When Done is Done

Not to denigrate anyone’s achievement on this first day past #nanowrimo2016, but what I accomplished most this month pumping out 50,000 plus words of mostly spewed inanity was escape from non-sense of the preceding weeks, months and years culminating in the moral depravity our nation titled an election. This “novel” I scrapped together with mindless word vomiting at times was an exercise in the refined art of escapism, full on head-in-sand, ostrich hiding out from a reality I’m still not willing to participate in quite yet. I may opt out completely. 

And so, the largest achievement of last month for me was this meditation on and practice of tuning out while tuning up the word count. I plan to stay right here, in cyberspace, MIA to the rest of reality–which I now understand is a choice, reality, that is. You make yours and I’ll make mine, and never shall an objective truth detour us from our subjective truths. Truth is lies and lies are truth. And while I acknowledge that we have obeyed the objective truth gods for far too long, this anarchy of subjectivism is a backlash of unknown depths and destruction. 

So, I say fuck it. I’m just going to write my own world and to hell with the rest. As you were. 

#MakeAmericaSmartAgain. #Irefusetobedumb

Revolution: Ten for Today

Millions will march and fight for freedom, from oppression, from patriarchy, one million women march. I will bring my daughters, and they will know what sacrifice they must make for freedom in this country. Or they will prepare to move out of the country. 

Fight or flight, isn’t that the way of things? After the election, my first instinct was flight. That’s often my way. I never really flee physically, but I leave mentally. I thought about getting my children out of here, college in Canada or France. Thank God for duel citizenship. Just make them grow in a place where women are not objects of hate and self-loathing. Give them promise.

But for me, well, I could close the blinds, darken the room, better to light up my screen to make the words burn into my eyes. Make every word count. Quit my outside job, so I can hole up and never see them, those who ain’t woke, as my daughter would say.

She, one of my two woke daughters, likes San Francisco as a college choice. She wants to be with like-minded folks. We are a bastion of expansive values: free love, not your father’s love, expansion not contraction, possibility not improbability. They would have us roped and tethered to their poles.

I grew up in the shadows of revolution. Missed the big love by a half decade or so. But I have inherited the capital of my foremothers, my powerful free-lovers and Black Power fist pumpers. When love and revolution permeated culture by necessity, a newly emerging consciousness that the status quo needed cracking open–wide. Let the dragons loose.

So many false starts with the Bernie revolution and the 99%’ers before him. So many apathetic revolts that you could hardly classify them as disturbances, more like gastric distress. But the country has turned to the darkness of dictatorial capitalism and extremism. The pussy puppet believes he runs a show. Reality tv via the White House.

And we joke and rage and prod each other with vitriol still. The attacks and protests, where will they collide and start the conflagration. I’ve got my gas can ready. 

Image: tanya-cuba-kgb-revolution (pixabay)

Reaching Out Reaching In: Ten for Today


August 22, 2016
 
How do I make it through this election season without losing friends, lovers and hope? I have never been particularly political in the sense that I cared not overly for the outcomes of elections. In my 40 plus years of voting, I may have voted FOR someone on the ballot twice. And only one presidential tenure had me gritting my teeth and angry too often.
 
But for the most part, my life is lived locally and interiorly. That doesn’t mean that I don’t care about the results. I do. But I am fortunate enough to live a charmed life where I can choose to live in a cocoon. Going about my daily chores, cares and doings, I burrow down deeply and ignore the rest of the world, or participate to the degree that I wish.
 
Perhaps that’s called first world or birth privilege. I don’t take for granted my genetic demographic winnings to be born where and to whom I was. I vote. I discuss. I inform hundreds of students a year about the world, locally and globally. I am not nihilistic. I hope. I care. I do my civic and personal duties.
 
But this election is different, to belabor the obvious. And not just because of who is running and how. I think I’m different. My eyes and sensors seek the world more, and so am more susceptible to it. My practice leads me to confront this headache nation, this raucous populace, with equanimity. I’m finding it difficult, prone to suddenly remembering books that need urgent reading. 

Looney Pantoum or I Suck at Rhymes: Poem 6

To cup a hand to an upturned ear

To hear what all there is to hear

Echo down the hall and up the stair

And keep my mind from turning fear.

 
To hear what all there is to hear

And keep my mind from turning fear

I’ll muster up ol’ brave good cheer

And fight the crowd’s scowly sneer.

 
To keep my mind from turning fear

And fight the crowd’s scowly sneers

I’ll hold my loves to me ever nearer

And never let them harm my dears.

 
I’ll fight the crowd’s awful sneers

And never let them harm my dears

Lest their hateful lies most insincere

Sway the surging tide to lesser cares.

 
I’ll never let them harm my dears

Nor sway the tide to lesser cares

Like hate and names no one dares. 

Framing targets in trigger hairs

 
Sway no tide to lesser cares!

Frame no targets in trigger hairs!

Come clean in consciences bared

For hate’s glare dies in love shared.

