even in golf. She wanted proof. I pulled the dictionary, found the word, showed her, and the entire class, and she still denied me the word because the example the text gave was "as in the game of billiards." She was very young, and a very pretty slender red-head who, as I learned later from my mother who worked for the US Navy, dated a lieutenant stationed there at Glynco Naval Air Station. But she was stubborn, and so was I. Needless to say, I rebelled, and soon owned one fifth of that class as a five or six of my friends and I sat in the back of the class and played a game I'd invented in the 4th grade, the rest of the year, goofing off and making each our "A" in English despite her best efforts to restrain or punish us. However, I also got an "F" in Deportment that quarter, and upon my wish was sent to the principal's office on the last day on school that year since I thought it might be fun. It was, and a bit painful, also, but fun just the same. An experience, a gas, a gag, a goof. You see, I was a straight A student, and I learned to rebel early against feckless authority, and you sir, seem to have completely lost your good sense in arguing this point with me. Guess, I can add this exchange to my memory banks. Oops, banks hold money, and an exchange is where Obama plans to send me to purchase overpriced insurance. I fear this analysis in writing from one's own nostrils will never end."
Robin was beginning to feel the weight of the argument upon her own quarters, "I'm sorry I mentioned it. It was a genuine questionnot intended to start a fuss. HeyDave Howard got fired because people didn't understand the meaning of the word 'niggardly'...that's even worse than an "F" in Deportment!"
"Robin, just because you might have refrained from mentioning it doesn't mean Max would have taken the same tact..."
Tom Howell was always a deft and absolute genius conversationalist, but was never much of a writer. Not that I didn't think he couldn't write a fine sentence when the muse shed her grace. Quite the contrary. He held his own on the page, but he seemed reluctant to go large, and he might have known that he did tend to write commonly at certain times when the task required a more spectacular presentation. I always sense he must have had some history to overcome before he could become a competent and confidant writer.
Roland was not amused apparently by the way his thread had dissipated into another topic, as he still continued to argue with his old friend who have done him wrong. So he wrote a humorous line of clarification he think I needed. "Roland did not have a landlord. Roland was invited to crash at a "friend's" house."
"And now you are going to start up another ruckus, Roland? Those words were used loosely to describe what is generally speaking a housing situation. Okay, I am indeed done. This is stupid." My words again.
"Ok, since we've totally hijacked this post anyway.....your Wittgensein quote reminded me of when I had to return some wood flooring to Lumber Liquidators. I was unsure of the square footage of my house and the salesperson said just order a lot and return any extra. So, I did and they try to charge me $100s in restocking fees. To get to the point the customer service rep said, "The invoice says returns are SUBJECT to restocking fees. 'Subject to' means you WILL get restocking fees". I said no it means I "MAY" get restocking fees and that she didn't get to decide the meaning of words; that the meaning of "subject to" had already been defined. So....I didn't have to pay." Slusher was finished.
But Tom was just knocking the dirt off his brown shoe act, and injected, "I was invited to crash at Gabriel Thy's house and stayed on for what seemed like years. I gave him the benefit of my wisdom during many a Black Label fest, proving in a double-blind test that Black Label was NOT a premium beer and "Life was NOT a submarine." Gabriel will be forever in my debt."
"LOL. Based only on the unassailable notion that life is a bowl of cherries. But what about iLife?" ask I, feeling the pull of nostalgia, as Tom was the only person in this discussion with whom I had actually spent any amount of sweat, sanctimony, and satisfaction. Or put another way, spent time shackled to the same ditch with half a notion of what it meant to be chasing and still defining that spectacular pursuit of happiness we learned about as kids and young scouts, he in mostly rural SW Virginia, and I, in mostly rural SE Georgia..."
But Tom and I had only recently become reconnected after a fifteen year exile during which we only heard from each other once or twice. I had turned my back on that early DC crowd for the most part, turning inside, to a nearly agoraphobic state, as my social life went from zero to nothing.
"Gabriel has a penchant for coining his own words, someday I hope he'll be able to bank on it," remarks Tom.
"There has been so such coining here today. iLife is a Mac term," I respond, thinking he may have imagined I just did it again.
"Life is a sandwich, the more bread...no, no, wait Submarine is a sandwich! I prefer 2nd Life anyway," he pretends he's extending the game. But I've had enough. Tom came late to the party, again. Wait a minute, he's usually early. An entire day early...
