This is coming a little late
because I was in the process of moving
from New Mexico to Oregon
during the summer months
and didn’t have much time for
|Fall of the Rebel Angels - Breughel the Elder|
So, back during the summer solstice,
published a couple of sections from a new manuscript called
The two sections can be found here.
I started the manuscript back in February (2021).
I thought I was writing a solo poem, responding to the constant feelings of overwhelm from the state of emergency across the earth – the changes that are here or are developing from climate change, the chaos created by media disinformation, the fear and sadness generated by the continuing pandemic, systemic police racism and brutality, class war built into the structure of the economic system, the horror and pain caused by so many US generated endless wars, along with experiencing the seemingly perpetual swing between anxiety and sadness among so many others - while at the same time experiencing 'business as usual' all around me and in my own life.
|fire in the west|
The contradiction between the news and present-moment experience coming in from all sides and still conducting 'business as usual' was maddening, exasperating, and I thought if I started another book that explored all of this with some (very dark) humor in it, it might bring some kind of momentary release (to both writer and reader).
Acknowledgement of the facts is one of the phases of grief.
Although the manuscript did not end up developing with a lot of humor (no surprise there), it is not simply a walk through grimness, darkness and doom either. It has taken shape in unexpected ways (that I'll eventually speak about in later blogs).
By the time I reached take 40 I realized that the book was somewhat of a hybrid of fiction and prose-poetry, with continuing and connected characters appearing and disappearing.
Writing this manuscript sometimes helps keep me focused and more calm.
May you find your own creative ways to regulate (find some calm and sanity), that may lead to taking action in your own way.
I include the first Another Apocalypse below. It is a prayer, an invocation, that begins the manuscript:
Another Apocalypse, Invocation
Is there a prayer that will bring anything back? It probably begins with these words Oh the black birds spin in and out of existence oh the black birds they spin… And ends like this: …flare stack fire against my skin, burning bright as stars. No one knows the words in between.
It’s too late for a prayer that asks for something. The spirit world has nothing left to give. We’ve been asking and asking for far too long. They’ve run out of shiny tokens. Remember how those greedy little prayers crisscrossed the sky like starling-clouds?
We need a prayer that’s more forceful now. One that can break into the spirit world, rummage around in spirit rubbish, pick spirit pockets, grab some broken shards of hope, rub two spirit stones together: flint-sparks that will light a path through catastrophe.
Screw prayer. Try sacrifice: a finger on the road’s shoulder. Try sacrifice: 24/7 videos of children in cages. Try sacrifice: the air that catches fire beneath a burning tree canopy. Fire merges with fire, melts the invisible barrier between worlds. Dead and living mingle, finally equal.
Ash particles drift in a clear sky. Perfect weather. Ash particles drift over a vortex of flame rising from a wall of water. Perfect weather. A glacier breaks away from my mind, floats into the Indian Ocean. I wake, my bed floats on dark water.
There are flare-stacks in the distance: beacons. They beckon.
You can find the two sections in Gone Lawn