I really want to get this going....

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Saturday, July 13, 2013

319. IN WRITING ABOUT MYSELF - IN THINKING ABOUT YOU


  IN WRITING ABOUT MYSELF - IN THINKING ABOUT ‘YOU’:
1. ‘IN THE PRESENCE OF MINE ENEMIES’:

You are truly a mystery to me and always have been – the place and the why and the how and the everything complete about whatever it is you do : like doors swinging off hinges or that old dying sunlight at 8pm bouncing down off the mid-Summer glass and the reflections of all that’s outside of whatever it is that consumes you now EVERYTHING’S a mystery to me complete: I see the barges limping off the harbor and passing the Kill van Kull some weird Dutch name from long ago and I realize I married that name I was born right there I was in place at the time of the beginning and never met an end - starlight magic fountains jumping girls through flaming hoops some circus is in town again : I’m watching the bearded lady shave it off while a monkey sings off-key projecting broken pictures on the tentside wall canvas flapping like ribbons in the wind and no one stands nor sits but I ‘THINK’ they’re there nonetheless but I can’t understand how that can be and someone is reading the Zohar at the edge of the stage to two small boys with yo-yo’s and a kite ‘no strings attached – really!’ one kid says and the other stuffs a yellow rag down his throat and in the instant it takes to do that the large lady with the mellifluous voice ducks down and swats him with her hand and he goes flying  -  like some seaside butterfly broken on a rose thorn  -  and when he lands there’s a certain thud the kind that makes you think of death but he gets right back up and shouts back to her ‘you fat mother-fuck I always hated you and you’ll NEVER be my mother not now not ever again!’ but nobody knows the nothing of any of that anyway so I walk alone along the wharfside junkheaps looking for Scarlet Rita or Larry the Leg or anybody I maybe once knew but now they’re all gone and dead and wasted and over with not a glimmer left to show for time whatever once was just was and that’s the end of that  -  the guy who used to sliver oranges on the flat-top table right over here I remember well he used to sing Italian songs in another tongue while slicing and writing letters home: ‘Salvia aregamenturo moriscus tui’ I remember was one of his pet phrases from the very start and I recall he said it meant something like how you "maybe get’a used to da place’a you is but canna’ never forgit the home dat ‘a you left" but I never really believed him and I knew it was all just betting odds and names of broken horses and jockeys who’d killed but no one ever spoke about these things as if it mattered and my entire life was a joke and a loser’s paradise once twice or even more and I never knew the beginning from the end (may have said that already) but I do remember three things strongly still – dead bodies in their coffins laid out and looking nowhere my father my mother my father-in-law and even my brother-in-law whose box we had to keep closed because he had no head left  -  having blown most of his face and skull off with a close-range high-powered rifle – that’s called suicide if it’s successful and if it ain’t it ain’t ‘suicide’ I guess (figure that one out) and all I really ever learned was that ‘suicide’ was always successful or it wouldn’t be called that instead ‘attempted suicide’ which whatever the heck that was never made any sense back anyway – hell we’re all that no matter the rest and each of these dead people I noticed had cold skin like paper and some odd stretchy feel and their faces each only approximated something that might have been them once maybe or maybe not or someone’s bad idea of that look anyway who knows – when you’re dead you’re dead and there’s no taking back what you left behind or no having what you once forget either – nothing wagered nothing gained I think they say – what the fuck do I know I only knew ‘em when they was alive  :  can you notice my attempt at being colloquial here ? I want to talk and write and act just like the rest of you so as to pass for human to fit in to get away with murder or however you may phrase that stuff : ‘the moon was arising on the plastered horizon by the seascape the madman made : and now that they’ve left the edgings off the books no pages can be turned and everyone merely looks about with the quizzical looks they’ve learned.
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And now all they’ve got is the picture of the girl running down the street or the Friday morning 7:00 commuter just ‘a tad late’ running for the train which is already on the platform and – alas – just will not wait : she is in pointed shoes with heels and a dark-colored skirt and jacket  with a white blouse and none of that is at all really set up for running or even a jog but she knows this all and is self-conscious about herself as she rushes past  -  holding also a bag AND a leather briefcase of some sort and sadly I moan to myself how poor that whole thing is that these lovely ‘creatures’ were somehow not made for this and the scène itself is a saddening one as in ‘what have we done to ourselves here and why?’ but she goes on her way and I really don’t know if she caught that train or not but she went on and time passed us by  -  later perhaps at the office she’d re-tell the episode of frenzy as if it had all been but another challenge OR perhaps she’ll rue the day and rue the scene and hate thereby the life she leads but whatever it WILL go on : we are known to be like that and we march lockstep amidst all things and I think to myself ‘in the presence of mine enemy’ I shall motor on I shall move along I shall head for home I shall continue and nothing can stop me now and I CAN SAY WITH SURETY – I have witnessed many things and I have watched men die and I have kept my silence as I selected and the wayward moves of law and order were nothing to me yet I remained amidst people with plenty to do : the man on the fourth-floor landing welding reinforcement struts to each fire escape along the way at each landing 8 stories high and each day he’d have made a floor or two and that progress was considered approved and that pace accepted and so before long this one side of the building having been completed was again certified somehow safe for those who must flee if perhaps they would need to : contingency operations to be sure but safety never takes a back seat anymore to anything and the glazier with his putty and his sheets of glass – mending windows and sealing frames installing wired safety glass in entryways and doors while the other man puts up convex mirrors along the lobby way – sight-spots for stealth or for watching who’s come and gone : the plumber with his work-case spec’ing out pipes and watching where the water leaks and how it runs the two garbage-men out front heaving trash the girl-scouts with their cookies and the Chinese food delivery guy parking his carrier bicycle out front while he dashes in with two white packages : I have witnessed the comings and goings of the good and the bad I have witnessed death as it lingered and birth as it walked by and I have seen the malodorous frenzy of what passes for a day go by me not once nor twice but some 17,000 and more times over and re-played like the dunning dice of a recumbent gambler on the mend from his awful wounds.
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And maybe it all adds up to nothing or maybe not I’ll never know except by my own re-telling salvage the lot of it service the loss and gather gain from whatever profit there can be : I swig a shallow dose at Pete’s or at McSorley’s anew or sitting back at Chumley’s I remember Bobby and all that was  -  when that life beckoned and when he too lived and the old poet-hag on the corner nearby and the fey proprietor with his stupid dogs and the Irish firemen who incessantly babbled as they drank at the bar and then stood a’back just enough feet back to check out the girls as they’d come forth and walked along and stop to the very same bar : these men could talk and they could leer and they could ogle but I never saw them ever go home with a one nor get a fistful in the face : and all this sex was glory and all this glory was fame and that’s the way both men and women worked since all time began and ‘FACE IT!’ I shouted aloud ‘all men are hacks and all women their mere accomplices!’ but no one ever heard a word I said and now I sit at the edge of a river : broad river wide and swift and straight : and wonder at my meanings as I look down – how pale the ancient water yet how deep the silent currents run – parts of me want to jump and parts of me want to drown and die and disappear or never be present again to be heard and missed and lost and forgotten WHILE another part of me wants to set afire the flaming world and catch the smoke rising from these waters and brand men’s hearts with a message ALL of hope and glory ! but I step back once more and sense the time is over  -  nothing mine nor to be recovered and all hands were lost at sea everyone now is gone.