"How are you old man? Doing great things I presume..."
"I'm in a Writers Group here and learning to make eBooks with InDesign 6. Future plans are for enhanced eBooks," he replies, ending the mystery as to why he recently wanted to bury the political hatchet he and I had been swinging the past few months on rare occasions. Scorned for my politics by nearly all the old crowd of woeful leftists from the old days, most had just ignored me altogether. But Tom and I had only recently become reconnected after a fifteen year exile during which we only heard from each other once or twice. I had turned my back on that early DC crowd for the most part, turning inside, to a nearly agoraphobic state, as my social life went from zero to nothing.
The Internet, and later, my splash into the not so fine art painting mud pit changed things for the better. I began to venture out again, but that social season only lasted for another three years until the 2008 financial collapse and subsequent election of Barack Obama to the US presidency changed my path again. Only recently had Tom finally come aboard this network. And after a few battles with each our unmovable arguments, aren't they all, he was tired of stultifying politics and wanted to talk writing which I thought was a strange move for him, not the political rot, but his interest in discussing this craft you are now reading. Makes sense now. Tom Howell was always a deft and near genius conversationalist, but was never much of a writer. Not that I didn't think he couldn't write a fine sentence when the muse shed her grace. Quite the contrary. He held his own on the page, but he seemed reluctant to go large, and he might have known that he did tend to write commonly at certain times when the task required a more spectacular presentation. I always sense he must have had some history to overcome before he could become a competent and confidant writer. I understand that Tom, too, has renegotiated his survival strategies, moving his psychic investigation and motion picture experiments back to the Smokey Mountain railroad town of his beginnings, Roanoke, VA. We salute you, Thomas Jefferson Howell, as you pace along the hardy roads of old picturesque Virginia in becoming a man of letters in some small gratitude to your namesake, perhaps of note only to a few tar & feathered friends, but in the end, as you once echoed the trope from a Dollhouse easy chairGabriel, when we die we die alone.
My nephew Dylan and his wife Jennifer named their firstborn son Jefferson, who is a precocious sunny blonde lad now about four, and to this day he answers to Jefferson, when he answers at all.
As solar activity drops to high risk century low, puzzling buzzing scientists—who've for past few decades or so—insisted planet barely missed flaming new ice age, all the rage in the Eighties, now had dutifully traded crazy moon white snow boots for trendy new blue swamp goloshes as they prepped the weak and the weary for pernicious man-made global warming trends, projected death of civilization, unprotected men of calculation, sober cool thinkers fighting like cats in the Captain's Tower, having replaced Ezra Pound and T.S. Eliot competitively, at least two generations ago with bursting advent of the whimpering class...
unless we stopped all modern activity, removed it to a more needy neighborhood, redistributed the wealth, heavy environmental taxation, daring energy industry transfers nation to nation, dumping energy back into the glittering soil, boasting certain good intentions whipped unintended consequences every time, so peace could again perfect its reign upon contemporary balance.
But this slick idea was modified when numbers secretly fudged melted into gosh darn goo of scandal from burning lights of world-wide media exposure, and strange humiliating coincidences, major players like Al Gore and The Hague sensing jubilant masses lampooning laughter even as Big Al the Grand Wizard slinked away from his own imperial carbon footprint,
only to pop up again in news to sell his failing network to Al-Jazeera. By that time powers had changed the name of green movement from Man-made Global warming to Man-Assisted Global Climate Change.
Yep. Cosmological scientists fooled again. Who do you believe now, a gaggle of government-funded white coats with pocket calculators fighting over grant money and other tax subsidies or your own self-serving senses when you step out the front door every morning? Certainty is nothing unless nothing is certainty.
In this age of Internet, gonzo TV and one's own dilly dallying daily devotions, everything he needs to consider his puny effect in challenging the cosmos, the gifted wing, more than a few paltry molecules at a time, man pockets like a broken rhyme.
Isn't that why a few cozy Parisians rounded up decades of thought, added some of their own, codifying existentialism the 1940s, until a few others shuttered Sartre's approach for chaos theory, hamming up for the 1970s, brokering game theory to police chance, pushing the unified field lovers back onto existentialism's pearly-gated scientist hunkered down among his graphs and chunks of ice, the Yukon Valley Dolls, analyzing a bucket of balls, which then burst off-camera his pus-filled cyst, stunning a moth with some butterfly cough.
