Thursday, May 29, 2008


shine, .:*ghost*:.

50% a notapoem, 50% a LIST:

- i don't know much, there's stuff going on that could tip the universe everywhichway away from here (where is here?
____and my sister's scared (which is a good thing, it means the universe is finally starting to quiver, and I see stars being shook loose and falling away behind the horizon (beneath my feet, where at last I can stomp my way to infinityism.

- i hear voices. i turn up my headphones louder, the voices have an incredible capacity to keep up____(i have not known such fatigue, i cannot sleep it off, i feel heavy, i have not had a breath of air in a week... i wonder what i am living off. (then i decide hope. and i shrug. seems obvious, even from here

- following tying up this loose tragedy (it's swayed in the wind far too long), I'm going to set sails for myself (the great(est) unknown). at some point in the near( or at very least a few paces farther than foreseeable) future I'm going to move past me. it will be swell to take over myself running in my white sneakers panting.
____(somewhere father in the unforeseeable but partially-possible I see my non.yet.wife give me that you-just-said-a-stupid-thing-you-shouldn't-have-said look, and I, I giggling myself into a frenzy will take three quick steps and throw my over my shoulder and put herhis hands over my eyes and say: da da da da dooo! (still giggling uncontrollably) because I know she (my non.yet.wife) cannot bear to throw a shoe at my non.yet.head with our little baby's limbs dangling like half-monkey, half-seaweed, half-miracle from off my head. So instead she will say: that's not fair put herhim down! To which I will reply: gigglegigglegigglegiggle HA! gigglegigglegigglegiggle foxtrotting the little dear into definite princessdom.

- and a story is yet to be written by me about the homeless men who gather in and around the public libraries by my home. There is nothing I love to see more, then the institutions of public and communal learning and wonder attracting those men and women whom most need a place to gather and commune. My story will be about several homeless scholars who sit daily and (quite insightfully) discuss Henry James, and giggle at de Sade, and despise Camus (for no real reason other than group-unity). Think what you will, the story is attracting me.

- and a story is yet to be written (about) (by) me, the homeless man who gathers in and around a specific place.time (in Einstein's language: {x, y, z, t}, that's me) and wonders about how dark he is inside himself, and how old he is, and if you cut him open if you'd see the rings you see across the trunk of a tree.

- other than that: __sunlight returns, __the jogs are getting longer and shorter, __the height of my soul changes daily, __Portishead (third) is what makes my days amazing, __i cannot understand the passage of time, __i abide by the laws of Brownian Motion: a free particle in a medium (air, water, gas, God, etc) appears to move randomly because of randomized collisions with the medium-particles; since all collisions are random, the particle is bound to move (since the only way it would stand still is if all forces were perfectly equal, and there is no equality since Bach and Cummings weigh more than the Lakers winning tonight, or the soup that unsettled my stomach at lunch), and so, I have no choice but to (move)(fail)(win)(die __someone hold my hand? __oh sweet wonderful dominions that are mine alone and no other man shall ever know!

- other than that: __a terrible stagnancy that has given life the smell of decay and the whizzing sound of life screaming past you as you sit on a train you cannot control and look at blonde children stationary on bikes, taste of snot already having reached their lips, as they wave little dirty hands at your blurrrrrrrrrface. __this scheme that has had me here is almost finished (sooooo close!), with one end a new beginning can sprout, and ashes make for great grass

- or as I told my mother today: if life didn't keep getting in the way, you, I and Sahar would have each conquered the world twice over by now. don't worry.

- or as Monz and I always say: this is what we do.

- or as I tell myself: of the infinite worlds of God, this is the shortest... brace yourself man, we're nearly there, in a sigh we'll be done and away and:

(there are no words for that part)

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

nocturne (fragments)

truthfully, it concerns me that the homeless man under the overpass is missing.
I have not seen him in days.
All I can hope for is that he's found a safer, warmer place.

The air grows pregnant. Heavier and heavier,
it is expectation that gives it this weight. We'll find either some climax to it,
a most natural turn of events ending in oh, simple as that,; alternatively,
we'll cling to hopefulness till we wake an older, more tired man.
____(at night i cannot breathe so well)

in any case.
somewhere a homeless man is hopefully more homeful.
also, somewhere a 25 year old male whose name is not mine is living the life i'd have lived had life been something else. also also, somewhere darker than here, the ocean makes a beautiful sound as it slides her slender hand along the sand's porcelain cheek; the moon stares with her lips dry for a kiss, too far away to reach anything but its own dust.

