A shower fumes genuflection for that man alone in a lunch hour park, to appease the “Who’s not stubborn” refracted blame Australian rainbows vibrate with as if outdoor light chose the significance it addresses to witnesses.
what house beams
it’s a warren
of closet alcoves
close as a shuttered
Experiments in style are a confusion about who to be, when, where, how and why. Like hair cuts, like medical decisions, like letters to your future self.
Style is how your very voice can be characterized, and letting an experiment in prose digress into prose poetry feels like a refusal to decide, a lingering in the nebula before a next move.
But my blog is gradually moving through a transition, through revisions and changes of pace, to go with new routines and day to day rhythms.
Lawrence Durrell has a poem entitled Style, with a very lovely stanza evincing rhythm visually and evoking metered verse forms, my favorite style of poetry for reading.
“Something like the sea,
Unlabored momentum of water
But going somewhere,
Building and subsiding,
The busy one, the loveless.”
I also like his line, “Estuaries of putty and gold.”
What names, horses as color.
First fought over at scale east of Scythia and west of the moon, the blanket appaloosa as now known for Nez Perce country, nearly forgotten already, back where the Silk Road was when it was traversable.
“If by dull rhymes our English must be chained,
And, like Andromeda, the Sonnet sweet
Fettered, in spite of pained loveliness;
Let us find out, if we must be constrained,
Sandals more interwoven and complete
To fit the naked foot of poesy;
Let us inspect the lyre, and weigh the stress
Misers of sound and syllable, no less
Than Midas of his coinage, let us be
Jealous of dead leaves in the bay wreath crown;”
“What is more gentle than a wind in summer?”
How the actors herald simple war.
Where did they put the theories of philosophy affected by animals that don’t privilege proliferation or fear of death? There are other fears too.
Conventionality is modest about knowability, trusts the good governance of social dynamics in a “mob” with informal information handling, poor access to pertinent information, reason to be distracted and information overload, all at once, all the time, attention economy the driver of minor everyday cruelty, was it a micro-aggression or a social accident from situational relative ignorance and selective inattentiveness?
Picture “the original Borgia script” feature using your imagination, towers, lunging out the gates of a besieged little turret over a spring, a fighting death in pajamas.
Before breaking his wrist leaping from a prison in a tower with a view of mountains, different villain, same era: He came to wear the black mask publicly when the disfiguring chancres formed.
Cesare acquires syphilis, takes hot bath in a slaughtered bull on advice: chirr, claudicant, chinch, cognoscenti, cicerone, chrysocarpous, coterie, chrestomathy, claque. Silver scabbard, silver horseshoes, wears black well, notably well.
amateurs must learn the marginalia
before you settle on the weights of
musical notes like widow birds
laden, as with coconut, slower than stately
no carriage horse on the ground
The insidious inertia of boredom that might yet arise even in a bastard dynasty that rallies its buy-in flex time compatriots in walled garden charity events with tents, but has private parties without wives prostitutes only.
The style of children’s journaling is the very worst, unutterably shameless.
How do you overwhelm, there in your own riding boots’ shadow, a reputation for pragmatism so vulgar next to “ten commandments” that it must be resisted with public intoxication, no – and there are ecstasies from actual abstention?
egyptian ducks big
as a goose in Cape Town
diamonds in royal blue quartz
dreams of a southern cross
No glory, nation building with no intention that the center can hold – not against mere enemies to usurpers of your fiefdom in statecraft as pomp and circumstance – the birth pangs of Renaissance witchery, art as satire in the midday shadow of Oriental Imperialism’s frontier.
passive voice, passive
voice, leave the birds
their constant cages
I’ll have your house, keep you in it
always dare the little ships to
their worst, only safe for
lovers in a lily confine
little old lady
blue cream goes anywhere
if you have wax stains
from a writing tablet at night
Marauders, spying a golden fleeced pastorale suddenly gone to coinage, alms racketeers losing interest in cemetery barricading, fearlessly laying organ pipe toward the sky, a greater weevil on Constantinople’s jealous, goldplate carapaced western bank.
Pax Italia, bright little lords, let us, have one more Crusade. Infantry, away! Mercenary, stay.
Immediacy, the absurdist Italian word for Godspeed that certainly doesn’t mean that.
A chthonic dirge dragged like a fishmonger’s load behind her deep lace train. The corvée stripped her village of men. The colporteur tapped the proffered book and smiled what he thought was a knowing smile.
The bottom wants to be found; ass hat humor.
His montgolfier sank towards the hill like a friend of the moon’s, bright faced and slow. The massive menhir put a pall on the valley. Thence moraine, nimbus, a mumchance confusion as cold as strained endurance, an ordeal.