I'm merely a journeyman, mind you, but I can smell ink, the rank differences in accumulative error between humanity's penchant for gross speculation and visceral control while also being limited by his obvious lack of precision in husbanding dormant or active volcanoes, residual tsunamis, bitter storms, topical flooding, global wind patterns, colliding rocks aimed at a rotting nuclear plant near you and various unsavory activities of our sun, that ultimate troublemaker, all circulating about this planet long before we began questioning its wobble.
Son, did I ever tell you about the time I felt presence of God Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth, as we zipped along the busy highway of twisted pairs and optical glass where stranded men roam, and there, the codes and standards and bromides of silvery asps greeted the punishing ace of diamonds whose face was instantly melted by the exploding heat of WORD, did I? Scholars will say it happened on July 14, 2013. Politicians will say it never happened that way at all.
But Facebook, the galloping ghost of the last few reckoning things still measurable by those in charge, was taking notes. In our cautionary appropriateness, we had long learned that if one's particular secrets could kill, they probably would. At least, we learned they should. Men and women and children alike challenged each other for the power to take down another with a few words or less. Beneath the global surface stability fostering form, the human brick, the muscle and the stick, cosmic wallpaper was peeling into colorful ribbons of functionary excellence with each utterance. Women had become like spikes, crooked in their own justifying eyes, resilient to the past death, as raw orange skies hurrying away to whom no one knows, began to buckle and crack. I saw brimstone rocks hurled, piling up against powerless flesh also peeling away, as screams of the unborn torn from the crucifix suddenly were silenced against loud witnessing flashes, confusion the only pie still remaining, invisible signs of Asche zu Asche we knew had made us strong now lay broken into pieces. Here we recall the "straining at gnats" remains of that big rock record:
Bruce to Mike. "Man you love some stupid media! You're one of the very few I know who wants this punkass narc aquitted. I won't waste time asking why? Did you [watch] NBC Nightly News Wednesday night? West VA life expectancy for men is the same as in Gambia. 64 years only. X VA gets 17 more years Mikie! You got no mortgageyou can leave. Then you slowly start to hate minorities a little less each year! An environment of love with a new diet can change a lot for you. Maybe you were never at peace? I recall a much more happier Mikie that wasn't very politically concerned. That Mikie couldn't be fooled into not enjoying life everyday! Was it all only foolish youth? Are you now the joyless sensible man you were always waiting to be or is this a life turn best backed out of? Slightly curious as to the real answer?"
Bruce was on a roll, and he expected to sop up.
"The gene pool around here needs a little chlorine. For some of us, the brains we had went to our head, for others, getting ahead would be the first to go..." thought Gabriel.
"You're wrong about me on so many levels that it's pathetic, Bruce. Did you know NBC edited the audio of the Zimmerman calls to make him sound racist? That's documented. I have many black friends here Bruce. Bet you didnt know that did u? I love people of all races..and I hate people of all races. I mow a ladies yard that's black...did you know Booker T. Washington grew up not 5 miles from me? You judge me cause I come at FB with another point of view that lamestream and liberals will never hear because of propaganda and controlled conflict talking point media...I enjoy life every day to the fullest..I am very much alive...just because I choose to look deeper into the truths behind the stories and see the bigger picture and connect the sordid dots and refuse to hide my head in the sand...I guess that in your eyes [all that] makes me foolish? Joyless? Hahaha, good luck. I am at peace knowing God is firmly in control and allows things to happen for a reason...Obama and co. are using this case to divide and conquer thru race and also to promote his anti-gun measures. Because I choose to be awake is a problem for you I guess. Well as Alice Cooper so poignantly says in an early song...you can always turn me off! Hahahaha..."
But Mike was having none of it. "PS, there aren't many natural food options here but I try as best i can to get organic etc...another eugenicist great idea to have country folks especially eat their GMOs so they can be overweight and sterilized (check into that goodie via GMO)...fluoridate the water, spray the skies with lovely chemtrails and keep us sedated with their slow flicker rate media and video games. Also, all the Fukushima radiation spreading thru the USA food supply...Haha you believe ANYTHING NBC says?..its all approved by your Bilderberg group talking points ...why shouldnt you? So yes, West Virginians along with all the USA have a low life expectancy...it's YOU that needs to wake the fuck up my friend..even with all the bad shit I am AWARE of, I stay positive and fight for liberty for all races...what if all the people that get divided by race woke up and saw the real enemy of the people..that's my mission..to create a critical mass of people of all races that are awake to the NWO's plans..."