(night, heavier still)
(i concentrate on each breath, hoping for a full chest-expansion)

there are no answers to be found during these hours.
once they kept me company, now they simply stare back at me.
my back hurts from the weight of the atmosphere pushing down on my neck.
(deeeep breath)

i imagine everywhere-but-here, God works at a frantic pace killing innocent people, borning babies, kissing buds into flowers, pushing a wind this way or that, crashing computers, putting words.ideas into people's mind, having me meet people, putting strange noises into the throat of my car, edging me towards the border of some next future i'll recognize when i meet. (i can hear the universe hum and click as it approaches.

palms in lap
i wait.
____(deep breath

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Some months ago, I was having something of a bad some-months. I decided to tackle the problem by reminding myself of things that are not at all bad. I composed a list. The rules for the following list were that I could not be too specific (it would be thousands of entries long had I been), and could not be too general (in which case it would be hundreds of entries shorter).

Ashtree adopting the idea made me revisit mine recently (for a few additions, eg pinkberry. If you do not care much about my list, blame her. If you do, thank her, it was her idea to post highlights from it.

thursday 24th January, 08. 2:34pm, Seattle, Washington.
(the crumpet shop)

2. breasts____________________3. playing C natural & B natural together on the piano
8. notebooks________________ _11. hand holding (but only in the two ways I find comfortable)
12. free verse_________________ 22. not shaving for days
28. play-fighting with 2-12 year olds_29. public transport
34. running on treadmills________ 42. friends you can be silent with
43. silence___________________46. that train ride from Hamburg to Prague
48. white bed sheets____________50. tulips
52. the way you said my name____ _57. the call to prayer in Turkey
60. lists_____________________61. the smell of laundromats
63. scarves___________________66. wood
67. trees_________________ __ _74. pipe organs
76. the concept of gravity_________85. sashimi
88. Adelaide_______________ _ _89. music scores
96. my yellow couch___________ _103. not having to drive
107. spats cafe_______________ _110. black ink
111. repeating lines.phrases i like over and over
112. definitions______________ _ 119. clouds
116. cats_______________ ____ _117. physical constants (eg. speed of light, mass of electron)
124. pancakes_________________132. Haifa
138. yellow pad paper_______ ____140. prayer
143. sunday________ _ ______ _ _152. being loved back
155. lying sideways on 1 seater couches
162. bright red anythings_________166. staying up all night kissing
172. rediscovery______________ _178. warm homes
179. quiet____________________185. too many pillows
190. genuine sentiment_________ _192. cooking with another person
199. women in underwear_______ _203. just making the bus
205. playing the piano for people when they need it
207. free refills________________210. being in love
214. West-Wing______________ _216. playing cards with Sahar
223. numbers_________________229. wooden floors
233. calling who you need and them picking up
241. obstacles viewed in hindsight_ _246. recognizing spiritual moments
250. libraries_________________258. my Indian prints from Mar
264. Southpark______________ _269. just listening
273. liking yourself naked________274. holding my hands over candles
282. the stamp from Bahji_____ _ _306. muffins

ok that's enough. currently the list goes to 343.
if you write me a list of random numbers, I promise to post them up (uncensored, so... be ready)

Friday, May 23, 2008

Vier letzte Lieder

______No matter what happens now
______I won't be afraid
______Because I know today has been
______The most perfect day I've ever seen


turnover 2, tommy oshima

a moribund fantasy/(a requiem for me)/(an epitaph for my grandfather)

I. Fruhling (Spring)

I've tried to avoid to house most of the day. I've wayfared, these long legs carry me to every crest but home. (my hand shakes, a disturbing memory breaks itself loose) (it's always about you). Three yellow cars pass (a flash of sunlight, but... here, clouds again).

You know when it's your day- the air tells you. The season tilts a little to the left (you see the shadows readjust as you pass) Lo death:

________You recognize me,
________you entice me gently,
________A shudder runs through my body
________your blissful presence

(love and death reconciled at last)

II. September

Now: half here, half everywhere (else). When I was a child, a patch of desert in the Congo, a massive oilship sitting, a giant machine sphinx, in the sand. We climbed rocks. I am there. Thirteen dark youths pass me. Identical black jeans, Cons, dark eyes concerned with the pleasure of miserable youth.

In the dying dream of the garden: no time now son, count your blessings, 95 times, use your fingers. I mumble, dry lips and all. I fall into the crack of a fantasy: my grandfather, I by his bedside:

____"how are you son?"
____"how old?"
____"as old as you."
____"really?" [half smiles]
____"well then, you'll join me soon?"
____"you haven't left yet."
____[chuckles] "only the body's left son. The rest is ready. There, hand me that prayer book on your way out."
____"... you want me to leave?"
____"old men tire fast."

________Slowly it closes its great
________now weary eyes.

I awake. A white dog smiles at me. I can't have blinked that long- it's immediately a snake- still white, I gasp, now- a dove. Three flaps its as far from me as a midnight I don't remember. Half here, half everywhere. In Africa, a dark river. We caught little clawed beasts to barbecue. I was scared, there was a wetness, elsewhere it was warm... there, under soo many trees, so cold. I did not touch the black water.

