My friend from Asia has powers and magic, he plucks a blue leaf from the young blue-gum
And gazing upon it, gathering and quieting
The God in his mind, creates an ocean more real than the ocean, the salt, the actual
Appalling presence, the power of the waters.
He believes that nothing is real…
When I was younger
it was plain to me
I must make something of myself.
I walk back streets
admiring the houses
of the very poor:
roof out of line with sides
the yards cluttered
with old chicken wire, ashes,
furniture gone wrong;
the fences and outhouses
built of barrel staves
and parts of boxes, all,
if I am fortunate,
smeared a bluish green
that properly weathered
pleases me best of all colors.
will believe this
of vast import to the nation.
Definitely going through an early thirty’s crisis. Existential questions loom large, career dropout, big trip, seedling ‘career’, new friendships, interests, opportunities - a new realisation of self. Accelerated change. Exciting and terrifying.
I’ve made the break. What if I don’t make the most of this time? Need to get there so I can be the husband and father my family deserves. Need to get through so I can be a man. Don’t want to be pathetic. Ups and downs are frequent. The critic visits often. So much to do. Motivation waxes and wanes. Picture of a satisfying life is coming into focus. The path is mine. I am living.
The pressurised winds find an escape from my frustrated mind, and by departing, reunite my thoughts with action!
Text for Nothing #8 (1958)
read by Jack MacGowan
In The Domain of Arnheim, Edgar Allan Poe describes Mr. Ellison’s four ‘conditions of bliss’. The first and most important condition is free exercise in the open air, or “The Health” as Mr. Ellison puts it. The second, love of woman (or men). The third, and most difficult to realise, contempt of ambition. And finally, the fourth condition, according to Mr. Ellison, is an object of unceasing pursuit - with an important caveat; “All things being equal, the extent of attainable happiness is in proportion to the spirituality of the object being pursued.”
My first impression was that contempt for ambition, the third condition, contradicts the unceasing pursuit of an object, the fourth. In my mind, ambition motivates pursuit. But, I guess, this is where the caveat of the fourth condition is crucial - ambition does motivate pursuit, but only when we pursue objects in order to feed our need for recognition and acceptance - I’m trying.
Political science seeks to comprehend political structures in order to develop theoretical models that link these structures to their consequences
Shards of warm orange light flicker through the frosty glass, scattered by the dog piss stamp of youth into a sleepy, docile herd.
Self-portrait in New York Hospital Bed, New York City