If he ever was, and the Eighties are long gone, Mike Twigger is nobody's wilting violet, as Bruce's insulting characterization seemed to imply, as the counterfeiter will often do. To pine for the days of old when Bruce was still the reigning local rockstar in our favorite local band several decades ago and we were all punk standarounds vying for our own dreams of beauty and truth and breakaway elegance slushed in alcohol for public consumption and perishable solitude in private, was a stretch none of us could muscle into place, no matter how the knotted strands of time loosened with the frailties of memory. For some of us the brains we had went to our head, for others, getting ahead would be the first to go...
So Twigger continues his snap, "I actually would love to gtfo of the USSA entirely, but the globalist bankster cartel is everywhere....except Iceland, Switzerland, and a couple others, oh yeah, the two they haven't installed Rothschild banks in yetSyria and North Korea...my advice is to start with The Obama Deception; the 2nd one is coming out soon and take off the weed colored glasses when u watch it. And by the way, what's your definition of stupid media?
"Speaking of joy, Bruce, I trust you enjoyed patronizing me, as much as I enjoyed defending myself from your slander and innuendo, since I know how much you love to blast anything that displeases you, and from my own observations that is quite a pay load over the years..."
Then I was pulled into this mess in the name of old friendships and wounded foes, cracked wills and compound woes...
…peace out rocker, life is greater and more terrible than all of us rolled together into a clump of Indiana clay glued together with donkey piss and ripe for distribution to the masses. It just is, and none of us are.”
"Of course, since I'm just a punk ass cracka in Northern Virginia I barely know a grasshopper from a bullfrog, but if I had a son, he would look just like Trayvon because I just love me some [fill in appropriate genetic material here] woman, and Obama had no business sticking his nose into this case and remaining silent about all the murders in Chicago, AND all the nationally unreported attacks on whitey by black youths that HAVE ALREADY been going on around this country marauding in the NAME OF TRAYVON." There are no permanent enemies in this world and few permanent friends, I added quietly to myself.
"Thanks Gabriel!...I know Bruce is comfortable with his own limited vision of the world! LOL."
But Bruce was not finished. Not this Bruce. Not now. Not ever. Not until his own last breath on this happy but doomed planet his own songs depict. I saw no limits on Bruce Hellington's vision.
"Maybe but I am not as miserable as either of you are by a longshot. That in of itself regardless of the means is worth a great deal more to me than any political awarenesses you guys seem so happy about having."
"Mister Hellington, you sling words like happiness and misery around as if they are personal weapons and we don't know who you are, as if any of that has anything to do with the topics I or Mike or you choose to discuss on Facebook, with our respective families, or merely amongst two or three gathered. Guess you found that "real" Jesus you were looking for..."
After all, in the packed heat of a few minutes he had called us miserable, then happy, without a measure of service to his own creative and political skin on bone the band 9353 had exhibited for so many years, and we, among its biggest fans. Without missing a beat, marching to my own undaunted beat, I write, "And Bruce, if I'm so damned miserable, then I certainly don't need you adding to it...peace out rocker, life is greater and more terrible than all of us rolled together into a clump of Indiana clay and donkey piss ripe for distribution to the masses. It just is, and none of us are."
But Mike wasn't finished. He was filled with the spirit and drew forth his sword of sarcasm, and had another go at the reign of a fallen king whose own art is the spilling of misery, "Yes, I can see clearly now. I am soooo miserable! Wow, if it wasnt for your clear unclouded insight Bruce i might have been lost...thank goodness for your preconceptions. Now i must renounce all these political posts and come back into the fold of ignorant bliss. Ahhh, I feel so much better already!"
"Either way I am still very grateful to be nothing like the two of you are stuck being today. Because you're obviously enviable in your joy of life. I wonder how long it will be and which one of you goes first? I won't read what you have to say but you can still feel good I hope for typing it. Peace to the miserable," offers the satisfied prince probably breaking out a move to Barbra Streisand's Doing The Reactionary.
