Sunday, December 31, 2006

church to avoid

It is simply unbelievable the crap some people actually believe. I was going to a church over in Albany for a short time, but the guy started raging about "the homos." I guess his view is that gays are inherently evil or something. It's pretty sad when you see the leader of a church who spends all his time ranting and raving about stuff he hates. I guess hate is a big part of his life. Anyway, I doubt this guy has ever met anybody that is gay. My personal view is that people are born gay or not, and you can be good or bad, sexual orientation is irrelevant. Due to people like this moron, gays feel, for a very good reason, that Christianity is hostile to them. It's sad and pathetic, and I'm not going to waste any more time over there, that's for sure. He also spent a long time raging about how men are becoming more "effeminate." I don't know where he got that, but I see no reason to believe it.
In another incredibly moronic sermon, he talked about how he "kinda liked Bush" because Bush didn't have doubts, and didn't get involved in the complexities of the situation. He then went on to talk about how a soldier can't have doubts when he is deciding to shoot or not in combat. While it is certainly true that in combat soldiers have to react quickly, this idiot is trying to say that somehow it is good to not look at how complicated things are in the real world. That's what lead to the problems we are in today in Iraq. Bush's simplistic aggresiveness has resulted in a huge number of deaths. This pastor was somehow saying that he liked Bush for this? What a pathetic excuse for an intellect this guy is. The real world is complicated, and there are all kinds of peoples, believing in all kinds of religions out there. The Christians that are looking for some kind of holy war are the Christians that I really detest. I don't think Jesus or anybody else in the Bible said anything about having to go to war with Islam.
Besides, in my opinion, nobody can say that Bush is any kind of Christian. One of the main points of the gospels is that the poor should be helped. Bush has spent his presidency cutting taxes for the very rich at the expense of the very poor. There is nothing Christian about that, in my view.
There's a lot of good stuff in the Bible. This guy was unerring in getting nothing but hate and nastiness out of it. The whole spirit of the church seemed to be getting into the attitude that they were "in a war" having to do with morals or some other type of bullshit that they invented. They need to relax and see the numerous exceptional things in the Bible that have nothing at all to do with war.
So I'm never going back.

Note: I'm not saying that Christianity is bad. I was just pointing out the things about this guy that I didn't like. I'm not saying he's "representative" of Christianity as a whole, and I don't think he has a clue as to what it is really about, at least in my mind.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

poetry books



Calm was the day, and through the trembling air
Sweet-breathing Zephyrus did softly play
A gentle spirit, that lightly did delay
Hot Titan's beans, which then did glister fair;
When I (whom sullen care,
Through discontent of my long fruitless stay
In prince's court, and expectation vain
Of idle hopes, which still do fly away
Like empty shadows, did afflict my brain),
Walk'd forth to ease my pain
Along the shore of silver-streaming Thames;
Whose rutty bank, the which his river hems,
Was painted all with variable flowers,
And all the meads adorn'd with dainty gens
Fit to deck maidens' bowers,
And crown their paramours,
Against the bridal day, which is not long:
Sweet Thames run softly, till I end my song.

There, in a meadow, by the river's side,
A flock of nymphs I chanced to espy,
All lovely daughters of the flood thereby,
With goodly greenish locks, all loose untied,
As each had been a bride;
And each one had a little wicker baket
Made of fine twigs, entrailed curiously,
In which they gathered flowers to fill their flasket,
And with fine fingers cropt full feateously
The tender stalks on high.
Of every sort, which in that meadow grew,
They gathered some; the violet, pallid blue,
The little daisy, that at evening closes,
The virgin lily, and the primrose true,
With store of vermeil roses,
To deck their bridegrooms' posies
Against the bridal day, which was not long:
Sweet Thames run softly, till I end my song.

With that I saw two swans of goodly hue
Come softly swimming down along the Lee;
Two fairer birds I yet did never see;
The snow which doth the top of Pindus strew,
Did never whiter shew,
Nor Jove himself, when he a swan would be,
For love of Leda, whiter did appear;
Yet Leda was (they saw) as white as he,
Yet not so white as these, nor nothing near;
So purely white they were,
That even the gentle stream, the which them bare,
Seem'd foul to them, and bad his billows spare
To wet their silken feathers, lest they might
Soil their fair plumes with water not so fair,
And mar their beauties bright,
That shone as heaven's light,
Against their bridal day, whcih was not long:
Sweet Thames run softly, till I end my song.
-Spencer, from Prothalamion

It is evident here that Keats was highly influenced by this guy, if you ever read his early poems....He even wrote one called "Imitation of Spencer." "Sleep and Poetry" ,one of my favorite Keats poems, sounds a lot like the Spencer style, which seems to be all about a great thing: the joy of beauty.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

trip

Just returned from the moon. Not a lot going on there. I walked around a few craters and picked up some moon rocks...I would add some pictures but my camera exploded in the low-gravity environment. Nobody there has heard about Ford yet but then again, there is no life on the moon, so nobody would have any ability to "hear" anyway. It was a cool trip. There was a nice panoramic view of the earth on my way back.
The little town here that I like so much seems to have experienced a bunch of rain, so I hear, but now it is back to just being cold.
Udon is becoming one of my favorites. It is a big thing in Japan, I remember, where everybody who wants to eat for very little money can go into the ramen/udon bars and get some good noodles for a reasonable price.

Monday, December 18, 2006

ne albany

the outer doors were a backyard and the shovels lined up in even rows
houses down the alley, shopping cart by the railroad
four old cars rusting and shining and moss-covered
and the barking of a dog
and the outer truck in working order
tiny house in gravel walls and barking
across the street a trailer
dudes working on a wrecked car
stars in the skies
the river close by
the trains running by in different tracks
and the heavy feels
and the animals and the grass
littering sideways on the road
even in the hand of the mind
the deep ditch running through the mind
and when she opens the door
pained and lined and suspicious
not far from the felony flats
deep mined in the ore of the mind.

suspicions known and suspicions thought, finding the right part and the right fit, through the temperaments and angles, suspicions and senses of sense, to understand, what it is that matters in the few days of this vain life through which we pass like a shadow? Macaroni with margarine, a dog who reacts to music, rolling of cigarettes, and who's to say, who of us has been here at the start of things, and who of us knows what we should be doing, in the few days, as the rains fall, and the drops of dew settle on the trailers, the frost on the grass? Is this a worse world, or maybe just the place where the few perceptive know, that this is life lived at the essential matter, to see, that who of us can lay out the skies, hard as a bronze sheet? And who can number the drops of dew? Who of us can see eternity in and hour, and count the grains of sand?

Was I wrong in my perceptions? Did I not see what I thought I see? Do I truely have my priorities in order, and my ducks lined up in the proper order? Can I look at chaos and see the real order? I think so.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

dickinson

The Body grows without-
The more convenient way-
That if the Spirit-like to hide
Its Temple stands, alway,

Ajar-secure-inviting-
It never did betray
The Soul that asked its shelter
In solem honesty

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Sunday, December 10, 2006

things as they are

the man bent over his guitar,
a shearsman of sorts. The day was green.

They said, "You have a blue guitar,
You do not play things as they are."

The man replied, "Things as they are
Are changed upon the blue gitar."

And they said then, "But play, you must,
A tune beyond us, yet ourselves,

A tune upon the blue guitar
Of things exactly as they are."

Who is a Wallace Stevens fan out there in blogworld?

I just got back from berkeley, and saw some old friends. Props to Vince of Stratosphere 68, putting out psychedelic rock for the new world, and Matt Richards at braintan.com for helping to develop an organic hide tanning process and being such a great guy. It's nice to know old friends are doing well, and it tries to make up for the old friends who are no longer with us, ...but one has to continue and hope for the best.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

walked around

and did a bunch of stuff today, none of which i can remember. The interzone was still there. Title of my new poem: "it's raining in my espreso".

