Asymptote

Thursday, 29 March 2012

You have a dream that
you’re run­ning and the harder
you run, the slower you move. Or
you are ever colder, each mo­ment
you feel is the limit but then
you are colder still. Or hot:
The bead of wa­ter
rolls down the rock face, a wet trail on sun-burned
stria that never 
quite reaches your parched
lips. Whenever you are
about to get ahead your car
throws a rod or your fur­nace
coughs black. Two steps for­ward,
one step back. Three more to
take.

You watch a pot.

It is a week be­fore she comes
home and sev­eral weeks pass and
it is still a week be­fore she
comes home. There are so many ways 
I could tell
her I love her with­out
ac­tu­ally say­ing it.

A Decade of Organic/​Mechanic

Saturday, 24 March 2012

Somewhere in the last cou­ple of months this weblog had its 10 year an­niver­sary. It was emo and ill-writ­ten 10 years ago, and I’m sure at least one friend would still claim that it is. For me, brows­ing through the archives of­fers a good re­ca­pit­u­la­tion of where and who I was, and how I’ve be­come who I am now; both in the things said, and the things left un­said. It started out as a di­ary and emo­tional re­lease dur­ing rough col­lege times, and once in Cleveland, I be­came de­fined by, and ac­cepted to some ex­tent, my sta­tus as a “blog­ger”. I have what web de­sign skills I have to­day di­rectly be­cause of this weblog. I spun off a few other weblog projects and be­came slightly “Tremont-fa­mous”. It was the first peer group I be­came as­so­ci­ated with in town, and I’m still friends with the best of them. 

Along the way, dif­fer­ent pri­or­i­ties as­serted them­selves and I be­came more in­ter­ested in prac­ti­cal ac­tion than cy­ber-noodling. The fre­quency of posts dropped off as my fo­cus be­came cen­tered on my meat-space life. A few years ago this post would have been filled with de­tailed links to the archives, and much more om­phaloskep­sis. I have a con­fi­dence now that I didn’t have then, and part of the rea­son I have it is due to this site.

Here’s to an­other 10 years.

Alien Queen Mother

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

I

You were born with a nest
full of eggs in your chest
laid by some
alien queen mother at
the dawn of time for that right 
res­o­nant
fre­quency and 

when her daugh­ter speaks it an egg will 
wob­ble, mi­crowave 
words heat it to hatch­ing and a phoenix! and
my chest is full of hot feath­ers pin­ions tickle my throat a rush.

This gasp­ing feel­ing, a tu­mult as claws
grip the di­aphragm I want it wants to burst
forth and we will pell-mell to­ward her on
golden wings and the ash from your pas­sage will
choke her throat.

So stop! Swallow, lar­ynx burn­ing. 
But, af­ter this crush, to 
hear her voice!

We choose my words like un­ripe plums, red, round,
sup­ple skin but still hard. This one a breast,
that the bole from which Adam was fash­ioned.
She re­turns words in kind, a code of del­i­cate
dis­pro­por­tion.

II

It is too much to touch; each other, the twin bird
we sus­pect nests in her chest, the easy word 
like a cro­cus in the crack of a side­walk.

III

Yet not enough. 
To touch is to ripen;
flesh bruised un­der my fin­gers,
bite the hip, taste the waist.

You shall all learn that
I am my own kind of an­i­mal.

IV

Alien queen mother, strands of
mol­e­cules spun, en­tan­gled in cen­turies
to make us mar­i­onettes, your eggs take
lit­tle sit­ting in your lust
for chil­dren.

V The right tone must not be thrown
lightly.

We’re
not all strong enough to wait. 

Groundhog Dream #2

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

One of the most in­ter­est­ing things about dreams is how we can hold them fully un­der­stood in our minds but, when we try to write them down, the struc­ture col­lapses. This not only il­lu­mi­nates the im­per­fec­tion of writ­ten or spo­ken com­mu­ni­ca­tion, but also, more sub­tly, in­di­cates the nat­u­ral il­logic and un­rea­son­able­ness of our minds. A dream with that kind of clar­ity would be in­dis­tin­guish­able from re­al­ity.

