This was taken from scraps. Cutouts produced incidentally while creating other black and white paper designs, extras tossed aside in the moment: the true first negative space of those projects, their waste, their remainder. Sifted through the pile of odd shapes belonging nowhere, randomly assorted without purpose. Four pieces chosen quickly, without thinking and no plan, without altering them further in any way, and within minutes assembled together and pasted up this leaning figure. Looks like a lot of things to me but speaks like an example.
Urging to make significant or even delicious more of those elements in us and in the world so easy to reject, to cast out, to trample on, or to simply pass by. Art and poetry are not luxuries but necessities for this reason. To allow the unattended or just what looks like refuse to be seen and voiced and appreciated rather than tossed a token now and again, hardly a crumb. The expendable, impractical, unnecessary – yours and mine too. With poetry especially we have a marginalized form expressing the marginalized in apt communion. To celebrate mystery, quiet amidst the noisy, or to place the unwanted or left behind because are we not all neglected or forgotten in some way and do we not all feel this. To serve the imperfect, the difficult, the unsavory or troublesome, even the scary at times. Our beauty does not exclude these flaws in a culture pretending to disown their existence.
What nobody would detect or consider without looking very, very, closely – art changing our minds about what’s beautiful and worthy, what we’re capable of discerning. Not just a world in which we consume choice fragments of one another relentlessly and treat ourselves so, but a hunger for the whole range and process of a more private experience admired, an intelligence beyond the conspicuous so that every day just a little bit, even just a little to be able to show up and not be afraid to look further. Since it’s the not looking – hiding – that’s more dangerous.
— And since culture’s infinitely richer than it could possibly be credited in any given moment — momentarily magnificent or bewildered or painfully plain. So are we.
Let me whisper. Let me bring these words to you, let them turn yellow then purple like light diffusing through polluted air. In a sound of voice I long to hear and embrace floats near me. Connect these words in us through this space, not by chains of past offenses identity crises and grievances. Let them feel comforting and welcomed, not as wounds, feel like birds at dawn singing through cold air or a bell tower carillon drop notes over chaotic streets on the way home from work in the evening. Let these words mean nothing, let them be nothing, let them exist for no indisputable purpose or explicit reason, yet not be treated as meaningless. Let them not be crowded out with opinions, nor create such crowds. What makes such opinions more meaningful?
What if I have no history anymore. What if I claim nothing. These words have tongue in them, lips, lungs, I want for them to not be pushed to sting. Let me kiss with them. Let me exist with you as if there were nobody else before us, and nobody to jump down our throats after. I have slept with these words when hungry, when lonely, now let these words take company. Let these words be a place to land, not just a springboard to and from troubles, not as an opiate either but a place to be fearlessly awake together. Let these words be a world that’s not too smart for romance. Enough views crowd us one after another, it’s blinding. If we come from nowhere beyond this moment, if only by sound we could touch these screens delicate as paper, what if.
Your voice alone is wonderful to me. Carillon notes blending and separating over rivers inside sending little messages barely heard, grow more resonant. I long to hear beauty instead of these arguments. Then these words will not chase you down, will not hunt you. For truly I long for you and for no opinion. I long to hear words exist less for the purpose of proofs, divisions, violence, information. Thus let their intelligence here stake no claim. Let these words be unimportant yet significant. Be available and abundant. Let them be valuable.