Any secret revelation of John had always been lost on me and I was salvaged only by a savior in my imaginings – savage at best – so it was felt that ‘at least I knew where I stood’ and marvelous entities like asteroids and comets portents in the sky overhead lanterns of light or doom sparkling sentinels of something to come they each had momentous occasions and then were gone : something coming something here and over as quick : the lighthouse at Alexandria perhaps had one on me but I was not really to sure and any ‘wonders of the world’ were just that – wonders of the world and not of me nor my world – which bore a different language and had a different edge was something of silence and something of dread and I’d walked these many moons with burdens on my back yet soon as destination neared (it seemed) I’d start out again and just keep moving  -  ‘no rest for the weary no sleep for the dazed’ or whatever that phrase once was : life had changed one million times since I first took air and though I’d never flown I’d certainly more than hovered (this I knew) – Patmos Pharos Phoenicia any one of those places would have been enough but I had all three – I lived in a library deep and one of my very own persuasion where things came out for me and rested steadily before my eyes and hands and I partook of that whatever and I kept clinging as long as I might and as was said of the Alexandria Lighthouse on the Island of Pharos in the harbor of ancient Alexandria ‘Description of it falls short, the eyes fail to comprehend it, and words are inadequate, so vast is the spectacle’ and likely too for me as much.
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You need few things really to be able to keep going or to get by : you need to search and know how the human ‘animal’ works – watching its movements reactions grimaces and feints seeing how thoughts of the animal are made manifest by moves of the animal – all these are things which add to the growing idea of ‘feel’ of felicitude for life itself ease of motion and movement and all this to see- for Mankind is a busy animal and one always scurrying about changing building cutting moving and bringing things to and fro and just by watching everything occur there is a richness that accumulates and it is cost-free and constantly changing as it enervates the mind and spirit to move itself forward – we bring back from that swarm each part and parcel of ourselves and things we remember the people and faces who come and go for just as in passing through time and events together we gain people and lose people we still ‘keep’ portions of them all within us and out traveling tableau provides us all the fodder and material we need to proceed and continue making a life  -  the rolling land sliding by the sunrise and its fall the spiriting of clouds and wind the rain ads and snows which come all of then precipitate themselves and more as they both ACT and are ACTED UPON and so it is with events and people around us : we are the chemical agent of change and process we are the reagent into which all this mix is thrown while WE are consumed and that exact-enough life-chemistry is what makes us have value and goal and just as NATURE wastes nothing but re-forms all things so too do we in our way possess and transform together everything around us ‘all the world’s a stage’ and all the rest and if we are actors in it playing our parts we are as well actors out of it developing roles changing the script and entering a constant re-write : these were the little things I learned the notes-of-notice of a man on the street and I amassed a fortune in my way  -  talking to people sourcing from anyone proposing links and adding to the catch-all fervor of the crowds barely held at bay and still now I can recall the bleat and the utterance of each person along – just months before I had been settled and screwy in a madhouse a house in a nowhere of sameness in families filled with dread and confusion up and down the streets all the same and now I had transformed what once was cheap carpet into a lush grass and I recalled the years spent in a certain lassitude of local movement – school home yard and field and not much more – visiting with relatives in the same boats with the same attitudes and ideas altogether and with their deafening silence towards anything which then may have been happening outside of themselves it was startling they heard at all : my father’s plight was one of three usually – fearing getting ‘laid-off laid-on or laid-out’ as I’d put it and the solace he brought to himself was in feeding and tending a family just the rest : but that held no cold comfort for me and I wanted out and got it : words on a jacket lines on a lawn sports in the attic and nothing to do and it’s a shame how many things were wasted.
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Not that there ever was a severance of doubt about any of that.
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Like gravy-ridden old men telling about themselves mile after mile of renegade story from here or there – the time he was in Berlin right after the war and it was a communist zone in east Berlin where the taxi-driver wouldn’t take them to some Strasse or the other and how the only thing that got them there was 20 bucks and two packs of Marlboros – for which the taxi-driver would have taken them most anywhere all of a sudden and if he’d had a daughter of age thrown her in too to boot or the time the soldier’s rifle went off in the guardhouse as he was cleaning it and killed the woman from Paris who’d just been passing by along the way coming back from a vegetable market and how the bullet went clear through her arm and body and how an international incident was prevented at the time only because two snarling dogs had scared everyone else away from the scene and two East German Stasi’s had come down off the higher platform and sprayed the air with gunfire as the lady died and they’d had a military car pulled over her and taken pictures of the horrible ‘traffic accident’ which had killed this ‘lonely visitor from Paris’ who was unfamiliar evidently with the traffic habits and walking patterns of the ‘new’ Berlin and how it had all been hushed up and quieted off so long ago  -  and they’d keep telling stories of things they’d seen these two men on the outside bench of the circular path around the bottom of Riverside Park down by the Eleanor Roosevelt statue in a nice garden area where they could watch the traffic separate and pass and the river out below stretched placidly along : gigantic old fronts of the big stone and granite homes along the road – voices of the little girls and kids with balloons coming down off the hill : I was there everywhere too and spent much time figuring to the west and then to the east where and how I wanted to go – fifteen or twenty pigeons flocking and pecking along the sidewalk picking up not food so much as the tiniest specks of gravel and dirt to ingest by which they cleaned their system and added grist to digestion – such a bird-simple system we should be so lucky ingesting grime-ridden hot-dogs and mice-infested kernels of popped corn  -  and it always seemed that everything was everywhere that May and warm weather would never arrive like this again and all the flowers and blossoms had bloomed and had their wonderful moments and then disappeared that quickly as cold weather and cold rain came back  -  everything good seemed washed away and every Spring color was lost – only green light green and dark coated the hillsides and the trees oak and elm and sycamore too in their own ways and own timings had taken over the landscape the world once ablaze with colors was now a steady strong green rippled by wind and coated by wet and it seemed over and over that everything was just as it had to be or it wouldn’t be and we ingested that like the gristle roughage the birds ate in the very same way and went on – no shame ever penetrated it seemed the Earth and its matter two-hundred billions and more again of dead bodies since ever – dead of natural causes bludgeoned by cavemen’s stones and rocks fallen from cliffs sundered in two by lance and axe and saber and knife blown to bits and dead by cannon rifle gunshot pistol grenade bomb atom bomb hydrogen bomb laser-guided missile bomb suicide-bomber poisoned by the slice cut open in experimentation and left to die contaminated bad blood disease-withered emaciated ripped to pieces by hordes by mobs a’frenzy burned at the stake buried alive tortured for the Pope or Allah or Moghul or Hengdu or Pasht whipped by Lucifer death-by-the-Devil or hung by a rope : Good-God it just goes on one thing after the other : and here we sit and here they sit and there they are again telling stories or making things up it’s all the same no matter.