(I grow less here, more everywhere)

III. Beim Schlafengehen (Upon Going to Sleep)

The blackness is all now. I can open my eyes without opening them. The blackness has its own colors and lights. Two invisible hands (gravity), 25 years they've held my ankles from beneath the ground, release me.

________And my soul unguarded
________will float freely.

The cement sighs and is lighter now. My heads hits a streetlight, the pole shakes, a dozen stars fall out- some leaves, some fireflies. The white dove passes me again. She grows black. oh. (your black hair flies away) are you here? are you everywhere?

____"we could"
____"we could"
____"we shouldn't"
____"but we want to"
____"but it's not right"
____"but we could"
____"but we won't"

I see a man... no (no!) me! A younger me. I didn't remember... why are there no creases on your brow?
I'm 15.
And you smile differently. _how?
(the thirteen dark youths pass, a grimace is not a laugh. They smile in misery- not having discovered pain yet). "We're to the gate. __This way" (a branch for his hand) (my heart is finally a tree. __stilled)

Somewhere ladies and gentlemen wear black and stand perplexed around a wooden box. I am the heart of the tree- carved into a hollow rectangular trunk.

My grandfather smiles at me. Looks right at home. I've never seen him so happy, he holds out his hands, we step an inch above tulips- they tickle my toes and I giggle with the voice of a baby. Somewhere a man with red hair sits on a grand piano and recites poetry:

________will float freely,
________in order to live in the magic circle of the night
________deep and a thousand-fold.

You who were with me in the ships at Mylae!" Stetson smiles, puts a hand to my shoulder. I shiver and in my weightlessness a skin is lost. There is no wind to scatter it, it drops as a sail and I am swept away.

____In the back of the car,
____our dilated pupils
____kissed and laughed.

________"shall we go back inside?"
________"we're... kinda parked in a side alley."
________"are you scared?"
________"do you wanna go back to the party?"
________"are you having fun?"
________"__rest your head on my chest, I want you to hear something."
________"what is it?"
________"the color of my heart in Morse code."
____________[. .. .._ ... .]
________"that's not what it said."
________"what did it say?"

IV. Im Abendrot (At Sunset)

Only the colors that reflect in glass
substance is only crystal,
how can your skin be so white?
(he smiles, my grandfather, shirtless and strong, like the picture
from his youth, rifle and deer over his shoulder, in the mountains)

____"where are we?"
____"inside a prayer"
____"i didn't know we could go there"
____"we can go anywhere now"

A red rock floats past me. Has the surface of the moon. I put out a hand and it glides past, touching my fingertips. A trail of red dust is released, a strand of hair, one color of the rainbow, massive red lips, blow me a kiss, a sunset smeared in clouds, my IKEA cabinet in Haifa, a tshirt you wore once, finally disappears. The rock turns its head over its shoulder and looks at me, in knowing. The red re-emerges, the wet hair of a mermaid, she gestures for me to come into the water.

____"it has been a while"
(i am not wet. I am water... I have aquatic organs. Fish float inside me, I disperse, an underwater lily sings cosi fan tutte into my noear. I giggle (bubbles). The mermaid opens her mouth
____"you are in me"
____(I am in everything)
____"that is the key"

In Africa, on dad's lap, watching the lighting. Hours of it. The whole sky charged, a magnet. My hair would stand straight... cars would be lifted off their wheels. I watched and hoped a supernova would suck us all back. Dad laughing, I was only a bundle of limbs then. I knew only happiness. Once, through the closed wooden shutters, I saw two soldiers with axes... destroyed this man's cart- he was selling bread. They broke it all. he cried. I cried silently. I was scared to watch, I thought they might see me, cross the street, walk into the building, climb to the second story, break down the door, and see my wet eyes hiding behind the closed shutters.

____"why do I remember everything?"
____"how old are you?"
____"right now... 3. maybe 4"
____"let it go"
____"I can't"

________In times of trial and joy
________we have gone hand in hand,
________now we can rest from our travels

I would like to be reborn as a tulip. Their buds remind me of bosoms, I do not know why (he smiles, disappears)

____I'm gonna fly right through the walls (don't be scared
________(i will, i will
____gonna float above your bed
________(i will, i will
____gonna kiss you on your head

(somewhere else, someone dreams of me. I am standing behind her, hands by my side, my chest to her back. She can sense me. She drops her hand, it falls into mine (I'm gravity, it can't go anywhere else). She takes a step back
___(somewhere very far away else, in a star there is an explosion, makes enough noise to deafen the ocean, the sound reverberates for a ___million years into black space no one can hear) Love disperses to unknown planets where a brown-eyed deer kisses another.
______(somewhere else my sister cries herself to sleep.
______the house is dark with lassitude
______I have burnt enough energy to have danced a star into existence,
______I have sank down a dark-veined well,

my grandfather senses my travels. "ssshh. relax son

________Come closer and leave them to their flutters,
________soon it will be time for sleep
________lest we lose ourselves
________in this solitude.