One of Hades' gardeners, calles Ascalaphus, began to hoot with laughter. 'Taken no nourishment at all, you say? This very morning I saw her pick a pomegranate froom your underground orchard.'
-Greek Gods and Heroes, by Robert Graves, published 1960.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

rita from china delight


This is a sketch I did yesterday of Rita from China Delight, who works Wed-Fri shift, and tends to wear orange. If I profit off this sketch I guess I should pay her some money...

on the invitation to the united states

My ardours for emprize nigh lost
Since Life has bared its bones to me,
I shrink to seek a modern coast
Whose riper times have yet to be;
Where the new regions claim them free
For that long drip of humna tears
-hardy



This is a video of Shotokan kata (form) being done by Kanazawa, one of the great instructors, who is still alive and teaching. I do this form of karate, under Reed Wilson, 3rd degree black belt, at his school. He currently teaches class 7-9pm at the Fingerboard Extension on 2nd street, across from Peak Sports, and there is an open training Saturday mornings, 8-10am, where we usually just work on kata, but there are no requirements and each person is free to work on what they want to work on, so if Jen or Corvallist wants to show up and check it out, Reed could use more students, and Keta would go ahead and show you the basic stuff. She's a shodan (1st degree black belt). I've been doing this for 23 years, and it means a lot to me, even though I can't seem to pass 2nd degree (but it's not about rank), at least that's what the regional instructor said to me. Of course that's easy to say when your 8th degree, which he is now.


Here's some pictures of karate in my style from the seventies and eighties.
http://shotokanpicturesblog.blogspot.com/index.html


In fact, I'm going to do some kata right now, because I can't relax and need to calm down a bit. Luckily I have a house and my own karate room, basically just an empty room with a floor. (most rooms have floors).

Thursday, November 02, 2006

rain


This rain is great. I'm really liking it. Who else likes rain? Oregonians are known for their love of rain. Otherwise they'd move somewhere else.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

smoke

at four o'clock in the afternoonof Aguat 10, 1862 very many people were assembled outside the famous Konversationshous in Baden-Baden. The weather was beautiful; the trees in their leafy green, the ligh-tinted houses of the cozy little town, the undulating hills-all things were festively arrayed with an overflowing munificence beneath the rays of the benignanat sun;all things wore a blind, trustful, and plasant smile; and the same vague but happy smile rover over the human facces, whether old or young, ugly or handsome. Even the figures of the Parisian or young, ugly or handsome. Even the figurs of the Parisisan lorettes, with their blackened eyebrows and pwdered ffaces, did not mar the general impression of obvious complacency and exultation; and the variolored ribbons,the feather, the golden and steely sparkles on hats and veils, involuntarily called to mind the vivacious shimmer and gentle place of spring flowers and iridescent wings. Though, truly, the dry, guttural rattle of the Franch patois, which was to be heard everywhere, could neither replace the twittering of birds nor compare with it.
Everything followed its appointed course, hoever. The orchestra in the pavilion playe a potpourri from Traviata, a Strauss waltz,or the Russian ballad Tell Her, whichthe obliging conductor had given an instrumental arrangement. The same well-known figures were crowded round the green baize tables in the Casino, and they all wore the stupid and avaricious, half-amazed, half-indignant, but esentlially rapacious....etc...-by ivan turgenev

dull town

Corvallis is a really dull town. Nothing happens here, it seems like. There are probably more parties and stuff in the bay area. Maybe I should go to college there. Actually, that's what I thought at age 18 and that's what I still think. Corvallis is a quiet little town, but the trees are nice and the river, etc. I frankly like the place, and the interzone is a cool place to get coffee and hang out. I've been doing a few sketches there, mainly of coffee cups and plants, and taken a few photos of various objects there. So anyway, for those of you that are newcomers to the town, I would recommend the interzone as a place to meet people, chill out, study, drink good coffee, and just generally have a good old time.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

this ray is the running sun,
this circle is the East-
tangles the wind made
on its most limpid errands,
and noon is high and upright,
a mast supporting the sky,
while the clear arrows fly
from silence to silence till they are
the slim birds of the air,
the lines that luck takes.
-pablo neruda

Sunday, October 22, 2006

I was the slightest in the house
I took the smallest room
at night, my little lamp, and book
and one geranium

So stationed I could catch the Mint
that never ceased to fall
and just my basket
let me think-I'm sure
that this was all

I never spoke, unless addressed
and then, twas brief and low
I could not bear to live-aloud
the racket shamed me so

and if ait had not been so far
and any one I knew
were going-i had often thought
how noteless-i could die
-dickinson

The Idiot's Song

They don't bother me. They let me go my way.
They say that nothing can happen.
How nice.
Nothing can happen. Everything comes and circles
forever around the Holy Ghost,
around that certain ghost (you know)—,
how nice.

No, one truly mustn't think that there's
anything dangerous in this.
Of course, that's the blood.
The blood is the heaviest thing. The blood is heavy.
Sometimes I think I can't go on any more—,
(How nice.)

Ah, what is this a pretty ball;
red and round like an overall.
Nice, that you made it.
Will it come when one calls?

How all of this names itself rare,
driven together, flowing apart:
friendly, a little bit uncertain.
How nice.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Saturday, October 14, 2006

corvallis!

land of liquid and slumbering trees!
fleet of foot and sound of mind!
eating all manner of pizza slices and oysters!
sweet fish-shaped, corvallis, a song of songs...
to ramble through the infinite groves
the rambling length of days
and the little ants in their holes
and the quintillions ripen'd, the quintillions green'd
land of the weavers and the tillers!
of long-winded professors and peripatetic students!
land of the wind and the rain!
laid to rest and feeling kind of silly, given to writing long ideas in lengthy verse, nonsensical and demonstrably ridiculous, understated and crazy without saying, gripping eidolons in the key west of the mind, flying through the marvelous colors and salmon colored papers of the sinking moments.

Sometimes I get the feeling that I was born in a pretty how town, with up so many floating bells down, and danced my didn't and went the same, sun moon stars rain, and wish at some point that the creative forces would come together to the point that I could get paid for just sitting down and typing. I feel the motivation to do nothing much of anything aspiration in a convention job sort of sense, beyond the required washing of the dishes, but there is an idea, an inspiration that comes from the works of the great thinkers and poets of the past, that continues to draw me back to the written word: perhaps coming up with a reflection of reality that is more real in some way: or at least more real in an "I will pay you to write that" kind of way.

Visions of Cody:
Cody spend time in his room, sweating out the twisted psychedelic chords that came out of his electric guitar, when the light was gone and the ice cream had all been eaten. A thumping bass heavy sound came out of his strumming, and he managed to play chords and bend all the strings at the same time, which I'd never seen anybody be able to do. He played bluesy chords in an interesting style and was into some strange new age literature, but a thinker and a real person, of course, is anyone not real? Still, it just doesn't seem like the guitarists I hear around this town measure up at all. Still, that was Berkeley in 1990 and this is Corvallis, ....so there would be a difference, but live music is generally pretty tiresome for me anyway, at my advanced age, but that's another story.

The leaves around this town are very nice. The weather is different every day, and the bean is a quiet place and the peppermind tea is good. I remain as I am, contain'd between my hat and boots, one hand pointed out in one direction, the other adjusting the volume on the music, strolling around campus and libraries, enjoying the trees, visualizing characters, travelling around somewhat metaphorically like a cloud in the sky, but given to the idea of travel and the beauty of nature and it's myriad manifestos, denizen of the strolling walking and natural bounce and detailed element, the form of the physical demonstration, the idea of the four directions and returning, the floor and the air, and the idea that beyond the simple, there is no idea, or no idea in any region that applies to the principles of the wasting of signals, the strolling of the fish-shaped, the cradle, endlessly rocking, the fish and the form and the grain that's been scattered on the rocky ground, the last stone, forgotten, that becomes the chief cornerstone, and ...
if you had a rock, would you give him a fish?
if you had a stone, would you give him a diamond?
Despite all technological advancement and complexity, the resides on last question: what is tha nature of reality and consciousness and the mere existence of anything that can be perceived? Is reality screened through categories or is there some sort of absolute squirrel across the way from the peacock?

Friday, October 13, 2006

haiku rambling


Two haiku and a coffee cup

Sunday, October 08, 2006

life is suffering

Things are miserable.
Why does my appearance
seem to have a somber tone?
I wear the black for the poor and beaten down
living in the hopeless side of town
I wear it for the prisoner
that has long paid for his crime
but is there as a victim of his time
-johnny cash, "man in black"

That song kind of helps me out a little this day and yesterday, to help me to go from just feeling hopeless and tied and depressed to the point where I can go out and keep being able to sympathize with people experience other problems, perhaps more severe than mine, although they don't feel like it at this point. I guess that's the difference between problems that affect you directly and problems that other people have or that happen to other people.