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The coxswain’s catacombs the habits of death and all the rest of that crappy jazz and the signs read ‘Mo e tel: Rooms to let’ and ‘China Blue Cheerful Botticelli - Nose-Up in the Indistry’ and as you can tell they all meant nothing to me gibberish mixed-up words some faltering native tongue rolling off the lips of a foreign devil – and even the nearby Chinese restaurant scared me off : ‘Jade Colon’ it read in neon and I was hoping against hope at least that the ‘y’ was just not working and nothing more than that was meant – a Jade Colony I supposed I could take but a Jade Colon I’d let pass : it’s like that everywhere now a steady slipstream of balderdash and inconsequence with things gone wrong and errors built in to the system and parts where they’ve already allowed for the screw-ups which inevitably happen : when you beat the workings down the workings take the submission in stride and everything degenerates by it just another little bit and The Filipino family in the other house is playing  -  loudly  -  old Connie Francis records (this I can’t believe) on a turntable garnered from somewhere and I can hear the crackle and hiss of the record as it plays again loudly I say and wondering as I am WHY in the world people from such an other culture would pick up late 1950’s or whenever Connie Francis music I sense it is all beyond me but it makes me wonder what they’re all about  -  transoceanic colonialism bullshit they don’t even comprehend and how nasty is that to be in such straits but it seems not to matter nor alter anything in a sense of daily living no more than watching 5’4” Mexicans shoot baskets in a neighborhood New Brunswick basketball lot  -  somehow I’m feeling something’s lost there too and here I am silently acquiescing to all this crap but demanding my privacy too : I want the world to BE if it must but to leave me alone (and so I TRUST it will be so) but at every step there’s something new someone or thing entering one’s face : tax this merchant- man can’t do this here nor there have no recourse no way out must have a permit and have time scheduled first and WHO SAYS FREEDOM AIN’T FREE (actually I’ve heard it said the other way around by those leftover military tyrants still celebrating their wars ‘whoever says ‘Freedom is Free’) never had to fight for their Freedom’ and in whatever way that crap makes sense for someone who says it than all the more happy may they be but it’s a long distant walk away from everything else in my eyes : bastards and buzzards at every turn just lurking to take what they can and the other ones – the little ones the servants the fools – they willingly serve at and gather the crumbs AND CALL IT FREEDOM to boot ! so that’s my categorical imperative do you see my own plague of spirit and venom and I once leaned over into an old man’s face and said ‘tell me all you know about living but make it quick’ but he couldn’t do anything but mutter back at me something curious and odd but perfect to him I’d supposed – ‘there’s no telling the time nor the place but one should always be ready for action’ and I remembered the cop once I’d heard in line at the deli-counter he was buying his lunch and I was waiting to buy coffee and he’d overheard someone say in line they weren’t ready yet and he turned and said ‘not ready ! you should always be ready and if you’re not – well -  then just never admit that’  -  and it was all meant as happy small talk between characters in line (the NYC cop the neighborhood locals the outside kid the student and me) but it all came across as something more than that somehow something beyond the rim of normal endeavor as of people really trying to connect over long and vast reaches of time and intention – everyone so different involved in so different things – yet it had all been done before and he bought his stuff and paid full price too (I’d thought cops got big discounts) and went along then on his way and there was a time when something like that managed to quell within me something - some feeling of angst some rabid disposition of anxiety and fault but it all passed so quickly that – just then – I let it go and anyway just outside the doorway was a bright sunny day with hundreds of people milling about and music playing and street-dancers dancing while hawkers hawked their wares : ‘inveterate tourists in pastel blue hats were looking around and referring to maps’ – the first instant poetry I’d every made up.
2. I WAS THE ONE THAT WASN’T:
It never came as a surprise to me that leftover people gravitated to each other – thus the clutches of bums and cripples the indigent and unwanted the criminal and the piker all hanging together at streets’ ends and grassy parks along roadways or under abutments – for a singular language of sameness and a shared sense of love and lost-love and bad opportunity and missed fortunes all come to one piece as around each other they shelter and harbor whatever left there may be and it’s heard in their words and seen in their eyes how they each clamor to share in the solace which each somehow affords the other – the man with the one bad eye and disfigured face meets the one with the withered hand (and together they enter grace).
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So how do you say it how do you take it how do you bring it forth ? do I talk too much do I overdo it and do I just go on without knowledge of limits or with no finesse of endings and stops ? I cannot say as for myself it’s all of one presentation : carpenters on the rooftop plying their trade and generals in the cornfield recreating the very lines of battle none of them need to stop and figure their limits or measure their stops and any reflected glory they bask in is worn like folded garments of royal cloth  -  without any ado they’ve already got it made and here I stand : lonely on 10th Street broken on 17th and forgotten for sure by 49th and all this without a doubt in a boy too old for the boyhood due and a man too withered for youth : there’s no declension to make this language right it’s all sadness and sorrow and doubt.
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But yet I scramble nothing not too big for this bag I carry – the whitewashed minions of Alastair McCowley or some guy who wrote about witches and magic and I see his portrait scowling in the most unlikely places like some Shel Silverstein glaring out from the back of a kid’s book ever : dead dead and dead times three they all are see : I’m having Genesis for breakfast again all those Seths and Esaus and Mables and Moronis packed into one place grooming while twenty people in glittering garb are reading I see the Bob Dylan newspaper given out for free and Gods who are flying are already overhead but the ones who have landed have crash-landed DEAD and every few generations another warbler comes someone fierce and stupid  who claims the wide field and wishes to say ‘take me oh cloistered man take me away!’ but it’s all insincere for society has been built by the littered broken foot  -  the crazy man in shackles the sex-fiend jerking off the Mater Dolorosa on the box-store flyer and Portuguese abutments made of concrete brick and steel are the only things left where we stand : Newark’s dainty streets have been A-bombed away and the small rivers of Passaic and Garfield and Rumson and and Clark are paved over or jammed into sluice pipes the better for sealing the fates of Mankind (YOU you who have given me nothing You you who have taken my sweat I’m here now to die BUT I haven’t died yet)….let me see your fingers let me see your thighs let me handle your motor let me drift in your eyes WE can walk off together (Me with my trousers rolled) and you with your self growing old and together like some Romulus and Remus or Nelson and Eddy or Abbot and Costello or Klavin and Finch we can march off towards Pretoria singing this song ‘The Bowery the Bowery they talk so strange on the Bowery’ but that was eighty years before when we were just learning to read the Rotogravure : you held my hand and I held you palm while small cobbled streets led us everywhere and that very first trip we took to a southern town held wonder and fear in equal degrees (we talked in tents like merchants we smoked cigarettes out on the lawn).
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And then the way I was told was that they really wanted someone to make noise – a loudmouth but someone with intelligence and stamina too and I figured there must be a hundred of those sorts of people around at any one moment so figuring that such was the way of any start-up religion I looked to the streetcorner to see who was there : the newspaper guy the dog-walker the guy who colors with Chinese chalk the namesake of Judas Iscariot the Naked Cowboy and the Intellectual Who Ate Paris  -  they all were there and as one person it seemed they all volunteered for anything I said : ‘I’ll do anything to advance my position I’ll be the best you can find I’ll do it all or most of it for money I’m not the person you always thought I was I want this moment in the sun just for me It’s my one chance alive yet to live…’ and that’s how they talked these whiz kids of the kettledrum these knights in errant armor these graduate students of the deaf and dumb and I said to them ‘if any of you want to make some money go to the Edgeton Property offices on W23rd Street ring the buzzer ask for Sal and tell the Jerry sent you – they’ll know what it all means’ : I watched as they all ran off and I sensed a real hunger in Mankind for Glory but thought it suspicious how they all had so much free time but just as this always happens to the person that it happens to so I was sure it would never come off successfully  :  Sal wanted volunteers for blood work to research some streetwalkers’ disease then going around and none of these people would know that but in reality what they were doing was getting twenty bucks for a blood test and a sample with a blood screening and dental exam