A wolf howls. A magician is sitting besides an unmanned popcorn stand. He throws his cards on the ground. I kick a spade as I pass. He throws me a heart I ignore. He smirks. A piano somewhere, e-flat minor. Palmless fingers play the scale over and over. It goes on: Worlds among worlds; Alone; lost to thoughts and memory and love

________How tired we are of our traveling
________can this perhaps be death?

Most of the quoted text is taken from the four poems R. Strauss used for his Four Last Songs. Also lyrics from the feather test by A, Weather and Eliot's Wasteland. 

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Prayer (a notapoem)

On a certain day Jesus paused by a Jew who was sick of the palsy, and lay upon a couch. When the Jew saw Him he recognized Him, and cried out for His help. Jesus said unto him: "Arise from they bed; thy sins are forgiven thee"(Cf. Luke 5:18-26)


green glow, scarlet trace


- i do not know how to encourage myself to be myself

__- i do not know what a myself looks like

__- i have lost alot by being human

__- the heart is an instrument that slips out of tune if unused

__- life is only a love-song

__- stars are indefinitude

__- breathing brings with it grave responsibility

__- i'm guaranteed invincibility the last moment before i die- it will be the greatest i'll be

__- somewhere inside me is all i might be

__- my children are waiting for me to think up their names

__- there's been a pain in my chest all day. Someone's knocking to get out

__- five trees in a row smiled at me- i'm going to be ok

__- in a few decisions i'll be a man

__- my hobbies include: discriminating between black pens

__- i am only here to find my soul

__- a blind-man looked me straight in the eyes and saw me (is the miracle

__- spin & spin & spin & spin,
____all fall

(- i look up at the sky, trying to find where i fell from)

Nocturne (fragments)

perhaps my body is asleep.
perhaps i am my soul,
i cannot sleep because soul has no need for it.

if i wanted to see you, i would.
if you wanted to, you'd call me.

the rest of it is in the air.
latent potential only our lungs know.


illuminated numbers
a red dot
endless black shapes,
a blind man's collage:
__(thoughts projected on worn inside eyelids)

a blind newborn cannot distinguish dream from dream-
has escaped time


i speak gibberish.
there are no words.
glass cuts planes and i cannot tell
an inch from a mountainside.
perspective being lost
feathers float upwards.

these words do not exist now.
nothing exists now


i lick my lips.
there are no kisses to be had.

i stand to get a bowel of cereal.

(having now failed as a patch of black)

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Letter to Sandy

________instantly arrive- and then O my blessed
________goddess with a smile on your deathless face you
________asked me what the matter was this time, what I
____________called you for this time,

________what I now most wanted to happen in my
________raving heart: "Whom this time should I persuade to
________lead you back to her love? Who now, oh
____________Sappho, who wrongs you?"
________Come to me again, and release me from this
________want past bearing. All that my heart desires to
________happen- make it happen. And stand beside me,
____________goddess, my ally.
Density, ..*ghost*..

Dear Sandy,

Firstly my apologies for not responding earlier, I am not being aloof- mostly I feel a little... capricious. Not entirely decided on one certain mood or another. I seem to manage, most times, several simultaneous states of emotion-being; so that when people ask me: how are you? I become very anxious and haven't the slightest clue how to extract all the various clouds from out each other to give a definitive statement of any kind. _fine thankyou.

The above fragment (i've edited it a little to fit the space) is from a prayer by Sappho. Martha and I discuss from time to time our Beatrice's, (think: unicorn, the end of a rainbow, the-one-that-got-away). For whatever reason(s), you do not end up together, which is the sad part. The queer part really. Emotionally, it all seems just-right. Manufactured perfectly for your heart (and it's beautiful when two people's hands are just the right shapes to fit into each other), and yet, you can't quite get it together. I cannot understand how this is possible. I offered a few days ago a mini-theorem: that God perhaps creates two souls so splendidly aligned as to be unquestionably attracted and loving towards one another- but the forces of life, the influences of various persons, fiscal responsibility, caste.religion.bias, all these layers of complexity simply adulterate it. It is a sad thought. Mostly I am certain that when I die, and no longer have to filter myself through my body (,_mind, and other appendages), in my sightlessness I'd see mostly everything more clearly. I'm very envious of my grandfather. Since February 10th he's been floating around. He can hear the heartbeats of trees, and spends his afternoon morphed into a blade of grass smiling at the sun, and then his rhythmic sleeptime breaths are the high-tide of some forgotten beach in Elysium. (are you tiring already of my Classical references?)

