Thursday, February 28, 2019


Did I ever tell you about the man
who taught his asshole to talk?
His whole abdomen would move up and down,
you dig, farting out the words.
It was unlike anything I ever heard.
Bubbly, thick, stagnant sound.
A sound you could smell.
This man worked for the carnival,you dig?
And to start with it was
like a novelty ventriloquist act.
After a while,
the ass started talking on its own.
He would go in
without anything prepared…
and his ass would ad-lib
and toss the gags back at him every time.
Then it developed sort of teethlike…
little raspy incurving hooks
and started eating.
He thought this was cute at first
and built an act around it…
but the asshole would eat its way through
his pants and start talking on the street…
shouting out it wanted equal rights.
It would get drunk, too, and have crying jags.
Nobody loved it.
And it wanted to be kissed,
same as any other mouth.
Finally, it talked all the time,
day and night.
You could hear him for blocks,
screaming at it to shut up…
beating at it with his fists…
and sticking candles up it, but…
nothing did any good,
and the asshole said to him…
“It is you who will shut up
in the end, not me…
“because we don’t need you
around here anymore.
I can talk and eat and shit.”
After that, he began waking up
in the morning with transparentjelly…
like a tadpole’s tail
all over his mouth.
He would tear it off his mouth
and the pieces would stick to his hands…
like burning gasoline jelly
and grow there.
So, finally, his mouth sealed over…
and the whole head…
would have amputated spontaneously
except for the eyes, you dig?
That’s the one thing
that the asshole couldn’t do was see.
It needed the eyes.
Nerve connections were blocked…
and infiltrated and atrophied.
So, the brain couldn’t
give orders anymore.
It was trapped inside the skull…
sealed off.
For a while, you could see…
the silent, helpless suffering
of the brain behind the eyes.
And then finally
the brain must have died…
because the eyes went out…
and there was no more feeling in them
than a crab’s eye at the end of a stalk.

Everything A Beginner Needs To Know About Grow Lights


Wednesday, February 27, 2019

RYŌKAN - “For Children Killed in a Smallpox Epidemic”

When spring arrives
From every tree tip
Flowers will bloom,
But those children
Who fell with last autumn’s leaves
Will never return.

Keep your heart clear and transparent
And you will never be bound.
A single disturbed thought, though,
Creates ten thousand distractions.
Let myriad things captivate you
And you’ll go further and further astray.
How painful to see people
All wrapped up in themselves.

I watch people in the world
Throw away their lives lusting after things,
Never able to satisfy their desires,
Falling into deep despair
And torturing themselves.
Even if they get what they want
How long will they be able to enjoy it?
For one heavenly pleasure
They suffer ten torments of hell,
Binding themselves more firmly to the grindstone.
Such people are like monkeys
Frantically grasping for the moon in the water
And then falling into a whirlpool.
How endlessly those caught up in the floating world suffer.
Despite myself, I fret over them all night
And cannot staunch my flow of tears.

Sometimes I sit quietly,
Listening to the sound of falling leaves.
Peaceful indeed is the life of a monk,
Cut off from all worldly matters.
Then why do I shed these tears?

I’m so aware
That it’s all unreal:
One by one, the things
Of this world pass on.
But why do I still grieve?

When I think
About the misery
Of those in this world
Their sadness
Becomes mine.

Oh, that my monk’s robe
Were wide enough
To gather up all
The suffering people
In this floating world.

Nothing makes me
More happy than
Amida Buddha’s Vow
To save

If you are not put off
By the voice of the valley
And the starry peaks,
Why not walk through the shady cedars
And come see me?

At dusk
Come to my hut—
The crickets will
Serenade you, and I will
Introduce you to the moonlit woods.

David Wallace-Wells

Penguin, 2019

Maurice Ravel (1929/31)

Yuja Want
Lionel Bringuier
Tonhalle-Orchester Zürich

Deutsche Grammophon, 2015

Georg Philipp Telemann (1681-1767)

Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin

Harmonia Mundi, 2017

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Demonstrating for AYASA INSTRUMENTS


Demonstrating for AYASA INSTRUMENTS





There is a sacredness in tears.They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.

