Asides

Memo: Poets and “Major Media”

In reply to someone’s “hot take” about how major media doesn’t give a shit about poetry (whatever)…. I replied: 

Do any poets give a shit about major media? 

Roll your own chap books, build your own culture, wander widely to find your audience, make *things* every day, stick poems to message boards in grocery stores & telephone poles next to lost cat flyers, mail 500 poetic postcards a year, find the renegade youth to mentor, transcribe stories from grandmothers, but every used great copy of poetry you come across for $3 and abandon them on buses with a note, go *everywhere* just to find coffee shops with a good table in the back corner and write so fast you’re inky pens run out.

Then paint poems on post boxes, make a painting of the poem on the post box and do an exhibit with other paintings of post boxes with poems (preferably at a goat farm in the country)…

Strangely, people show up, people ask questions, people want to be part of whatever it is that they’re doing even if you or them don’t understand it.

Doing these things, I find very little time for erstwhile mass media or even submissions to *highbrow* literary journals (plus rejection letters need a return address and well, I don’t always have one).

Poetry is for you to create and share with those who seek the goods. Carry on accordingly. 

Aside: Japan’s change in next 20 years

this kura (in Saidaiji), built in Meiji and now falling in in itself has witnessed so much cultural change – both in Japan and the world at large

Japan’s change in next 20 years

Somehow I feel like we’re going into a massively interesting time of transition in Japan. 

I keep in mind how Japan radically transformed culturally and societally a short period of time during the Meiji *restoration* and then again (under obviously very different circumstances) after the Pacific war. 

I think that when my little son (born Reiwa 2) is 20, Japan will be a very different place and a lot of this starts with a return to rural areas and traditional, sustainable living.  You may say I’m a dreamer but… well in i am 🙂

Memo: strange dreams (despite all the goodness)

wall of kura barn somehow the contrast makes sense

strange dreams (despite all the goodness)

So many weird dreams last night. Did nice “loving kindness“ meditation before sleep and tried to let all the natural disasters & human conundrums float into night sky but maybe it’s all getting to me a little bit.

Themes of not being able to catch up and do enough on “anything“.

Wishing peace and calm to all sentiment beings as possible.

So much wonderfulness in my life but sometimes well, the serotonin and dopamine or whatever just get a little out of whack… So much I want to do but I have to remember to roll it slow.

Everything is trucking along and yeah, reflecting on how much has happened in this last year under unusual circumstances.
I better just pick up the ukulele…

##

Ed says, “Seems to me u just might be overthinking the situation a little. Or, u just might be holding yourself to a higher standard than others expect from you. You’ve been doing great, accomplished one hell of a lot in a short period of time. Lighten up on yourself. Enjoy, just enjoy what you’ve got. Deep breath. Love ya.”

Kim says, ” This is my constant struggle! You’re doing a great job, just knowing you’re out there in the world really helps to keep me calm & inspired!” 

Memo: Pearls Before Swine

 Pearls before Swine (ps i love pigs)

Consider being careful about putting your precious ‘pearls before swine’, meaning that some people will never get *it* and if they haven’t figured *it* out already, they are unlikely to. There is possibly something in themselves that they have to fix before they can figure out how to give you the respect you deserve. It’s on them, not you.

You have wonderful things to share which you carefully consider before sharing (pearls) and you share with people who quickly skim-read and disregard or barely process.

You spend your precious time and spoons for little benefit because they (swines) don’t take the time to ponder, care, or respond in thoughtful manner or take action.

This is all optional unsolicited advice, govern yourself accordingly. 

Summer plans: Baritone Ukulele and writing hiragana / katakana

On my stated list of objectives for this year, I plan to:

1) Learn to play a song or 3 on baritone ukulele to amuse my baby boy. I’m up to 4 chords but strumming still clumsy. Sorta figured out tabs & even printed Early Morning Rain & Landslide & Wheat Kings.

Also

2) Learn to read/write Japanese characters *properly* since I live here, I figured it would be handy – ugh. Noting I’m much better at place name and personal name kanji characters that I am at phonetic kana – thank it’s the same misfiring neural synapse is that prevent me from memorizing the most basic of phone numbers #Dyscalculia

3) Probably something else but I’ll stick to those two.

PS (Really there’s a mighty long list of things to do for putting the house back together, fixing up yard & garden, as well as “life administration” tasks but file the above under personal improvement/enjoyment).

Memo: (wishing a) Peaceful Week in US + Atlantico and Pacifica proposal

Memo: Nov 2 2020

Wishing for a peaceful week in the USA.

Also advocating for proper representation for Guam, Northern Marianas islands, Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, American Samoa, WaDC etc.

Maybe make two states out of all the territories (Atlantico & Pacifica) > combine the Dakotas and split Wyoming into the neighboring states to keep the total state numbers under control :-)

Yeah yeah, putting it in there to get people thinking but really the math sort of works out… I should really never post anything like this but really feel the people in these territories deserve proper representation so letting people know how weird/lousy it would feel if suddenly people of Wyoming or North Dakota were disenfranchised

On a similar riff, as I recall learning when Texas joined the union, there was a provision that the state could split into three states at some future point. Wonder if this is ever discussed as an actual option?

52/55/ even 60 states, why not…

A Lunch with the Future, Contextualized

Marshall McLuhan in San Francisco 1965

Re: academic soothsayer Marshall McLuhan… in this case, a lunch in San Francisco 1965, introduced thusly (note recently deceased Tom Wolfe namecheck):

“Hot on the trail of this titan, I thought to myself, “Where is the last place in town you’d expect to see Marshall McLuhan?” and that’s where we I found him–at Off-Broadway in North Beach, lunching amid the topless waitresses with Writer Tom Wolfe, Adman Howard Gossage and Dr. Gerald Feigen.”

More… 

 

Support Wandering Artists, who wander well

A reminder to support the pursuits of your local wandering artists. Oft quoted, “Not all who wander are lost…” {but some of us are, intentionally}.

Ergo: Not running away from something but strolling towards something, maybe noted upon finding. Maybe not. Wander on, document, create, share. Good shoes are a bonus, but don’t let them fool you into stopping. Beware imposters, the self-proclaimed et al. #drifton

Looking for a Direction

Vincent at the age of nineteen

Schoolboy, junior clerk at an art firm, teacher, bookseller, student and preacher: Vincent van Gogh was all of these before he decided at the age of 27 to become an artist. That decision would change the history of art forever.

‘I heard from Pa that you’ve already been sending me money without my knowing it, and in doing so are effectively helping me to get along. For this accept my heartfelt thanks.’

Vincent to Theo, Brussels, 2 April 1881

Longform Jouralism: Hiroshima via The New Yorker (originally published 1946)

Hiroshima

A hundred thousand people were killed by the atomic bomb. Survivors wonder why they lived when so many others died. Photograph from Rolls Press / Popperfoto / Getty (Note: shared here for educational purposes)

Note: exceptional piece of longform writing, crafted in the aftermath of the Hiroshima / Nagasaki 1945 and published a year afterwards. hyber-personal character storytelling in the wake of calamity.

Originally published By now available in full in The New Yorker