Tuesday, September 7, 2021

Many Nightmares in the Vast Nightmare

Outside at night, a different day's rain quietly speaking in still trees, I recall how I loved Tolkien's many references to starlight. The way a sentence intimates the shape and subject of the next (is like how early texts intimate the shape and subject of a life). 

Going back in time to junior year high school, early fall, stealing two books from the library about the intersection of Zen and Christianity, the path of my life in so many ways thus set indelibly in stone. Also, this paragraph is dedicated to Bon Scott and Roland Barthes.

At what do you work hardest? To be loved is to be approved of, found worthy, accepted, et cetera.

The Titanic one of many nightmares in the vast nightmare which was the twentieth century with which I am still not at peace. The front porch prayer flags now ready to be burned and the ashes buried in the garden and finally no new prayer flags purchased.

Digging potatoes, talking quietly to myself, noticing later a toad sitting even more quietly beneath a renegade squash plant, listening. It takes no body to be home.

On the other side of the river, a certain breed of ancestor - Celtic, in love with song, fucking and war - watched me work through a thorny aspect of relating to God, and when at last I'd clarified the salient point (which had to do with guiltlessness), they lowered their shields and blades and knelt in homage, and I was then lifted and delivered into a new and unintended intimacy, and in this way realized that I had become an ancestor who would one day watch his descendent navigate holy terrain that for me involved spiritual conflict, sexual longing and poetry but for him will involve something I cannot imagine but still need in order to finally leave this world. Geese crying out in the early morning, flying north to south over the horse pasture, traveling songs I once mistook as my own. 

What happens when you stop pretending that anything actually happens? The water in this river connects to the water in all rivers, and all rivers are in motion, ever bent on the sea, which itself attends only to the moon and sky.

Estranged mostly from family I struggle with folks who continue to struggle with family, feeling like the bigger problems are internal, abstract, solved by God when we surrender, et cetera. I remember the trolley tracks in Fall River when I was five years old, and feeling a certain way about the twentieth century looking at them which I have not yet been able to describe or convey to another, and if I feel sorrow at all about my pending death, it has mostly to do with this.

While this paragraph is dedicated to Randy Rhoads and Michel Foucault, who together are the clearest I've managed to be about sex in this life. On the other hand, the word "erection" always reminded me of erector sets - very popular among certain uncles - and it seemed to me a phonesthetic tragedy, given the joy and beauty of one and the bland stupidity of the other. 

At a late juncture making mostly Greek coffee, standing in the dark kitchen alone, listening to neighborhood roosters hollering like Jim Morrison hollered in the years before his early death became unavoidable. Me and my penchant for pretty glass, me and my happiness writing this sentence, me as close as you get in this life to the breathlessness of God. 

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