Mortaljive: The Rest is Silence

There is no still point in all the Universe, and that is the rock upon which I stand

Sunday, October 31, 2010

A Dream of Autumn Redux



I took this image in November of 2008, at the Silverton Reservoir. Fall colors, wet leaves, the feel of verdant decay. Ah, wilderness!

Labels: ,

Religious Art is Often Very Dramatic



Image by mjs, taken at the St. Wenceslaus Cemetery in Scappoose, Oregon.

Labels: ,

Friday, October 29, 2010

The Opinuary Column



The Opinion "And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God*" has been stomped on, tasered, riddled with bullets, blown up by a drone aircraft, disappeared, tortured, maimed, squashed, violated, raped, shit upon, pummeled, decapitated, buggered, imprisoned, murdered, squashed, assassinated, disemboweled, poisoned, asphyxiated, lynched, pulverized, deleted, flayed, cremated, thrashed, throttled, torn apart, bombed and bitten to death. The richest bastards in the game have paid off the Lord, and the glittering palaces and majestic boulevards of the Heavenly Kingdom reflect the new owners' aesthetics: the Gates of Heaven have been reinforced with fools gold, forged in the fiery battlements of Hell. The Opinion was bought out during a hostile takeover, and heaven has never looked more malevolent, removed, cold and cruel. Yahweh/God has accepted his golden parachute and exited the building, to pursue adventures in lands not yet created, to work on projects that remain a mystery to us all.

The Opinion was born in a quaint little thatched hut built of morality and justice, wherein it thrived wondrously in its modest confines, and spent its early days laughing and running and playing, while keeping an eye upon the horizon for something it could not quite see. Upon reaching adulthood it left home and wandered the countryside, often spying the common folk who labored in the sun and shivered in the cold--such experiences reminded it that the mystery of being was no less complicated for the poor than for the rich, except that the ability to exploit one's fellow man increased with the concomitant increase in capital. The Opinion came to know that a tension existed in the world, one of tidal movements that surged and ebbed as the times changed, and that sometimes things had to get really bad before the tide could come back in and wash away the crimes of man. Sometimes the crimes were so bad that no single tide could do the job, and the sands at the edge of the sea glistened with blood and despair. No matter: the Opinion knew that humanity had a greater depth than mere wealth and power, and so was happy to remind anyone who would listen that flesh is fleeting, but the essence of the universe was an eternal one, and all who lived participated in that eternity, equally and fully.

Late in life the Opinion started drinking heavily, and after a series of bad investments found itself on the verge of bankruptcy. Unable to fend off its lenders, it sold its primary insight to the wealthiest people on the planet, who rewarded it by hiring a squad of goons to kill it just as soon as was humanly possible. Heaven is now filled with some of the wealthiest motherfuckers this world has ever known, even as children die forgotten in the streets, guilty of the crime of being poor and condemned to suffer. Paradise has been leveraged by Hell.

In lieu of flowers the family of the deceased would like lots and lots of money given to them, to spend as they see fit.

Arrangements by the Supreme Court of the United States of America.

*Matthew 19:24

Labels:

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Death of a Bird in Autumn



last sunday
i heard a loud thump
something had struck our living room window
i went and looked
and on the porch lay a newly dead bird
its neck broken
blood along the margins of its beak

i didn't want to tell my wife
she lay in bed, apart
but soon she was up and she saw
there were no secrets that day



i dug a hole in front of our house
my wife placed her heart in her hands
and held the bird in gentle sorrow
we were quiet witnesses

we lay flowers for a nest
and spread mother earth for cover
we said goodbye in the cool of autumn

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Opinuary Column



the autumn moon has seen it all
pledges and lies and folderol
parties of tea at its beck and call
everyone down on their knees

money is king and tv is queen
nothing left for the in between
the cats get fat when the times are lean
everyone down on their knees

take a walk in the chilling air
fair is foul and foul is fair
there's something here that's not quite there
everyone down on their knees

god--booga booga, ah-cha-cha
god--booga booga, ha-ha-ha
god--booga booga, fiddle dee dee
everyone down on their knees
if you please
everyone down on their knees

the government is demonized
full of thieves who hypnotize
shrink it down until it dies
everyone down on their knees

the proper life is a corporate state
let the market decide your fate
money is speech and you don't rate
everyone down on their knees
everyone down on their knees