As a dishwasher, I could easily lose my self-respect, but heck, why the heck should I do that? At this advanced age I'm more sure than i ever have been of who I am and what is important. Still, it is a scary world. I'm not sure I can trust my own mind, or necessarily be able to read the signs I need to read.

卯の花をかざしに関の晴れ着かな
Springs of verbena
thrust in my cap- such will be
my fancy attire
-basho

This reminds me of the dickinson poem that ends "perhaps I'll put a trinket on" which just goes to show, you can make a slight change and make note of the sun and life goes on.

Monday, October 02, 2006

poem written a while ago

when the television continues to emit
when I have had quite enough coffee
when I have toasted and eaten the bread
when I sit with a soft eye wondering
wandering over the frame of the contemplative room
wandering out the window and back
that seems the whole world within itself
containing worlds, contradictions, dogeared cowtails
framings in their infinite weaving
-chris farrell

part of a story
One day we decided we would set out for Oregon. My dad said, "sure, come on up" so we packed up a few things, and took the bus down to the freeway. We got out a sign and stood there waiting for a ride, while the cars came whizzing by. Finally someone picked us up. He was a guy who looked closet to forty, with a dark mustache, who said that he graduated from Berkeley in "chemical engineering". I got in the front seat, and was in charge of the conversation. He was working in toxic waste disposal, where it was certainly possible to make a lot of money, so we didn't bother to help him with the toll going over the bridge. He turned off somewhere up outside of the immediate East Bay Area, and we got to wait some more. The sun was till high in the sky, and it was warm, with the ozone dustiness of the California heat. A thing guy in a truck stopped for us, with a thing little mustache. He started telling us about all of the hitchhikers that he had to take out, because they tried to attack him.
"He pulled a gun on me, and I turned and grabbed it, and then the door came open and we both fell down out of the truck, rolling over and over, but I was on top in the last and took his gun away from him.
"Yeah, a lot of hitchhikers are dishonest." When I said that, an uneasy silence followed. He was wondering if we were dishonest and there was no way to dispel the tension. When he first stopped for us, he had glared at us and asked if either of us had any weapons or guns, making us feel like Bonnie and Clyde ever though we didn't think of ourselves as anything like that, until when he began to talk of it.
He mentioned that his wife was form the Philippines and talked about how they had met and what she had meant to him and his trip to the Philippines, and what it all had ...He was quite a guy, but wasn't going far so he let us off soon and wished us luck with a friendly smile.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006






sat down and wrote this poem recently at my local coffee area.


Poem #2

i was evolving out through the park
grass frolicking on the lawns
housing woody and square
the wrinkles round my thought
age and the way of sight
going out through the evening
striding through the twilight
seeing the suns flood
across the sky
unstopp'd
early in the current
walking on through space and time


I think it's pretty good, just pondering the lyric "there's wrinkles round my baby's eyes" from the bruce dude who always goes on about fixin' cars and such.

To be where you are, just as you are, have you ever considered that? -what it would be to be "just as you are"?
It seemed to me again that any circumstance could be seen in any variety of ways.


Saturday, September 23, 2006

idiot's song

They don't bother me. They let me go my way.
They say that nothing can happen.
How nice.
Nothing can happen. Everything comes and circles
forever around the Holy Ghost,
around that certain ghost (you know)-,
how nice.

No, one truly mustn't think that there's
anything dangerous in this.
Of course, that's the blood.
The blood is the heaviest thing. The blood is heavy.
Sometimes I think I can't go on any more-,
(How nice.)

Ah, what is this a pretty ball;
red and round like an overall,
Nice, that you made it.
Will it come when one calls?

How all of this names itself rare,
driven together, flowing apart:
friendly, a bit uncertain.
How nice.
-rilke


I am too alone in the world, and yet not alone enough
to make every hour holy.
I am too small in the world, and yet not tiny enough
just to stand before you like a thing,
just as it is.
I want my will, and I want to be with my will
as it moves toward deed;
and in those quiet, somehow hesitating times
when something is approaching,
I want to be with those who are wise,
or else alone.
I want always to be a mirror that reflects your whole being,
and never to be too blind or too old
to hold your heavy swaying image.
I want to unfold
Nowhere do I want to remain
because where I am bend .....

this is a lousy translation, maybe done by a computer. No use copying in the rest of it. It's from Rilke's Book of Hours.

It was a nice day and we worked on Tekki Sandan, which is one of the trickier forms.


Thursday, September 21, 2006

slang

Bad slang words to use on an airplane:
"the bomb". Never refer to anything as being "the bomb". As in, "man, that movie was the bomb!" Or some federal air marshalls will probably be pinning you to the floor with your arm in an armlock.

I'm kind of ill today and feel weird. Maybe it's the change in the weather.

in the fridge:
pears
guacamole
fruit salad
tofu
old stir-fry w/ rice
yogurt

good movies to see:
tokyo story: ozu
the devil and daniel johnston
office space

Monday, September 11, 2006

walked to the circle k

and thought to myself, what does all of this matter? Things change, stuff happens, the clouds roll along over the sky, the rivers flow to the sea, the waters roll by, but they are not the original waters, thoughts pass through the mind, dishes get washed, buses roll around, people make whooping sounds,
working all day in my daddy's garage
driving all night, chasing some mirage.


John Yoo has got to be one of my least favorite people, the talking-head lawyer that tries to justify Bush trying to hog all the power. How does he live with himself? How can he really believe that the constitution says anything about the president getting all the power, when it clearly says nothing like that? How does he sleep nights? Good job on trying to destroy the fundamental basis of our democracy, John. I'll give you a pat on the back---not. And to make matters worse, UC Berkeley gave you a job, my alma mater, so Berkeley gets slimed too.

248

There is a pain-so utter-
It swallows substance up-
Then covers the Abyss with Trance-
So Memory can step
Around-across-upon it-
As one within a Swoon-
Goes safely-were an open eye-
Would drop Him-Bone by Bone
-Dickinson

Saturday, September 09, 2006

I felt

I felt the hour rising up
and stillness reigned
steam rising from my cup
light coming down in train
if only it could fill me
water to a thirsty man
take away the folded leaves
questions of can't and can
I felt the hour rising up
and the sun was setting low
i put the Moon into a cup
and sighed to see it go

-chris farrell


That's a poem I wrote like ten years ago, when I was young and foolish, or at least ten years younger than I am now. The biography on me is going to be called "The Price of Genius". Not bad, right?

Composed upon Westminster Bridge

Earth has not anything to show more fair:
Dull would he be of soul who could pass by
A sight so touching in its majesty:
This City now doth like a garment, wear
The beauty of the morning; silent, bare,
Ships, towers, domes, theatres, and temples lie
Open unto the fields, and to the sky;
All bright and glittering in the smokeless air.
Never did sun more beautifully steep
In his first splendour, valley, rock, or hill;
Ne'er saw I, never felt, a calm so deep!
The river glideth at his own sweet will:
Dear God! the very houses seem asleep;
And all that mighty heart is lying still!

If the above poem seems wordsworthian, that's because it is by wordsworth.

The Lamb

Little Lamb who made thee
Dost thou know who made thee
Gave thee life & bid thee feed,
By the stream & o'er the mead;
Gave thee clothing of delight,
Softest clothing wooly bright;
Gave thee such a tender voice,
Making all the vales rejoice:
Little Lamb who made thee
Dost thou know who made thee

Little Lamb I'll tell thee,
Little Lamb Ill tell thee;
He is called by thy name,
For he calls himself a Lamb:
He is meek & he is mild,
He became a little child:
I a child & thou a lamb,
We are called by his name.
Little Lamb God bless thee,
Little Lamb God bless thee.
-william blake, songs of innocence and experience

I really feel kind of tired today for some reason. Who knows what it might be. Maybe it is living in a country where people without money can't get any justice. Maybe that's it.

