Surrealist Doodle

Surrealist Doodle
This was used as the cover of Karawane in 2006 and I have included it in on a number of bags and postcards over the years. Someone on the subway asked me if it was a Miro. I was very flattered!

Sunday, March 30, 2008

I need to . . .

to leave town or drop acid.

I need something to change my consciousness, complete the reach, the gesture I felt last night listening to Greil Marcus and the Mekons talk about punk in a nearly dark theatre I need to live in a nearly dark theatre not just a dark room with the sound off but a dark theatre with a stage that smells like wood and polish and empty seats full of once-bodies and once-again bodies but liminal in its dark I couldn’t really live there very long but i could hang out there, come and go, like I come and go at home and eventually because i couldn’t actually sleep in a dark silent theatre because i can only sleep where there is light and noise because the pressure of falling asleep in dark silence is more than i can bear but there’s a heartbeat, a strain maybe like a heart attack waiting to happen to push you over to the other side to push you to something unknown but it’s not as dark as maybe you might think it’s a potential, it’s a tease, it’s something you can’t have you can only glimpse it but i need to hold it for a second i need to understand and grasp it and then come back i need to go somewhere unknown . . . that’s what it is unknown in time or mind or space or geography but somewhere unknown where there’s no expectation and no clock and maybe no comfortable familiar bed maybe but someplace

1 comment:

Lyle Daggett said...

I think that pretty much narrows it down to Las Vegas or Tokyo.

Have you ever read (or seen performed) any of the Japanese No plays? They're apparently different from Kibuki, though I haven't learned enough about either one to know what the differences are.

No plays tend to be quite brief when they're written down, just a few pages -- apparently a lot of the story is conveyed with song and dance. I've never seen any performed. What has struck me, reading a few in translation, is that the plays are capable of conveying epic story and scale, even though the form is ostensibly highly compact, concentrated, almost miniaturized. (Kind of like tanka and haiku that way, evoking whole landscapes and eras of time in just a few words.)

Arthur Waley's translation (called, I believe, No Plays of Japan) is well done and has good introductory material and notes. Ezra Pound also did a book of English versions of Noh plays (to use Pound's spelling). I'm inclined to recommend Waley's translation rather than Pound's -- Pound is too much of a loose cannon aesthetically, apart from his repugnant politics.