god--booga booga, ah-cha-cha
god--booga booga, ha-ha-ha
god--booga booga, fiddle dee dee
everyone down on their knees
if you please
everyone down on their knees

we can't go forward and we can't go back
out of choices and out of whack
men with guns all talking smack
everyone down on their knees

nowhere to run, nowhere to hide
no more bread, only humble pie
we came to conquer and divide
everyone down on their knees
oh
everyone down on their knees

the autumn moon has seen it all
pledges and lies and folderol
parties of tea at its beck and call
everyone down on their knees

money is king and tv is queen
nothing left for the in between
the cats get fat when the times are lean
everyone down on their knees

take a walk in the chilling air
the color of fall is everywhere
nature is fallen and what do you care
everyone down on their knees

god--booga booga, ah-cha-cha
god--booga booga, ha-ha-ha
god--booga booga, fiddle dee dee
everyone down on their knees
if you please
everyone down on their knees

Monday, October 18, 2010

Sunlight, bamboo, fence



No mind

Friday, October 15, 2010

The Opinuary Column



The Opinion "Christine O'Donnell is not a witch" has died after a brief but virulent spell. The Opinion, born of secular disbelief, was only a couple of weeks old when it was stricken with beguilement's dementia, a rare and fatal form of utter stupidity. In point of fact, O'Donnell is without a doubt one of the greatest witches ever to run for political office*, as evidenced by her wizardry in shrinking Sean Hannity down to the size of a wallet and smashing his face beneath her ass. Non-witches can't do that--they don't even try. (*Note: Ohio Representative Jean Schmidt is a banshee, not an actual witch).

The Opinion is survived by a host of ghoulish conspiracy theories, macabre insinuations, ad hominem poltergeists, sycophantic sorcery, corporate conjuring and one gaseous load of bilious voodoo...that you do...so well!

In lieu of flowers slap my ass and call me Sean Hannity!



++++

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

All My Heroes



i wanted to come back home in the light of day
greeted like somebody who could make a love song
i wanted peace of mind, plenty of time
to go over the details and not be wrong, again
but the sun kept falling into the west
it fell just like a golden vest
taken from another dead sheriff
another man of the law
he saw it all, and then we laid him in the ground

all my heroes
buried thirty years ago
we missed them, for awhile
everybody who is here is already
gone forever
say goodbye
we all get to say goodbye

i was writing for perfect animals
eulogies and memories and poetry
we could fill the van with Noah's friends
let the rain fall down, float on into town
we will land upon the highest mountain
and listen to the wind, listen to the wind again
we'll light a fire in the cold
we will burn our legendary fantasies
until we choke upon the facts

all my heroes
buried thirty years ago
we missed them, for awhile
everybody who is here is already
gone forever
say goodbye
we all get to say goodbye

we have learned to ask only stupid questions
with a microphone and a camera made of god
strangers are stranger and stranger every day
but i see inside their eyes one more surprise
where i sought to point and blame, nearly go insane
now i tap on windowpanes, my reflection
is given to the rain

all my heroes
buried thirty years ago
we missed them, for awhile
everybody who is here is already
gone forever
say goodbye
we all get to say goodbye

i wanted to come back home in the light of day
greeted like somebody who could make a love song
i wanted peace of mind, plenty of time
to go over the details and not be wrong, again
but the sun kept falling into the west
it fell just like a golden vest
taken from another dead sheriff
another man of the law
he saw it all, and then we laid him in the ground

++++

Monday, October 11, 2010

A Happy Moment



++++

Labels:

Thursday, October 07, 2010

The Opinuary Column



The Opinion "The One True God approves of Yoga" has died of complications arising from an acute case of pretzel logic. Born of the belief that various cultures around the world have cultural traditions that can be of benefit to others, it collapsed while stretching across the gulf that divides reason from belief in conservative Christianity. It leaves no known respite from the uptight, jaw-clenching, dogma-clutching religious jackalopes that denounced it, save the ability of its adherents to ignore church leaders who will say any fool thing at the drop of an epistle. Or to rephrase: the ones who keep Jesus on the cross are the ones who keep replacing the nails.

