I really want to get this going....

Each day's listing is an excerpted edit from my work. These are numbered and sub-headed for ease of read and isolation from full body of continued text. Each small excerpt is a single-themed piece culled from a much larger whole. Please follow the heading numbers down to #1, or click on 'archive'. The highest numbers are most recently posted, obviously. If so interested, for follow-up, you may contact via e-mail shown - perhaps for discussion or annotation needed.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

15 WAYS TO WEAR A SASH (the old eastside waterfront, nyc, 1968)

207. 15 WAYS TO WEAR A SASH (the old eastside waterfront, nyc, 1968):

I'd lost every reason to stay in place and I could see nothing more than that - the three people I had at least once known to keep me in place were gone and I'd already forgotten them and the old dives by the east side waterfront were no help - McCormack's was becoming a holding pen for old men and drunks and a place where there was nothing any longer but old stories from tired old mouths - they were excavating around it and every time I went there someone had just unearthed something - old pipes old medicine bottles buttons buckles plates and shards of pottery or old keys and chain links and firearms and pistols and casings and holsters too and as much fun as any of that may have been (the girls always jealously guarded whatever they'd find and the guys would simply brag to boredom) it was old hat since the entire scene was already picked over a hundred years 75 years before and more with the Brooklyn Bridge project (which had taken away blocks of old places - tenements waterfront hovels old bars and brothels and any rickety old standing building within a thousand feet of the old waterway) and anyone who wanted to start talking to me about digging and excavating and all that I could tell them a few things and give them a piece of my mind too - all their trite old crap amounted to nothing but more exploitation and theft padded with rubbish and stuff I was already tired of - and I just didn't care and wanted to walk it off anyway : eastside hovels henhouses bars and morgues - it was all the same to me : dressing-gown windows wedding stores and mirrors with 50 cent frames and candles reflected in cabaret lights and scabrous old demitasse sets and damask curtains and bedposts made of oak and ebony inlays and canopies and whorebeds it was everywhere and easy to overlook because everything now was rotting and falling apart - I'd seen windows just suddenly drop from above three stories up old panes of glass and sliders give way and I'd heard ancient old boards creak and crack and just as quickly come tumbling down apt to kill anyone in the way but somehow along the way I'd lost my own fingerprints and the marks on the wallpaper weren't mine either : painters and guys in painter's caps both pretending to be one-the-other but both mixed up as ever : wall painters and housepainters in their splattered clothes passing right by abstract painters and color-splashed homos and artists of renown with cigarettes dangling from their ink-stained mouths and every street was being torn up Nassau Street Pace College Gold Street and Fulton and all that - a thousand new people a day thriving on something - federal workers and census talkers both with their fingers up their asses and noses too getting a sense of smell from whatever their readings told them : how many and where and when and what do they do and how do they do it : the sexual habits of immigrants and tornados the offspring of the clout and power the wasted youth of the Centrifuge Society sitting on bleachers cheering on the basketball game being played in the wintry heat under artificial lights and pigeon-toed girls standing high with earrings that dangled while they danced and the Puerto Ricans beneath the bleachers looking up to strain an eye to see whatever they could see up any girl's flying skirt or dress and that was that and nothing mattered no Saint Tolstoy or Saint Sartre nor Karlo Marx nor Karl Marx either and only the ghost of Max Eastman knew for sure and I twirled with finesse just to learn to talk and I winnowed the finger and painted with ice and became a carpenter just to make my own furniture and then a theif just to steal it back and I had no compunction but never stole a car and I had no complexion either but never made a girl's face color with blush and Sister Mary Alonzo and Father Jack Benny the two idiots finally ran away with each other and got married anyway - old St. Joe's never was the same as the boys in the school went instead to the local School of Industry to learn to plane and learn to saw and weld and hammer but none of them ever came up to potential but the rest of the entire city can tell you that - 'what's made of wood anymore anyway' they'd say with a snicker while holding their crotches with each other's hands : silence had to be and every horse (by 1967) had already been put to sleep and the only agonizing memory left was the guilt of driving a car you called a 'Mustang' to boot and what the hell was that ! someone wanted to know but no one ever did.

Thursday, March 20, 2008


206 . AT LEAST THE MOTTO WAS ORIGINAL (the Revolutionary War):