to boot : that was it and even though it didn’t sound like much it would all be explained to them as saving the future of mankind and I’d seen homeless people take a dive for less so I figured ‘what they hey’ and I’d already been paid ten bucks to pass the word around anyway and there’s no fool like an old fool or so the saying sometimes went and like the guy I knew whose friends all called him ‘wretch’ all I could do was wish them luck  --  I stayed around for another two weeks after that sleeping on the floor with Wendy Spinner each night to stay warm but we never had sex nor any of that because believe it or not she was already engaged to Peter Serkin who was Rudloph Serkin’s kid (the big-deal world-class pianist) and Peter Serkin was by then already on his way to his own famous classical piano career and I – compared to any of that – was a tiny little weasel but I got on really really well with Wendy and actually liked her a lot too but that was 40 years ago and more believe it or not and I still see Peter Serkin around and listen to his music too but Wendy Oh Wendy I never heard of again (no well really they married in 1968 and had two kids and but are not still together) and back in those days it often seemed cold and I often seemed lost but we stayed together in some little front room at the Studio School on the first level floor a few steps up and just past the front reception desk and mail box area I don’t remember the incidentals of Wendy’s looks nor her face or hair but all I do recall is the feeling of being swept away by a compatriot I could ‘dig’ and someone at the time for whom no interlocutory words were needed – it was all direct and right between us no cross-hatching needed and no intermediary either BUT THEN IT CAME TO PASS as the bible would put it that time’s great farmer seeded all things other and what grew grew with each its own directions and tendrils and those who followed what was theirs followed wherever it led : Pippa Passes and Pilgrim’s Progress too.
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But let’s listen no matter for the water is washing the walls and the sea is coming up from its limitless depths and flooding the walkways and the saltwater seeds what it can as fish die flopping around and the little pace of seaside snails and crab-legs too are seen slithering slowly to their own small demise  -  the windows stay wet and everything is damp and there really is no weather any longer for the sky has become the air and all atmosphere as only rainclouds perform at street-level now and fog is the name for the daylight : we wish it were not so BUT yet it seems as if this civilization is over and ‘we have tanked the attempt we have surely ruined the effort but whether or not we get another chance is the question on everyone’s lips’ and at night when the world goes dark it is such now that no one is ever sure any more if it will ever be light again (a certain uncertainty is certain).
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The Bunko Mob The Gang With Two Brains The Marlo Brothers The Infestors The 12th Street Maniacs The Mongoloids and The Harem Girls you know what they were ? eastside gangs that I came across as I lived like a corpse on 11th Street and any of these would rather kill you as lick a stamp and I lived right there right next to Paradise Alley which was legendary famous and an outrageous corner of 11th Street and Ave A or whatever it had an archway over the entry which said just that ‘Paraside Alley’ and somehow it stayed put all those years  -  motorcycles and motorcycle gangs came and went and by ’68 the Angels were moving in in whichever incarnation they’d blown into town with – Chicago Outlaws Diablos Hell’s Angels I forget the exact name but when they came in it all shifted and soon enough they were a big gang of their own and there’d be bikes parked out there in a row from all over and people coming and going but before that JUST before that in Summer ’67 there were still leftover things from the era before  -  it was once an actual Beatnik nest and famous for poetry and for who’d hung out there : the girls were the best though and it wasn’t just girls because the Beats prided themselves a lot too on ‘older’ women dark severe and really black in outlook and clothes too black I mean like serious and negative not black so much like Negro – that never mattered – and by older I meant like 35 or so which was ancient by those standards and they’d stand around dressed in black sweaters and small hats and berets and scarves with cigarettes dangling and smoke everywhere and they were all skinny and beat small and emaciated-looking and I never saw a fat Beatnik somehow like that at the end by the end it was over anyway in those years – squashed like yesterday’s toadstool or a bad mushroom and so quickly replaced by the next mess that it never mattered but the very first beat-gropes I ever saw was right there – one of these ‘older’ women had nudged a guy aside out at the back wall of Paradise Alley which was actually right where I could look down from my window and watch and they were going at it hard and strong and then two more guys I saw came out and they all started just fucking her and she never said a word was digging it greatly wanted more and was loud like an animal with pleasure and I saw it all everything and nobody winced nobody minded and those guys were coming like string all over her by the time it was done and they laughed and were all kissing and laughing some more and then they all went back inside and Paradise Alley was like that and I never saw so much of it anywhere else  -  the best and the greatest it seemed like some Playland from the bounds of Hell and I still now and then read about it along the way  -  so many wan reminisences and/or people really trying to do it justice or get the feel of it across but they all  -  it seems to me  -  fall short : and all of those little local gangs I mentioned eventually just disappeared as the street was subsumed soon on a much larger crash-pad fad of hippie and druggy stuff which took over and really THAT was wherein I lived – the stupid cusp of one age overtaking the other like Summer crowding out Fall or something akin to that anyway  -  the cold winds blowing took it all away and the next thing that was seen was like puke on the streets or blood in the alley and infestations of people like rats – kids insanity murder bad trips stolen cars runaway people cops Puerto Rican hoodlums and whores dominoes in the street gunfire eruptions of bad food and water with hungry children and goons and morons on the prowl along Tompkins Square Park and it was fun and it was done or ‘if it was fun it was done’ however and there was sometimes glory but more often trouble everywhere : rock and roll’s pathetic attempts at wisdom supplanted dark be-bop jazz in the park – this was remember where Charlie Parker had lived – and kids never even knew and nobody else either knew what had hit them for it all was like some condescending lark a happening of mirth and fantastic celebration but underneath it all ran a dark black strain of ignorance and conceit but no one saw it then never.
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“You know what it’s like when somebody dies and they know that no one’s gonn’a care or come get him ? you know what it’s like to see someone put on ice for three days and then when still unclaimed they just cart his sorry stiff ass away and bury him out on the island in the middle of the East River unmarked in a pauper’s grave in some Potter’s Field tended by prisoners brought in on workboats ? you have any idea how sad that all is?” of course I didn’t know had no way of knowing but was just listening anyway and as I sat there the old Hudson River was at my back at some broken down-run-off crumbling pier at the end of 19th street or somewhere the water ran within itself and it seemed sometimes to by moving up and down more than along its way the river roiled so it was sometimes like that – churning and bubbling like you couldn’t never know what was under there a’bubbling up or trying and we were sitting lousy on a temperate day just a couple of us passing the time before food  -  or some idea of food where it could be found  -  and the conversation had gone into this ‘death’ mode with stories of when and what happened and to whom : Johnny Fyfe “kil’t by a train on the upper fields of Harlem” whose dead and mangled corpse was carried down on some planks by two of his friends and when they got to the west 60’s the cops finally stopped them and said ‘you don’t gotta’ go no farther – his Irish buddies from Hell’s Kitchen is steppin’ in to take him from ya’ and there was a three-day drunkfest in his honor on the fields over by the river “we drank like sawhorses and crazy pigs and every girl dat’a ever knowed him when he was good – well that times they let us ALL in jes’ for his honor and I swear I NEVER stood straighter than when I was honoring Johhny Fyfe – and never got so much pussy goin’ again neither” and nobody wanted to forget ‘Slanderous Tommy Rhodes’ who’d gunned down a fourteen-year old over the proceeds of a mugging and was killed himself in turn by the kid’s very mother – his dead body was left to rot in hundred-degree days for nearly three ‘til the stench drove them crazy and they called in the coroners to take it away’ and everyone there had a story and reason to tell it and I sat there staggering as I listening  -  what a strange lethal world this bizarre time had brought me into : puffed-up men with red bloated faces talking a mile a minute about whatever last passed their brains and going on forever about things they’d never have again  -  everybody missed a women everybody remembered a favorite fucking everybody had a gun story or one about hunger or cops or horrid violence done to another : it went on like that and seemed to last forever and I couldn’t be squeamish because no one else was and then it broke up later on just as sudden the instant everyone started realizing that it was time for the restaurants now to begin hauling out their stuff -  leftover portions scrapings waste whatever – never no-minded anyone did – they all picked and scraped and ate at whatever was found  -  and I was among that crowd COUNT ME IN and never more proud neither for a veritable feast just for the taking.