So I wanted to take a moment to talk about the last post on this blog, I don't in general like the idea of expounding on one's own work, but I wanted to demonstrate to my various critics ("you are too abstruse!") (though to my defense, my critics would rarely use the word 'abstruse', most likely they'd summon the great depths of their literacy and manage a "you are too weird!") that my writings are not completely at random. That a great deal of thought does sometimes go into their construction. Mikrokosmos are a set of short solo-piano pieces composed by Bela Bartok. (the reason that that is obvious is because I've used the Eastern European spelling of the word, same as him). I've been trying to write more concise poetry for a few months now. In that past (and present) I have not quite managed a terse and laconic style, and am aspiring to it. The idea is to fit a whole lot (of meaning) into a tiny framework. Like a haiku. You could say a haiku is something of a microcosm (now using an english variation of the word). So that explains why the little pieces are soo brief.

The subtitle of the work is Études d'exécution transcendante, these are the 12 transcendental piano etudes (studies) of Franz Liszt. He uses the word 'transcendental' in the sense that the pieces were written to be the most difficult works for piano ever written. At the time, he was successful- and still, they are amongst the most difficult, thus their aspiration was to 'transcend' the abilities of the then-pianist. My poems are a play on this title. I use the word 'transcendental' by its dictionary definition: of or relating to a spiritual or nonphysical realm. Thus, my 12 (now you see why there must be a dozen) 'letters' are addressed to transcendental nonentities: forever, history, disappointment and so on.

Some are successful. Love, future, silence, and God I am very happy with. Never I am not so pleased with. I would like to spend some time discussing the idea behind it:

Dear never,
__I build you with

When I was 12 years old, my parents built our home. My father and I would sit opposite one another across the kitchen table and draw 'plans' for the home. My father's looked very technical. He used graphing paper and something he tried to explain to me called: scale. I on the other hand drew mansions and space-station lookalikes. When I suggested to my father we add another 11 stories to the one he had drawn, he explained that that was not possible. I could not understand what was soo impossible about it.

Some years later, perhaps I was 14 by now, in Sunday school, a particularly dense (he was seemingly very unintelligent) young man professed that when he grew up he wanted to be a neuro-surgeon because he loved the brain and wanted to spend all his time "playing with it". The teacher laughed at him. He did not understand the humor of it. He stared back at her and said: what? what's wrong with that? My point is this: the concept of negatives is not something that we immediately know to start off with. Sadly, it is a concept that's developed, in time, through disappointing experiences. At those ages, I remember Eman and I discussing going to Harvard or Oxford or La Sorbonne with a certainty that even the stars believed. A certainty that even we ourselves! believed. I wish I had something of that belief left in me now. I remember saying to Ms. Reid, my then-piano-teacher (and evermore-teacher), I'd like to play the c-sharp minor prelude.
ME ___Rachmaninoff.
HER __uuuhhh
ME ___that's what I'd like to play.
HER __aaaarrre you sure? Perhaps you might manage it, but... it will take some time.
ME ___that's fine.
HER __as long as you promise to play some other things in parallel.
ME ___like what?
HER __how about this Bach minuet?
ME ___[minuet... sounds so... small]
HER __don't be scared, let me play it for you, at least listen to it.

____[J.S. Bach, minuet in G major from Anna Magdalena's notebook is heard]

ME ___[i have never been so happy in my life]
HER __what did you think?
ME ___why does it make me happy?
HER __[he wrote it for your soul, not your ears] shall we give it a go?
HER __hands seperate now dear. Right hand first. da da da da da da da' dada.

That is what IV. is about. Where I am now, so completely entrenched in a sense of that's-never-gonna-happenness, and its genesis, which is a fairly strong recollection of recent disappointments.

I want to talk about one final thing before I leave you, it's Damien Rice's O album. For a long time it just made me... so sad. It doesn't soo much anymore. I certainly do have sad memories associated with it. A particular train ride from Hamburg to Prague comes to mind. I remember looking and being soo shocked the world could still be so beautiful despite how I felt. I remember writing a six page letter during that ride. In it was this line:

you who are soo great and deserve so much, and me, whose sole qualification in life seems to be that these trees covered in snow move me to tears.

The album makes me swoon. It doesn't matter what time of day it is, or where I am. It is an album for couches, and overcast days, and the feelings of love, and missing of it, and the wanting of it, and that if you think about it, lips are dry desert sunsets. I listen to it often in Seattle, which has somehow become the place I come to recollect.

I have used many words and said nothing really. Nothing about how I feel, so I shall try and answer that with a list before I say my adieus.