A kind of kindness (Ten for Today)


We’re in the car. I muse out loud, “I want to carry into the world the kindness and caring I feel when I do yoga or when I write about the garden I peek at sometimes through the fence separating our yard from the neighbor’s or when I’m baking apricot and garlic spread into baguette then topping it with sun dried tomatoes that have soaked in Greek olive oil a good long while, for our dinner guests.”

The one in the front seat is silent, but the wise ass in the back seat, snarkily asks in disbelief, “You?” Then she shakes her head slowly and says, “Nah.” They both laugh.

I laugh. She’s a quick witted funny kid. But as we drive a way into the silence, a momentary pause in conversation, each with our thoughts, I frown inside. 

I meant it. The kindness does not extend far beyond the mat. I don’t want to manufacture it for myself by motion and feel-good-pat-on-the-back exercises and readings. I want to exercise it, stress test it in the throes of messy, even horrible existence, in the battles on the streets, on the road, in the supermarket, and on social media. 

This election circus distracts me (a Trump funk), foments mental terror and pulsing anger that requires the quelling by kindness, everyone’s. But mine is especially important in my world, to the people I touch. Hiding inside words, playing nice with language won’t do. I won’t be jailed by the surrounding toxic vitriol. I vow to melt it, laser it with the heat of my passionate dispassion. 

Love. Love. Love. Love. Love. Love. Love…

Post Politics: April Fools…Still? (Ten For Today)


August 3, 2016
 
You–

Where do I begin? Are you for real? You know the clear sign of adulthood is recognizing your own strengths and weaknesses, limitations and possibilities. Children believe they can do anything, fly to the moon with just their will and hands flapping, grow a cape and avenge their slights against school yard bullies. But adults know the difference between fantasy and reality. Not you.
 
Some say you know exactly what you’re doing. Others say you yourself have no idea what will come out of your mouth until you say it. My dear mother in law is like that–no editing filter from brain to mouth. It comes from a hyperactive attention deficit disorder, lack of impulse control and other causes. I’m no doctor. I’m just an observer. But she, at least, understands where she belongs, what makes her most effective as mother, friend, cook, caretaker and citizen. She knows her shortcomings and does not decide to become a surgeon or insist she can be one just because she believes her surgeons are not doing enough for her cancer and heart condition.
 
But you, ‘man’, own everything you do, say and believe, and expect others to do the same. You’re not a citizen of the world, just yours. The rest of us are all visitors to your world. They used to diagnose people like you as insane monomaniacal threats, curable only by electroshock therapy.
 
But that’s you. Somehow you have inserted yourself into every corner of the planet. The causes of your rise are plenty, but the time for analysis and disbelief are long past. Now the question is what will be done with you by the half of the nation that thinks, cares and clings to a worn, battered, torn and flaking democracy, but a democracy at last.
 
I am confident thoughtful people with conscience will do the right thing. Those lost in hope, dreams and fantasies, those longing for brutal fathers as a result of their own overriding fears, indomitable past or cultural patriarchal indoctrination will see themselves in you or not see you at all for the sake of something, something to help them bear the weight of the malaise and downright horror of their existence.
 
Whatever happens, madman (not to defame the ill) or pretender, I have hope that reason and goodness will prevail by the forceful intentions and actions of people who care, love and hope in humanity.   

At the Corner: Ten for Today

I don’t know why I bite. I practice keeping my distance, detaching from all the crap around me, only to self-sabotage in weaker moments. Quixotic behavior, fighting windmills, I collapse, fall into the delusion that cyberspace is real, people on Facebook are real. They are not. They are as solitary as I am, poking at keys to create effect. There are no people in cyberspace, just ones and zeros. I know this, and yet…
 
Going out to dinner with my housemates, dad and partner, that is real. Though the restaurant was too noisy to facilitate conversation, we know what we want to say–and the food is always good there at our corner joint called, “The Corner.” Upon seating, the waiter, who knows us by name, delivered a cellophane wrapped wine glass we left there a month before. They knew it was ours, and the bartender brought it to our table upon seeing us. Even though we have never sat at the bar, the guy recognized us for our frequent patronage.
 
That’s real life–in the flesh.
 
To feel the pulse of America and predict the outcome of this upcoming election, I need to get out of cyberspace, off my computer, and walk among real breathing human beings, who can look me in the eye and tell me who they are and what they want. Only posers–personas–hide on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, and all the other social media sites created for production, the creation of false spaces, rooms, and people who perform pieces of their lives, oh so convincingly.

 

Image: around the corner

In the Key of Hate

wp-1459816977939.jpg
The trump-er grown loud in palsied anger

defeaned himself to the mad deranger 

While…

One penless poet in an inkwell stared

down letter-less pages of his dreams bared

For…

The world’s gone bonkers at last I tell you

rightside up is sideways blowing up truth

As…

When growing rich means exploding idols

and viscous real estate steals upturn skulls

So…

Time then once and for all to scrap the deal

that fear-stuffed progress regressives pig squeal.

End.

Hate. 

Coda: