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.

Friday, September 26, 2008



'I didn't want for nothing because I never wanted nothing' was the way Leroy Archimedes put it to me (I called him that but his real name was Eddie Stark) but all he ever wanted to talk about was the Lever Brothers Building on Park Avenue and over time the whole idea of Lever Brothers and the Archimedes Screw and leverage and all that early geometry stuff got me to just calling him Leroy Archimedes and what the hell from what I'd learned he'd grown up half Black and half Puerto Rican in the area once known as San Juan Hill until it was all torn down for Lincoln Center and environs sometime about 1959 - he used to show me these pictures which were incredible and almost saddening in a way too - really powerful black and white shots of the old neighborhoods going down with boarded up tenements and old shacks and houses and they just actually came through in the late fifties and ripped it all away - tore the neighborhood to smithereens and displaced all the people into some other forms of ratty jumbled housing projects modern for the day but shitty by now or already torn down again - most of the those people are already dead or displaced over again two or three times so those in 'power' figure they wouldn't ever talk and if they did no one anymore would listen anyway and these pictures showed how the old street were just 'disappeared' to use an old communist phrase from Authoritarian Rule everywhere (yes yes even right here in the good old fucked up USofA one stinkhole of a pile of shit nowadays anyway) : and all those fools from the upper-echelons of Manhattan society you know just HAD to have their cultural bailiwicks wherever they were to be and anything in the way well too bad for that - Robert Moses and all his hoo-haw cadres of planners and engineers and enforcers and condemnors and everyone else on the take like him just penciling out whatever they didn't want and just red-lining whatever was in the way - they ripped apart and to shreds entire portions of New York City and these were parts and sections and streets that really meant something and had once had legacy and heritage and were places where people and families and kids lived and grew and just like Eddie Stark they lived with this loss and disruption the rest of their days - memories and pictures all that was left - remembering grandmas and grandpas and the old stoops on which they sat and the dark curtained living rooms in the walk-ups where the family came together for whatever holiday or gathering was underway - all gone and Eddie would say 'it wasn't like they replaced it with anything either - they just moved us aside so they could build plazas and lighting architecture and big halls and concert rooms and stuff that we'd never take part of anyway - even if we wanted they priced us out and none of us had ever had any money anyway and we weren't about to spend it for some red velvet seat in a high-class music hall built for others but it was all on our backs and then they wondered why people were angry and got violent and sore or turned to crime and disruption themselves' and I was sure I understood all that - Eddie had done some small time for petty larceny and robbery and things - nothing really horrible but the sort of stuff you just do when you're living on the streets and he to me was a sort of original NY 'displaced person' but unlike all those crazed and wandering post-war Europeans staggering over the upper westside and spending their days in intellectual consortiums or on upper Broadway median benches sorting out all life and philosophy together he was just merely a displaced poor half-Spic nobody running down his time in the maze and he knew it but there was a certain form of optimism to him too which always staggered me - like the idea of the Lever Brothers Building - all glass and steel and supposedly breakthrough modernist architecture - you'd think he'd hate it for pretty much the same reason and throw in 'corporate' reasons too but instead he loved that building - went to look at it often talked about it tried getting inside it as often as he could - I guess it always represented something to him maybe a successful version of tear-down and new building that he'd unsuccessfully lived through with Lincoln Center back then and all those streets in the 60's DURING the 60's (funny conundrum there) did draw in all the rich hoity-toity music and theater and opera types it was built for - windblown plazas and fountains and all that - Calder paintings and sculpture and wall hangings and murals and outdoor vistas with water spraying through back-lit walls of glass - it all was there and stayed filled with lines of ticket holders and box-seat subscribers and all those upper east-side and Park Avenue money-bags who frequented such places of 'cultural diversity' never knowing they real 'cultural diversity' was with all those bastards they'd thrown out of their houses and homes but it probably never dawned on them in their cocktail ventures to give any forethought or hindsight to what they were doing or had just done : 'miserable rich bastards are like that' Eddie had said and Eddie had a sister Carla I met once or twice - nothing like him much more subdued and fitted-for-home and she lived in this little joint in Brooklyn with a kid and a husband and even a dog and it all appeared to have worked out Ok for her no matter what the early years had done her husband was in some pipefitters local 1223 or somewhere and seemed to keep working local and steady on construction jobs and stuff and Eddie by contrast never did much work (figuring as how he knew me and how we hung around between things it should have already been clear - most of my people were indigents or starving artist types and you know how they say 'birds of a feather all flock together' or whatever it is POINT MADE) and whatever work he'd get he'd say 'I don't gott'a work mind you' as if excusing what he was doing - small time parking lot stuff or lifting and moving jobs - and his main thought was like so many others I'd meet that survival could be had by wits for this was after all New York City with things everywhere just waiting to be lifted or stolen or broken into or 'transferred' for it all was a veritable small-crime hoodlum's paradise if one could just first get over the burden of assaulting or getting into people's faces and being aggressive and all that - of course things sometimes went miserably bad and time had to be paid for that too but it was all in the cards and part of the mix and by it Eddie and so many others never really got hurt and did manage to survive - a certain 'fringe' economy like that hit me in the face once I realized it too was everywhere - in addition many many of these construction and demolition sites were goldmines for theft too - breaking and entering half-sundered places wherein some apartments nearby were still intact - easy to break into and easier to steal from - big-time stuff easy to trade off or get money for (there were literally rings of pawnshops and junkyards and stuff where anything could be traded off) and in its own small 1960's way it was a wonderful paradise of something for that sort of thing - we caught it too as it all slowly was dwindling away.

Friday, September 19, 2008



One day I watched the moon big as a quarter or more rise yellow and slow in the sky - it was always funny to me how so much of NYC itself with all its big-city attributes and all that became for me nonetheless a huge observatory as I watched the sky everywhere I could for meanings and happenings of things going on - the downside to that was always the pure logic and rational science I'd find later to explain whatever I'd seen : how the moon it is said though appearing larger than ever at its rise and diminishing through the night as it rises and travels along the higher sky is always actually the same size at any time and merely to the observer seems so different at rise-horizon because of the dust and atmospheric infractions in the lower portions of the sky which acted always as magnifiers to the image - an idea I always found bogus and quaint because no one could then ever explain to me why the MOON going down is always small and never seemingly larger bright or as vibrant as the evening's rise but anyway no one ever watches a moon-set no one ever talks of it you never hear of it and certainly I thought that if you did it would burst the fantasy bubble of all these science types watching it descend small as a nickel in the waning sky (rooftops and certain other vistas were great for sky-observatory lookouts and some great expanses of parkland and grass across Central Park also held particular values as categorical spots for observing) and in addition any of the bridges and walkways high up afforded magnificent views and vistas as well perches from which to view - along the riversides and somewhere up along the upper westside where the Croton Aqueduct and its memorial water tower were located - Morningside Park and all that too - if one had the means and reason to roam and wander there were any number of points to go to : and in addition lots of my science questions and sky-observer thoughts went unanswered - things like do the stars generate their own light or is it all reflected like as the moon's from the sun and if it is are they not gaseous orbs aglow with themselves or are they instead dead matters and horrid floating chunks way out in the cosmos by the millions ? not to be outdone the diminishing returns of the effects of light and sky always tried to overcome the aspects of astral observatory I in my own way tried to make of the sky : a bus trip to the Catskills or Bear Mountain made often all the difference : that huge slab of rock and soil high above the Hudson's waters and looking out east from there the broad vista vivid in its way whether green with Summer of dun-brown and stark with the barren depths of Fall and Winter - large scrounts* of rock and dirt attached with trees and shrubbery in weirdly divergent manners high high up : the night sky in its turn was mysterious and wild in either place - witnessed by the strip lighting of comets and asteroids and a million stars twinkling but nowhere an answer to my own science questions : who generates what and from whence - the giant lights of the screen of illusion the broad scrim of picture-perfect imagination and the deep-black of night - ideas of Edison from here grew (why should he NOT - he surmised - take over a task of the God?) and the feelings concomitant with it - like the arms of a dentist down my throat and ripping at my rib-cage upward - I felt them all and considered them each - making me think hard about every idle minute I wrestled with fate and mused
over meaning.

*scrount - outcropping, angular footing.

Friday, September 12, 2008


239. ONE MILLION YEARS TO THE DAY (actual aversion/actual achievement - but oh what a view!):

The hardest thing is being truthful and knowing what to say when you are - for being truthful can cause pain and be painful and many of the supposed effects of it can cause other repercussions not often welcome and partially for that matter not too many people go around saying what they will being 'truthful' to the matter and it's like you always hear people say about little kids and five year olds and stuff how they're 'truthful' and just say what they will because they don't REALIZE the results or repercussions so for that instance it's seen as excusable innocence and light-hearted sweetness and mirth the 'innocence' and joy of childhood and the 'child-like' qualities of the young - and it's OK at that level but by the long time of adulthood it's assumed to be over or better be before trouble starts - prophets have always been truth-talkers and seers and soothsayers have always managed to tell the truth but not many others do - there are so many millions of ways it's avoided that every mark and every twist of a sentence uttered bears the tracks of avoidance and caution - except maybe when the doctor (if he dares) finally says 'you're gonn'a die' - that's a portion of truth-to-the-face to be reckoned with (finally) at last - but outside of those moments it's mostly unused this TRUTH idea - interesting but too deep has potential but too scary uncomfortable but too much to deal with : so we just let it go : and anyone sitting around the old train-track junkyard campfire is going to be ready to tell SOMETHING SOME AVERSION and all along the way it's hard to get to the truth of the point or even to the point itself - shielded as it always is by lack of truth : what are we and where to are we going what have we become and how and why ? anyone want to talk? (it's as if someone says 'he doesn't know how to act' when what they really are saying is 'I don't LIKE the way he's acting') and anyway there's no diet BETTER than death so that's that - lines of cars and a few motorcycle police lined up at the entrance of the tunnel outgoing and the lines of cars are so long that a few blocks away there are NO cops and still plenty of cars and the avenue hookers are going door to door at the cars looking for anyone seeking a suck or a fuck - anything they can do quickly maybe thirty bucks or so and they're not afraid APPARENTLY to speak the truth if that's what it can be called - door to door truthtelling with no shaded areas in between : guys in cars alone awaiting fixation or traffic to move - how's it all done ? I'll never know but I'd bet they pull out of traffic first - all those beleaguered sidestreets along the Javits Center area as I recall had gutters literally lined with cast-off sloppy condoms and you could count them as you walked - but this isn't how I started off here REMEMBER I said the hardest thing is being truthful and if that's not by now an inside joke a pun a double entendre of Shandian proportions I don't know what it : cute is what you make it I guess.
You've got to have a God you've got to have a source for that God you've got to have an origination for that idea of a source for that God and then you're needing an originator for that source - a reductio ad absurdum which then tacitly involves all matter and the essences and ideas of matter and presence and then space and function movement place and time and an essential cause-and-effect relationship somehow worked out both mentally and upon some other form of a physical plane within properties of tangibility as reality and at the same time self-awareness and factors of evidence trait and removal - time wherein the 'whole' then goes and a source for that too - where the sources each end up then in turn leads to myriad fusings of other ideas gelled together as perhaps alternates of that 'one' reality (or not) which quest for oneness then presupposes a primary presence or primary function which in turn demands senses of deniability and argumentation which demands aspects of refutation and exchange - absolute essential regarding illusionary movement versus true direction and space/time encapsulated within ideas of visibility vision obviousness and directness : this reality will then leave a trail (or trails) of itself in shades of history legend myth and moral each inhabiting the work between tall-tale and tell-tale - whatever the difference - markings and evidences on a globe or paintings within a cave-wall somewhere - what are our original scratchings ? what stories we tried to weave as a silent people eons ago if we did what language drew forth from it - verbalizations OF those selfsame pictures perhaps or illustrations instead of thoughts not yet vocalized or made tellable - fantasy fusion with fragment and figment as we decided what to believe (with guidance ? without guidance) and by this time I wasn't doing anything myself except banging nails and hauling hammers biding time wallowing in sin scrubbing old ideas clean - as I realized it was easier and easier to be vague and far away and more and more difficult to be precise about anything : above my head the pliant shares of others spread their claims - pompous retractions or genteel soundings about love and infatuation and I saw the men at the gym going in but forgot something about it HEARD the loud music pumped for their exercising but forgot all about that too : watched graffiti grow on the wall like spiders and wondered at once of its need or effectiveness 'hating the sin but loving the sinner' as they say and I thought of that as much as I could but never made much sense of it : I went up to a hilltop along Copper Mine Ridge just to look down into the valley below where there were cabins and small houses with winding roads through the woods and small ponds and streams leading to them - nothing large or really outrageous but instead just what I could see as many minor and meandering items all pulling together to make the local countryside wet and green and wide and verdant (not 30 miles from the heart of NYC) - I sometimes wished to be living there myself with a small place for my own use a two-room hut or any cabin of sorts perched bestride a path or the wooded by-ways which hikers passed or something along the old and now unused railway bypasses - piles of old stone and dirt a few rusty old rails and a shed or a track marker - some old mysterious orange markers with some numbers on them or some directional arrow or an arrow-shaped arm which went up or down based on the pull of a metal lever nearby - water towers atop steel trusses and the ruins of what once must have been a small station or a dropping off point for something or other in days long past - EVERYTHING was a marker a signifier and tried in its essence to MEAN something or at least LEAD to another thing - and I found that to be the situation I was in as well -1967 and 1968 and all the years since having amassed their times and gone - deaths and murders fury and mayhem noise and havoc and all the beleaguered and sanctimonious shrillness of packs of wolves or hyenas at large : everything sly and miserable snarling and hungry and I thought 'how could a mind find peace?' and the only peace I could find was right back where it wasn't before - within the maelstrom was the very 'peace' I'd left - townhouses blown to bits bomb parts and dead people in the streets and bodies in the basement with cops and FBI guys chewing Chiclets with aplomb and some other guys with hammers a'bleeding were knotting a fence - throwing out the empty lots where before all the buildings had stood and I stood (in my turn) transfixed at awed alike by the danger AND the escape the cunning and the lethal ERROR of all the ways I'd see (there's no pallor like the pallor of the grave) and one last time ONE I decided brushing my teeth looking down over Delancey Street alone and forlorn and forgotten (but oh ! the view the view!).

