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Archive for July, 2009

Music for the dying

Sunday, July 26th, 2009

Prescriptive music for the dying [link].

We become so focused on the need to fight death, we forget about the need to make it comfortable. When I brought my father’s CDs into the hospital, my mother fought me on it. She used the excuse that they might get stolen, but I knew what she really hated was the way I was moving his belongings into the hospital room. In her mind, the fewer of his possessions there, the easier it would be to get him home. And people who are comfortable, don’t fight. They give up.

The concept of death and disease as a war works for some people, I suppose. For the rest of us, fighting our own bodies, our own humanity just doesn’t make sense. Shadow boxing.

Healing is more of a dance.

How do people change

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

How do people change?

Well it has something to do with God, so it’s not very nice. God splits the skin with a jagged thumbnail from throat to belly and then plunges a huge filthy hand in, he grabs hold of your bloody tubes and they slip to evade his grasp but he squeezes hard, he insists, he pulls and pulls till all your innards are yanked out and the pain! We can’t even talk about that. And then he stuffs them back, dirty, tangled and torn. It’s up to you to do the stitching.

Just mangled guts pretending.

That’s how people change.

Angels in America

Watching stars without you

Saturday, July 4th, 2009

I’ve always seen fireworks from the wrong perspective - standing above them, looking down. When I was a child, I lived in an Appalachian river valley, and to view the fireworks we drove up into the mountains. In my adult years, I’ve found myself in a number of situations - in a hotel room, looking down over the Delaware river fireworks, or in a private plane, flying over the Pennsylvania landscape, seeing fireworks simultaneously from a number of small towns. Only once, in Aspen, could I not get above them, and the three of us lay in the parking lot while the ashes rained down on us.

The dream was always running ahead of me. To catch up, to live for a moment in unison with it, that was the miracle.
-Anais Nin

Quantum memory

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009

And there’s someone in a tree —
— or the day is incomplete.
Without someone in a tree,
Nothing happened here.
I am hiding in a tree.
I’m a fragment of the day.
If I weren’t, who’s to say
Things would happen here the way
That they happened here?

I was there then.
I am here still.

It’s the fragment, not the day.
It’s the pebble, not the stream.
It’s the ripple, not the sea.
That is happening

-Sondheim, Pacific Overtures

Pacific Overtures (2004 Broadway Revival Cast)

Pacific Overtures (1976 Original Broadway Cast)