02 April, 2013

Losantiville Lines: Inclination, Poetry, and Song

Your Sacred space is where you can find yourself over and over again. - Joseph Campbell

All I've ever really wanted to do is write poetry and play music. -- Me, in a conversation with Amanda

April means that Spring might actually be here, and that, shortly, summer will arrive. April also means it's National Poetry Month. And while I don't generally need an excuse to write poetry, I have found that it's useful for me to take advantage of said Month to write Poetry.

A few years ago and under a different blog title (Fictions of the Dead Machine, for those hearty few who may have been reading me that long... and if you have, Gawd Bless Ye!) I decided to write one poem a day for the entire month of April. They weren't all good poems; but that's entirely too subjective a standard to judge anything by.

The problem with holidays, set aside times of the year, and months dedicated to this or that or the other is that we, as a culture, tend to misunderstand the purpose of said holidays, seasons, and sometimes arbitrarily chosen spans of days. Such days are not so much time keeping tools as they are mnemonic ones; they are part of The Long Memory, and one of our connections to it. They have become reasons for percentage off sales and the regurgitation of traditions and rituals whose actual purpose (mnemonic) has long been lost to the hobgoblin of habit.

When I decided to write a poem a day before, it was mostly because I was afraid I was losing something something. I was still writing -- at that point, getting paid for it -- but there was very little poetry to it that I could see.

Time and Distance have changed some of that perspective.

I have long been aware of the wonderful and terrible blessing it is to know what you want to do. There hasn't been a time, since the age of 10, that I haven't wanted to write. There hasn't been a time that I wasn't around music and wasn't enamored with it. Much of my memory, like most people's is fueled by music. That all I've ever wanted to do is write and play music has helped provide a certain filter for things; I was able to eliminate a lot of options that others may have seen as plausible (My Dear Sweet Ma always thought I'd make a good lawyer or social worker).

But that also means that I have been doomed to, on occasion, engage in preoccupations for the purposes of making a bit of money here and there. Some people call that having a job, or... Gawd help them... a CAREER.

For me, it's always been a damnable distraction, contrary to my nature, my purpose, and at times, my happiness.

But even so, I must remain aware that there is poetry and music in it.

1. Crawl Inside

Find the light deep in the belly.
Home is the place where the sun always shines.
Outside the window,
gray cityscapes stretch immense --
monuments to pale sensibilities,
altars upon which we spill the blood of children.

There is music in the pocket of the sun;
rhythm is reflected in new Spring Moon
from the light in your eyes.

Taloolah sings through strings
forged from precious metals
and ancient dreams.
Her voice is yours,
and it echoes in my ears.


Dream of Spring and dread the impending summer;
speak of stowing away the sweaters, the long underwear, the wool;
spend long minutes staring into mirrors,
wondering about laugh lines, sagging skin, and back fat;
resent objectification and miss being the object;
hair color, wrinkle cream, the right car, the right light;
graze on salads and sparkling water while the scent
of ribs on the spit and cold beer waft in the wind;

dream of spring.

Days idyllic that never were; imagine a once upon a time
when your first thought of the day was not
Not Again...

Location:Cincinnati, OH