  1. elated. jubilant
  2. sad, as though I were soaked in air, and air was invisible- so while I was swimming in it, I still could not know it, and describe it
  3. excited about the new wonderful people I've met
  4. lonely. alone. a moon in orbit
  5. excited about what life might.could hold
  6. terrified about what life might.could hold
  7. accomplished and proud of who i am
  8. ashamed. small. tiny
  9. useless
  10. useful
  11. concerned with creation
  12. concerned with escape: be quiet and drive (far away)
  13. erotic. sensual. i want to kiss women's ankles, knees, thighs. fingertips, wrists, shoulders. necks, ears, eyes.
  14. i want to lie here alone and read and write and be left to myself and my no-longer-avoidable history.

    I grow too-large Sandy.
    I am noman anymore.
    I am no man.
    I am giant.
Much Love

Monday, May 19, 2008

Mikrokosmos (Études d'exécution transcendante) (a first draft)

Dear Everything:_____________________Dear nothing:
__may i trouble you?____________________i'm still in line.

____III. ______________________________IV.
Dear forever: _______________________Dear never:
__this passes swifter than________________i build you with
__the kick (twinkling) of a(n) rock(eye)______disappointment.
__i am you soon.

Dear Love:_________________________Dear history:
__hello?__________________________ __you are cancer in the air.
___________________________________i cannot breathe.

____VII. _____________________________IX.
Dear future:________________________Dear silence:
__you're never on time.

Dear volition:______________________Dear Heart:
__ready?, set... NOW!___________________i'm sorry,
__(try again)... NOW!___________________skin's not armor.
__no? please?... go.
__da capo

Dear God:

nocturne (fragments)

hello 3am.
(my soul walks to Martha's window and stares out.
it ignores the stars and looks at the lights reflected in the water)

i can feel my left kidney, __it is an unusual feeling.

6 months ago i was in china.
it was autumn.
the sun grew off trees and fell like fingertips back to the ground.

12 months ago i was in brisbane.
i was too sad to cry,
i grasped at monday after monday and knew that when i hit the bottom it would hurt. ___(it did

12 days ago i was in los angeles.
i woke and slept and woke and slept.
if i can manage that one pattern i'll eventually find others. the same stars frequent the same bars,
they'll find me and get used to me hanging around too.
i'll make friends.
someone will hold my hand and whisper to me:
_________________________you are here

night has long taken to ignoring me.

a body left alone for too many nights will know itself as a shadow.

somewhere else someone i love lives their life.
somewhere else someone i once was lives his life.
somewhere else someone i never knew lives their life.
somewhere else someone i could have been lives his life.
somewhere else someone i could never have been lives his life.

i am too many ghosts.
i cannot compete with the company.

sweet bastard night answer me:
______(night speaks in silence)
______(there is nothing to decode because:
____________________there is nothing left to say.

go to sleep you fool.


  1. when i woke up, i did not have to recall what led me here

  2. i find hotel rooms and friends' spare bedrooms a rare treat. i miss beds. i miss blankets you have relationships with

  3. there was a time i knew where streets led. felt local, could advise about best places to eat, which cinema had the best seats and where i once skipped class to make out with a girl... in short knew a place- start of sidewalk to end

  4. my homes always had pianos, pianos have 88 fingers that met mine. i never feel lonely with pianos. they always know what to say to me

  5. having pictures, quotes, drawings on the wall. i too often cannot remember myself.... i need my constellations, i cannot navigate... i am losing

  6. books. books. books. books. Here are the few I miss the most:
    ____- William Blake, an introduction (has color plates of the artist's drawings also)
    ____- Pablo Neruda, Collected Poems, a bilingual edition
    ____- Prayers and Meditations, Baha'u'llah
    ____- Piano Concerto #3, Sergei Rachmaninoff (i love the score)

  7. knowing my address and phone number off by heart

  8. why do i feel so dizzy all the time?

  9. my cds. here are a few that I am missing these days:
    ____- Shostakovich, Symphony #5
    ____- Mozart, Violin Sonatas (E flat... and... i can't even remember
    ____- Bach, Mass in B minor

  10. that feeling of 'I'm homeness' when you walk in the door

  11. knowing where to park

  12. not having to ask myself how long will i be here? several times each day

  13. praying to know the last line/ not knowing if this is the start of something or the end/ i will show you fear in a handful of dust

  14. i am building too many memories. i am growing too old. i cannot carry soo much in my head. i get dizzy every time i stand up now. for every inanimate object i have an anecdote. i find only trees seem to speak my language. i am growing old too prematurely, i have no peers save the trees. my hands shake like their twigs. i am something also that floats in the wind

  15. i don't feel safe. i cannot be protected from it- i do not know exactly what it is- it is whatever led me here. i am too small for you. i am too small. i am sorry. i am. i