Yes I admit searching for your face in crowds afraid of what I’d see. You came in closed the door leaned your bike against the armoire put your keys and wallet down on the dresser and stay
ed. We listened to the same musical refrain over and over after the film credits stop
ed since you made it last
er than needed that evening, years
your presence melts resentments and smile fades priorities then there’s only innocence in us. I’ve felt long
ing and awe and dread since childhood toward everything in life and everyone I’ve loved. This is why poetry picked me without asking. I’d eventually tell the truth, sometimes incredibly pained and sometimes without flinching in a way that served an art. I was less than eight when I knew I was alone. I see her walking slow
in memory, eyes locked down at the ground watching feet move mechanically, but once she stop
es to stare at a glow. Strange. A mesmerizing purple hue around a shadow, circling the contour of the dark form in the sidewalk – was this some prophecy for today? Six brothers and sisters new lives pop in and out of dreams like a vague connective tissue. Purple orchids sit in the windowsill wait
ing for water don’t need too much attention, bookshelves crammed with ideas and lyrics and pictures don’t make missing someone better or easier the exceptional courageousness it takes to care. Beyond the selfish, superficial, convenient or practical no bar, text box, or website brought us together. You said you noticed I always look at the poem during critique instead of up at the group, you stay
ed long enough to get to know me a little but not very deep. My most entitled and arrogant phase featured this loss although I couldn’t explain how much loneliness this arose from and alienation. I still can’t keep up with demands in all directions by myself but who really can or how long
can we pretend. Later on we leave after a short time. Except in rare circumstance we see differently those places in them we fear and elements in us embracing those who don’t want to know and those who do and we take all of that, all of it. What kind of knowing is this fantasy saying this does not have to be so exciting. Saying stop
by hang out in the studio as you draw for a time or whatever because it is not about your body or not your body only, not about exotic trips or going out impressed or impressive and we are not rushing out of here either, not on our way home because there’s nowhere really to be, nowhere like here at least because why not with you, why not here mixing paint testing glue for collage building something any kind of creativity beyond our outfit and face and the lighting or even the freedom in doing nothing also, stretch out in the grass for hours or lounge on the patio quietly, why not cooking pasta and talking late into the night, where are these people?
Those who don’t care about time?
This does not have to be so exciting it just has to be true. I want to go find them and set down my keys on the table, turn off the internet and TV, to tell me their stories or notice the majestic shape of a tree reach in every direction for the sun to form such pleasing angles, am I crazy? I am angry because there’s no antidote to the recklessness of others. To the tyranny of business, being busy and making things happen. There’s no pathology in craving more significance to our company — is it so dangerous to desire this today, feigning instead to resist real feeling as a means of self-improvement? I have feel
ings. That need not be cute or palatable. Take no hallucination of ideals, that aesthetic is so tired. The end is coming soon, dears. Come by my love because fifty thousand options, fifty million options are not you, because fifty billion other options are still not who you are and because it does not matter about tomorrow, even now doesn’t matter because there’s nothing to do. In truth, there is really nothing.
Drink tea with me, no pool, no bar, no fancy food, no nice clothes, no entertainment. I’m up the mountain pass now sipping the tea, bundled in wool, iron and wood and smoke billowing from fires in the freezing cold, there is no service here, and everything is free. I long for you here but will find somebody to come with me, somebody along the way who wonders what it would be like to set their keys down anywhere, anywhere, and love those you find. I create no words, no art to sell truly, I make piece after piece for those I hold and a place for us to exist in is all the same affair I work for, beyond the obvious yet not beyond those held in the middle of the darkness because the only thing we have that’s free in this world is each other and we know it. This is why poetry is not endangered. Is this not the belief anymore, here – what happened? Nothing is just only ours. Everything is for each other. This is one truth of mine among many. I wish it weren’t so sometimes. I’d like to need no one, but this contemporary promise is a false idol of sorts. I unpeel bananas
in the kitchen for breakfast, oranges
in the afternoon and adore them in solitude. I don’t really adore french fries, though they taste good — body is treated like this too. It matters how you see
things, when we unpeel and also when we don’t. I’m still being with them, still in love irresponsibly on paper and on screens and whatever and it’s great. For us cyc
ling colors through bay windows, stay
ing up all night. I come here to write for tears of long
ing to watch icy blue rivers in us melt
from ancient glaciers — they need a job. In this moment as with most that matter nobody knows this about me and it’s okay. I am the same as everyone. You who recognize this thing.
You, taking heart
Scene from bedroom window at 2 am from the point of view of a sad vagina
About as elemental a design plan as it gets…
but enough to turn into these
and this more simplified idea to play with some more,
yet like many sketches, that first cluster of lines still intrigues me on its own…
7″ x 8.5″, black paper on bristol