"It's about informing the public for a critical mass against the evil fucks that are behind it...so there is a purpose to it...or did you miss that whole thing...and i guess you disregard the other 40% of my posts that have nothing at all to do with politics..."
There was not a lot of fun in having to sustain this conversation long enough to bang out some semblance of closure, so I engaged the throttle with the hope that the arch antagonist would find something to bleed, and we could end this sparring non-sense. "No sir, I have never demanded or even defended the notion that people emulate me, foster me, or be enviable of me, but it seems you have quite a talent for projection, he who himself prides a honed skill for vile outrage...and is proving it once again by hijacking this thread with a string of ad hominems aimed at two adjuncts who don't fit the preferred profile of his own historied, and esoteric genius. Having turned toxic towards me a while back now, the Wrath of Bruce is not my burden. As for which of us three will "go first' I am quite sure it is me since I'm nearly 60 years old, thus having a number of good times already under my belt on both of you, and as you are obviously so keen to announce, carry more weight than the two of you put together the last time I calculated. Is that REALLY where you are standing these days, Mister? I have no doubt that you enjoy every moment of your life, and that you are going to live forever, or at least a day, a day, and a half day longer than I will, so rejoice, man rejoice, you have inspired the heavens. And hey, Bully Boy, that's right, don't read what I write, but who among us can't imagine I will know once you do. Go write one of your "miserable" songs, I mean "joie de livre" songs for the population, as you lead us to believe that you possess or exhibit the "joy of life" more than either Mike Twigger or Gabriel Thy do, and for holier than thou reasons to boot. Fact is you don't know what drives us, and how much and to whom we give back and for what duration and at what personal cost to ourselves. Some of us give and are not photographed with every bundle of giving. To be seen by men...but I applaud YOUR street work nevertheless. It is good-hearted. And I know you are honest with the buck. So why don't you just mind the Father's business without stepping into a situation of which you know so little and slinging crap as if you know it so well..."
Given that the Trayvon Martin case had nothing to do with stand your ground, as a legal premise, despite the Left's dubious intentions to make it that in challenging the Florida law. It was a self-defense versus manslaughter case from the very beginning." I wrote, responding to another comment on the thread that had lingered without clarifying resistance. Then I attached a video with Thin Lizzy or actually Phil Lynott's solo release of Ode To A Black Man.
His memory or at least, his faithfulness to it are tragically failing him, but as soon as this thread was over, he was on the phone with another mutual friend telling him how he, Bruce, had drilled me, Gabriel, a new one, or something to that effect, and he wanted this friend to join him in badmouthing me.
Bruce fancies himself a man who speaks truth to power, and I'm not here to doubt it because his next parlay could only make me grin as he fiercely foraged his stockade for even more predictable clichés to hurl. "The wrath of Bruce? Like such things exist or you could care? At least we don't have to hear a bunch of whining from you two haters today! I know you're both very pleased with it. Very Nice. You should have been a more serious artist Gabriel just like Mikie should have been a real guitarist. Art can do many things for your life if you do not come on board with the clock running and a list of demands from the community that must be met or else. You could have meant it instead. You could have given us something other than sour nonstop poly rhetoric in the last chapter of your life. I fully understand why there is probably no way you can't hate me no matter how hard you'll never try not to. The thing about it is I am still the same Bruce now as I always was despite your Jesus assumptions. It is the two of you who had the political personality shift, not me. Very nice Gabriel after one visit in my home ever in your entire life and you are now an authority on me. I remember why you came there now. You knew a piece of the puzzle was waiting to be explained as common knowledge when you asked me "why does DC hate me so much"? I had no problem answering you. The answer was known city wide for years. It's because you pulled out your dick on the stairway at the Boogins party at 12th and P st in 1983 and proceeded to piss on Bess Powell's legs forcing Rene Farkass to beat you up and throw you out. Oddly you called him the next day acting like the two of you were still good friends or something. That's just one factor as to why DC never liked you very much. Whether you regard yourself as an artist or a real estate man or just a pervert with a video camera trying to get people "Sued", I sense your largest anger comes from a sense of entitlement unfulfilled given your original assumed potential as some southern colonial coulda man. Now you should take it easy old bully put that inner Curly in check. You ain't got long to live and I really don't want to get personal here with you but I am about to and you won't like it fat boy not one bit when I get warmed up here. Mikie consider the life Gabriel has and consider it fair warning. Forgive me Mikie if you've been raped by a black man recently. I had no idea? It all now makes perfect sense."