3. ON THE BATTLESHIP MANTA GREY:
Well it wasn’t the Good Ship Lollipop that much I was certain of – the siding was harsh steel plating the color was a dour and stern military hue the sounds were militant and composed of bells and clangers and commands and the only reason I was on it was because I was delivering fish : ‘delivering fish’ was a euphemism – I’d always been told – for bringing whores to a location to which they’d been summoned but this wasn’t that – I was literally delivering two large frozen white boxes of fish to the kitchen area below decks of this ship which had docked on for the overnight or something  -  the guy at the fish market who’d called me over asked if I’d take the job making the delivery and if I could do it right then and as quickly as possible  -  and ten bucks later I was off with a hand cart loaded with three large boxes as I said of fish that had been frozen it felt near solidly into a triple-block of concrete but which in reality were some part of yesterday’s leftover catch bought and paid for by the ship cook or kitchen mate or something  -  so I was let up the gangplank and went smartly on my way and then elevatored down-decks to the galley or whatever the kitchen area was referred to as  -  the guy was a big sloppy burly Irish guy in a white short and apron and he grabbed the boxes from me and said a quick ‘thanks that was perfect’ and although again I’d always thought that all this stuff was taken care of beforehand and carefully measured out by military brass this extra order of fish was to be for the captains and officers alone  -  some sort of special meal they were getting : I wondered about ‘why fish?’ as if had I been at sea for two or three months probably fish was the last thing I’d want but maybe in some perverse way now that they were ‘on land’ again they wanted ‘fish’  -  go figure that one :  so I walked away down the steel corridor with an occasional sailor or mate or whatever milling about going on with business  -  sweeping and brooms and dials and shovels and all that THINGS being checked  -  the view outside was certainly cool – the tall buildings were framed with light and steel as if it was all some passing parade of postcard or picture the harbor was slapping the walls and there was some form of a spray which occasionally washed along  -  I’d been on the Staten Island Ferry a hundred times so that I was familiar enough with all the sensation felt but it was much more massive this format was and everything seemed magnified : the guys at the fish stall were grinning when I got back and I really couldn’t understand why but I grinned right back and watched them as they hosed things down and washed the metal trays but no one ever told me what I’d just delivered outside of the story I just mentioned  -  which seemed right to me  -  yet the way they grinned and stuff I had a feeling of something else – like it wasn’t maybe ALL fish or it was BAD fish or leftover scabby stuff they wanted to unload or fish they’d pissed on or hid a gun beneath or something  -  a million stupid thoughts went through my brain and I was none the wiser for any of them but the two guys nearest me had sat down to begin playing cards and so then did I sit and said ‘what’s up?’ and they said ‘oh nothing scamp – you just made the captain’s day that’s all’ and I said ‘how’ and they said ‘that was four hundred bucks worth of the best prime fish we got – we’d stolen it and then sold it – the four of us – and you just delivered it all for us – SMOOTHLY brother’ : and then I realized in an instant that if this went BAD it was ME and no one else who’d be culpable as I’d made the delivery – most of the real operation of the fish market was overnight and by morning was mostly cleared out and these guys were here just for their clean-up shift and hanging around but they’d done all this thievery during the night and it was only me who’d taken that fateful last step of making the ‘delivery’ and once I realized that I figured I’d better move along just in case  -  nothing ever did come of it but I moved along smartly anyway just to get to some other part of town.
-
Times like that were tense and funny and I was still a newcomer to that Summer town  -  August and September 1967 I was still finding things on every streetcorner that astounded me and it felt as if each day was a billion degrees with hot sidewalks melting and streets of black tar sagging in the weight of old pennies screws and washers and gum melted in – if you looked carefully you could see most anything pressed into the soft surfaces of each street and corner  -  it was a wond’rous excitement just to watch trucks unloading and hear the catcalls and bravado of the drivers and carriers  -  whistling or shouting out to passing women or yelling about this or that as they moved and scurried about at the sidewalk floor receiving elevators and basement entryways which opened onto the open sidewalk with cars more tracks and taxis honking and screaming in their bids to get past  -  people walked around or over things as they has to – the girls and women in the shortest pastel-colored skirts imaginable in a stylistic fantasy of panties and bloom which defined that Summer and those few years  -  no qualms about showing whatever showed or even bending over for whatever reason no matter and showing everything there was to show  -  it was as if on that singular level of id eros and sexuality no one cared as everyone cared – a blasé lust was in the air everywhere – men and women too – sex ruled the night airs and married women it seemed suddenly gained a second wind : I didn’t know what to make of much of it and for sure a lot of it all probably passed me by : I literally lived for a time with no sexual fantasies of any nature at all and I walked about as if a kangaroo-character in some odyssey of the Outback a wandering localized continental drift which was apt to take me anywhere – some places had connections in my head to other things – like some mesmerizing Holden Caulfield grip on the Central Park Boathouse or lake or the Natural History Museum and so many other references everywhere about – I scrounged and I waited I littered and I took – and most everything I got I got for free and strange mountains of food and refuse seemed always about as much as the breezes off either river blowing inward to cool off or try to some unfettered blinding lower eastside heat blasting along St. Mark’s or 1st Avenue or A or B it never mattered as everything just seemed adrift in the same hothouse air.
4. JUST AS WE BROKE- SO THEN WE STUMBLED:
The surrendered angle the alcove of some mad perdition the shade of an arching tree – any of those things could have held me forth or kept me dangling just above the edge of danger : masked men shooting randomly into crowds myself included with very inauspicious endings but I just went on paying no mind to what was around me and marveling instead at the sharpness of the attitudes I’d see : the fat guy from the music studio engineering a full board of slides and power turning a set of songs into something they never were – adding tympani and verve to what the poor guy had barely whispered the firemen out front of their station – slowly painting red the old wooden doors – probably their 50th coat of paint (it was thick like its own separate plywood) since its own time began and I wondered ‘why does nothing change do all things just go on?’ and even though of course I knew the answer I asked too -words anew for something sterner to do – question existence ! pander nothing for the common man ! take no prisoners!’ and of course and most importantly ‘whitewash no fools!’  -  which last one I never really knew what it was supposed to have meant BUT nonetheless I always thought an idle man to be a dead man and so BECAUSE OF THAT I lived on and just kept working I hoped at something  :  walking swiftly down Great Jones Street or Cornelia or Sullivan or 7th or Spring  -  all of those weird little enticements half neighborhood and half trying to be international-in-flavor big-city streets and stores but in essence none of it was anything except for whatever gloss was put over it all by storytellers and guidebooks and tourist crap and truth be told each street such as these was filled up with the anxious the loud or the angry or fired up old Italians on their last red-sauce legs or crinkly wizened Orientals shuffling along bent on something and bent of back with Slovaks and Spanish and Negro porters leaning into doorways or peering out windows to see what was down below – the airshafts filled with debris and mattresses broken bottles and cans the old window sills the stone of which had either been already broken or chipped away or in the process of becoming someone’s ridiculous artboard for profane graffiti or ignorant markings and the tumbling beatnik potheads or ghosted storytelling hippies crossed each other like twisted ships in the night : half-hearted artists and gay young men with brushes and flowers to paint while staring at naked beauties posing as models for artists-to-be (‘there’s nothing easier than this’ she said ‘anyway they’re all queer men so nobody makes a move’) guys drinking black coffee from oversized Okinawa mugs – dark colored hints of something in magenta clothing with oh-so-flamboyant scarves – and the fortune-tellers were out in force squeezing little hearts into over-sized chests while lesbians sat at the bar staring out in their overall and jodphurs and boots and everyone was smoking something while they littered the field-of-play at the Sheridan Street Station with old New York Times or Village Voice junk and gum was stuck to the flagpole and some stinking old rag hung limply forlorn – turpentine-battered oldsters asleep on any bench or guys with their dicks hanging out just barely exposed but touching themselves nonetheless while they watched : cars taxis and buses the subway beneath the Maidenform bra mothers and the 18 years old girls pretending to be pure while salacious horny cops twirled their sticks as they slowly walked on watching everything and nothing too or seeing it all but seeing nothing : and as I watch the fey young kid waltzes by as lightly as an angel with a wiggle to boot he floats along as gaily homosexual as a butterfly or hummingbird could be and I wonder about it all ‘self-consciousness’ at least or ‘what’s he feel as he does that stuff?’ or ‘are they born in the wrong skin or in different skin anyway just trying to get out?’ – and surely nothing of it mattered to me but I wondered like a saint in some pure wind-driven snow and I was thrown to nowhere in this mixed-up mash of people : as I often wondered are we ‘a part of this life’ or just witness to it ? do we take in our awareness while playing a part in it too ? are their still mysteries that about about things which will be found ? and up high above my head I stare at the sunlight passing across the old building top – old wooden plank siding and two small windows in a leftover house from 200 years back – leaning and creaky small and yet serene amidst all the city verve that’s grown up around it and only in this part of ‘town’ as they call it can these old places yet be found  -  the twisted lanes and wooded copse of an old Greenwich Village and the surrounding areas of what once were marsh and brook with twisty lanes turned reluctantly into streets and the potter’s field and ammunition grounds to parks and groves and every corner has another old vista  -  wooden buildings once shacks that housed the masses and these quaint old buildings were still stuffed – like stuttered words in an active mouth – between things and behind others as the new and old mingled and the lazy days and evenings brought forth the memory and attitude of everything that long ago was – I watch the sunlight make a triangle in the sky and a geometric proportion of goodness on high and the imagined tri-arc of light to sun to window and sky somehow sweetly settles my brain – some personal and cosmic overflux of peace and well-being and the storyline of what once was but shall be no more : yet somehow it makes me feel fine.
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“Men are all alike and so are all their Gods – I found that out a long time ago – all that vengeance and anger violence and retribution and the killing of the masses that goes with it all and I never know why but the only thing I’ve ever gotten from this stupid world is sadness – the sadness that comes with it : that absolutist bullshit crap about men killing men for a cause and men taking it upon themselves to rule over others with the solid stipulations of rightness AND righteousness too and the straight-line direct message from the Gods stuff by which we apparently murder and main each other and it’s all a direct link to stupidity and madness nothing else : I’ve been sickened over time and over again by things I’ve seen and heard : the stupid Spaniards who put a bull in a bullring – first unloading him blindfolded from the rear of a truck – after dousing his horns with gasoline and then setting him free after the horns have been lit into flames – stupid sucking bastards these famed Christians are – and then cheering as they watch the bull rave and rant to its death in some forlorn corner of the arena – WHAT PRIDE’S IN THAT for a God OR His creation you’d have to tell me that – or the American Appalachian hunters who select the dog with the least successful treeings for the afternoon and hang him from a tree in glee and I’m sickened by the sadness around me : animals like corpses along decimated highways left to die and rot after being massacred by cars and the time a thousand small frogs in some post-rainstorm frenzy were crossing Route 6 at dusk right by the ‘Camptown Races’ Stephen Foster sign by Wyalusing Rocks and the cars going by just ran them over by the hundreds – smashed frogs and guts all over the roadway – what kind of God would forget this stuff in the equation and not kill off Mankind – if even as merely a gesture of His own righteousness about His own work : how can this be accepted how can any source of justice be found coming from a mess such as this  -  meandering millions of evil idiots crawling and crowding over the very globe they’re ruining and NOT A WORD BACK in either direction for this God or that God nowhere and Mankind in its eyes harbours resentment and hatred and cannot then fathom its own reasons why RUINATION is its wont REVOLUTION its aberration as the thunder roils and rolls overhead the great pealing of perfection breaking back over itself and every God story has its own ending : while we ‘wait’ for Salvation (again) or fire up the maddening guns for to make RIGHT the world in the WAYS of GOD – hangdog message-mentor that it is – there is no meaning but rot and there is no passage but the one to DEATH and to BACK from whatever oblique blackness we once came from EMITTED like atoms spit forth atomically and clinking to the darkest sides of some magicians swift DNA – ‘we are monkeys not men and we prove it and then…’ SO I’ll mention once more – ALL men are the same and so are their Gods” and as he was talking to me I was sitting up in a chair reading the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius which reading he’d interrupted to tell me what he’d just told me  -  based I guessed on the premise that he saw that I was reading about Gods : and I might as well have been since they were all alike – Pagan Animistic or Religious doesn’t matter – and I wanted to harken back to where I’d been and tell him I’d been there and visited and seen and lived the times KNOWING FULL WELL that all it would do would be to certify back to him and confirm that he was right in his meager and raging opinion but WHAT HAD I TO WAGER no sum worth anything : and the thunder overhead pealed again and the thin stick of lightning jagged lit its jagged way down ‘God’s saber this ? God’s diminishing sword?’ I questioned myself : “for Pete’s sake” I said to him “why don’t you stop your harrowing outrage and get down to business here anyway – like what the matter really is is you’ve got nothing to do and too much time to do it in so your brain is breaking things down way too much : people don’t give a shit about that stuff – if they’re told to ‘live like this’ they do it and if they’re told to ‘go to church’ they do it or repent or pray and seek the God of their likeness – notice I said likeness not choice – why is it every man’s God in the end comes out looking just as they do anyway ? which is to say as sadly humanoid as possible” and my point was (even though no one was listening) fairly much the same as his had been : Mankind are dolts the message is sadness and ALL THINGS LIKE THIS DO PASS AWAY  - -  (but hell I said to myself I could have read all that on a matchbook cover for what it all was worth)….