  16. besides the highway entrance, under the shadow of a dusty tree, on the dust, the wayfarer sits and stares away. His wrist wipes the sweat off his forehead. Summer is here, all things glow white. We are in the sun's heaven. He cries audibly to himself and rocks back and forth, mumbling. Most fundamental prayer God gave us we say with our bodies- not out souls.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Some Approaches to Identity

___Whatever God hath willed hath been, and that which He hath not willed
___shall not be.

__________The Bab

untitled, selma


"I'll pray for Jesus to help you find yourself"
__"That is kind of you... but if I may offer a correction- I know precisely who I am. __ My current predicament is... a trifle, I just have to find what I'm going to do to about making rent."
"Oh of course!, you're right. Who we are isn't just about our job."
"It is nice when it is... but it doesn't have to be."


When I was younger I knew all about myself. I knew everything there was to know about myself by not thinking about it. Later, I entered a period of intense questioning. I asked all sorts of questions that could never have answers:
  1. if i was a man, and trapped in a giant igloo surrounded by bear-eating penguins- for whom I was no match, would I:
    __ (a) recite prayers?
    __ (b) run around really fast in circles until thoroughly dizzy so as to numb the eventual carnage
    __ (c) try and hastily dig a whole through to the other side of the planet
    __ (d) options (a) and (b) simultaneously

  2. if i was a man, and fell in love, and was asked to choose between my love or the discovery and successful restoration of the aquatic tomb of Atlantis I would:
    __ (a) kiss my love heartily on the lips and be merry
    __ (b) forsake my love for the benefit of Sea-World establishing an underwater ride
    __ (c) draw kangaroo stick figures using twigs as I sat on the side of a road and wallowed in delicious self-despair
    __ (d) none of the above
I dug myself a deep hole with philosophical reasoning, and added to it later by questioning not just what I might do in a particular hypothetical situation, but who I was beneath my skin (and this is where the real trouble started). At first I explored simple solutions to the problem by taxonomy. I classified myself into various folders, lists, and established rituals in order to delineate who it was that I was. Eventually I came to realize that even though I liked very much: white bed sheets, white button-up oxford shirts, oriental lilies, and small dogs that behave like ascetics, it said nothing about who I was. The air grew dense with uncertainty and my constant preoccupation with my self (my self- the self that belongs? to me?), my world, and all sorts of other things that begin with my. I became frightened, since it seemed to me unlikely that I had any real ownership over the world, time seemed to march away quite independently of I, and my heartbeat seemed to talk-back to me in rebellious-teenage-scowls.

Feeling lost, I decided that the problem was in the inactivity of thought. Certainly then, the only solution to the problem was action. Clearly, what I lacked was experience- since it must be experience that forms (?!) the man. I decided that perhaps I had no identity, and that some experimentation would somehow beget one. Very well then, let us climb a few anthills, obscure a few sunrises with cigarette smoke, and giggle through a few bad movies. now what? Was I... this?

Later, deciding that even though I couldn't quite corner a discrete meaning for I, I could at very least be proud of my achievements, decided that identity must somehow be linked to decisions, and ultimately, to achievements. This phase ended in a sort of catastrophe. One by one these (so-called) 'achievements' were stripped from me, and I found myself: alone, an ill-formed 1, a medical-school dropout, unemployed, dumped, and frankly: not a very pleasant person to be around.

For a few weeks I resigned myself to the unfortunate conclusion that I had failed as a man, and that my identity was now essentially that of a failure. I decided to move to Afghanistan in hopes of dying, forgetting myself and joining a band of wild coyotes, or lying still on a hill long enough to be petrified for posterity.

I decided to master the following modes of communication when I did get to Afghanistan:

____- gestures
____- sign language
____- patterns of dilations of eyes
____- dreamscapes
____- translating through rocks
____- hand holding, lovemaking and tongue-kissing
____- the erratic, seizures of bodies called dance
____- the vibration of taut strings tied at either ends
____- reading palms
____- interpreting the flight of eagles
____- the aura of burnt leaves
____- blowing sand in each other's faces


Despite my very earnest efforts, my attempt at a perfect apathy for all-of-everything (forever) simply failed to eventuate. What I found that derailed it was this:
None can withstand the operation of Thy decree: non can divert the course of Thine appointment.
For the first time something rather awesome occurred to me: perhaps I was not really that important. Perhaps the ebb and flow of the universe is simply just that: the ebb and flow of the universe, in which I play a part- and though a fish can move and swim and cause ripples, it cannot rival the moon, it cannot alter tides.


