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Sunday, June 21, 2015

SENSE AND SENSELESSNESS

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matisse 

Saturday, I had so many places to be, so many things to do, I decided to stay home, write and have a long nap. I'm thinking this is today's agenda as well. I'm seeing a pattern in  behavior. When I have too much expected from outside self, I tend to balk like a donkey and stand still, unmoveable. I wanted to go everyplace expected. First, a bluegrass jam at friend's house with some good musicians, also my neighbors and friends. An old-time band I like and haven't seen in a few years was playing at the bandstand in the Sparta park. At the next house down the road, Josh was visiting for the weekend with a handful of musician friends, interesting people. I looked forward to it until the day it all happened. On the day it happened, I didn't want to do any of it. It was exhausting to think about. I could have made videos and written about the experiences, but when it came time to go out the door, I didn't care enough to go. Went to bed, took a good nap. Woke up ready to write and wrote up into the evening. Went next door to see Josh and friends, stayed until really late, sitting about, talking, relaxed. Three of them, at different times, picked up a guitar and sang a couple of their own songs that were good-worded and well performed, just sitting quietly, all of them good musicians. 

matisse

I'd been going every day for three weeks, and last week refused to go anywhere, had the whole week at home. By Saturday, I was so content not going anywhere, I couldn't stand the thought of going out into the world, reminding self, this is the Age of Television, I'm expected to smile a lot, talk and watch everything I say. Reading in Philip Glass's memoir, he quoted Nadia Boulanger, "Il faut faire un effort." In English, it is necessary to make an effort. She was talking about the artist with one's form, in this case music composition. I bring this up, because it came to mind when I was thinking it's too much effort to go from one place to another all day. Busy-mind self said to relaxed-mind self, It's necessary to make an effort. Relaxed mind self responded, But necessary only in one's art form, not for when the effort involves driving and drains on energy. I pre-forgave self for side-stepping a logjam. 


matisse

The day's rain has begun, a gentle summer shower sounding like wind in the leaves. And then it stopped. Everywhere I look online today and yesterday, I see pictures of the white guy that shot up the black church in Charleston. Every picture I see of him reminds me I don't even want to think about this latest effort for a guaranteed spot on national news by another psychotic child-adult. Something happens we call senseless is no longer unusual. Senselessness, mindlessness, is the new normal. I think it's interesting. It can rightfully be said of this time, "That doesn't make any sense," It reminds me there is no sense anyway. Our traditional, collectively believed ideas of order are breaking down now, changing. That which worked before doesn't work anymore. This is something I must accept or go nuts with frustration. Everything traditional doesn't work anymore. The rules have changed mid-game without notice. I don't see much of the rational anywhere in everyday life. We live by habits, schedules and distractions. I see so little of the rational that I tend to choke when somebody remarks, What happened to reason? I don't see reason anywhere. Reason is good for problem solving, and that's about it. 


matisse

I see the world I live in, near and extended, without sense. Somebody comments on irrational behavior in alarm, and I don't know what to say. It makes perfect sense to me. Of course I don't expect rational behavior in this time. We depend on certain social rules that keep us from killing each other. Somebody side-steps the collectively agreed upon rules and it's called senseless. Just about everything we do is senseless, this church shooting just another senseless act. It had plenty of thought behind it, but no sense. I notice the cops didn't beat him to near death when they arrested him. They were good to him. He'll be the star of the white gangs in prison. Of course, the people of color in the prison will see him through cross-hairs. The white gangs will be his backup. I can't even get near processing the grief that erupted in the church. I can't think about it, because it's too big, way too big to get my mind around. That the same people might have died in the wreck of a church van on the interstate is quite a different thing to mourn than shot down in church by a mean little bastard. I can't dismiss the event or the mind behind it, can't accept it either. The enormity of the grief around this event is too big for my mind to behold, and has the capacity to break my heart if I go with it. The craziest aspect of all, it was no surprise to anybody. When the book is written, it will take a thousand pages.  


matisse by matisse



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