Tuesday, February 21, 2006


Deep, dee dee dee deep. Oh what could I add to deep American culture conversations, the tsunami of words on radio talk shows and internet blogs, network news and cable rants, culture wars, everyone uses words like "patriotism," baby boomers remembering shards and fragments of childhood civics classes, great speeches of history, Founding Fathers being pimped like toothpaste to prove one or another point on all sides of the cultural divide.

And even this has been said before. All the words have been used, great dictionaries of words, encyclopedias of information flung like mad confetti into citizen homes and gardens.

So I shall go deep de de de deep. Deep to roots of trees and bottoms of lakes, deep as canyons and low valleys. Deep to the bottom of it all, where everything is joined and there is no conflict. Deep where we all share existence itself, we are all together, all one. No hocus pocus here, no magic secret Mason handshake, no Druidic nature worship. Just spinning in the universe, all of us spinning, deep in our own existence, playing out the light and the dark.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Pink Ice in Auld Manhattoe

Crazy weather, woke up to rain, sloshed to subway in sleepy morning gloom.

Two guys on the N train, one tall, lanky, silver hair, streetwise face wearing blue windbreaker vest over workshirt, other guy brownhaired, shorter, clever fox face with shabby coat and blue jeans, both gripping their New York Posts, conversing about the events of the day. Silverhair is the raconteur, wiseguy voice complaining about the man keeping him waiting, "he says he's gonna be there at 9:30 and I'm still waiting at 10:30"and I don't know what kind of work he does but he says he needs the money. And they're talking about whether their numbers will hit and foxface says "we haven't hit a number since she took that dive," and they're reminiscing about a woman who leaped from a fifth story window and splattered herself on the sidewalk, she was a friend of silverhair, he says they had a good six months way back in the 80's, he was making an extra thousand a week, splitting his share, dealing drugs, and foxface wonders if it hurt splattering like that after the fall, silverhair says no, no, it was immediate, she didn't feel a thing.

So I get off the train at 57th Street and Seventh Avenue walking under sidewalk scaffolding leaking in big cold streams of rainwater.

Around 11 a.m. the sun comes out and all of a sudden it's a spring day, la la, everything is shiny and smells good in Auld Midtown Manhattoe. I do some errands during my lunch hour and I'm in Rockefeller Center walking by the skating rink and it's so nice outside I just stop by the rink, they're playing Ray Charles singing "You Don't Know Me," and I'm watching the skaters and the ice is pink, pink with big hearts on it, I wonder how they did that, and I know it's from Valentine's Day, and there are good skaters and falling down skaters and one little boy who is wobbling madly around the rink always looking as though he's about to fall but he doesn't.

A lady and her daughter ask me to take their picture and make sure the pink ice is in the background, so I snap the camera for them.

And now it's evening and cold winter again, thermometer plunged and the rest of the weekend is going back to winter. Before I went home I ran another errand downtown, by Union Square, the early evening sky above the park was rich dark violet of such clarity it dazzled my eyes.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

I Had A Dream

Had a dream about Jack Kerouac last night. A dream about Jack, ack. Was somewhere, at a party, a fellow was making everyone laugh with a description of a lazy jazzman sax player, he'd fall asleep till his solo, the fellow did a very funny takeoff, imaginary horn in hand, toot tootling, oodledee squeeaah, very soft, very sleepy, I laughed in the dream. Ho ho.

Then I'm looking at a black and white picture, it's someone's 1950's living room, in the foreground a big heap of children sitting at the kiddy table, behind them crowds of adults having a gathering. I know it's a party for Jack. Jack is about to speak, and somehow I'm in his head, I see we're going to say something really different, real art, something new, serious and good.

Then I'm outside the suburban house on the lawn. There's a crazy old sailor hanging around, he has some sort of banner he's carrying, then I'm back with Jack in the living room, we raise our head and see someone holding the old man's banner, we know the man is dead.

Whoosh I'm back in the yard and I hear a man saying, "well everything about his life was interesting except for this damned funeral!" And right after that I hear Jack, drunk wild voice cutting through air and he rings out ten syllables but I don't remember what they were, and all the previous schemes of art are nil, void, null, nada.

So I woke up and did my work for the day and now I'm inputting first blog entry. Jack used to visit friends in NYC and he'd joke and call it "Auld Manhattoe." So this is my blog -- Auld Manhattoe. I lived there and now I live across the river and work there and oh yeah, yeah, oh yeah, Jack and me, dead and alive, bearing ten mysterious syllables of drunken rue.