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Sex is like a cardboard box – as much as you can stuff into it it will take  -  up to a certain point : what made me think of that was the two naked girls curled up on the old tan couch in the old studio room where some 10 or 12 people were busy sketching and painting them while an art instructor went from easel to easel and spot to spot critiquing each work in its progress – I’d never done this myself ‘painting from life’ never really having interested me since I painted an entire different format for myself and any drawing I may have done was usually done on the fly and nothing really studiously approached or worked over – so I couldn’t tell what the point of any of this was and a few of the resultant drawings and paintings did seem the same to me anyway as they were made of of the usual jagged charcoal markings denoting the breaking down of object into form and then form into line and all that eventually ended up as much looking like a jumble of smudges and blurs as anything else (studio drawing like this was part of a grand old ‘traditional’ artist’s education in the old ‘Continental’ vein and was the one attention this school really gave to the old hoary tradition of art education – the rest being free and fluid loose and easy) and by contrast at the same time a few were painting and drawing in very true-to-life manner yet each thigh and breast and neckline was pretty much the same : how much could you do to raw unbridled nudity without advancing the pornographic angle anyway : but it was nonetheless always worth it to see the girls splayed out against one another all breasts and asses and vulvas and faces haphazardly displayed by ones and twos and even the guy models whether in faux-heroic stances or semi-self-conscious languid poses of informality always had a dick hanging somewhere and an expression of some lackadaisical awareness of what they were doing – egad no boners please! -  so anything an instructor had to say – I thought – would be comical indeed ‘well you’ve got that pussy just right but there’s a little too much line on that guy’s cock’ or that’s how I laughed it off anyway – knowing it wasn’t really about that stuff anyway : and then that got me thinking about God again and all the cool stuff He’d supposedly made  -  all these bodies and swells and juices and orifices – and I wondered if that guy who’d just been talking at me had ever taken any awareness of all that as he considered the plights of both Mankind and its Gods – those Greeks on Mount Olympus seemed to fuck enough for a real tribe anyway – and human or not I wondered what he’d thought of any of this and the beautiful girls and even the not-so always attracted my attention and I loved to watch them upon completion as they slowly broke down a pose gracefully moved themselves around and then somehow always demurely put on a purple or nicely colored robe or wrap to walk off in – they’d re-appear a little later nicely dressed and ready to walk out and no one would ever say really a word to them about the whole scene they’d just gone through  -  entertainment or not as it was  -  the art world was weird like that – especially for 18 year old boys don’t you think?
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“Hold it up motherfucker” that was all I heard and all I really had to – the guy was a sailor of some sort a stevedore maybe or a deck-hand all cocked up and rippled with muscle and bravado – and what he had just then mistakenly assumed was that I was someone he should be chasing down for taking something from the deck of the ship – which of course I had but could never tell him or let on about – so I turned and simply said back quickly as I kept moving ‘it’s for Ed Trenery and he wanted it brought down to him immediately – you’ll have to take it up with him’ which was some form of the truth in the fact that yes there really was an Ed Trenery down on the wharf but he was in no way concerned with me nor what was in my hands and it apparently worked as an excuse or at least forestalled any further pursuit at that instant of me and of the two large brown envelopes in my hands – which were stuffed with cash and had been sought immediately by three men in a strange black car out along West Street who – I’d noticed – were still awaiting my arrival and that arrival being made (at least long enough for me to get away) I dove into the opened door and the car simply and with great ease I might add sped away into the early dusk of any Tuesday evening and if I was pursued I had been pursued fruitlessly I’d guessed since no one seemed to be following and the apparent ease of the ‘heist’ – if that was what it was – in and of itself was alarming for me : I’d been promised a clean 75 bucks to do what was needed – which I’d just done – and that amount of money-as-pay had just been handed over to me “nice going how you went about that kid – took nerves and balls to just walk up there and you did it with both – good now beat it and stay close so’s we can catch up to you again when needed awright?” - I nodded my assent and scrambled out of the black Cadillac stretch somewhere I noticed just north of the US Postal building on Eight Avenue and everything else – me and them included of course – just merged with traffic  -  me on foot in a half-rush and them in their black car tooling along pretty much like all the rest except longer and headed towards uptown and not across town and it felt good to have succeeded first time like that and I knew I’d see them again soon – once the taste of this gets in your mouth you just generally want more – but for the moment what interested me was in going over all of what had occurred in my head : the envelopes had seemed to have had hundreds no thousands of dollars in them and the bills were all aligned and crisp and banded – so it wasn’t just some day’s receipts kind of thing or anything like that – they seemed perfect and clean and new and counted and separated – all that stuff just like a bank does –so I figured they were either bank-stuff already stolen or new bills just – shall we say – ‘mass produced’ and I don’t mean a church collection – I mean real solid-gold class A counterfeit money like ‘if it fits under the counter we take it!’ kind of dough : however what it was doing on board that little cargo ship and why these malfeasant knuckleheads too had an interest in it was beyond me AND why it was pretty much just left there untended and allowed to disappear as it did still rankled me but I had done what was asked and gotten already my 75 bucks plus the good notion that I could work well and could do more for them sometime soon – I almost looked forward to the day.
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It was only later much later after I’d done this sort of thing 6 or 7 times that I found out what was really happening – and because of finding that out I stopped doing it (at probably a greater risk to my own life and limb) : the guys name was Antonio DeScarpa and he was from somewhere around Sullivan Street I forget but what came down was that one day we were somehow just talking and he was asking me a lot of questions about my interests and what I wanted to do and what I was doing all this stuff for – all of that sort of talk – and I began telling him about my interests in art and writing and learning and literature and all of that and of course it was like telling him I was interested in translating the Septuagint back into a new form of Greek and he just stopped dead in his tracks and ceased talking to stare me down and say – “get the fuck out kid and get the fuck out now ! this shit’s gonna ruin you for life – you’ll never live it down and sooner or later you’re gonna take a fall – y’unerstandin me?” – I had at that moment no clue as to what he was alluding so he explained it all for me pretty much as follows: ‘everybody ‘cept you is in on this heist – this is counterfeit money in a constant stream coming in from somewhere and everyone knows about it – the guy who leaves it laying around the guy who never chases you down though he sees you taking it the twerps in the car who drive you away and pay you their measly hundred bucks or whatever it is – the people on the boat the whole bunch of them they KNOW this is all going on – HUGE amounts of counterfeit money being brought in and distributed – tens of thousands shit hundreds of thousands eventually of money – and the only one right now in real jeopardy is YOU you dumb son-of-a-bitch – you’re a nobody and you’re the ONLY one they all know enough to finger if they’re poked – you’re the stooge the fall guy the whatever and if they DIDN’T want you to take those envelopes believe me they’d have shot you dead the first night and right now each and every time you’re brought back in your getting closer to big big trouble and fuck all your dreams of painting or writing or whatever the fuck you’re talking about  -  now take this money and get as far the fuck away from me NOW as you can – I do NOT wish to see your sorry ass ‘round here again!”
All in all the weaving of the web was something akin to maintaining the fiction of always having fun or being exciting  -  like Life Magazine covering yet another Edie Sedgewick sighting – it was all bullshit and story for effect and the idea was simply to promote promote something keep the ship afloat and moving forward allow each person to remain busy and distracted enough so as to not ever have the moment needed to view the real situation  -  the great fiction that was hip reality happening now the scene where it’s at and all that crap and beneath it all was a Jewish coyness a gay vacancy something which was slowly creeping into the fabric of the society and which would (and has) eventually destroy(ed) it like the shadow of Jack Ruby moving forward with a gun taking that slow time needed to fall between the cracks of time  -  all of that was still vivid in everyone’s mind and the country had snapped as craziness became the order of the day but an ordered craziness one still with lines and procedures for it was all put forth as something without challenge or danger and in that manner it was better able to seep seep slowly into the same fabric of time through which Ruby and his ilk had crawled and everywhere one looked there was something afoot  -  nascent industry of couture and clothing and faux-music and styling and posture and ‘journalism’.

