Thursday, September 22, 2011

yes : music

a few months ago i wrote a post titled the no : music. that post was my thinking out loud my own fears and desires of what i want from my writing. there is a danger i think of making categorical statements that begin with 'always' and 'never'. as we often later discover after making such statements that the world is present in its varies forms and it, you and i occupy the spaces between yes and no.

my wanting no music in my writing stems from my belief that i am a citizen of the world and i am seeking a translatability in my work. my poems, i hope, are translations already of the language buzzing in my head to the words i write down to i hope an easy vehicle to other languages. i've been greatly influenced by translations and i want my poems to also translate from my language to another without losing meaning. that, and i am also mostly a film kind of guy and if i had to do my education over again i'd probably go to film school and study filmmaking not in the hope of becoming a director or screenwriter but to learn the techniques of cinema for use in my writing. because i am a hopeless case. i knew what i wanted to be and do at age 16. i wanted to be a writer. when i hit my late teens and early 20s that desire for writing transmogrified into poetry. i've been a sucker ever since.

still but so music is essential in my life. punk rock defines me still, from my political stances to how i wear my hair, the tattoos i've burnished onto my skin and the chuck t's i wear on my feet. ever since i heard the dead kennedy song 'california uber alles' when i was 15 i've been a sucker ever since. how music shapes my writing is too complicated to tease out. i will say that song lyrics have had as much influence on my poetry as have poems. when i go to youtube -- which is pretty damn near every day, at least for a while -- i learn over again that the video website is great for films but even better for live music. my tastes in music can be called catholic. i am no longer the snarling young punk who shouted 'kill the poor' in my best mock swiftian repose. my range has broadened and admits the music i once disdained. my only critiria for live performances is that it be passionate. i love it when the band, or performer, smile in mid-play because i know they are enjoying it as much as i am. when the crowd is sweaty and jumping and swaying i think that there may still be hope for our humanity.

it is that kind of ecstatic joy that i hope i can get into some of my writing. we are here for a short while. we cause great suffering. but we are also the cause of tremendous pleasure, joy and kindnesses. when we are young we want to be brooding and dark and dangerous. we want to be little rimbauds fucking shit up taken seriously for serious artists. we suffer and want the world to know our suffering and that we suffer for the world. yes, there is much to that. there is also the dickinsonian tradition toward ecstatic repose. to find the world in a drop of dew and delight in it. this station will be gone soon. in the meantime, love and find love and share love and create love. in the end the beatles got it damn right, 'in the end the love you take / is equal to the love you make'. perhaps more so because the worlds around us need an increase in kindness and love. look around. i learned that in a song.


At 9:07 AM, Blogger Jim K. said...

ah...ecstatic joy, dead kennedys,
little rimbauds...
one thing that lashes them together
without cutting the logs is: rhetoricals, repeat, repeat-w-variation, ecstatic fiction,

rhetoricals and rants are a way
to make music without losing the
jelly fill from the donut

there was a slam team at an event
last night...interesting how that's
shifting into rhetorics, drama,
..but slam was always trying to
rattle the public's cage..

i'm big on punk-to-new-wave...
i think re-examination and finding
epic stuff in the everyday is key

At 9:09 AM, Blogger Jim K. said...

Chef E. is looking to start up
a zombie/macabre and loosely related
pub. Thought you might like to
know. She left a blurb at me blog.


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