Vincent D'Indy, 1886

Antonio de Almeida,
Francois-Joel Thiollier
RTÉ National Symphony Orchestra

Monday, February 25, 2019


Everybody thinks that this civilization has lasted a very long time, but it really does take very few grandfathers’ granddaughters to take us back to the dark ages.

Richard Fleischer - USA - 1966

Antonio Vivaldi, 1705

Naïve, 2012

Photo Credit: EW, no photographer listed.

Sunday, February 24, 2019

JOHN PRINE - ”Speed of the Sound of Loneliness”

You come home late and you come home early
You come on big when you’re feeling small
You come home straight and you come home curly
Sometimes you don’t come home at all

So what in the world’s come over you
And what in heaven’s name have you done
You’ve broken the speed of the sound of loneliness
You’re out there running just to be on the run

Well I got a heart that burns with a fever
And I got a worried and a jealous mind
How can a love that’ll last forever
Get left so far behind

It’s a mighty mean and a dreadful sorrow
It’s crossed the evil line today
Well, how can you ask about tomorrow
We ain’t got one word to say

So what in the world’s come over you
And what in heaven’s name have you done
You’ve broken the speed of the sound of loneliness
You’re out there running just to be on the run

Frédéric Chopin, 1839

Nikolai Lugansky

Erato, 2002

Saturday, February 23, 2019


Those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything.


Bruno Rocha & Victor Mello

Friday, February 22, 2019

NOAH LEVINE from Against The Stream

God has abandoned you. Fear does not serve you. Your heart has betrayed you. Only the music can guide you.

Will McPhail


Michel Bianco
Le Coro de Berra

Josquin des Prez (c1455-1521)

Peter Urquhart
Capella Alamire


Thursday, February 21, 2019

FYODOR DOSTOYEVSKY from The Brothers Karamazov

The man who lies to himself and listens to his own lie comes to a point that he cannot distinguish the truth within him, or around him, and so loses all respect for himself and for others. And having no respect he ceases to love.

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

JEAN-PAUL SARTRE from The Respectable Prostitute

What’s done at night belongs to the night. In the day time you don’t talk about it.

Halldór Laxness from The Fish Can Sing

A wise man once said that next to losing its mother, there is nothing more healthy for a child than to lose its father.

Wallace Shawn from The Designated Mourner

She said something like, “I don’t understand your relationship to society. I don’t understand your relationship to the world.”

“You know what?” I said snippily. “I don’t understand my relationship to my own ass. I was standing naked in the bathroom and I saw my ass in the mirror and I said, ‘What is that? What is that? And what does it have to do with me?’”

Samuel R. Delany

The only important elements in any society are the artistic and the criminal, because they alone, by questioning the society’s values, can force it to change.

Special Agent Dale Cooper

I’m going to let you in on a little secret. Every day, once a day, give yourself a present. Don’t plan it, don’t wait for it, just let it happen. It could be a new shirt at the men’s store, a catnap in your office chair, or two cups of good hot black coffee.

Samuel R. Delany from The Einstein Intersection

“What are you doing here?” I asked her at last.

“Probably the same thing you are.”

“What’s that?”

She looked serious. “Why don’t you tell me?”

I went back to my knife. “Sharpening my machete.”

“I’m sharpening my mind,” she said. “There is something to be done that will require an edge on both.”

T’ao Ch’ien

I built my hut within where others live,
But there is no noise of carriages and horses.
You ask how this is possible:
When the heart is distant, solitude comes.
I pluck chrysanthemums by the eastern fence
And see the distant southern mountains.
The mountain air is fresh at dusk.
Flying birds return in flocks.
In these things there lies a great truth,
But when I try to express it, I cannot find the words.

Billy Collins - “One Self”

I am trying to imagine that I am someone else,
a grocer, an aerialist,
a young viola player who travels
around the country in a bus full of musicians,

but difficulty lurks at every turn.
I am not really sure what a viola looks like,
plus, I have become so used to being me
that I have become an assistant professor of myself.

