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!

Tuesday, July 03, 2012


What do people want to be?

I wonder as a I look at them walk down the street in their clothes, women mannish preppy frumpy. What are they putting on? What does it make them?

Me, I want to be quiet, still. But I still want to be heard. Want to shut down the to-do lists and shoulds and tv shows and news and bombings and mother’s voice, lover’s voice. I want to be heard from the silence without speaking or even having to think a single word. To radiate meaning.

That I may seek not so much to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to love, to be consoled as to console.

Words and moments linger, an afterburn, a sunspot. Desire & regret; self-satisfaction & replay. It’s never really that we want to live forever or remain in a single moment of former glory, but for every moment forward to be like our best, for every minute to be worthy of a replay, so splendid and full of affirmation that it pushes us forward and forward until looking back, remembering, remains an act reserved for our eulogizers.

I’m getting overstimulated again, when it’s quiet that I said I wanted, isn’t it?

You’ll have to excuse me. I’m prone to ecstasy. Ecstacism. Outbursts. Exuberance. Protuberance. Tubers. Goobers. Gompers. (Samuel. Union leader.) I get giddy.

The bus is so jarring I can’t read my own writing. Where are the socialists now when we need public works. Who will step forward with their uncashed taxed refunds and say this pothole is mine! Stand back while I fill it in!

An old woman with a shopping cart.

A young woman, vibrant on the outside, secretly afraid of everything. Afraid of the phone. Afraid of men. Afraid of ridicule.

A bodacious middle aged woman. Young face. Varicose veins. Learning self-possession. Unlearning fear.

So many things to become. So many clothes to put on.

As I write this under white puffy clouds, fathers in Iraq are stocking up on nerve gas antidotes.

Such things will never touch me unless I dwell on it. Remind myself. I need to be reminded.

I don’t want to put on camouflage and a long face. Everywhere it should be sunny and even dark clouds in the distance should mean only rain and not fear.


Glad tidings.

Does every story need a point?

A plot? A moral? A narrative arc? What is the thread of our lives so that we know that we are ourselves? Through operations and changed and removed organs, through people forgotten and dead and cut off from us, lives we may never return to, yet something holds us in, keeps everything from falling out in a big mess on the floor in front of us. But what was the moral of the story?

I ramble. I rage. I wonder. I cry. And so I should be still. And radiate. So you can understand me.

Lunge. Lurch.

Perch. Porch. Scorch. Scrounge. Scourge.


Scour. Scowl. Scourge.

With thorns.

Make yourself quiet. So you don’t feel it. Make yourself quiet so your body forgets you. So you forget to feel.


Announce. Pronounce. Denounce. Renounce. Renown. Redoubt.

All of these things that come spilling out of my head when I’m trying to figure out what to be. When I’m trying to radiate


Ruts & ruts & ruts & synapes & moats and potholes & veins & interstates & things that travel the same path forever. Only the river can change its course. I can(not) be silent. Can(not) quiet the cacophonies symphonies tympanies that accompany me. I am not what I am trying to be.

What do people want to be?

1 comment:

Mike and sometimes Rachel said...

Most or many artists might be diagnosed as having some degree of subclinical bipolar disorder -- hyperensitivity. It's generally not crippling, and it is at the base of what makes us interesting -- but t causes problems, because too much sensitivity makes us vulnerable.