Donald Trump and his new Republican Party proved something: That a Constitution written when indoor plumbing was actually cutting-edge technology, is not itself strong enough to withstand a manipulative assault on it by a modern day organized crime mindset that literally came of age in the dark gaps found between its words.
what can we do when
off the glaciers sheer
and dams burst outward
to peasants in valley
so far away from you
hunched over a teak desk
looking tight for the line
of the feeders on bottom
As the Dome burns its effigy
in Democracy’s last waltz
Chronic pain, headaches, muscular issues, and migraines from cervical damage, just plain suck.
If you’re a drug seeking individual, this kind of pain is like a winning lottery ticket. Willy Wonka meets Powerball.
But, if you’re just trying to stay sober, and do life in a clear and lucid manner, pain is a lifetime sentence in the sandals of Sisyphus.
day by day
drags on by
frozen in place
by violent tides
an unstable tower
but not suffer
the poison is gone
people need love
the rest is loose
we end up
Like a lot of people, I have been looking at a lot of heartbreaking videos. I just don’t understand that much hate. I really don’t.
I can understand a verbal explanation of it, sure. But I can’t wrap my heart around what it takes to twist your soul into so many knots that the only explanations you will accept anymore are based on the idea that everything around you is really a deception. A place where secret societies pull all the strings, and where everyone wants to make everything about you and your life irrelevant. A place where the hope you have is that if we can somehow just eliminate all of the physical differences we find objectionable in people, then we can some sort of Super Utopian Alpha society.
But that kind of hate doesn’t just go away once it gets what it wants. Things would just end up playing out like all of the nasty parts of American history, but in reverse and way worse. Once they got rid of the first (and darkest) layer of people, you know they would suddenly discover some other social group to degrade. Bullies just look for new victims. And then who knows… But, left-handed people may want to quietly remain on notice.
Personally, I could not, and do not want to live in a world like that. And like a lot of people, there doesn’t feel like much we can do right now. We voted already. And we can’t fight this with violence. That’s exactly what they want. But there is one thing we can do. And they’ll never see it coming.
The next time we see someone that you really don’t like right now, say something nice to them. Something that reminds them know that we are all still neighbors. Do it for no other reason than that it is in forgiving that we are forgiven.
Hurray! for the day
when the NRA falls
and the rest of the lobbying swine
Amendment Two even
protects us from THEM
and the pockets of money they line
to scare you at home
is their main power point
as they scam-off and co-opt our rights
that amendment is ours
it’s as safe as the rest
they concoct all the dangers they fight
there weren’t liberal plants
to come for your guns
and that Q thing is frankly, bizarre
start using your brian
let go of your hate
the country we’re killing is ours
i once knew
a magician whose
best trick was to get out
before the shooting starts
saving an artist’s heart
the pain we all feel
as open-minded feelers
expose their hearts to live
when the ravenous breath
of a new orange julius
is lobbed by industry
at the soul of men
RIGHTS exist within
the STATE itself as a whole
hers being with CHILD
I was just texting with a friend who had just come back from a house party, and part of his comments were that he didn’t feel like he fit in with that particular group of people. My initial response was, “I feel like that at every party.” Which isn’t entirely true, but it sometimes feels like it. In fact, for about 95% of my life, I’ve felt like I’ve only had about 5% in common with any person in the room.
For myself, I feel as though that happens to me when I am acutely aware of my-self. You know, that part that tells me that J am actually separate from others. There’s something about those feelings of isolation, or separation that seem to fuel the egos growth, solidifying the belief that we are unique and different from others.
Of course, none of that is actually true. The more I lose myself in any situation, whether some music or even just a really good conversation, the less I am thinking about myself. I don’t think about whether I’m hungry or not, or if I’m bored, or even if I am being self-conscious about the clothes I’m wearing. Instead, I am engrossed in the moment, in the now. I am present.
Self-talk, that chattering monkey in your head, necessarily requires you to pause your attention to the current moment, and asks of you to step slightly outside of it to gain perspective. While this view is only a subtle difference, it’s more than enough to stop you from being fully present.