1 Comments:

At 5:15 PM, Blogger Steve Finnell said...

DID THE 1ST CENTURY CHURCH HAVE NEW TESTAMENT SCRIPTURES?

The prevailing thought of many is that since the Bible was not canonized until sometime between 300 and 400 A.D. that the church of Christ did not have New Covenant Scriptures as their guide for faith and practice. That is simply factually incorrect.

The Lord's church of the first 400 years did not rely on the man-made traditions of men for New Testament guidance.

Jesus gave the terms for pardon 33 A.D. after His death and resurrecting. (Mark 16:16) All the words of Jesus were Scripture.Jesus did not have to wait for canonization of the New Testament in order for His word to be authorized.

The terms for pardon were repeated by the apostle Peter 33 A.D. on the Day of Pentecost. (Acts 2:22-42) The teachings of the apostles were Scripture. The words of the apostles were Scripture before they were canonized.

The apostle Peter said the apostle Paul's words were Scripture. (2 Peter 3:15-16...just as also our beloved brother Paul , according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, 16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand,which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures...

The apostle Paul's letters and words were Scriptures when he wrote and spoke them. Paul did not have to wait for canonization to authorize his doctrine.

John 14:25-26 'These things I have spoken to you while abiding with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to you remembrance all that I said to you.

The words and writings of the apostles were Scripture and they did not have to wait for canonization to be deemed authoritative. The apostle did not use man-made creed books of the church or man-made oral traditions to teach the gospel of the New Covenant.

Did the early church have written New testament Scriptures? Yes, and they were shared among the different congregations. (Colossians 4:16 When the letter is read among you, have it read in the church of the Laodiceans and you, for your part read my letter that is coming from Laodica.) Paul's letters were Scripture and they were read in different churches.

They were New Testament Scriptures long before they were canonized.

WRITTEN

Matthew A.D. 70
Mark A.D. 55
Luke between A.D. 59 and 63
John A.D. 85
Acts A.D. 63
Romans A.D. 57
1 Corinthians A.D. 55
2 Corinthians A.D. 55
Galatians A.D. 50
Ephesians A.D. 60
Philippians A.D. 61
Colossians A. D. 60
1 Thessalonians A.D. 51
2 Thessalonians A.D. 51 or 52
1 Timothy A.D. 64
2 Timothy A.D. 66
Titus A.D. 64
Philemon A.D. 64
Hebrews A.D. 70
James A.D. 50
1 Peter A.D. 64
2 Peter A.D. 66
1 John A.D. 90
2 John A.d. 90
3 John A.D. 90
Jude A.D. 65
Revelation A.D. 95

All 27 books of the New Testament were Scripture when they were written. They did not have wait until they were canonized before they became God's word to mankind.

Jesus told the eleven disciples make disciples and teach them all that He commanded. (Matthew 28:16-19) That was A.D. 33, They were teaching New Covenant Scripture from A.D. 33 forward. The apostles did not wait to preach the gospel until canonization occurred 300 to 400 years later.

THE WORDS OF JESUS AND THE APOSTLES WERE SCRIPTURE WHEN THEY WERE SPOKEN AND WRITTEN. THEY DID NOT HAVE TO WAIT FOR CANONIZATION TO BE THE AUTHORIZED WORD OF GOD.

MAN-MADE CREED BOOKS AND MAN-MADE ORAL TRADITION WAS AND IS NOT SCRIPTURE.

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