THE JUICE MADE THE NEW GIRL WINCE 'It's been twelve centuries now since anyone's walked over the Asian mountains.' She mentioned that twice and I was no longer sure even of what it referred to. Hannibal? Himalayas? Alps? Urals? Carpathians? All those mountain ranges like names of strangers. I knew, I think I know, I heard, well, maybe. I think, therefore I...climb? Rode horses? Carry my own baggage over to Kilimanjaro? Whew! Beats me, all of this does. I want, much more instead, to be inverted like a comma, twisted like a frank, salted like a peanut and, for secular-vast God's sake, be taken away in chains. I thought I knew history well. Now she's broken it all to Hell.
IMBROGLIO AT MCFADDENS The fat-waisted middle-man held me down for the count while the champ went on pounding my head. I screamed for his mercy. He laughed louder than that: 'you old fart!' I thought he said; something like that. Why I had come here? I'd already forgotten. The blood tasted better than the chilly food, and the drinks were no better than the rotten girls who served them. I thought, for just merely a moment, I'd rather be down for the cunt, but figured not to say for it wouldn't work and he'd probably pound my head all the harder. I was not, decidedly, here, any champ of my own, nor material to be one now. A few missing teeth. A swell where my nose might have been. That arm, now twisted and pinned like wire behind an old TV's back, would - I was certain - never hammer a nail again. Were I to roll over, he'd probably just kick my butt anew. Pound my kidney down, browbeat the back of my - already well-beaten - brow. Do you see the conundrum this causes? I'm in trouble at McFaddens, for no ostensible reason at all.
PRELIMINARIES OF JILL I sense I'll get through January OK, for anyway what it's worth : crenelated icetops, roofs and gutters, icicle hangings and that decrepit drugstore awning which finally collapsed under its load of snow. Your big box of oranges, some special kind, flown in from a distant place - Timbuktu or Samarkand. Delicious you claim to taste and oh so sweet on the tongue. I'd bet. You yet. - Disappear me from this absence, make me one with joy. I life out my hand from the sticky matter it's been caught in, and realize I'm hindered by its ooze and weight. Nothing slows down, except, s0 it's been said - that which slows down. Make it past the shackles, brother, and you're free. Free. Free again like that Allman bird or whatever from way back when - when the rafters rang with laughter, when the Beacon wasn't peakin'. - Now like litter after a catfight, dogfight, ticker-tape parade for vandals and sportsmen and astronauts both dead and weightless and alive and floating, I can't figure a thing. Why you're here, and I'm not. Or vice-versa. For the crowd, swelling and frolicking all along the sidelines, we are nothing but some geeks in a car on parade. Go ahead then, convertible girl, you do your royal wave, and I'll do the gaze.
WHAT'S ON TAP? Sitting still lonely, trying to remain pleasant - as sure of myself as nothing. Merely counting things doesn't always work, isn't enough. Taking all that New Age personal inventory schlock for what it is. An always-on-tap Propaganda message. Well, maybe sometimes there are exceptions : the jury-rigged phone call in the middle of the night that brings nothing forth but more mystery. The unrecognized voice. The strange yet dull urgency. What does that mean? - Alone, it stands for nothing; like a speed-bump stands for speed. Or a 'slow-down' demand? I can't think of anything anyway, now that you're gone.
WHEN BROWN TURNS TO BLACK Fickle moments that arrive entire, at once, as altogether. I stand back - vaguely, and just for the moment - to look at a Pollock. Number 1, 1950, to be precise, later re-named as 'Lavender Mist'. It's the one Vogue magazine ran with in March '51 for their trendy fashion shoot. What a different world it must have been. Lightning streaks, and grease marks, new jet planes enticing the sky, fears of great Red Commies everywhere, and why?
JOHNNY'S SO LONG AT THE FAIR (Tycho Brahe) Bring in the capstans and all the happenstance of random occurrence; the universe is spinning madly as we fall. We are suspended - seemingly - in a space of no space, in a liquid all our own, hanging tenuously in a dark-matter space (listen to me) of our own dire imagining. All your Science now, Tycho Brahe has gone to naught. The wonder is that we are yet here. - I look at the shapes of things and I see a jar. The shape of matter varies, but my certainties abound. They each keep their shape, and remain the same. So then, I have no doubts, I am not a doubting man. Should you but need to imagine, know that I was fixed by nose-in-place Johnson - some quack from the broad Venus plains. I suggest nothing and nothing is thereby suggested back. So I need not even listen : except to the Spring and the air and the sunlight and all the mottled lands and waters of this world. Nature is my cuff link, worn boldly in my broadly-patterned shirt. - I want to find the world right where it is. I want to find a Nature - as well - in place. My lead pencils and exercise books, (remember them?), are kept yet under lock and key in the library closet, beneath the stairway at the third-floor landing. Hardly anyone goes and no one sees. Only a rich man, carrying candle and light in the deepest of night, would even know this all existed. - I am kept like silk in a madman's harem. I am Johnny, so long at the fair.
AT THE RAINBOW HILTON No dreams, no dreams like this one.
You make me savage and dense, have already.
I take out the spoon, and the sharpened knife,
which I then plunge (effortlessly) into my
still self-sustaining chest. I fall to the ground,
dying. But before that ends, everything is over and I wake up again standing straight. The ladle has fallen off the counter, and your blood-red soup is dripping onto the floor. The ceiling lamp seeps forth its errant light, illuminating all and nothing just the same. I glance at the calendar page on the door. It reads '1954'.
CITY OF BROTHERLY LOVE Such largess keeps me waiting, keeps me wanting, keeps me wily and willful as well and about all things. Seventh and Pine or Spruce or whatever - all these places scatty abound, whether lost or found, all those antiques and family stories and food in the City of Brotherly Love. - I broke your harness the day the Moon was eclipsed. We came back running, both of us out of breath. Long, long after midnight. The blue rush, the black rush, and all that orangey tint. Largess and love - all pleasures too - in the City of Brotherly Love.
WHAT A BLIND, CRAZY MESS THIS IS First off, we're going to bite the apple; yes, yes bite. Like that mysterious Adam in the garden far off, walking deliriously in a circular motion, we'll shamble a juba past each obstacle in our path. We'll erect an edifice and a hurdle in any location we choose. Fences will not stop us, nor walls, nor doorways. - Loft lifts and elevator entries. Piles of rags and blankets, things with which to cover cargo and freight. Everything is cast about as if - without thought - the craven dream has come to life. I watch the lights from the wall across; their thin yellow shafts flow from bulbs long past tired worth and usefulness. So drab, so beat, the shallow force of the lightbeam itself seems to hesitate before touching its place. - Outside the entryway, where music blares, someone else has lit a torch. Oddly in place, its light splays from a barrel and is tended by men - watchful and sure, they harbor their feelings about flame and fire jealously, keeping it close. They want - apparently - both the warmth and the light it can afford them. Like misers, they grab every bit of what they can keep. - It's a sad world, seen this way. No one owns a thing, and what they do have someone else has already cast off. Everything is in movement, passing and fading, first being and then disappearing. We maybe watch shadows and think them so real. Everywhere is light, illusionary light, showing us things and then taking them away.
You can surmise all that I am from what it is you read about me herein - experiences and outlooks philosophies and viewpoints too. "For God's sake ! will SOMEONE please read this stuff - it's very important."