By the time I have learned to play
the viola, even badly,
I would be close to death at best.
And I am so happy when I can stay home

and pass the time in a leather armchair,
volumes of Diderot on the shelf above me,
some jazz low on the radio,
slow waves of memory washing over me

and desire passing through me
like the tiny amount of electricity
that flows through the night-light in a bathroom.
So maybe the way to overcome the ego

is to start small, to imagine that I am still me
only I was born in Columbus, Ohio,
and I go to the gym three times a week.
Or, better still, I do not go to the gym at all—

it is up to me after all.
Maybe I stay home and listen to the news
with an uncooperative look on my face,
a smoker who likes to look out the front window

as I do, or to sit in a leather chair
under a long shelf of French literature,
a fellow who gets tearful
whenever the wind stirs up the leaves,

who gets tearful thinking about his parents
buried under tall drifts of snow
in a large municipal cemetery
somewhere on the outskirts of Columbus, Ohio.


Life and death are nothing but the mind. Years, months, days, and hours are nothing but the mind. Dreams, illusions, and mirages are nothing but the mind. The bubbles of water and the flames of fire are nothing but the mind. The flowers of the spring and the moon of the autumn are nothing but the mind. Confusions and dangers are nothing but the mind.

Samuel Beckett from Molloy

Perhaps I had invented him, I mean found him ready made in my head. There is no doubt one sometimes meets with strangers who are not entire strangers, through their having played a part in certain cerebral reels.

Jorge Luis Borges - “Ars Poetica”

To gaze at the river made of time and water
And recall that time itself is another river,
To know we cease to be, just like the river,
And that our faces pass away, just like the water.

To feel that waking is another sleep
That dreams it does not sleep and that death,
Which our flesh dreads, is that very death
Of every night, which we call sleep.

To see in the day or in the year a symbol
Of mankind’s days and of his years,
To transform the outrage of the years
Into a music, a rumor and a symbol,

To see in death a sleep, and in the sunset
A sad gold, of such is Poetry
Immortal and a pauper. For Poetry
Returns like the dawn and the sunset.

At times in the afternoons a face
Looks at us from the depths of a mirror;
Art must be like that mirror
That reveals to us this face of ours.

They tell how Ulysses, glutted with wonders,
Wept with love to descry his Ithaca
Humble and green. Art is that Ithaca
Of green eternity, not of wonders.

It is also like an endless river
That passes and remains, a mirror for one same
Inconstant Heraclitus, who is the same
And another, like an endless river.

Harold Moreland translation

Etgar Keret from The Bus Driver Who Wanted To Be God

His whole body was completely still, except the wings, which were still fluttering a little, like when someone dies. That’s when he finally understood that of all the things the angel had told him, nothing was true. That he wasn’t even an angel, just a liar with wings.

John Keats - “To Sleep”

O soft embalmer of the still midnight!
Shutting with careful fingers and benign
Our gloom-pleased eyes, embower’d from the light,
Enshaded in forgetfulness divine;
O soothest Sleep! if so it please thee, close,
In midst of this thine hymn, my willing eyes,
Or wait the amen, ere thy poppy throws
Around my bed its lulling charities;
Then save me, or the passèd day will shine
Upon my pillow, breeding many woes;
Save me from curious conscience, that still lords
Its strength for darkness, burrowing like a mole;
Turn the key deftly in the oilèd wards,
And seal the hushèd casket of my soul.

Roberto Bolaño from The Savage Detectives

Nothing happened today. And if anything did, I’d rather not talk about it, because I didn’t understand it.

Aimee Mann - “Susan”

Oh Susan, you were clued-in
You knew just how this thing would go
A prognosis that was hopeless
From the very first domino
I guess I see it all in hindsight
I tried to keep perspective despite
The flash of the fuse, the smell of cordite

Now I’m in that place again
And I know he can’t come in to get me
And someday he will live to regret me
Susan I can see it now

Oh Suzie, they get to me
They can really be wearying
So he threw me rope and buoy
Let me use his decoding ring
There must have been some kind of parade
We kissed for a while to see how it fades
And pulled the pin on another grenade

But I’m in that place again
And I know he can’t come in to get me
And someday he will live to regret me
Suzy I can see it now

Oh Susan, the hope of fusion
Is that the halo will reappear
It may be pure illusion
But it’s beautiful while it’s here
I had some trouble with the goodbye
I checked my roman candle supply
And watched the vapor-trail in the sky

But I’m in that place again
And I know he can’t come in to get me
And someday he will live to regret me
Susan I can see it now

Hannah Arendt

The trouble with Eichmann was precisely that so many were like him, and that the many were neither perverted nor sadistic, that they were, and still are, terribly and terrifyingly normal. From the viewpoint of our legal institutions and of our moral standards of judgment, this normality was much more terrifying than all the atrocities put together.

Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane - "The Trolley Song"

With my high-starched collar and my high-top shoes
And my hair piled high upon my head
I went to lose a jolly hour on the trolley and lost my heart instead
With his light brown derby and his bright green tie
He was quite the handsomest of men
I started to yen so I counted to ten
Then I counted to ten again

Clang, clang, clang went the trolley
Ding, ding, ding went the bell
Zing, zing, zing went my heartstrings
From the moment I saw him I fell

Chug, chug, chug went the motor
Bump, bump, bump went the break
Thump, thump, thump went my heartstrings
When he smiled I could feel the car shake

He tipped his hat and took a seat
He said he hoped he hadn't stepped upon my feet
He asked my name, I held my breath
I couldn't speak because he scared me half to death

Buzz, buzz, buzz went the buzzer
Flop, flop, flop went the wheels
Stop, stop, stop went my heartstrings
As he started to go then I started to know
How it feels
When the Universe reels

Lysander Spooner

There is not, in the Constitution, a syllable that implies that persons, born within the territorial limits of the United States, have allegiance imposed upon them on account of their birth in the country, or that they will be judged by any different rule, on the subject of treason, than persons of foreign birth.

Thomas Merton from No Man Is An Island

Only when we see ourselves in our true human context, as members of a race which is intended to be one organism and ‘one body,’ will we begin to understand the positive importance not only of the successes but of the failures and accidents in our lives.

My successes are not my own. The way to them was prepared by others. The fruit of my labors is not my own: for I am preparing the way for the achievements of another. Nor are my failures my own. They may spring from failure of another, but they are also compensated for by another’s achievement.

Therefore the meaning of my life is not to be looked for merely in the sum total of my own achievements. It is seen only in the complete integration of my achievements and failures with the achievements and failures of my own generation, and society, and time.

Emma Lazarus - “The New Colossus”

Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame,
With conquering limbs astride from land to land;
Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand
A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame
Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name
Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand
Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command
The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame.
“Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she
With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”

The Tallest Man on Earth - “Like The Wheel”

I wish I was the sparrow in you kid’s side
That could fly above this summer all day long
On an island in the heart he has to carry
Past the many you have let into your song

And I said “oh my lord, why am I not strong?”
Like the wheel that keeps travelers travelling on
Like the wheel that will take me home

In the forest someone whispering to a tree now
This is all I am so please don’t follow me
And its your brother in the shaft that I’m a-swinging
Please let the kindness of forgetting set me free

And he said “oh my lord, why am I not strong?”
Like the wheel that keeps travelers traveling on
Like the wheel that will take you home

And on this Sunday someone’s sitting down to wonder
“Where the hell among these mountains will I be?”
There’s a cloud behind the cloud to which I’m yelling
Oh, I could hear you sneak around so easily

And I said “oh my lord, why am I not strong?”
Like the branch that keeps hangmen hanging on
Like the branch that will take me home

Samuel Beckett from That Time

never the same after that never quite the same but that was nothing new if it wasn’t this it was that common occurrence something you could never be the same after crawling about year after year sunk in your lifelong mess muttering to yourself who else you’ll never be the same after this you were never the same after that

James Joyce from Ulysses

“After that he began to mope by himself, talking to no one and wandering about by himself. So one night he was wanted for to go on a call and they couldn’t find him anywhere. They looked high up and low down; and still they couldn’t see a sight of him anywhere. So then the clerk suggested to try the chapel. So then they got the keys and opened the chapel and the clerk and Father O’Rourke and another priest that was there brought in a light for to look for him…. And what do you think but there he was, sitting up by himself in the dark in his confession-box, wide-awake and laughing-like softly to himself?” She stopped suddenly as if to listen. I too listened; but there was no sound in the house: and I knew that the old priest was lying still in his coffin as we had seen him, solemn and truculent in death, an idle chalice on his breast.

