Saturday, March 5, 2011

Catching Trains

It is horrendous, this world's condition of dying. Loss of life is the most arduous vista of pain. Let us honor Akilah's life and legacy, and honor her advance toward death as "a field of investigation" by writing a poem....While on your back fold your fingers with fingertips pressing into your chest, this way you conduct the flow of energy back inside you. Occasionally PRESS your fingertips deeper into your chest to better sense your recycled circuitry.... Let the poems and music become an entirely new PLACE you go to. When the CD ends light a candle. WRITE THESE PARTICULAR NOTES BY CANDLELIGHT ONLY!... Notes about death, notes about living with death, notes about the topography of grief, of darkness, isolation, forgiveness, and what it means to give and receive mercy. For the next week keep your notes on you at all times. Walk everywhere with them and BE READY to add to them, or to begin PULLING them and kneading them into a poem, a poem you write for the living who are dying everyday. And STOP sleeping so much! We sleep TOO MUCH!  --- CAConrad, excerpted from Akilah's Legacy, (Soma)tic # 55

This body is constructing a plexiglass box, 8 by 5, that it can get into via a hatch n lock system above, needs knock to be let out of. I've been told there is a magician who is named Chris Angel and that he is a "Mind Freak." A  student said to me that this Chris Angel places himself in suchlike contraptions. And people stare in awe at how he is able to fit into these spaces, how he can endure the cramped extremes of his own doing for so long. Ok, I said, but I was taking the construction of this box--sitting in the middle of my office/bedroom in lying sheets--as a place of banality, making visible the sort of enclosures we're married to most of the time. A place from which to write and a place to stare out of. Suspicion of blind-spots to the cube I inhabit. I will move at the end of the month into a house the bank has owned for two generations. Some enclosures are larger, where  still we perform invisible, intimate, virtuosic, acts of production--like organelles, say, for a nervous system guarded by board members. What's magical about living in a box? Maybe a lot, if the question is what COULD be magical about living in a box? 

I am from the midwest. 

The Amtrak station has not been 
what it names for a long time 
now. It's a clenched limb, monumental cut in the horizon for the sky that breathes. [A gag system also, that sings. The throat of grief. And me pissing in a bucket projected silently on a screen behind the live me pissing in a bucket. I say to E that public incontinence is as rare as public grieving. It's not a matter of who will strain for you, but who will strain with you. Of a once-was. In an is-shape. Post-industrial tape choking off air as it wraps the gullet is also love. "Why?" "The sound is tremendous. Shared and tormented the wind and the skin cohere, so we collect and backlight  the voices 

resolve. This restoration of our electrical current. We will each have mended spines at least once."] A deco foot trapped in a boot of fences. 

One time playing postwar there an Israeli named Zvi fell thru the rotted floorboard to the mezzanine. He didn't die. But it was dark inside, and that fantastic echo, and magic really could steal your fears. 

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