Better part of an orchestra, are the right undelivered notes.
For instance, alcahest, amative, ambsace, anidian, ambergris. Dictionary of difficult words rehearsal: No aigrette tiara, etc.
Under that andiron’s feet the litter gathers in bowl ribbed stains.
Horace. “Behind the horseman sits black care.”
Replete. The intimacy of demonstrative despair, that full length of it.
“I will tell you.
The barge she sat in, ..
.. the poop was beaten gold;
Purple the sails, and so perfumed that
The winds were love-sick with them.”
– Antony and Cleopatra
What blue night is missing from this perfect candled skyline? A precipice man made.
The runs, the roof, The New York Album, the hell hath no, recursive leave no force behind polytonal ascending.
Paper bullets of the, bullet list, bullet point, bullet.
Mark, the notes already where? Digital download.
“Truly the name of brother is a beautiful name and full of affection, and for that reason we made our alliance a brotherhood. But that confusion of ownership, the dividing, and the fact that the richness of one is the poverty of the other, wonderfully softens and loosens the solder of brotherhood.” – Montaigne
Name that wind.
Hawk to a horseman, hand to a saw.
Finnegan, Fergus, Llewellyn, Llwyd. Galahad, Faithless. Gilead, Fain.
Civil society gropes through near anomy, shrinking from main roads. Civilians are press-ganged by and hostage to apatetic warfare. Our arbutus snugged us into the time of leaves fluttering into one another’s shadows.
His only contemporary epopoeist went to the lions, returned to join the dogs.
He wouldn’t let a papist parent’s sphexishness embrangle his unblemished soul. No deipnosophist whore, he banged the table in reply – what snake, what church, what rat was this?
My notes read like an L.A. typist’s fasting chrestomathy, dog-ears flapping in the wind.
Horses and foals. Returned runaways, no charge.
Neither let the youngest refuse to study philosophy, nor the oldest weary of it.
Only two actors each in the plays of Aeschylus.
What if you were demoted to king of California, you could hack it? It’s a life.
Fern in the drawing room, palm frond stuck in the carpet. Nettling, warm to the ball of your heel, synthetic yarn.
King coral is a California kingsnake. Has a double, no idea which is most venomous.
So have box turtles, blind newts, seeing bats and those four o’clock-tussling migratory moths with a wing stroke like slipper flower trumpets.
A love story about a goose written to go with a prelude in D minor, about a “cold outdoor penned in but the friend is leaving now” separation anxiety. Goose as an emblem for brother.
Horace. “A lovely woman’s body tapers off into a fish.”
Strange women put in stereoscopic order by an inevitably faster pacing horse. Rhiannon, horror genre, married mouse kidnapped in a flour sack.
The spotted dog descended of a whale and back again, one other monkey with swimmer’s nose. What a nose.
“I love Orion ..
His flaring points of reference, his shining dogs.
.. the mouse and the owl,
with the clearness of water sheeted and hidden,”
“Positive deviance” and excelling in traits beyond reasonable or conventional potential, against all understanding and alone in foresight until too late, an example for modernity, mentionable fate.
Skip ahead: The ticket girl’s battology can’t be sidestepped or shut up. I haven’t settled on the design of a binnacle for this water sapphire.
Categorical reasoning pop quiz for Gallup: name two things a philistine has in common with a pharisee, two that differ.
“For our boy, a closet, a garden, the table and the bed, solitude, company, morning and evening, all hours will be the same, all places will be his study; for philosophy, which, as the mother of judgment and conduct, will be his principal concern, has this privilege of mixing in everything.” – Montaigne
Little red and yellow rampant rocking horse. Philosophy the buoyant friend, he the confidant, her undiscriminating secret sharer. The world still standing, and she out of riddles for the only comer.
“.. fond of pertinence, and consequently of brevity.” (ibid.)
His balize waved cautiously. An annuent statue rode pulleys onto a pedestal facing the gulf of the dam.
Sword laid for a guest in the master bed, decanter in the bath.
Intertextuality among contemporaries, Sophocles and Euripides, Euripides and Alexander, Sophocles and Aeschylus, democracy and Menander. “In nature how was I evil?” Rex.
The things themselves carry the words along.
Philoctetes and isolative identity formation, situational paranoia, another attempt on the life of Odysseus. War psychology and “stranger” status among men who resist repatriation – after forced estrangement.
Chocolate and hazelnut tea as well as coffee with milk.
The imagination rests.
Fastest thing, the very first.