Friday, September 08, 2006

homeland security

In this new age of terrorism, it may be the case that the American people have to accept some kind of wiretapping or whatnot. Let's be realistic: there are nasty people out there that want to kill us, and Bush didn't just make that fact up to scare us. It's really out there. It's also true that that problem is getting worse because of our policies, but that's another story.
The point is, if Bush wanted more power, he should have gone through proper channels. He's not king. Ted Koppel said just that last night on Charlie Rose. He said what I'm saying, which is that there may be cases where we have to give up a freedom or two. These are complicated questions. But when George junior just goes and does what he wants like he's king, that's not acceptable.
Speaking of Ted, that guy has a lot of intelligence and poise, it is obvious. That's the cool thing about TV, I guess. Sometimes Charlie gets guys on there that really know how to talk and make a point, people that can really choose their words carefully and really leave an impression. The news hour with Jim Lehrer, on the other hand, has a lot of people that really don't know much, but I like Jim anyway, and Ray, and Margaret, and the whole gang.


What I have been reading recently:

The Get Fuzzy Experience, about a cat with a bad attitude
"Tropic of Capricorn" by Henry Miller, because George Orwell said he was worth reading and he had some similarity to Walt Whitman.
"Collected Essays of George Orwell". A great writer that has fallen off in popularity.
The Book of Job. Over and over.
"How to Compost": fun with composting.
"History of Shotokan", about the old inventory of this particular style. Karate history is kind of nebulous because nobody wrote much of anything down.
The expiration dates on milk bottles. I got a bad milk at Fred's today. Fortunately they were nice about giving me another. If you check the dates out, some of them sit there for weeks....

Seen on the street: "Without Beavers there would be no water. Without water, there would be no life. Choose the Beavers. Choose life."

I try to not feel superior to people that are still out there wreaking havoc on their bodies with drugs and alcohol. I try not to feel superior, but I fail.

DDNR

DDNR (abbreviation) : Drunk Did Not Return. Condition of no longer being able to continue a specific activity due to over-consumption of alcohol. Often invoked in the middle of a board game, card game or physical activity and/or recorded on a scoring sheet. Can be used as an adjective or verb.
I know it's Sue's turn, but we'll have to skip her. She’s DDNR in the other room. Don't forget to mark Allison DDNR for the second round! Tom Can't play this hand. He's DDNRing.

Good Shotokan karate Seminar coming Up: Friday Sep 14th 5-7pm, Boy's and Girl's Club. Featuring Sensei Chris Smaby, 7th degree. He is a great instructor and also trains police in real-world techniques. Be there or be normal.

I'm feeling very persecuted these days. It seems like people just get messed over and despite being good people they keep getting messed with, kind of like Job or something, which I am reading a lot of, by the way.

I'm taking a Linux class this Fall. I figure it is kind of a neat thing, and I like messing with computers, so why not? And there is no way I want to spend the money to get Vista, which will just be a waste of time anyway.

So Bush suddenly wants Congress to pass a bill that makes all the illegal stuff he did legal? Why should they? Time to call Bush to account, lock him up, throw away the key. Tell him it's a fraternity prank.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

banana guitar flashlight



armor shiny tooth and nail eschatological sententiousness and the cloudy moose moon of the night and the wherewithal and the strings and elements and nightmares here and there and everywhere.

running through the bayou strumming on a guitar and making sense of the pretty cow town as the rainbows inching down streaming lines of destinutional reupenhancement concrudescenses.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Ghost ride da whip-new internet fad sweeping america

Apparently the latest fad is "ghost riding", where some foolish individual starts driving his car and then while it is still going, gets out of the seat, sits on the windshield, does a little dance, whatever, and then leaps back into the car at the last possible moment. Needless to say, there have been numerous crashes. They film the whole thing and upload it. Isn't it great we have these ridiculous pointless joie de vivre type fads going?
Most of the videos are set to to tune of the song that started it all: ghost ride da whip by e-40 or somebody.
So I'm going to try it with my bicycle.
More on the fad here

Saturday, August 19, 2006


jefferson park Posted by Picasa


 Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

beanery report

The Beanery was about the same as usual. I ordered the usual. Somebody was getting interviewed. Construction was continuing on the large building next door. The skinny guy with the goatee was there with his laptop. It was slightly humid and muggy.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

tupac dickinson

Poem from Emily Dickinson typed out while listening to Tupac.

There is a pain-so utter-
It swallows hollowpoint triplebeam up-
Then covers the Abyss with Trance-
So my 500 Benz can step
Around-across-upon it-
As one within a thug life-
Goes safely-where an open eye-
Would drop him-packing a Tec.

Who that cares much to know the history of man, and how the mysterious mixture behaves under the varying experiments of Time, has not dwelt, at least briefly, on the life of Saint Theresa, has not smiled with some gentleness at the thought of the little girl walking forth one morning hand-in-hand with her still smaller brother, to go and sek martyrdom in the country of the Moors? Out they toddled from rugged Avila, wide-eyed and helpless-looking as two fawns, but with human hearts, already beating to a national idea; until domestic relity met them in the shape of uncles, and turned them back from their great resolve. That child pilgrimage was a fit beginning. Theresa's passionate, ideal nature demanded an epic life: what were many-volumed romances of chivalry and the social conquests of a brilliant girl to her? Her flame quickly burned up that light fuel; and, fed from within, soared after some illimitable satisfaction, some object which would never justify weariness, which would reconcile self-despair with the rapturous consciousness of life beyond self. She found her epos in the reform of a religious order.
-george eliot, middlemarch

George Eliot was a great writer. One of the best.

The wind was blowing all over the place today and it looked as if it might rain almost after being kind of muggy and overcast in the afternoon.
I knew a guy who would sit downstairs in the lower level, studying architecture and snorting lines of speed intermittently, or so it was said. He was a bizarre looking character, but many of those people were kind of bizarre. Per and I were talking at one of the tables one night, and he told me that I seemed like the kind of person that would like speed, after he admitted that he and his friend were high on the stuff. Speed always seemed like something that would just speed you up, so why would I want to try that? ...or at least that's how my thinking went.
I remember strolling down Telegraph between Berkeley and Oakland, listening to Wake of the Flood on tape, really absorbing every note of that album, a really slow and sincere, beautiful album. I would walk the same route every time, turning at the same places. I remember I would pass an old black lady at the same time of day who was always sitting out on her porch, and she started to recognize me after a while, but she didn't wave or anything like that.
There were a lot of strange cults around, and bizarre religions, and normal religions. The north side of campus was known for several divinity schools that were based around there. I kind of at the time was interested in Buddhism and various eastern religions, (and still am), but was never one to be sucked into a cult. Of course, karate is somewhat of a cult, but not really, considering that it is basically just a physical discipline, and the philosophical aspects of it really aren't religious in nature.
I remember reading The Only Dance There Is by Ram Dass and thinking it was really great. He did write some good stuff, but he did some questionable stuff when he was at Harvard, like sleeping with his students, so you have to wonder about the guy. Still, he looks good compared to Timothy Leary. That guy was just a egocentric cynical manipulater. I guess I used to believe that psychedelics might lead to some kind of expanded consciousness, but I gave up that idea long ago. It seems to be that any spiritual achievement should be done within the normal consciousness. Shortcuts aren't going to work, and that's not even counting the possible negative effects: bad trips, etc.
What am I doing to make the world a better place? Not much. I volunteered at st
The second kitchen in Barrington, on the second floor, was the vegetarian kitchen, and I volunteered to do my workshift there, even though I had absolutely no idea of how to cook anything at that time. It seems to me like I really didn't learn much either. I remember slicing a bunch of broccoli and that is about it.
Mostly back then I ate slices of pizza and Ms. Field's cookies, which I snuck into the back of the Pacific Film Archive, because they didn't allow food in the auditorium.
I walked into a little ice cream shop on the North Side and there was a bum sitting in there, a homeless guy with blond hair and a red face, and I remember that there was a copy of the book "The Power to Preserve" by some hack science fiction writer on the shelf, with that picture of all those weird green people on the cover.

Saturday, July 29, 2006

from Thoreau

We can only live healthily the life the gods assign us. I must receive my life as passively as the willow leaf that flutters over the brook. I must not be for myself, but God's work, and that is always good. I will wait the breezes patiently, and grow as they shall determine. My fate cannot but be grand so. We may live the life of a plant or animal without living an animal life. This constant and universal content of the animal comes of resting quietly in God's palm. I feel as if I could at any time resign my life and the responsibility into God's hands and become as innocent and free from care as a plant or a stone.