I’m call­ing my newest re­cur­ring dream the Groundhog Dream, be­cause it’s a bit like Groundhog Day, in that the gen­eral me­chan­ics stay the same while the specifics al­ter with each rep­e­ti­tion. First the dream, then the in­ter­pre­ta­tion.

The dream al­ways starts out in a place like Whiskey Island but much larger in scale, with many other peo­ple. We all travel to the shore to hear a rous­ing speech about fight­ing some kind of Evil. The Evil causes a shift, or glitch, in re­al­ity and every­thing is chaos. In the first in­stances of the dream, I was al­ways in a waste­land with­out food and with com­pan­ions who were just as con­fused as I was. The rest of the dreams would con­sist of wan­der­ing around look­ing for sus­te­nance. Kinda OT Biblical.

In this lat­est ver­sion, my lu­cid dream­ing kicked in a bit and I made sure to pack some food be­fore go­ing to the speech. This time the glitch still af­fected me, but Neil Gaiman was also aware that it was go­ing to hap­pen and had me and a few oth­ers fall into an al­ter­nate re­al­ity only tan­gen­tially like the Harry Potter uni­verse. It was more like Harry Potter by P.G. Wodehouse. We ended up in this or­rery where Neil Gaiman ex­plained what the Evil had done, if not why (no one re­ally knows why). The solv­ing of the glitch in­volves help­ing as many peo­ple as pos­si­ble find their way back to their proper place and do­ing it your­self in a cer­tain amount of time. This is a bit like a video game.

We go to a train sta­tion where the only way to sum­mon a train is to lie down on the tracks (kind of like how the eas­i­est way to get sick is to men­tion how you’ve not been sick) Tootle the train shows up and hauls us to an­other sta­tion, where, in pre­vi­ous re­cur­rences, I know that we’ll learn that one of my com­pan­ions will die. So does Neil Gaiman, so we all take a bath­room break be­fore walk­ing past the mu­ral that de­picts this death.

Meanwhile, I find a pile of col­or­ful con­struc­tion pa­per cards and de­flated la­tex bal­loons, and ex­cit­edly call every­one over to eat. These are sort of like the cards we’d have to make to send to nurs­ing homes when I was in grade school, but were sent to us as sup­port in­stead. We have to eat them be­cause the longer we’re away from our right­ful world, the more pale and life­less we get, and the more we hunger for color and joy. We’d be­come un­wit­ting joy vam­pires. When we eat these brightly col­ored stuff we be­come more hu­man for awhile.

Paper and la­tex aren’t easy to eat though, and I find the bal­loons too hard to chew and get nau­se­ated. At this time a new group shows up and joins in our feast. A girl I had a crush on in col­lege ap­pears, ob­vi­ously with an­other man, who turns out to be an al­ter­nate uni­verse ver­sion of me (though we look noth­ing alike), which is con­firmed by the fact that he had the same web­site URL. This makes me feel lonely and I re­al­ize that my son Abraham has been af­fected by the glitch too, that he’s out there alone and needs me, and I re­al­ize just as there are mul­ti­ple ver­sions of me, there are mul­ti­ple ver­sions of Abraham and even if I can’t find my par­tic­u­lar son, maybe I can find an al­ter­nate uni­verse ver­sion to care for.

That’s it. I woke up and it was time to get ready for work.

There’s all kinds of stuff go­ing on here, and I feel that I can iden­tify both the foun­da­tional feel­ing and real world ref­er­ences to ex­plain most of it. The foun­da­tional feel­ing is one of search­ing for a place I be­long and be, in con­fi­dence and still­ness. The train stuff is be­cause Abraham talks about trains con­stantly, but it’s got a lit­tle bit of Stephen King Dark Tower go­ing on as well. I can’t iden­tify the rea­son for Neil Gaiman’s pres­ence, but the bal­loons and con­struc­tion pa­per is re­lated to Abraham again. Alternate re­al­ity stuff is due to The Man From Primrose Lane. The game-like na­ture of avoid­ing im­pend­ing traps and the re­cur­rence are prob­a­bly re­lated to the fact I’ve been re­play­ing Dragon Age 2. The crush is due to a crush.

I think this dream could be turned into a fairly good tale, but I’m cer­tainly not the one to write it.