When we aren’t present in our own life, we miss the magic of the moment. And by missing that we begin to separate from others, just a little bit. We begin to see the differences between ourselves and others. And when we do that, we begin to make judgements, even the most well-meaning of which encourage us to compare and separate again. And each time it needs just a little bit more, inch by inch, stretching on for miles.
And we find that, no matter the teacher, the message is the same. “Judge not, lest ye be judged”, is nothing more than a statement of cause and effect, one that we can expect to happen if we allow ourselves to step back in order to observe the differences between ourselves and others. That in itself is neither a good nor a bad thing. What it is though, is simply the statement of a natural law that we can count on as surely as gravity pulls us back to earth.
It is a mile built on inches.
Because, once we do, we have begun to lead ourselves into the hell of no longer truly being on the same plane as others around us. Each judgement one more small wedge that we use, to split ourselves off of the larger tree of society.
When I am sitting in a party and begin to think, “I’m not sure I agree with that lady’s politics”, or whatever other differentiation I might toss to my mind for fodder and fun, is the moment that I set that this separation in motion.
And only we can do it to ourselves. I am the only person actually capable of deciding whether or not to put chasms of thought between myself and the person sitting right next to me.
I was listening and laughing to David Sedaris’s Santaland Diaries near the end of this writing, and during a discussion about forced enthusiasm and fake authenticity, David uttered such a profound line that I stopped dead. It summed up everything I was saying about the cause and effect nature of self-judgement that dooms then dooms us as individuals. And it’s that line I will end with:
“All I do is lie, and that has made me immune to compliments.”
I saw Bohemian Rhapsody recently with some friends, and I loved it. I’m also old enough to have been around for the first time around. Long before it seemed necessary to immortalize it on the big screen as its own story.
Soon after I saw it, I found myself listening to an interview with Rami Malek as he discussed what it was like to attempt to portray Freddy Mercury, and it got me thinking. Imagine the process someone has to go through when they try to portray a primarily contemporary musical idol to their original audience, as well as a newer world. More than that, someone who was such an absolutely massive personality. I mean, Freddy Mercury was, if nothing else, a man with a huge presence in recent musical history. A personality that embodies, and maybe even defines the title of “lead singer in a rock and roll band”.
And, during this interview, Malek, begins to describe how to emulate a man who, when he was on stage, gave 120% at all times…
I stopped right there.
Ok, at so first my pedantic nature takes over and I think, “Ugh. I hate that crap. Per Cent. Per 100! If we are giving something our all, that all would be 100% of what we have to give, right?! I hate this crap. It’s just over-the-top Tony Robbins motivational blargspeak, and it makes my teeth itch. But the more I thought about it, the more I thought about why some people make us feel as though they can give beyond what we think they are capable of giving. Therefore, when they give it their all, we see that it’s in excess of what we expected to see from someone like that. And we label it as them having given 120%.
But, this is about art. My belief is that art is really spirit. Or, more specifically art comes out of the gaps in our spirit. It reaches itself out to, seeking the same in others. And art is the language they speak.
Art is spirituality manifested in some form that pleases/stimulates/connects with other people’s spirits, and it communicates entirely on its own plane. It comes into being when its creator creates it, or names it, or loves it, or even passionately hates it. Sculpture and music, painting or stagecraft, subway platforms or museum niches, art exists because we’re human. In the darkest of places, art is a blazing torch. Even in the mundane, art is the eyebrows* we put on that spreadsheet of dry numbers we give to our boss.
But what about the artist who doesn’t have cracks, or even gaps in their shell? What about those who are almost raw spirit under a thin human veneer, coming face to face with the world for the first time. They don’t create when they make their art, they become it. As they perform their art, they create an energy around them that is its own, higher form of art. This form we call ‘love’.
I don’t think artists like Freddy Mercury are capable of giving 20% more than everyone else. I think they are somehow able to transmit the love they helped create when their untethered spirit is finally allowed to fluently speak its native tongue. That’s what we call that ‘art’.
And the best we’ve come up with to describe this phenomenon is, ‘he gave 120%’?! No. No. No. We’re going to need to get an artist on this right away and change that.