Sunday, September 07, 2008


238. BETWEEN THE ABSOLUTES OF BLACK AND WHITE - (cherry street, nyc, 2008):

It's a sometimes thing : I was put on this Earth for no reason at all I was placed here to advance my fellow Mankind I was given no reason nor meaning to exist I was sent here with a mission to bring Man forward I was absurdly placed in a universe of neither rhyme nor reason I was given the tools and responsibility to bring something good to the race I am here as everything flounders about and withers and dies senselessly and in random ways I am here to witness that to every thing there is a time and place and a God-given reason for occurrence I witness hellacious fragmentation I see the great unity in all of creation : in like manner this could go on for pages of endless rumination as equally senseless and stupid or exalted and meaningful but such digression would bring the shame to my pain - which is un-needed and not to be welcomed for sure and in its stead I avail myself of the broader idea of 'witness' : I am that which I am as it takes place beneath a sunlight of mean logic or tortured chance (after all what else have we - alternatives in either direction lead only to shallow pits and shoals of despond) and so because of that HERE HERE I find myself wandering and telling back the story winsome wise loud and true : two bakers beneath the Brooklyn Bridge talking of transport while above hundreds of people pass walking - their little heads and colorful outfits barely seen from a short distance and over and over the scene is repeated - lovers and hikers walkers and bikers students and the despondent the priest the teacher the metal-worker the artist the craftsman the writer the housewife the buyer the wayward carpenter and the eager acolyte of some weird political creed - they all walk on and in one direction or the other they partake of the city before them : vaulted expanses of skyscraper and steel looming windows and glass high up and seagulls and pigeons which dart about while below the tugs and ferries slide by - traces of heat and smoke evade the passage of time and water - energy such as this pervades the time of day and the night (alive too in its own fashion with necklaces of bulbs and great shadows of illumination) : and alongside that the family exiting the towncar which has stopped at the Bridge Cafe while they carry their luggage and bags from the trunk and rear seat - up the narrow stairway in dark green which rises up the side of the old building - shagged and somewhat twisted and tired and old and bent the place of once-where-sailors-lived now housing a small rooming house of sorts to which this family's return has brought them - the daughter whose bag says PACE (a nearby university) and the well-dressed father - whose swagger says just as much says it with better polish too - the gent is attired like a king and his daughter (to be told) could make someone sing with a delight all their own - wife and mother and a teenage son along for the ride perhaps - the family together shoulders the load while the car's driver sits and waits - alighting from the car but for a moment and then going right back in : I watch this from an old concrete seat under the buckle-domed building along Bridge Street (once a long time ago called Cherry where a mansion sat facing the river and Washington with Martha lived) - anchored by iron stars high up in the wall and glazed with ancient rippled glass two hundred years old (ancient for here to be sure) and I start thinking how this all once was water and nothing more - the slow creep of the island's landmass stretching with fill and rubble to eventually fill in these harbor spots where once the great ships berthed - old pictures I've seen of rows of schooners being unloaded and pilings with rope and anchor and hook and cart all crowded with workers and sailors and laborers and purveyors - cart-horses wagons storehouses and granaries all now gone - like a will-o-the-wisp of inventions and vagaries a mere story in some picture book of old - and I think to myself these aren't after all the kinds of people who would go around reading Fritz Fanon or studying the markings of some old Buddhist monk these are by contrast actors on the stage - real life doers and people engaged in the money-market ventures and the foibles of finance which define downtown these are (I defined) 'Players' within their own market - restless valuation and streamlined return with streams of fluidity and risk and turnover all going on at any one time so that even now as they engaged in returning from whatever their papers were making money for them in spite of the rest of the day - weather world affairs sickness and health and the rest - just by being alive they were playing the market : finance was like that and the downtown markers of Wall Street and Broad were always in operation so that all one really needed was a hand in that mix at once and first and after that it all took care of itself : but that was another story and that was another place.