Identity is least confusing when it is silence. A black space. When there is no question as to who you are, or even worse: what. I seem to know the answer to this question almost innately as long as I don't ask it. It's not that it's a mirage, but more that it follows Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle, the more one tries to measure it, the more one tampers with it. My physics teacher put it this way: like trying to pick up marbles soaked in oil with your hands in boxing gloves. As soon as you make a move to ascertain definitively the position of the marble, you touch it- and it rolls away. The concept of an identity, we know to a certainty, is a collection of certain things: a precise formulation of qualities, virtues, and talents latent in a person as potential capacity. Should one develop them, then one could be said to be successful at being themself. Should one simply disregard their individual merits and shortcomings, one could be said to be un-themself.

As to existential quagmires:
  1. what do i do with all this skin?
  2. i smell as though i am constantly dying
  3. am i just dust being carried by the wind?
  4. when i (as a leaf) detach from my tree... will the voice in my head_____stop?
what can I offer but that there are no consistent answers to stand on? So one is walking on shifting sands made up entirely of illusory and imaginary reasoning. One is simply asking their mind to suffocate them- but by all means, do what you must to realize that you cannot float on clouds.


  1. (Paradox) __I am most myself when I am not concerned with my me-ness

  2. (Paradox) __I am most myself when I am engaged with the world through actions, deeds, and emotions, rather than when I am insular and engaged only with the black-pit of me-ness I find in my chest

    putting the two together we get:

  3. I am most me when I am not me at all. I am most me when I am: everything other than me. In other words: my identity is closest to being I when it is: a mountainside, the color purple, my sister's crooked right eye, a faded fire-hydrant, the smile of the mexican baby who smiled at me on the bus today, 13 quarters, the moon orchestrating grass migration patterns, the love in my chest that beams from my eyes.

In short: I see my identity as everything other than me. I am a black hole that somehow seems to fit pretty nicely into this particular now and here-ness. My influence on other-than-I's is variable. I am sometimes shaken, sometimes shaker. I am sometimes giant, sometimes dwarf. It is impossible to trap me in a jar. This does not imply that my identity is mutable, but that my identity is the world, and the world is endless. ceaseless. without-boundary. perennial. (i sit by the side of a stream and watch it. it looks the same, but is constantly flowing simultaneously towards and away from me. these are the mechanics of the soul- which can flow towards and away simultaneously).


I do not know. I know that I have failed at everything I considered once to be important. Four months into that I find myself still waking up in the morning (occasionally anticipating a bowl of cereal). Thus some twinkle in the blackness in the pit of my chest still has a sort of hope.

"It is nice when it is... but it doesn't have to be."
"right... but I'll pray for you anyway."
"you don't seem that worried."
"I'm not."
__"Few of my friends would call me that."
"What would they say?"
"It's not soo much what they would say, but what I have to say about it"
______________________________________________"which is?"
"this is why we have faith. Faith is the framework we use to interact with hope."
"faith is why we can be hopeful"

What is my identity?

No God is there but Thee, Who hearest and art ready to answer.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

One Perfect Day (two love-sketches) (two notapoems)

____The long day wanes; the slow moon climbs; the deep
____Moans round with many voices. Come, my friends.
____'Tis not too late to seek a newer world.


untitled, ..*ghost*..


outside i hear the sound of a train.
finally, something that's going somewhere.
i had a dream of coming home,
of lying on a couch,
holding someone,
connected at the hands
under a flimsy blanket.
i lay there and we spoke in breaths-
our hands communicated,
transitions in heat and miniature sweat.
i rubbed my lips against her ear,
i heard a smile pass across her face
her eyes looked where they wanted,
mine were lost in her hair...
all i was was lost in her hair-
and that alone was enough.
i grew, sprouting from my palms into hers.
i grew into her and filled her.
there are tulips in her chest i put there,
there are garlands and daisies and her blood
is the petals of geraniums i kissed individually.
i was happy then.
in that dream of an ideal evening.
in that dream of having a garden in someone's soul.


I'm dating this girl, nothing serious; but when I get home in the evenings, she doesn't say anything. She's already at my place. She's made tea. She's not mad at me for being late. I walk over to the couch, where she's reading. I take off my jacket and loosen my tie. I crawl behind her, she squirms and gives me an annoyed look as she contorts her head to kiss me hello. No one's said a word yet. muuah. That's enough. I'll lie there, and let the sounds of men and the ink of contracts drift out of my body. She'll read on, unconcerned about my hands around her ending on her belly. I'll be lost in her hair and the smell of it... and she'll be happy enough with me because I'm a man and am warm and am always stocked up on delicious tea. she'll read on. I'll hold on to her.

Later I'll rise, take a shower and come back. She'll probably have fallen asleep. I'll kiss her forhead:

"it's late, you should probably just stay over"

She'll nod. I'll pick her up, take her to the bed. It won't bother me where life's going. It won't bother me who I am... cause whoever I am on that night... will be enough for me.