"Goldfish and goldenrod I’d heard it said and both of them seem pretty useless to me and since we’ve tamed the atom we’ve untamed the world but it’s never quaint enough that we don’t think about what once was and the old world is filled with interesting stories but no one today any longer knows them or knows them less or perhaps knows fewer of them – you know I’ve always liked using the word ‘fewer’ in any instance I can in place of the erroneous word ‘less’ which I hear so many people misuse ‘We have less customers today because of…’ but really it should be ‘we have fewer customers…’ the word ‘fewer’ being plural usage while ‘less’ seems to work perfectly well for the singular as in perhaps ‘less use’ where you wouldn’t say ‘fewer use’ but rather ‘fewer uses’ where it is wrongly said ‘less uses’ – anyway I’ll keep on with less diversion and fewer interruptions OK and moving from that to the next I’ll tell you another thing – as a dichotomy – we may want to be thankful for such things too as the battlements we just passed and the old lookout heights at the top end of this park old rock outcroppings and natural features from which the advancing armies could be seen at a distance by the settled-in armies and maybe we should be thankful for them because today’s everyday living and the calm we live amongst could not have been achieved without the sacrifices much earlier of these men who fought and staked out positions in what was basically a wilderness which was being intruded upon by others and all these others of course felt as right about their cause as did the soldiers trying to hold out as well as the soldiers from another land sent here but for the fight and all the while the beleaguered and decimated native population could merely watch in wonder or look on in sadness and awe as everyone and I mean everyone went about killing each other (I wanted to say ‘killing themselves’ but that doesn’t work) in the pursuit of a fashionably idealized sense of freedom and correct politics but even in that old day when they fought NOTHING it was nothing really made any sense and less it does today and it’s like hearing a kid say ‘my mother is French and she loves me very much’ it’s all meaningless and without any connection to anything else and as much as we destroy the natural world around us that is as much as we must really pay back for what we give out and it’s all a terror" at this point I was afraid somehow she was maybe coming unglued but wasn’t sure what to do not having spoken myself for quite some time yet I was totally interested in listening to this woman who just seemed to be rambling on and as we walked downward from her 110th Street lair near to the area where she taught and 116th Street and Morningside and the cathedral and all of that curious landscape up there (we’d just started at Parallax Books the interesting bookstore located on the selfsame street with the most intense view of the Cathedral of St. John the Divine as it fronted the west – a sight I’d remembered many a time over the last 30 years but now this same street had completely refined itself and turned around its dreary location into something much finer and yes the Cathedral still proudly glowed – but we’d walked well down from there and her interest really piqued as we’d entered the park environs at The Harlem Meer as it was called) and anyway it was better to listen to her stuff than to have to hear some of the stuttering barbaric banter of those people walking by in either direction – the weird tourists from other lands with their cameras and maps and lunches the skinny local kids walking for mischief or bugging people the little groups of cackling girls on the search for whatever would bring forth their giggles the old people staggering along in silence seemingly intent on whatever the lovers entwined walking dogs or mooning the nature types slowly staring at trees and lingering beneath bridges or along the ramble their quiet and slow patter although soothing to the ears made up of nothing either the stately ones usually men walking by preoccupied with thoughts of money or prosperity or young women for all I know the religious types walking with God the kids learning to ride bicycles with mothers and fathers in tow the Japanese always eager to break out a smile and stare back the tough Germans walking with wood the hungry the fed the single the wed in EVERY aspect the pinnacle of mankind achieved even within its dregs but NOWHERE else was the talk so good not even the time I’d spent with Elizabeth Villiers Liberty from 25 Fifth Avenue an awkward persona now so long gone BUT I never forget for sincerity breeds familiarity and good dreams do all the rest and with that said I was ready to let her go on and continue which she then did with some pretty amazing new subjects - all things of course I could have myself said too but was IN THIS CASE letting her speak for me "things I hate – you really want to know? – board games card games any kind of pass the time games and by games I mean where two or more people are involved because I really do enjoy crossword puzzles but that’s all not acrostics not jumbles nor any of those other weird word-games without clues or with convoluted methods and shapes and all that RUBBISH I like being alone and I can’t stand people who insist on staying overnight or who insist on having you stay overnight because I really demand aloneness and people bother me."

Wednesday, March 12, 2008



Brevity was a container which held my own life and even with its occasional leaks and spills it managed to hold enough material to keep me busy and the briefness part of it I never got even in the hopes that I'd never reach that end so as to find out to any satisfaction that it really was brief or not : no semblance of anything but doubt there : and I was able mentally to compose various chapters of it into segments recognizable as chapters maybe or areas of experience or parts of things related (and I always found that a stunning title for something 'Parts of Things Related') but no matter towards any of that as things ran through my head constantly and experiencing life and reality in an instantaneous fashion demands attention but that attention is of course made far more difficult by the selfsame attendance to the detail of words and story going along with everything else so like a man living two lives I acted and I watched together at the same time and reading philosophy I was able to find connected strings of ideas which brought into focus this idea of DUALITY which had been discovered first by me - a true and authentic discovery - and then only later found to have been an entire area of philosophic expertise which had anyway been going on for thousands of years the DUALITY of what we experience and what we live the witnessing and the doing together at the same moment the presence of self and consciousness reflecting while it is doing the stark adherance to principal and advantage at the same moment the coloring of reality by the psycholgical underpinning which hovers BENEATH (paradox there) reality and words - I found that all to be of the moment and again the more I delved of course the fainter it got - the dual nature of all things the reflexive nature of every thing the false reality reflected in the deeper sense of twin manifestation the opposites of Unity in the graceful glide of 'G-d' as it was put in Quaranic and Hebrew verse and the DUALITY of all we experience - (in the sense of self-knowledge which goes by the knowing that 'I am present here doing THIS but I am not fully here until I am NOT doing this' and the self-recognition which comes from both sides of the equation is then my present moment - which has no real values because it has ALL (both) values - of being and non-being) and I supposed to myself too that the essential idea of all this was to be able to realize that a part of me was present in both worlds in TWO places and more but only my being aware of itself watching and being watched too and Reality by that becomes but the active scrim onto which so much illusion is projected out of which (from which) one part of us selects the story and another part the place or both or one or none and NOTHING is the same anywhere.