The great God is very calm withal. How superfluous is any excitement in His creatures! He listens equally to the prayers of the believer and unbeliever. The moods of man should unfold and alternate as gradually as those of nature. The sun shines for aye! The sudden revolution of these times and this generation have acquired a very exaggerated importance. They do not interest me much, for they are not in harmony with the longer periods of nature. The present, in any aspect in which it can be presented to the smallest audience, is always mean. God does not sympathize with the popular movements.

I delight to come to my bearings-not walk in procession with pomp and parade, in a conspicuous place, but to walk even with the Builder of the universe, if I may-not to live in this restless, nervous, bustling, trivial Nineteenth Century, but stand or sit thoughtfully while it goes by.

Next to us the grandest laws are being enacted and administered. Neext to us in not the workman whom we have hired, but ever the workman whose work we are. He is at work, not in my backyward, but inconceivably nearer than that. We are the subjects of an experiment how singular? Can we not dispense with the society of our gossips a little while under these circumstances?

My desire for knowledge is intermittent; but my desire to commune with the spirit of the universe, to be intoxicated with the fumes, call it, of the divine nectar, to bear my head through atmospheres and over heights unknown to my feet, is perennial and constant.

Thursday, July 27, 2006


 Posted by Picasa

The world is hot and I wax colder, and the lines continue, boring and full of childishness and folly and terror, and I wonder just what things might come to in the interim, and the length of days and nights.
The typical old people are here, and the smattering of students and the extreme lengths that people go to in their sleep, in the heat of the moment and the wonder of each sincere night and moment and necessary puzzle, which one might realize as we all stumble from one thing to another.
It is nice and cool in here, the ceiling fan blows endlessly, and the world of ideas and psyches combine in major sense and declines, and the length of each penstroke and baroque queue defined by each major idea. The wonder of things are what they seem, or can become what they might.
There's god above and night by night one looks down on his gorgeous roof, full of all the rantings and tired bellowings that came to bear on what we can see or do in the idea or memory of trees or shadows and full memories of placemats, and each circle comes back on itself to make itself known.
Each major accomplishment gives to itself that which each man can take from the lot, and finds itself in line with what it can see. The world is full of timely detours, remorseless wanderings, and temples and schools, of edgeless thoughts and mindful denials and strong mannerisms and unknown changes.
The way of each curtain denial and the meanderings of thought, and exorcism and exercise and of the source, and the tangent realms, seen and meant to be,
coffee cups on the edge
and each prescient work,
finding itself dislodged
makes a demonic waste
set round on the edge
ticking of the clocks
we make up our minds
and find our sister stations

I find that what I can see is never as good as I might try to make it be, as one comes into his true idea and relation, relating to the coast and the ragged Point Joe crags, and the grass laid out and the dews that silently remain, the exit from the fight and the sense of sneakiness.


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Tuesday, July 25, 2006


new kitty cat we named Jasmine. She is in love with life and loves to bat at things and run around. Posted by Picasa



Does anybody want to buy this drawing and pay me lots of money so that I can get a big apartment in Manhattan with a doorman and picassos by van gogh on the wall and not have to wash dishes any more? No? Okay.

Newsflash: I did some laundry today: four t-shirts, a lot of shorts, and a lot of socks. Just thought I would share.

Friday, July 21, 2006


free verse w/ drawing Posted by Picasa

Thursday, July 20, 2006

coffee memories

I remember sitting at the campus Beanery in 1994 or so, in the summer, having just got out of some class, and drinking a coffee, which was a new thing for me to do. Something about the taste of the coffee got to me, and the caffeine starting kicking in, and I was hooked. Later when I moved to Portland I would stroll across southeast Portland listening to Robert Hunter, admiring the nice houses and the twilight, and wind up at Coffee People on Hawthorne, which at that time had some nice old thick wooden counters, and the coffee cups were heavy and gave you that viscerally pleasing thunk when they hit the bar. Coffee People had some good locations and pastries, but I guess they expanded too fast, got too greedy or something. Their slogan was "good coffee, no backtalk" and I remember going in there once and the guy asked me "what's happening?" and I said "nothing" and he said "why not?". I didn't reply, but I should having pointed out their slogan to them, that "backtalk" wasn't allowed. Maybe that wasn't in his contract or something.
There were a few people at class the other night, and it is nice to have a skill that somebody is interested in learning. You can sit around on the couch all the time, but if you don't get out and get some exercise, sooner or later you won't be able to get off the couch. I have a bad habit of eating large numbers of chocolate chip cookies, but on the other hand, I usually get out and exercise every day, either riding the bike around or walking or karate, so I burn through a lot of calories too.
I might go ahead and make some pasta at some point. There is something about the processes of cooking that is relaxing. Maybe I should be into table saws or hammers or something more stereotypically guy type interest, but cooking is kind of fun, and doesn't require much more than I have already. Actually, there are many things that are needed, but not a lot that I don't have.
It would be nice to get the heck out of town to avoid this heat, but there is not a lot of money to work with.
Second street is my favorite street. Perhaps I'm biased because I live in this town and seldom leave, but with the Beanery, Grass Roots, etc, what more do you really need?

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

random ranting

Why is it that people write out checks when you are standing there hoping the line will quickly progress? Those people laboriously write out the check, and then they write the amount in the log. What is the deal with these people? Couldn't they at least have the courtesy to write out the rest of the check so that all they have to do is write in the amount? Or couldn't they just pay with a card like everybody else? It isn't the seventies any more, and though you think you deserve a long face to face chatty interaction with the clerk, the rest of us might just want to buy our stuff and get out of there without listening to a long discussion about the church social or whatever it is you are talking about.

I find that I go around getting irritated about quite small things, and I have to admit that I need to find something else to think about. You don't think St. Francis was going around fuming about the guy that just passed him on the right, do you? There is only a finite amount of time in this life, and there are always positive things to think about, like the flowers in the grass or the blue sky, or whatever the heck you can think about that is positive. I often forget this. This is a great town, a very beautiful town, and yet it is so easy to get caught up in negativity. I'm only starting to learn this.

I had been hungry, all the Years-
My Noon had Come-to dine-
I trembling drew the Table near-
And touched the curious Wine-

'Twas this on Tables I had seen-
When turning, hungry, Home
I looked in Windows, for the Wealth
I could not hope-for Mine-

I did not know the ample Bread-
'Twas so unlike the Crumb
The Birds and I, had often shared
In nature's-Dining Room-

The Plenty hurt me-'twas so new-
Myself felt ill-and odd--
As Berry-of a mountain Bush-
Transplanted-to the Road-

Nor was I hungry-so I found
That Hunger-was a way
Of Persons outside Windows-
The Entering-takes away-

-e. dickinson

George Bush is evil. There, I've said it, and the world if full of confusion. People are out there on the street waving flags and exhorting us to support the troops, like it is all that simple. Sure we can support the troops, but Iraq is falling apart in a civil war that doesn't have much to do with our troops, other than we created the whole situation. What a mess. People need to take a chill pill and live and let live, relax a little, and live in harmony.
It was a mistake for Israel to even have been created at all. However, it is there now. They aren't all going to say, "ok, we'll go back to Europe or Russia" or wherever, so it would be nice if the radical Islamic element would recognize Israel's right to exist. Without recognizing that, it's like trying to negotiate with someone that's trying to kill you: kind of hard to do.
The government seems to be completely broken down and dysfunctional. The number one most important domestic issue is health care, and they aren't even talking about it.