Bruce apparently was pulling out all the stops even though each of the three of us already were quite comfortable squabbling among the stops, so Mike lays it all out for onlookers to gawk, if that was their game, emotionalites to emote as they so pleased, info gatherers to gather and info planters to plant, declaring that life was good, and he was fine once more despite the details of past flash in the pan soreness, "Molested by a black YMCA counselor years ago..lol but I have worked thru that pretty much fine and have forgiven him and myself to the point of where if I saw him i wouldnt even let it interfere with saying hi....and has no bearing whatsoever on things i feel/post sociopolitically. and my "shift" has taken place gradually as I learn about the NWO (hidden dynasties) and learn Gods plan in the Word. And uh..I still am a "real" guitarist...I play every day...but it's cathartic to let it out what u feel Bruce..better out than in...the more honest we are with each other the more we can build a solid foundation on which to fight the real enemies of the people...they want us divided...but really I think that's its petty to try and make character assassinations via experiences to make up for being bested by facts and knowledge of all sides concerning the original topic... I know it seems you are inadequate to discuss these things without knowing the whole story..but don't be defensive about it and lash out in a personal way...again..it's petty...better to inform yourself at the very least to get on equal debate footing on the issues...instead of your already formed "opinions" not necessarily based on facts and historical documentations..."
"PS. Thin Lizzy rules!" thunders Mike the Twigger.
"I love you guys!" transitions Bruce Hellington the Almighty.
"Wait a damn minute. You stole my line," bark I, the Gabriel Thy, adding "There are facts, Bruce. And then there are the William S. Burroughs cut-ups. Your last assessment of that smattering of GT trivia most definitely falls into the latter camp. I won't be callous enough to sort it all out for you since you seem just as capable of mustering a set of facts as anyone belonging to your "political persuasion". Interesting reading, though. Feel free to talk smack all day long against my name. That's what it's there for (by popular demand)..."
Tuesday, September 3...
"Thanks Mike for the thread. I'd tried to find it a while back and gave up during a bout with scroll fatigue. Fact is, Bruce is not unaware of what's going on in the world. Why he suddenly has shifted from the ultra paranoid rantings about what a mutual friend whom we shall call Shelley had told him concerning top secret government facilities and missile silos and EMPs, et cetera, amply fertilizing his own keen suspicious mind of all things outside himself is puzzling, but I suspect it's just a manifestation of his role as self-annointed HIGH PRIEST in the scene defending his turf, dumping on us probably things he's been told himself. Who knows, or cares, anymore. 9353 songs are not exactly Pat Boone sings the classics...so this display of psychological muscle is just as dour as anything we publish (although I hear this latest CD is something altogether different, go figure). Since he's off playing rock star again, something's he earned, and we are not dropping everything to jump in his honor, he must attack. His memory or at least, his faithfulness to it are tragically failing him, but as soon as this thread was over, he was on the phone with another mutual friend telling him how he, Bruce, had drilled me, Gabriel, a new one, or something to that effect, and he wanted this friend to join him in badmouthing me. Andy said he just couldn't do that. So, I'm not impressed with Bruce Almighty's grip on all that much anymore. Who's the hater in this sandbox? His type of spirit rules the Left now, but the really ugly thing is that Bruce was pushing similar if not the same cautions about Big Brother on me back in the Bush years. Now he's calling the two of us haters. What a stinking hypocrite, or maybe he's just, uh, progressive!"
I love you too...
my baby's so sweet she's rots my teeth,
the fig of creation, I find love to be such an awkward word,
but am only comfortable in pronouncing it,
in my case childless,
to this beguiled wife with whom I execute it
not unlike the notion of sugar water. Towards others,
those feelings and outreach is a reflex, but the word
LOVE itself poses quite a stumbling block to the poet long
preferring the word RESPECT, but hello, as signifier
knowing too how the American gangster culture
pretty much bloodied that word for me to boot,
so one if by wink, two if by blink...
and if it brings you happiness, sue me.
[ 2013, Lovettsville, VA ]
"Ignorance and virtue suck on the same straw. Souls grow on bones, but die beneath bankers' hours.""