The political class will miss the wilderness democracy offered, but pigs have never wondered how to cultivate their own pannage. A chemical sink or drink, water occupies parallax place, public or commercial, natural or industrial, clear or under surveillance, flammable or quenching, battle prize or negotiated frontier.
Who dreamt of the pelagic bestiary at the last magnificent spaces on our frontier-exalting maps, became our deepest chronicler of the heart.
Like Conrad he described the human soul as a penumbra in candescence, thwarted both spheroid sides and brief. A maxim in steel princeps with illuminations led the way – no pope was less a pharisee than the spanish Alexander. She stood on purlicue, stripped of her arms.
No prince can live by perfidy alone – he must punish an enemy’s traitor himself if his name is as black as a Borgia’s. The recital hall, scene of mothers’ most ignominious bursts of acid persiflage.
A palter, a petrel, a plenary too, puissant, proviso, perorate poltroon, puerile, the pharisee, pusillanimity. Philomel, pyrrhic, polemic come true, perspicacious? Pertinacity. Phenogenesis. Phew.
Happiness is. Imaginarium, the credits sequence.
Quaff, quattrocento, quean, raga, ravissant, Rabelaisian, reive: The hand that works the quern is like a specimen to children of the corn syrup, the echo chamber’s preference for a quodlibet damned those what would stay though the creek does rise, heedless of the facts.
His every quiddity increased the anger of the crowd. Our halting rapprochement only made me more nervous. Ulysses slew the quisling like a rat when he had spoken.
And enough’s enough, rejectamenta, rhonchus, sfumato, rhamphoid, sainfoin, seraglio.
Tried to read Kant again. Yawned and sneezed at the same time before finishing a sentence, gave it up. “Good prose is like a window pane” | no more counterpoint | disastrous distinction between content and form.
“Think not for this, however, the poor treason
Of my stout blood against my staggering brain,”
So is it Ovid’s Metamorphosis or Kafka’s? One is a “moral” poem concerned with human suffering and helplessness. It is physical, suffering renders Ovid’s characters “vulnerable, erotic outcasts from the world of the gods.” Machiavelli favors Ovid, clay tablets and all.
“The iconography of suffering has a long pedigree.” And a good deal of full color, partial undress in the Chicago museum. From Regarding the Pain of Others, “these are surely intended to move and excite, and to instruct and exemplify.”
To bear this worthily is good fortune
To have survived the sleepless death of hunger,
unaccompanied but not alone inside,
to have endured the weakening conviction
that endurance is a thing to celebrate,
to have answered the night with the lowered voice
of someone who knows his words cannot be heard,
to have consoled a ghost so uselessly fear
filled me in the utterance and would not leave,
to have lived as an enemy to people
I could not have violated, concealing
my hunger from help at every turn, knowing
war as I never imagined it, total,
to have returned to grace and the fellowship
that surrounds a man without being noticed,
is to carry that hunger inside, alone,
anxious to remember unsharable things,
and yet be at ease with grim contingency.
The language of captivity came easily,
for I was not at ease and this appeased the men,
the meek eyes on their guns, the supplicant raised hands,
these gestures of submission were instinctive, clear
and seemingly respected – they took me alive.
To come into their village raised my hopes – I smiled
at seated women, children and the elderly,
convinced that here among them I could count upon
the nature of a civilized society
to govern and soften my lot, as a human.
In truth I smiled to see them well and self-absorbed,
exotic and in their own way beautiful, proud.
The neatly woven integrity of their world
and the confident abundance of artifacts
as intricate, trim and colorful as shop goods,
proving their world was made and not hacked from wild things,
impressed me greatly. They scarcely looked up at me,
and those who paid attention kept their composure.
But I was not so gently minded, I was tied
spread-eagled on the ground and left to shit myself
despite my saying, whispering, as though the shame
conveyed by whispering could say, I had to go.
I raised my voice when I had voided, angrily
demanding their attention – but they were watching,
they had listened, their eyes said they had understood.
What had they understood? The comprehension there
was still obscure, their feelings for me were too strange,
for me, none of their intentions were foreshadowed.
I sank back into neutral rapport with a child
twirling a beetle over my head on a string,
my attitude passive, my nerves jangled by noise
from the desperate clockwork of wings, captivated.
When we left the village I confronted my death.
I did not face my execution grimacing
in anticipation. But the spray of gun shots
should have murdered me, the shock of transformation
from a prisoner to a dead man ripped through me
with wounding certainty and stole my body’s voice
to shout into my brain that I had been destroyed
just the same. I was enraged to have survived it,
yelled. The executioner who failed to kill me
so deliberately and with an understanding
stared back with his black glasses, fired by my ear.
The pain was deafening – I watched him shout until
the sound returned and stood still at attention, stunned.