Johannes Agricola in Meditation

There's heaven above, and night by night
I look right through its gorgeous roof;
No suns and moons though e'er so bright
Avail to stop me; splendour-proof
I keep the broods of stars aloof:
For I intend to get to God,
For 't is to God I speed so fast,
For in God's breast, my own abode,
Those shoals of dazzling glory, passed
I lay my spirit down at last.
I lie where I have always lain,
God smiles as he has always smiled;
Ere suns and moons could wax and wane,
Ere stars were thundergirt, or piled
The heavens, God though on me his child
Ordained a life for me, arrayed
Its circumstances every one
To the minutest; ay, God said
This head this had should rest upon
Thus, ere he fashioned star or sun.
And having thus created me,
Thus rooted me, he bade me grow,
Guiltless for ever, like a tree
That buds and blooms, nor seeks to know
The law by which it prospers so:
But sure that thought and word and deed
All go to swell his love for me,
Me, made because that love had need
Of something irreversibly
Pleadged soley its content to be.
Yes, yes, a tree which much ascend,
No poison-gourd foredoomed to stoop!
I have God's warrant, could I blend
All hideous sins, as in a cup,
To drink the mingled venoms up;
Secure my nature will convert
The draught to blossoming gladness fast:
While sweet dews turn to the gourd's hurt,
And bloat, and while they bloat it, blast,
As from the first its lot was cast.
For as I lie, smiled on, full-fed
By unexhausted power to bless,
I gaze below on hell's fiercest bed,
And those its waves of flame oppress,
Swarming in ghastly wretchedness;
Whose life on earth aspired to be
One altar-smoke, so pure!-to win
If not love like God's love for me,
At least to keep his anger in;
And all their striving turned to sin.
Priest, doctor, hermit, monk grown white
With prayer, the broken-hearted nun,
The martyr, the wan acolyte,
The incense-swinging child,-undone
Before God fashion star or sun!
God, whom I praise; how could I praise,
If such as I might understand,
Make out and reckon on his ways,
And bargain for his love, and stand,
Paying a price at his right hand?
-Robert Browning

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

defrosted freezer.

I left the door open on the freezer accidentally, so the stuff got all half melted, and one bag of raspberries had a leak, so when I closed the door, the raspberrie juice froze everything together in a big lump in the bottom of the freezer, so I finally dragged it (it is half-size) out to the driveway and let it defrost. The meat had to go, but the raspberries may still be okay.

Friday, July 07, 2006

houses

I rode out Oak Creek drive today and was impressed with the beautiful gardens and nice empty fields and rolling hills out in that area. There are some big gardens out there that almost look like mini-farms. One place has a bunch of goats too in addition to a large garden. It is a nice area, but unfortunately Oak Creek drive dead ends after a while, so without a mountain bike you can't connect to any other roads. Possibly you could follow the gravel road to connect with Sulphur Springs road, but you would need a bike that can ride on gravel. I was impressed with this area.


Speak, Memory
Back in the olden days, light years ago, when I was in college, things were different. I remember hearing about something called "e-mail" from my mom, and how I really should sign up for it. She had it because she was a professor and someone had set it up for her. So I went down into the basement of some science building on the north side of the berkeley campus, a place that was known as the geek lab. Everyone seemed to be doing things on extremely large screens, and the laser printers were working at full speed. I asked someone how to sign up for "e-mail" and he dismissively told me to go read a book on unix. That's the way it was in 1990. Basically back then we had computers that basically just functioned as word processors and that was it. Internet connectivity wasn't a factor at all. I think I learned what a modem was back in high school and used it to connect to "bulletin boards", which I think don't exist any more. That was based on some other kind of technology.
Anyway, Berkeley was a beautiful campus back then, and still is, I'm sure. I lived in a huge building that was part of the cooperative student association, basically the same as the dorms except it also had workshifts and stuff like that. I signed up to work in the vegetarian kitchen even though I really knew nothing at all about cooking at that time. Back then we had a kind of person known as a "vegetarian". My friend said she was trying to be a "vegan" and I asked what that was and that was the first I knew about veganism.
The place I lived in was kind of artistic and oriented towards music and creative types of things, as well as drugs, though mostly marijuana and psychedelics, as far as I knew. I knew that heroin had been pretty big there in years prior to that, but I never was around any heroin addicts as far as I knew. People were kind of crazed and on their own head trips, doing art, creating music, taking drugs, having the mistaken impression that the drugs were going to get them high and not hurt them in the long run. I remember my friend Sol, a kind of intense guy who also sold pot, invited me to go see Jerry Garcia, and so we headed over to San Francisco. Prior to leaving, though, we headed somewhere on a bus, with him carrying a backpack full of something that he left with some girl. I later found out in was full of marijuana, and hanging out with him was a big risk that I shouldn't have been taking, not because marijuana is bad, but because I could have got in some serious trouble. Anyway, we headed over to the Warfield on Market street and saw the Jerry Garcia Band, with John Kahn and Melvin Seals and some cool backup singers. It was an absolutely phenomenal concert, without a doubt the best concert I will ever see. I saw Jerry a couple other times, and the Dead a few times, but he was kind of hit-or-miss, but back then he definitely put out some good music.
Guitar playing was a lot of fun in that co-op. You could just wander down the hall and start up an impromptu jam session with whatever guitarist you happened to run into.
The weather in Berkeley was warm and mild. The winter got a little cold for a couple of months, but that was it.
My senior year was not the greatest. I remember watching a lot of TV and getting interested in the whole David Koresh thing, and then the bombing of the trade towers. I would wander out of my apartment half a block up to Cody's books, on of the greatest bookstores around, right on Telegraph avenue, and spend hours there reading the New Yorker. I remember reading about some guy who had headed out for Alaska to experience nature and find himself, not realizing the dangers of it all, and he ended up starving to death in some abandoned bus in the middle of the tundra. Pretty brutal.
Telegraph was kind of cool, but kind of rough in a big-city kind of way. If you came out and tried to walk around at like three in the morning, there would be nobody on the street but prowling crack addicts, looking for something to steal. It was kind of hairy.
Then there was "People's Park". Some people loved that place my freshman year because it was easy to go over there and score some pot. On the other hand, I see now that many people did not want that kind of activity, but anyway, they cracked down on all that at some point. There was one dude, Anthony, that we would see around, who would occasionally set up his amp on the street and play really great Hendrix-like music, but he was a crack addict, and would come in the bathroom at the house at Ward street to smoke his pipe. Some many colorful characters....
Most of the students going to Berkeley were totally serious about their studies. I was a little preoccupied, but I did manage to graduate. I took some great courses in classical Japanese poetry, Japanese literature, Classical Chinese, etc, and studied my ass off intermittently, but somehow, although on the one hand I was intrigued with the subject, I really didn't know where I was headed with it all, so I never did more than the B.A. I took some serious writing classes, where we were forced to read heavy stuff like the Iliad, etc, but I guess I really didn't get any kind of direction from the whole thing. I took a poetry class from Robert Hass- he was a great teacher and a great appreciator. I learned of Hopkins, Yeats, and many others from him, and later went on to discover Dickinson, Whitman, Rilke, and Jeffers, but I got a lot out of his class. But was it difficult? Not really.
I took a class in "Comparative Religions" way back in 1987, was before Islam was really reviled the way it is today, but I remember than a woman came in who had converted to Islam, and many people were hostile to her because of the attitudes towards women that tend to come up in that culture. We also took a field trip to a Dominican monastery that was located in the middle of Berkeley. The monks wanted us to know that they did it for God and not for any other reason.
I did a bit of karate down there at a few different schools, but it was never a high priority. Sensei Sharifi, a high-ranking instructorr, was just opening a school in Oakland at that time, but his dues were high, and it was in kind of a rough area, so it could get a little risky riding down there. The dues were also kind of high, for what money I had anyway. Later on I did end up training there quite a bit. It was quite challenging, there were many black belts, and I could have gotten a lot more into it if I hadn't been distracted by so many other things.

Sunday, July 02, 2006

karate done right

Kanazawa doing Jitte is truely a beautiful sight. This guy is a star of Shotokan karate, and he does what to me is the way a kata should be done in this style of karate. He doesn't make it flowery or anything, or do anything to attract attention to himself other than doing the kata in a very skillful manner, utilizing the proper form, speed, etc.