Guy Davenport from Ecologues: Eight Stories

There are many objects of desire, and therefore many desires. Some are born with us, hunger, yearning, and pride of place, and some are of the foolishness of the world, such as the desire to eat off silver plates. Desire is a wild horse to be tamed. Virtue is habit long continued. The taming of desire is like the training of an athlete. Discipline is not the restraint but the use of energy.


If you light a lantern for another, it will also brighten your own way.

Tom Waits - “Strange Weather”

Will you take me across the channel
London Bridge is falling down
Strange a woman tries to save
More than a man will try to drown

And it’s the rain that they predicted
It’s the forecast every time
The rose has died because you picked it
I believe that brandy’s mine

And all over the world
Strangers talk only about the weather
All over the world
It’s the same
It’s the same

And the world is getting flatter
And the sky is falling all around
Oh and nothing is the matter
For I’ll never cry in town

And a love like ours my dear
Is best measured when it’s down
And I never buy umbrellas
Cause there’s always one around

And all over the world
Strangers talk only about the weather
All over the world
It’s the same
It’s the same

And you know that it’s the beginning
And you know that it’s the end
Once again we are strangers
As the fog goes rolling in

And all over the world
Strangers talk only about the weather
All over the world
It’s the same
It’s the same
It’s the same


Though frosts come down
night after night,
what does it matter?
they melt in the morning sun.
Though the snow falls
each passing year,
what does it matter?
with spring days it thaws.
Yet once let them settle
on a man’s head,
fall and pile up,
go on piling up –
then the new year
may come and go,
but never you’ll see them fade away

Samuel Beckett from All That Fall

How can I go on, I cannot. Oh let me just flop down flat on the road like a big fat jelly out of a bowl and never move again! A great big slop thick with grit and dust and flies, they would have to scoop me up with a shovel.

Robert Tew

There are two ways to be happy: change the situation or change your mindset towards it.

Monday, February 18, 2019

RUMI - “The Pull of Reality”

Reality is what grabs hold of you
and pulls you away from mere things.

Reality is not what makes you blind
    and deaf
and causes you to cling more tightly.

The spiritually blind imagine things
that only increase their suffering;
the fancies of selflessness
are what come to the eyes of

Sunday, February 17, 2019

LUCAS HUNT from “A Story Sung - Why Fiction Writers Should Read Poetry”

Any writer who desires to get at the truth of human experience should read poetry, because it contains a multitude of possibility. Poetry is the mud that grows the seed that becomes the forest. It is the clay that makes the brick that forms the building. It is the blood that moves the body that holds the spirit. Poetry has the essence of life in it.

Yet because small seeds grow tall trees, baby bricks make big buildings, and single moments have the power to change lives; poetry and fiction have a crucial relationship. It is a matter of fertility, potency, and efficacy. A novel becomes greater than the sum of its chapters when it has the blood and guts of poetry in it. Then people really feel what they read, and understand the meaning of the story on different levels.

Saturday, February 16, 2019


Beauty and ugliness have one origin.
Name beauty, and ugliness is.
Recognizing virtue recognizes evil.

Is and is not produce one another.
The difficult is born in the easy,
long is defined by short, the high by the low.
Instrument and voice achieve one harmony.
Before and after have places.

That is why the sage can act without effort
and teach without words,
nurture things without possessing them,
and accomplish things without expecting merit:

only one who makes no attempt to possess it
cannot lose it.

Friday, February 15, 2019

HAROLD PINTER from No Man’s Land

I have known this before. The voice unheard. A listener. The command from an upper floor.

Because my property taxes should pay for your shitty kid's shitting public education.

Right, maggots?

Thursday, February 14, 2019


I went up to my room again, drew back the curtains on a calamitous sky and lay down. I could not understand what was happening to me. I found it painful at that period not to understand. I tried to pull myself together. In vain. I might have known. My life was running out, I knew not through what breach.

Happy VD.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019


Surely the day will come when color means nothing more than the skin tone, when religion is seen uniquely as a way to speak one's soul; when birth places have the weight of a throw of the dice and all men are born free, when understanding breeds love and brotherhood.