Saturday, March 08, 2008



And anyway what am I to lose ? the whole world is running down pop culture has reduced everyone to the status of pygmies morons and zombies too and noise is ever-present and no one has any sense so it's all like popcorn in a blender as I see it - useless noise a battered pulp of nothingness and some more unessential fine-tuning of pablum and shit all mixed together as I roll down my window and spit at the passing parade : dirigibles in the sky fat and bulbous floating around hanging over sports shows and cheerleader squads and bi-planes along the coast trailing fatuous signs for people who don't read and along the sandy walkways edging the beach gigantic black people horn and holler in on everything while low-life vandals from the renters' districts spray-paint their mad messages on every doorway and signpost they can find : what bows down to that ? the police and the goon-squad the priests and the geeks : worship where you will because even Paradise leaks and Father Mulcahy (yes that's who it was) raises his hat and blesses the sea.

Friday, March 07, 2008



"Many people die from uninspiring locations and like some Sambo with a flexo-knee they are always crouched down in obeisance to something or someone else : moviemakers are always taught to work on capturing the sheer flux of life the interactions of many motions large and small as they go into the makeup of a situation - you've got the overlapping attentions to small detail the conversations the words and thoughts the inner thinkings of the people involved (which oddly in movies can only really be shown facially or by scene and object angle and light) and the craft of moviemaking is somehow to put all of these together to both advance a plot and move the action while 'developing' a sense of continuation and progress towards the overlap of all these things coming together as an eventual resolution (always foreshadowed perhaps BY something unusual but leading : as when in Macbeth Shakespeare has Banquo ask Macbeth - of whom the witches have just spoken as 'King-to-be' which has stopped Macbeth in his tracks and he recoils at the thought of his future [which too is thus foreshadowed craftily] 'Good Sir why do you start and seem to fear things that do sound so fair?' by which words then the reader or viewer is enticed in for the remainder of the plot so as to see what it is which is to occur by this odd foreshadow) : Belle the Busker said "in Tarangire National Park I broke off a spike of yucca plant and drizzled the sticky iodine-colored sap onto my rash (which I called my 'leprosy')" : In Princeton one morning the police car pulled up to the Dillon Gym and by the doorway two policemen got out and while adjusting their caps they both entered the lobby through the side doorway and went within : a old day's couplet would read 'it should come as no surprise to you/that Karl Shapiro was a Jew - and he once said of Ezra Pound 'his anti-Semitism vitiates his poetry too' BUT others said even worse things (of Pound) - 'he's so unbalanced he wouldn't even hang straight - he went from bad to to verse - he started out to be a bard and ended up barred' but I always loved the guy go figure : someone came and took the leavings from the garbage - old peels of potato broken heads of wilting lettuce some cast-off pieces of fruit and pastry and others things too and people noticed and began to wonder who was doing this and where it was going 'I hope they're at least eating it for themselves and not giving it to animals - you don't want cows eating cows or pigs eating pigs - slop like that tends to all get mixed together and mashed for cattle feed' and whoever said that I figured must have known what they were talking about - must have been a farm lad or had grown up on a farm or something because who else would know any of that and no one challenged what was said anyway because they knew no better : I'd actually grown up for a few years on a farm doing exactly that - transporting wagon loads of refectory leftovers to the pig yard where we'd simply slop it over the fence and into the feed troughs for the hungry and vital pigs we kept - I'm not sure where they ended up because we didn't ourselves slaughter (as far as I knew) but we did get a lot of pork so maybe they were taken to a meat man or butchered somewhere else - I never knew that nor cared - and there were some 250 of us boys in the age range of 11 to 17 on that farmstead but this stuff was never mentioned (we'd talk instead about infinity and if two lines perfectly straight would ever intersect on an infinite scale inclusive of cosmic curvature and stuff like that) : crazy table-talk for crazy growing boys - Mike Bartholomew Joe Vouglas Leo Benjamin and the rest and we'd have the fields of peppers and string beans rented out to Campbell Soup Company and Campbell would send flatbed trucks crowded with black migrant seasonal workers who'd come to pick the crops and followed the harvest time north and on each truck there'd be maybe fifteen migrants and a large amount of straw baskets which they'd walk through the rows and fill them up PIECE BY PIECE with whichever crop they were picking - I don't know how they were paid or anything but they never hurried and always seemed distant and caught up in their work and ways : odd strummings of small guitars and people singing and hymns and talk and such but they always worked and never lingered and any evening each day they'd be gone again as all the trucks would drive away for another day and return the next with another batch - same people or not I really never noticed much and whatever it was back then it was small small world or me 1961 thru 1966 maybe (hard for me to remember that too) but I'd never leave that memory behind."