Here's me playing tears of rage by Bob Dylan.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Lions in Sweden

No more phrases, Swenson: I was once
A hunter of those sovereigns of the soul
And savings banks, Fides, the sculptor's prize,
All eyes and size, and galled Justitia,
Trained to poise the tables of the law,
Patientia, forever soothing wounds,
And mighty Fortitudo, frantic bass.
But these shall not adorn my souvenirs,
These lions, these majectic images.
If the fault is with the soul, the sovereigns
Of the soul must likewise be at fault, and first.
If the fault is with the souvenirse, yet these
Are the soul itself. And the whole of the soul, Swenson,
As every man in Sweden will concede,
Still hankers after lions, sent them back
To Monseiur Dufy's Hamburg whence they came.
The vegetation still abounds with forms.
-w. stevens

Justitia: the roman goddess of justice

Frogs eat butterflies, snakes eat frogs, hogs eat snakes, men eat hogs

It is true the the rivers went nosing like swine,
Tugging at banks, until they seemed
Bland belly-sounds in somnolent troughs,

That the air was heavy with the breath of these swine,
The breath of turgid summer,and
Heavy with thunders' rattapallax,

That the man who erected this cabin, planted
This field, and tended it awhile,
Knew not the quirks of imagery,

That the hours of his indolent, arid days,
Grotesque with this nosing in banks,
This somnolence and rattapallax,

Seemed to suckle themselves on his arid being,
As the swine-like rivers suckled themselves
While they went seaward to the sea-mouths
-w. stevens

rattapallax: the sound of thunder

Nuns fret not at their convent's narrow rooms

Nuns fret not at their convent's narrow room;
And hermits are contented with their cells;
And students with their pensive citadels;
Maids at the wheel, the weaver at his loom,
Sit blithe and happy; bees that soar for bloom,
High as the highest Peak of Furness-fells,
Will murmur by the hour in foxglove bells;
In truth the prison, into which we doom
Ourselves, no prison is: and hence for me,
In sundry moods, 'twas pastime to be bound
Within the Sonnets' scanty plot of ground;
Pleased if some Souls (for such there needs must be)
Who have felt the weight of too much liberty,
Should find brief solace there,as I have found.
-wordsworth (who else)

sundry: haphazard assortment of different things

The weather is kind of warmish and a bit overcast today. The interzone has burritos with a lot of marinated tofu in them. I like tofu, but I'd pretty much prefer beans in a burrito, generally.
I get a big kick out of my job: I really don't mind it at all. There is something about dishwashing that kind of calms my mind. On the other hand, doing it full time would be a drag, and I didn't go to college for four years to be a dishwasher, so maybe I'll get into day trading or mutual funds or something.

I can really do without that tall building they are building in front of the beanery. It really blocks the sky. I often feel a real sense of peace walking into the beanery and enjoying the quiet atmosphere and sky in that part of town, being a block from the river and all that, so I don't like that new building.

much have I travelled in realms of gold
measuring out my life in coffee spoons
in a litte cow town
cooking up some fried rice

Saturday, June 24, 2006

oregon state hospital





what a weird strange looking place-100 years old. A dungeon really. They are finally going to rip it down and build a new one.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

alligator




What's the deal with this alligator thing on the lamppost? Is it some resurgence of preppiness in Corvallis?



Here's a picture of my coffee cup. There hasn't been a lot going on. Enjoying the weather, doing the usual biking around, enjoying the lack of traffic. It is kind of a lazy and hot day and I might wander on downtown. I was walking up 12th street from van buren to Taylor today and noticed that there are a few really really nice and beautiful large old trees on that street, and the houses are exceptional, people taking care of their gardens and flowers, all making the effect of a really nice quiet street that is pretty much in the middle of town. So check out 12th street, if you happen to be walking, say, from the library to Fred Meyer, for example.

anyone lived in a pretty corvallis town
with up so many floating bells down
they danced their didn't they went their same
sun moon stars rain
-ee cummings

In other news, the town is quiet. I've been walking up Van Buren because it has been so quiet traffic-wise. Usually there are too many cars to enjoy that street, but this evening in particular, there was a nice feeling in the air, etc.
I was thinking, have I always lived in this podunk town? The answer is no. I left for a while, went other places, but now I live here on very little money and tend not to take many trips for that reason. On the other hand, St. Francis didn't take a lot of trips either. When it seems to me that I need some material item, or I need to spend money for anything, I think that if my mind was in the right place, I wouldn't need any of those things. Then again, I am not sure what exactly my goals are at this point besides continuing with the karate and so forth.
But karate is just something I've always done, a great thing, but not something that will pay the bills. On the other hand, I really don't have the ability to get excited about any real-world aspirations, it seems. I have my job, which really doesn't bother me, and the only thing I really have much interest in is the weather, or maybe poetry or something. Thoreau was content to wander around and endlessly chronicle the working of nature. In a way, that could work, but then again Thoreau died young, embittered, and alone.

On the other hand, what is the use of excessive worry? Life happens as it happens. One can only do the right thing given the circumstances of the moment.

Friday, June 16, 2006

choppin blades

boys kickin back
laying in the shade
ain't nobody tripping off
the money I already made
the 90's were subjective
2000 for the ballers
the drop top Jag
and a candy-red Impala
If you're selling big G's
keep pushing my n*
hold your horses
I'm a big something getting bigger
I'm Pimp C b*
In the ghetto I'm a star
I made this for the n*'s
trying to chop in their cars
-from "Choppin' Blades", Dirty Money, by UGK-1994

chopping blades:



blades: 18" or larger chrome rims that have three propeller like
portions; 'choppers'

"Them blades was choppin' up tha block"

Saturday, June 10, 2006

picture


guitarist at beanery Posted by Picasa

Thursday, June 08, 2006

corvallis slopes

The land slopes up slowly toward osu, so it is obvious why they put the university there. It is hard to say there is much of a hill, but you are walking slightly uphill all the way from downtown to central campus. Jefferson street is a particularly nice street because of all those nice large leafy trees that are there. It was kind of cloudy this morning but finally got sunny in the late afternoon.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

the recluse

A man is raisede up from the earth by two wings-simplicity and purity. There must be simplicity in his intention and purity in his desires.
If your heart be free from ill-ordered affection, no good deed will be difficult for you. If you aim at and seek after nothing but the pleasure of God and the welfare of your neighbor, you will enjoy freedom within.
If your heart were right, then every created thing would be a mirror of life for you and a book of holy teaching, for there is no creature so small and worthless that it does not show forth the goodness of God. If inwardly you were good and pure, you would see all things clearly and understand them rightly, for a pure heart penetrates to heaven and hell and as a man is within, so he judges what is without. If there be joy in the world, the pure of heart certainly possess it; and if there be anguish and affliction anywhere, an evil conscience knows it too well.
-imitation of christ, thomas a kempis

hams and delusions are esteemed for soundest truths, while reality is fabulous. If men would steadily observe realities only, and not allow themselves to be deluded, life, to compare it with such things as we know, would be like a fairy tale and the Arabian Nights' Entertainments. If we respected only what is inevitable and has a right to be, music and poetrywould resound along the streets. When we are unhurried and wise, we perceive that only great and worthy things have any permanent and absolute existence-that petty fears and petty pleasures are butthe shadow ofthe reality. This is always exhilarating and sublime
-thoreau

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

life and fate

the ten thousand maniacs play on the speakers, and have kind of a distinctive vocal style. It has been raining every day now for the past few days but I managed to get the lawn mowed, which really needed to be done. There is always the weather, seeing the weather and wondering how things will go, and not knowing, and worrying, and experiencing this and that, and the real pain in this world, not able to separate out, or to get into any more detail that I have gone into already.
There are those who take chances, or maybe they just do what seemed right at a certain time, and perhaps it was the right decision, but at certain times, there can be the distinct feeling that something has gone very wrong.
I guess it could be worse. I could be like Keats and have died eleven years ago. On the other hand...

I heard to old, old men say,
'Everthing alters,
And one by one we drop away.'
They had hands like claws, and their knees
Were twisted like the old thorn-trees
By the waters.
I heard the old, old men say,
'All that's beautiful drifts away
Like the waters.'
-yeats

somehow that poem makes me feel better. There is beauty out there apart from any particular thing.

Who will go drive with Fergus now,
And pierce the deep wood's woven shade,
And dance upon the level shore?
Young man, lift up your russet brow,
And lift your tender eyelids, main,
And brood on hopes and fear no more.

And no more turn aside and brood
Upon love's bitter mystery;
For fergus rules the brazen cars,
And rules the shadows of the wood,
And the white breat of the dim sea
And all dishevelled wandering stars.
-yeats

No, my life is not this precipitous hour
through which you see me passing at a run.
I stand before my background like a tree.
Of all my many mouths I am but one,
and that which soonest chooses to be dumb.

I am the rest between two nots
which, struck together, sound discordantly,
because death's note would claim a higher key.

But in the dark pause, trembling, the notes meet,
harmonious.
And the song continues sweet.
-rilke

I read it in your word, and learn it from
the history of the gestures of your warm
wise hands, rounding themselves to form
and circumscribe the shapes that are to come
Aloud you said: to live, and low: to die,
and you repeated, tirelessly: to be.
And yet there was no death till murder came.
Then through your perfect circles ran a rent
and a cry tore,
scattering the voices that not long before
had gently blent
to utter you,
to carry you,
bridge across the abyss--

And what they since have stammered
are the fragments only
of your old name.
-rilke

Monday, May 22, 2006

The hour is striking so close above me,
so clear and sharp,
that all my senses ring with it.
I feel it now: there's a power in me
to grasp and give shape to my world.

I know that nothing has ever been real
without my beholding it.
All becoming has needed me.
My looking ripens things
and they come toward me, to meet and be met.


2.
I live my life in widening circles
that reach out across the world.
I may not complete this last one
but I give myself to it.
I circle around God, around the primordial tower.
I've been circling for thousands of years
and I still don't know: am I a falcon,
a storm, or a great song?



3.
I have many brothers in the South
who move, handsome in their vestments,
through cloister gardens.
The Madonnas they make are so human,
and I dream often of their Titians,
where God becomes an ardent flame

But when I lean over the chasm of myself-
it seems
my God is dark
and like a web: a hundred roots
silently drinking.

This is the ferment I grow out of.

More I don't know, because my branches
rest in deep silence, stirred only by the wind.




4.
We must not portray you in king's robes,
you drifting mist that brought forth the morning.

Once again from the old paintboxes
we take the same gold for scepter and crown
that has disguised you through the ages.

Piously we produce our images of you
till they stand around you like a thousand walls.
And when our hearts would simply open,
our fervent hands hide you.



5.
I love the dark hours of my being.
My mind deepens into them.
There I can find, as in old letters,
the days of my life, already lived,
and held like a legend, and understood.

Then the knowing comes: I can open
to another life that's wide and timeless.

So I sometimes like a tree
rustling over a gravesite
and making real the dream
of the one its living roots
embrace:

a dream once lost
among sorrows and songs.

Life sometimes gets to a place where there is a lot of nervousness and uncertainty, and then all one can do is listen to Jerry and relax, and know that everything is okay:
Candyman:
come on you pretty women
with your hair a hangin down
open up your windows
cause the candyman's in town
come on boys and gals
roll those laughing bones
seven come eleven
boys, I'll take your money home
look out look out the candyman
here he come and he's gone again
pretty lady ain't got no friend
till the candyman comes around again

I come in from memphis
where I learned to talk the jive
when I get back to memphis
be one less man alive
good morning mr. Benson
I see you're doing well
If I have me a shotgun
I'll blow you straight to hell
look out look out the candyman
here he comes and he's gone again
pretty lady ain't got no friend
till the candyman comes around again.
-and incredibly beautiful song by the Grateful Dead, American Beauty '72.



The lord owns the earth and all it contains,
the world and all who live in it.
For he set foundation upon the seas,
and established it upon the ocean currents.
Who is allowed to ascent the mountain of the Lord?
Who may go up to his holy dwelling place?
The one whose deeds are blameless and whose motives are pure,
who does not lie,
or make promises with no intention of keeping them.
Such godly people are rewarded by the Lord,
and vindicated by the God who delivers them.
Such purity characterizes people who seek his favor,
Jacob's descendants, who pray to him.


Is this too religious for you? Too bad. It's my blog. Sometimes life is confusing and you just need to go back to a text, or at least that his been my habit in the few days of my vain life.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

It's nice to get some comments on my blog.

I checked out a copy of "The Journal of Henry D. Thoreau", edited by Bradford Torrey, from the osu library again. It must be out of print, because I've only seen it in the library. Something about it is quite remarkable, and I'll share with you, my readers, some of the better quotes. Thoreau, although he got cynical as he got old, was quite a thinker on the beauty of nature. He was also very solitary, which is a trait in common with me.

If there is nothing new on earth, still there is something new in the heavens. We have always a resource in the skies. They are constantly turning a new page to view. The wind sets the types in this blue ground, and the inquiring may always read a new truth.

What a hero one can be without moving a finger! The world is not a field worthy of us, not can we be satisfied with the plains of Troy. A glorious strife seems waging within us, yet so noiselessly that we but just catch athe sound of the location ringing of victory, borne to us on the breeze. There are in each the seeds of a heroic ardor, which need only to be stirred in with the solid where they lie, by an inspired voice or pen, to bear fruit of a divine flavor.

Whatever past or present wisdom has published itself to the world, is palpable falsehood till it come and utter itself by my side.

So that's it on Thoreau for now.





Thursday, May 18, 2006

name-calling

People who write blogs should realize that it never makes them look good to call other people bad names. There is a lot of conflict in the world, and to avoid destructiveness and conflict, you have to avoid negativity in your own consciousness and emotions. If there is a disagreement, or others are doing things that you don't agree with, it really never helps to refer to them in degrading and nasty terms, and it ends up dragging you down in the mud too. My theory is that one should express his opinion calmly, and not get sucked into angry and emotional debates. If you are advocating peace, or the end to the war, you should be sure that there isn't anger and conflict within yourself.
On a related subject, Critical Mass bike ride really seems to me to be trivial at times. If you go out there and ride around and make a statement, fine, but if you go out there looking to get into a conflict with the police, and then that happens, you have noone to blame but yourself. If you really want to advocate bicycling, then bicycle every day, and that is the best way to promote bicycling. It seems to me that a lot of young people that are advocating causes like, for example, preserving the old growth, or riding bicycles, are basically going out there to look for a fight, so that makes them basically as morally compromised as anyone else. If you are going to complain about something other people are doing, make sure that you yourself are doing the right thing or you are just creating more problems.

On the other hand, people need to get out and protest unnecessary wars, unnecessary logging of old growth, and promote the use of bicycles. Critical Mass really just seems like an unnecessary stunt to me, though. Get out and ride the bike every day. Then every day there will be so many bikes on the road that people will have to start noticing them. Having a big herd of them out on only one day is just an annoyance, and pointless as well, because how many of those critical mass types really bicycle every day? On the other hand, maybe I'm being overly negative.

I guess I'm really the type of person that would rather look inward, or at least try to look inward and find peace, than to go out and try to effect change in the world. It's not that I am satisfied with how this country is being run, but I have always in the back of my mind living a life in connection with nature, separate from society.

I will arise and go now, and go to innisfree
and a small cabin build there, of clay and wattles made;
nine bean rows will I have there, a hive for the honeybee,
and live alone in a bee-loud glade.

and I shall have some peace there, for peace comes dropping slow,
dropping from the veils of the morning to where the cricket sings;
there midnight's all a-glimmer, and noon a purple glow,
and evening full of linnet's wings.

I will arise and go now, for always night and day
I head the water lapping with low sound by the shore;
while I stand on the roadway, or on the pavements gray,
I hear it in the deep heart's core.






Unrelated quote:

Job 35

Then Elihu said:
"Do you think this is just?
You say, 'I will be cleared by God.'
Yet you ask him, 'What profit is it to me,
and what do I gain by not sinning?'
"I would like to reply to you and to your friends with you.
Look up at the heavens and see;
gaze at the clouds so high above you.
If you sin, how does that affect him?
If your sinsa re many, what does that do to him?
If you are righteous, what do you give to him,
or what does he receive from your hand?
Your wickedness affects only a man like yourself,
and your righteousness only the sons of men.

Men cry out under a load of oppression;
they plead for relief from the arm of the powerful.
But no one says, 'Where is God my Maker,
who give songs in the night,
who teaches more to us than to the beasts of the earth
and makes us wiser than the birds of the air?'
He does not answer when men cry out
because of the arrogance of the wicked.
Indeed, etc.

This kind of relates to my own belief that you can do anything you want, but you may as well do the right thing.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

angst

I feel a vague sense of angst, as if things are not going well. Sure, it is sunny; sure, the little kitten is happy playing with various cords and moving objects, but there is a vague sense of angst, as if the world was slightly out of tune.

"I met Brother Lawrence for the first time today. He told me that God had been especially good to him in his conversion. He was eighteen at the time, and still in the world. He told me that it had all happened one winter day, as he was looking at a barren tree. Although the tree's leaves were indeed gone, he knew that they would soon reappear, followed by blossoms and then fruit. This gave him a profound impression of God's providence and power which never left him. Borther Lawrence still maintains that this impression detached him entirely from the world and gave him such a great love for God that it hasn't changed in all of the forty years he has been walking with Him."
-from the Practice of the Prescence of God by Brother Lawrence.