Saturday, January 13, 2007

4. The Wire

Then the tree if not time
at least Art Blakey--
hard bop with a touch
of the parade ground,
in a good way--
the orderly handling by
many bird species
crowded up amongst
the short-term food
emergency--giving way
on the good branches,
keeping beefs short etc.--
then everybody gets their
designated seconds of
bark digging umolested
maybe some eavestrough
spider web, but stepping up
clean and bright
in bandstand order with
a solo worked up ahead of time
so that routine becomes display
and spring can start to operate.

via Bifurcated Rivets the fine Swedish singer Monica Zetterlund with the Bill Evans Trio/Once upon a Summertime

Friday, January 12, 2007

a chronological list of every book Art Garfunkel has ever read

3. Entiamorphic Chambermaid

A stack of "Argosy"
in an orgone box,
but no bacon
in the midden--
individually a dry maple leaf
in good nick seems
worth about a quarter
but I'll get rid of it
for a dime and put the change
in a Crown Royal bag,
and in the spring
a parcel of mulch
will arrive by courier;
less an operating system
than Rick Wakeman
vs. Dr. Who at Joddrel Bank,
more something slipped into,
all warm & well-rehearsed,
all long exhalations uncoiling
like Gilray speech balloons,
though the unfamilar tread
tenderizes ankles on the icy slopes.

today's YouTube - Saint Etienne - The Bad Photographer
some terse turf advice from the 23rd book of Nanaimo classics prof Ian Johnson's translation of The Iliad, which was chosen by Naxos as the the basis of their Audiobook version--

"Antilochus, you may still be quite young,
but Zeus and Poseidon have been fond of you.
They've taught you all sorts of things with horses,
so there's no need to issue you instructions.
You understand well how to wheel around
beside the turning post. But your horses
are the slowest in the race, and so I think
you've got some problems here to deal with.
The others' horses may be faster runners,
but the drivers are no better skilled than you.
So, dear boy, fix your mind on all that skill,
so those prizes don't elude you. You know,
skill in a woodsman matters more than strength.
It's skill that lets a helmsman steer his course,
guiding his swift ship straight on wine-dark seas.
And it's skill, too, that makes one charioteer
go faster than another. Some racing drivers,
trusting their chariot and horses, drive them
carelessly, moving back and forth, weaving
on the course. They don't control their horses.
But a cunning man, though he's got worse horses,
keeps his eye on that turning point, cutting
the pillar close. Such a man also understands
how to urge his horses on, right at the start,
using leather reins. But he keeps control.
His mind doesn't wander, always watching
the man in front. Now I'll tell you something—
there's a marker, so clear you cannot miss it.
It's a dry stump of oak or pine standing
about six feet high. Rain hasn't rotted it.
On both sides of that stump, two white stones
are firmly fixed against it. At that spot
the race course narrows, but the ground is smooth,
so a team can wheel around that stump.
It may be a memorial to some man
long dead, or perhaps men placed it there
to serve as a racing post in earlier times.
Swift-footed lord Achilles has made that stump
his turning point. You need to shave that post,
drive in really close as you wheel around
your chariot and horses. You should lean out
from that well-sprung platform, to your horses' left,
giving the right-hand horse the lash, calling
to him with a shout, while with your hands
you let him take the reins. The inside horse
must graze the post, so the well-built wheel hub
seems to scrape the pillar. But be careful—
don't touch the stone, because if you do,
you'll hurt the horses, you'll smash the chariot,
which will delight the others but shame you.
So, dear boy, take care and pay attention.
If you can pass them by as you catch up
right by the turning post, then none of them
will reach you with a sudden burst of speed,
much less overtake you, no, not even
if he were driving godlike Arion
behind you, that swift horse of Adrestus,
from heavenly stock, or the very horses
of king Laomedon, the finest ones bred here."

new issue of the always-excellent "Common-Place" has an essay on Blogging & 19th cent. print culture

"Blogging should remind us to ask of the past, not just who was reading or what was read by whom, but also when, how often, and where was reading done? In giving us the term "lurking"—with its connotations of idleness, fraud, and concealment, as well as the possibility that readerly latency might at any time be converted into discourse or action—blogging also prompts us to ask of the expanding print media of the nineteenth century: When are readers potential writers? How might the presumption that readers are potential writers have organized the world of print?"

Thursday, January 11, 2007

Pages from 'The Children's Encyclopedia'

2. Cranberry Firehall

Stinks to be in the engine
of always conspirin' & pokin'
where it ain't exactly required--

rattlin' around like a tooth
in a paint can achin' for inspection,
but like the firehall's multi-function

a ramp into space
is no longer an option,
no fire escape in the sky--

they're mixin' the gravity with somethin'
or somethin'--but its still a good thing
the lids this big, you turn it right down

step out onto the 'scape
for a couple of cupped Cameos & voila!
when you return everything

is exactly the same
except its ready now,
wreathed in glistening steam!

South Wellington Trees

just in case you hadn't heard, all the recordings of William Carlos Williams are here & free & in your house--kids today have it so lucky!

(pictures & lots else here on the History of Paterson NJ--useful for Williams, Smithson, Shirelles & Sopranos research!)

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Pages from "The Children's Encyclopedia"

for Michael Szarpowski & Bruce Conkle

1. Cascadia Border Patrol

I'd like to stop kicking,
but every time I do
something spectacular happens

that people will pay to see--
it's not like its even down to me,
& running my fingers counting

bribes along envelope tops
hurts me as much
as these January pellets

raining from my winkle-pickers
must hurt you, but
Centralia's where the Inland Empire

meets the real Empire &
you've entered our domain
as an ark of infinite sustain--

orchards hazy with
ciderblink down to
Dorn's sound, lowering chopper

heat differential maps
of backpackers loaded
versus ornithologists

lightened by self-hypnosis,
though in real life
if surveillance gets

that close it's probably what's
in your thermos
they're after.

the divine Lani Hall, SERGIO MENDES & BRASIL'66 "Ye-Me-Le" (Music Scene, 1969) (they have Wichitah Lineman from the same show, too)

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Monday, January 08, 2007

some kind soul has put the rarely-seen 1977 Muppet pastoral Emmet Otter's Jug Band Christmas up in 6 parts on YouTube. My cheap "fur"-lined corduroy jacket I call my "Emmet Otter Coat".