Wednesday, March 1, 2023

Eccentric and Reckless, It Skids Away and Drops Dead into Its Own Skeleton

Gravity's Rainbow released 50 years ago yesterday, Howard Nemerov born 103 years ago today though actually born on February 29, you haven't daydreamed about a February 29 birthday? Yesterday also my brother B's birthday, 1961 so no Leap Year luck, but send him a bump if you know him but haven't already

Haven't done that in a while. Will I ever read, with focused comprehension, front-to-back *Gravity's Rainbow* or *Mason & Dixon* or *Against the Light* ever again? Gaddis' *Recognitions* or Gass' *Tunnel*? Will I finish *In Search of Lost Time*, I'm in the middle of *Sodom and Gomorrah* and flailing. Beyond my eyes' dimming I was young until sixty-two, this past year, yikes! skipped middle-age, went straight to old. Mountains I can climb all day but might cripple myself if not die climbing down, my freaking eyes, knees. My memory, old too, I remember 1977 better than yesterday, am I wrong or was Modest Mouse not an oompah band of weight once?


Howard Nemerov

This admirable gadget, when it is
Wound on a string and spun with steady force,   
Maintains its balance on most any smooth
Surface, pleasantly humming as it goes.
It is whirled not on a constant course, but still   
Stands in unshivering integrity
For quite some time, meaning nothing perhaps   
But being something agreeable to watch,   
A silver nearly silence gleaning a still-
ness out of speed, composing unity   
From spin, so that its hollow spaces seem   
Solids of light, until it wobbles and   
Begins to whine, and then with an odd lunge   
Eccentric and reckless, it skids away   
And drops dead into its own skeleton.

Born 213 years ago today, one of only a very very very few old farts I still want to listen to these days
"The focus on all forms of trauma except economic exploitation has helped to disguise the problem at the heart of neoliberalism"
Biden’s program for mass hunger: Food stamps being cut back for 42 million
Does a final theory exist?
Resistance to the technocratic dystopia
TODAY! in motherfucking Democrats
The context of the new Anti-China Campaign
The moral cost of capitalism
Gaddis and Markson: Two Letters
Slothrop's half centuryTODAY'S MONOLOGUE: I am a Slothrop (since I'm trotting out old gags here). Born in 1959, my trajectory mirrors this shitty country of ours exactly.
Gravity's Rainbow is 50, and I am old too
Gravity's Rainbow is 50, and I am too old to
Pinning down the cagey emotions of Amy Clampitt
I haven't read Clampitt in years - shame on me - she was an important gateway drug in my early 20s
Fever Ray's Voices of Desire


Jesse Nathan

If I were half as free as you
I wouldn’t droop,
make faces of parchment,
shed branches like phantoms,
wouldn’t hide
a heart of soft scarlet.

If you were half as free as me
you wouldn’t go—
you who leave not once, like guests,
but over and over, like friends.


  1. ... and Tom Pynchon is 84 or 85 and still crazy after all these years, as Salman Rushdie noted. My recording mechanism used to bring 53 and 54 years ago back with bad clarity, but not so much now. I was defending a thesis in 1977 (essentially, Elliot Gould in 'Getting Straight') without the benefit of air support. I recall Modest Mouse kinda but am willing to take a refresher. Never stop being in nature.

  2. today i learned that in east timor the circulating paper money is the u.s. dollar, but they are making their own coins, including one dollar and two dollar coins

    wikipedia also tells us

    "Timor" is derived from timur, meaning 'east' in Malay, thus resulting in a tautological place name meaning 'East East'. In Indonesian, this results in the name Timor Timur. In Portuguese, the country is called Timor-Leste (Leste meaning 'east'; Portuguese pronunciation: [ti'moɾ 'lɛʃ.tɨ]). In Tetum it is Timór Lorosa'e (Lorosa'e can be literally translated as 'where the sun rises').

    The official names under its constitution are "Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste" in English, "República Democrática de Timor-Leste" in Portuguese, and "Repúblika Demokrátika Timór-Leste" in Tetum.