Wednesday, November 22, 2017

The Accounting Beyond the Account

What I can't talk about:
  1. Chastised yesterday by Bookkeeper for not being dick enough badgering underlings.
  2. It always works for me, said Bookkeeper, badgering me for not badgering underlings.
  3. Bookkeeper's souls.










CORSON'S INLET

A.R. Ammons

I went for a walk over the dunes again this morning
to the sea,
then turned right along
   the surf
                         rounded a naked headland
                         and returned

   along the inlet shore:

it was muggy sunny, the wind from the sea steady and high,   
crisp in the running sand,
       some breakthroughs of sun
   but after a bit

continuous overcast:

the walk liberating, I was released from forms,   
from the perpendiculars,
      straight lines, blocks, boxes, binds
of thought
into the hues, shadings, rises, flowing bends and blends   
               of sight:

                         I allow myself eddies of meaning:   
yield to a direction of significance
running
like a stream through the geography of my work:   
   you can find
in my sayings
                         swerves of action
                         like the inlet’s cutting edge:
               there are dunes of motion,
organizations of grass, white sandy paths of remembrance   
in the overall wandering of mirroring mind:
but Overall is beyond me: is the sum of these events
I cannot draw, the ledger I cannot keep, the accounting
beyond the account:

in nature there are few sharp lines: there are areas of   
primrose
       more or less dispersed;
disorderly orders of bayberry; between the rows
of dunes,
irregular swamps of reeds,
though not reeds alone, but grass, bayberry, yarrow, all ...
predominantly reeds:

I have reached no conclusions, have erected no boundaries,   
shutting out and shutting in, separating inside
          from outside: I have
          drawn no lines:
          as

manifold events of sand
change the dune’s shape that will not be the same shape   
tomorrow,

so I am willing to go along, to accept   
the becoming
thought, to stake off no beginnings or ends, establish   
         no walls:

by transitions the land falls from grassy dunes to creek   
to undercreek: but there are no lines, though
       change in that transition is clear
       as any sharpness: but “sharpness” spread out,   
allowed to occur over a wider range
than mental lines can keep:

the moon was full last night: today, low tide was low:   
black shoals of mussels exposed to the risk
of air
and, earlier, of sun,
waved in and out with the waterline, waterline inexact,   
caught always in the event of change:   
       a young mottled gull stood free on the shoals
       and ate
to vomiting: another gull, squawking possession, cracked a crab,   
picked out the entrails, swallowed the soft-shelled legs, a ruddy
turnstone running in to snatch leftover bits:

risk is full: every living thing in
siege: the demand is life, to keep life: the small
white blacklegged egret, how beautiful, quietly stalks and spears
               the shallows, darts to shore
                            to stab—what? I couldn’t
       see against the black mudflats—a frightened
       fiddler crab?

               the news to my left over the dunes and
reeds and bayberry clumps was
               fall: thousands of tree swallows
               gathering for flight:
               an order held
               in constant change: a congregation
rich with entropy: nevertheless, separable, noticeable
          as one event,
                      not chaos: preparations for
flight from winter,
cheet, cheet, cheet, cheet, wings rifling the green clumps,
beaks
at the bayberries
    a perception full of wind, flight, curve,
    sound:
    the possibility of rule as the sum of rulelessness:
the “field” of action
with moving, incalculable center:

in the smaller view, order tight with shape:
blue tiny flowers on a leafless weed: carapace of crab:
snail shell:
            pulsations of order
            in the bellies of minnows: orders swallowed,   
broken down, transferred through membranes
to strengthen larger orders: but in the large view, no
lines or changeless shapes: the working in and out, together   
            and against, of millions of events: this,
                         so that I make
                         no form of
                         formlessness:

orders as summaries, as outcomes of actions override   
or in some way result, not predictably (seeing me gain   
the top of a dune,
the swallows
could take flight—some other fields of bayberry   
            could enter fall
            berryless) and there is serenity:

            no arranged terror: no forcing of image, plan,
or thought:
no propaganda, no humbling of reality to precept:

terror pervades but is not arranged, all possibilities   
of escape open: no route shut, except in   
   the sudden loss of all routes:

            I see narrow orders, limited tightness, but will   
not run to that easy victory:
            still around the looser, wider forces work:
            I will try
       to fasten into order enlarging grasps of disorder, widening   
scope, but enjoying the freedom that
Scope eludes my grasp, that there is no finality of vision,   
that I have perceived nothing completely,
that tomorrow a new walk is a new walk.



Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Refuse Refuge Refuse




  • I knew Sunday yesterday was Meredith Monk's birthday. 75 this year.
  • I prepared the birthday post Sunday night - mostly canned like most the birthday cards because why paraphrase myself, some small new though - then, Monday morning, didn't want to post.
  • She's a refuge I go to. I tried on the way to work. Helped. Still didn't post.
  • I listened to her last night, didn't write why I didn't post her card yesterday.
  • I tweeted Vocal Frier mid-afternoon yesterday re: Monk's birthday: Hey @vocalfrier today in (sic) Meredith Monk's 75th birthday (in case you know anyone who has a radio show tonight at seven that specializes in vocal music).
  • and he responded I may know someone in that situation, with a tendency to celebrate Ms. Monk's work.
  • and he wasn't lying. Here's an hour of Meredith Monk, last night on Vocal Fry.
  • On show message board (and Dan on mic-breaks): people just happy it wasn't an RIP show.


Sunday, November 19, 2017

Where Flames in Flamings Burn Back to the Trees



  • Earthgirl on trail yesterday.
  • My favorite two weeks of the year, the ochre-ing. Post peak, pre-dearth.
  • On Richard Wilbur, a new biography, and on Richard Wilbur and his contemporaries.
  • I have not read a biography since made to, I'm not starting today. I'll never read one. Make me.
  • Hecht taught Wilbur, said Wilbur's faith animating his poetry shouldn't penalize the poetry.
  • If I put a mirror behind the otterbox maybe selfie potential.
  • Hecht said, Jeff, you wouldn't know honest faith if it blessed you.
  • Thanks to Dave for the Cat Stevens' ochre song. 
  • All I want to do is hike with Earthgirl.











A WORLD WITHOUT OBJECTS IS A SENSIBLE EMPTINESS

Richard Wilbur

The tall camels of the spirit
Steer for their deserts, passing the last groves loud
With the sawmill shrill of the locust, to the whole honey of the arid
Sun. They are slow, proud,
 
And move with a stilted stride
To the land of sheer horizon, hunting Traherne's
Sensible emptiness, there where the brain's lantern-slide
Revels in vast returns.
 
O connoisseurs of thirst,
Beasts of my soul who long to learn to drink
Of pure mirage, those prosperous islands are accurst
That shimmer on the brink
 
Of absence; auras, lustres,
And all shinings need to be shaped and borne.
Think of those painted saints, capped by the early masters
With bright, jauntily-worn
 
Aureate plates, or even
Merry-go-round rings. Turn, O turn
From the fine sleights of the sand, from the long empty oven
Where flames in flamings burn
 
Back to the trees arrayed
In bursts of glare, to the halo-dialing run
Of the country creeks, and the hills' bracken tiaras made
Gold in the sunken sun,
 
Wisely watch for the sight
Of the supernova burgeoning over the barn,
Lampshine blurred in the steam of beasts, the spirit's right
Oasis, light incarnate.


Friday, November 17, 2017

wondered what it meant, wondered if we are writing poetry or all huddling in one big tent clasping assholes



  • Fire alarm drill yesterday at work, planned, one required each semester.
  • Asked earlier in day if our radios worked and if yes were they charged gave game away.
  • New: old colleague - who is still a colleague - barking directions like a boss when alarm sounded.
  • Life in the Assholocene: assholes demand subordinates be assholes to each other but be especially assholish to their subordinates, etc fucking forever and always, amen.
  • IATY3T:WABR.
  • Get it? New permatag but for two posts a year.
  • As good as anything.











I AM VISITED BY AN EDITOR AND A POET

Charles Bukowski

I had just won $115 from the headshakers and
was naked upon my bed
listening to an opera by one of the Italians
and had just gotten rid of a very loose lady
when there was a knock upon the wood,
and since the cops had just raided a month or so ago,
I screamed out rather on edge—
who the hell is it? what you want, man?
I’m your publisher! somebody screamed back,
and I hollered, I don’t have a publisher,
try the place next door, and he screamed back,
you’re Charles Bukowski, aren’t you? and I got up and
peeked through the iron grill to make sure it wasn’t a cop,
and I placed a robe upon my nakedness,
kicked a beercan out of the way and bade them enter,
an editor and a poet.
only one would drink a beer (the editor)
so I drank two for the poet and one for myself
and they sat there sweating and watching me
and I sat there trying to explain
that I wasn’t really a poet in the ordinary sense,
I told them about the stockyards and the slaughterhouse
and the racetracks and the conditions of some of our jails,
and the editor suddenly pulled five magazines out of a portfolio
and tossed them in between the beercans
and we talked about Flowers of Evil, Rimbaud, Villon,
and what some of the modern poets looked like:
J.B. May and Wolf the Hedley are very immaculate, clean fingernails, etc.;
I apologized for the beercans, my beard, and everything on the floor
and pretty soon everybody was yawning
and the editor suddenly stood up and I said,
are you leaving?
and then the editor and the poet were walking out the door,
and then I thought well hell they might not have liked
what they saw
but I’m not selling beercans and Italian opera and
torn stockings under the bed and dirty fingernails,
I’m selling rhyme and life and line,
and I walked over and cracked a new can of beer
and I looked at the five magazines with my name on the cover
and wondered what it meant,
wondered if we are writing poetry or all huddling in
one big tent
                  clasping assholes.