After an idyllic childhood of stretching and meditation in the mountains and plains of Northern India, the Opinion traveled the world and was integrated as a member of the family into a wide variety of cultures, sharing its message of a calm and measured approach to our bodies and minds, to our mystery and our place in the universe. Depicted as an arch-villain by men who insist that "The embrace of yoga is a symptom of our postmodern spiritual confusion, and, to our shame, this confusion reaches into the church." it is of little wonder that Satan himself does not assume the pose of a yogi, and relax his breathing, to find an inner stillness where the self is irrelevant in the sea of all-consciousness. A blissed-out devil is no way to keep a tension-reliant belief system at the top of its game, no how! No good Christian prays for Satan to be released from his role as Bad Guy in Chief--gotta have a bad guy or there is no Christianity! And we certainly can't have enlightened people running around--it makes the rest of us look bad.

In lieu of flowers the family of the Opinion ask that you let go of attachment, seeking not the garden without but finding instead the garden within, where the monsters at the gates of Eden are merely your own fears: pay them no heed, smile and pass through to enlightenment. Seriously, Jesus would, like, totally meditate. Bet on it.

++++

Note: good, white Christians should denounce yoga, but do not denounce killing brown people, for this does not conflict with the core teachings of the bible. Like so many of the Tea Party members, often conservative Christians themselves, it is understood that billions of dollars may be given to war profiteers and malignant corporatists and not an eyebrow shall be raised up, or an utterance of protest be sounded, for these acts are in accord with the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth, the Prince of Peace. Amen.

++++

Labels: ,

Saturday, October 02, 2010

A Boy or a Girl



he lives in a perfect world
we don't know if he's a boy or a girl
because in a perfect world
it's impossible to know

she flies in a perfect sky
we don't know if she's a boy or a girl
because in a perfect sky
nobody knows

can we be candid
can we be true
we all just clap our hands
what about you
what about you

i fell in a perfect hole
i didn't know if i was a boy or a girl
because in a perfect hole
we become the earth

i died in a perfect way
who could say if i was a boy or a girl
when you die in a perfect way
it's just like birth

can we be candid
can we be true
we all just clap our hands
what about you
what about you

the tv is the police
the radio's on fire
i ran with my bride
chased by the choir
we made it to the car
smoke filled the sky
we climbed inside and died
i don't know why
i don't know why

he lives in a perfect world
we don't know if he's a boy or a girl
because in a perfect world
it's impossible to know

she flies in a perfect sky
we don't know if she's a boy or a girl
because in a perfect sky
nobody knows

can we be candid
can we be true
should we all just clap our hands
what about you
what about you

the tv is the police
the radio's on fire
i ran with my bride
chased by the choir
we made it to the car
smoke filled the sky
we climbed inside and died
i don't know why
i don't know why

he lives in a perfect world
we don't know if he's a boy or a girl
because in a perfect world
it's impossible to know

she flies in a perfect sky
we don't know if she's a boy or a girl
because in a perfect sky
nobody knows

can we be candid
can we be true
we all just clap our hands
what about you
what about you


++++

Friday, October 01, 2010

The Opinuary Column



Bless the Little Children
Keep them Round and Clean
Show them what's Acceptable
And Say just What you Mean!
The time is right to Ladle Them
With stories from the Right
Jack may Chop a Beanstalk
But it's Taxes that we Fight!

If the March Hare comes along
Fretting about Time
Disabuse the Rodent Thus:
Why, Democracy's a Crime!
The few are being Punished
For the Billions that they've Made!
They are the Backbone of the State
They're how Dross and Dreck get Paid!
Why on Earth should They Give More
Little Children, do be Brave
You must Know, Within your Bones
The Rich Must Now Be Saved!

Come to the Tea Party! dear, dear Ones
Come eat Cookies and Drink Punch
If you will do a Kindness There
We may just give you Lunch!
Oh, tell your Friends, bring them All!
A Nation will be Proud
You are the Army of the Rich
It's Time you Sang out Loud:

"Banish all the Socialists!
The Lazy Health Care Fiends!
Vote against your Interests
Give us your Magic Beans!
Keep God and Country Uppermost
And hang on to your Purity!
It may just come in Handy
When you've lost Social Security!
Remember that the War is Good
Whichever War is Going
Debt that comes from Killing Others
Is like the Wind that's Blowing"


The Mad Hatter and the Dormouse
And the March Hare all Agreed
They had drunk from all the Cups
It was Time to take a Pee
But just when they were Ready
With Pantaloons Unclasped
They found their Reach Exceeded
The Thing they call Their Grasp
And Bladders cannot hold Forever
No Matter what your Stance
Tea Parties start with Laughter
By the End You've Pissed Your Pants


++++

Labels: , , ,