Archive for April, 2008

Melissa Ferrick, Johnny Cash – obsessions and fatigue.

Posted in Melissa Ferrick, Music on April 29, 2008 by boychick1

I’m feeling a little overwhelmed this morning with everything I need to do, work – the pull of things I’d rather be doing. Having a hard time settling into the present moment and accepting what needs to happen today. It’s beautiful outside if cool. I am listening to Melissa Ferrick’s “+1” – love, love, love it. Obsessive soul that I am it was determined late last night that I had to bite the bullet and have every note she has recorded…so I have filled that compulsion. And I am listening, listening over
and over, and over again. Another habit of mine when I find something I really like.

For fucks sake I am tired of using “I” …I, I, I, I seesh one day let me weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee for a change.

Alright why am I hooked on Melissa Ferrick — it’s the beautiful contrast between these strong sounds (her voice, the guitar skills) and this delicious vulnerability in the lyrics and how she expresses them with her phrasing. I decided it is like that moment in music where Johnny Cash sings Hurt, the song by the Nine Inch Nails. Only when I listen to Ferrick I get to have that moment over and over again.

If you don’t know what I am talking about re: Johnny Cash & Hurt, here it is. One really does need to have ALL of his late recordings on the American label.

Good art, music just break us wide, wide, wide, wide open.

love-
j.

95 lbs…

Posted in Melissa Ferrick, Muscles, Personal ramblings on April 29, 2008 by boychick1

I put on my favorite workout cd today…Ferrick 70 People at 7,000 feet. If Melissa can sing and play that long, I can exercise that long.

Bench press…loaded on 95 lbs…lift 10 times. Then do it again.

Why one asks – so I can look like Gabrielle or was it look for Gabrielle?

Or was it so I can eat an entire batch of peanut butter chocolate chip cookies?

Doesn’t matter…never thought I could do that in my life and of course now I want to go for 100 – at least before I am 60 and middle aged.

j.

See ya there…

Posted in Uncategorized on April 27, 2008 by boychick1

Three classes to teach and then…I’ll see you there!

Chris Pureka + Lansing Mi.

nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

Posted in On Poetry on April 27, 2008 by boychick1

A beautiful young woman and terrific writer blogs here. It’s one of my favorite places to travel, read and be inspired by her sensitivity and honesty. Recently Jen of Awakenings wrote a post on poetry and her thoughts about it.

I have been reading tonight – the idiot box went off. Weeks ago I canceled my cable tv, as to pay over $50 a month struck me as obscene. Now I live with a single channel, I believe CBS. Never watch. The absurdity of how we live our lives struck me today, so many of us leading a dead existence in terms of our employment. We work until we are exhausted and come home to fall in front of the idiot box and entertain (?!!) ourselves with gruesome tales of child molestation, rape and murder. This relaxes us? People eating sheep’s eyeballs is enlightening and reduces our stress level — it makes sense of our lives.

No wonder we are all fucked up. I digress but I will never again do work I don’t enjoy and come home to watch people be raped and murdered all night. Seesh. So poetry – and how beautiful is this line…

“nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands”

It is one of the most beautiful images in poetry in my opinion, a line from my favorite poem – spoken by a woman not inclined to have favorites.

But art – poetry, prose, music, paintings have that ability to enter my soul the smallest recesses and touch places I did not even realize were there. Until that moment when they enter, and I am made aware, I expand.

Art soothes my soul, it’s my life’s blood but has never been a life raft. I don’t want a life raft, I don’t want to be saved — I want to be shoved out into a vast ocean, to journey, to expand, grow and go to places I did not even realize existed, or how desperately I wanted or needed those places until I am there. I want to be made insecure and there I will find peace in that most intensely fragile place. Life break me open again, and again, again so that I may grow even more aware, blessed, grateful for this miracle called our lives.

My favorite poem by e.e. cummings

somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
by E. E. Cummings

somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot touch because they are too near

your slightest look will easily unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skilfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me, i and
my life will shut very beautifully ,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the color of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands

Night Of Noise.

Posted in Andrea Gibson, On Poetry on April 26, 2008 by boychick1

I had a terrific time at EMU’s “Night Of Noise” — it followed yesterday’s Day of Silence. Although I was not silent yesterday becoming aware of the event a little
late. Frankly I would have enjoyed a day of silence as I love the restfulness and peace in that kind of activity.

But Night Of Noise with poetry performed by Andrea Gibson was great – she is funny and smart, her stories nearly as interesting as her poetry. I always enjoy hearing an artist talk about her own work. She performed for over an hour material that covered love, life, gay rights, the war and other political issues. Stellar.

I’m enjoying Mary Oliver’s book and find she has included poems on politics, the war, and love in very direct ways. She is perhaps best known as an observer of nature and uses nature as metaphors for love, politics and the human condition. Many of these new poems are very direct, lacking metaphor…I am finding them interesting and what she has to say very fresh.

For example…

Of The Empire

We will be known as a culture that feared death
and adored power, that tried to vanquish insecurity
for the few and cared little for the penury of the
many. We will be known as a culture that taught
and rewarded amassing of things, that spoke
little if at all about the quality of life for
people (other people), for dogs, for rivers. All
the world, in our eyes, they will say, was a
commodity. And they will say that this structure
was held together politically, which it was, and
they will say also that our politics was no more
than an apparatus to accommodate the feelings of
the heart, and that the heart, in those days,
was small, and hard, and full of meanness.

It has gotten cooler and is going to rain and storm today — I’ve a class to teach this morning, three tomorrow and a couple of consultations. It appears I won’t be missing any seductive spring weather which will make is easier to focus on working.

I’d love to throw open the windows, throw out the clutter and paint the walls some delicious colors. Picked up a robin’s egg on the ground yesterday — it had cracked (one lost) the most exquisite color and I kept it, as something in my life just has to be painted that color.

peace-
j.

More…poetry Friday night.

Posted in On Poetry, Personal ramblings, Photos of me on April 25, 2008 by boychick1

I’ve given Red Bird one quick read through this morning, after I walked the dogs I spent some time on the recliner in the backyard reading. It reached almost 80 degrees here… it was blissful. Then to the gym and had just one client’s dog to work with today. An easy day. I had over seven phone calls but I ignored them – not great for business but I will catch them tomorrow. Have some long days ahead so I took it easy today. I’ve also lined up some landscaping work and will be working with a landscaper that I met at the art studio. Should help to alleviate some of my money worries and any time I spend outside (or listening to music) does not feel like working. As intellectual as I am inclined to be, I really enjoy manual labor (as long as it does not resemble housework in any way). Probably because it allows me to daydream and think about what I want to think about. There is also something terribly honest about manual labor and I love that about it.

And it’s poetry tonight…in a few hours I will be listening/watching Andrea Gibson perform at Eastern Michigan University. Better get myself ready i.e. “all queered up” for a night out.

In the meantime let me share another poem from a great collection…Percy is Mary’s dog.

I Ask Percy How I Should Live My Life (Ten)

Love, love, love, says Percy.
And run as fast as you can
along the shining beach, or the rubble, or the dust.

Then, go to sleep.
Give up your body heat, your beating heart.
Then, trust.

Silly says…enough reading and blogging already!

Mary Oliver: Red Bird

Posted in On Poetry on April 25, 2008 by boychick1

Mary Oliver is 70 years old – one of my favorite poets she has offered up another book “Red Bird”. I just picked it up yesterday and have started to read it this morning. Every poem a new one…what will I do with myself?

Luke, by Mary Oliver from “Red Birds”

I had a dog
who loved flowers
Briskly she went
through the fields.

yet paused
for the honeysuckle
or the rose,
her dark head

and her wet nose
touching
the face
of every one

with its petals
of silk
with its fragrance
rising

into the air
where the bees,
their bodies,
heavy with pollen,

hovered-
and easily
she adored
every blossom,

not in the serious,
careful way
that we choose
this blossom or that blossom –

the way we praise or don’t praise –
the way we love
or don’t love-
but the way

we long to be –
that happy
in the heaven of earth –
that wild, that loving.