31 October 2003

in lisbon i didnt want to wait for the shuttle bus, so i walked into town, along a lonley lonley road, that i have been on before.

there was ocean, then rock beach, then train tracks, then dying grass, then four lane highway, then train tracks, then four lane highway, then sidewalk, then abandonded buildings, all stretching horizontally against each other for miles, some separated with metal fencing, some separated with a stagnant stream of litter, plastic botles and weathered cardboard. above, pedestrian bridges every mile or so, military looking. cars very fast, their doppler stereo passings coloring the air with movement, but no other sounds, no one else, no people, just me. distant billboards. the ocean an awful color. the sun unfiltered. the sky emormous. the earth enormous. everything so vast in the distance. the ground uneven, rocks from the railroad tracks hiding in the dirt. wires above. road signs. blue, grey, black, brown, white.

so alone.

yet lonliness, that empty isolated feeling, not present. lonliness rare when alone. i have never felt lonliness in nature- ancient skies and rocks and trees and wind, there i feel contemplative and connected, a part of something greater. my heart a sun. or home at night, those enchanted friday nights when no one calls and i get take out indian food and a bottle of wine and eat and drink at the table by myself with a cloth napkin and music playing and maybe a thick reference book laid out before me, the pages turning with detached intrest, me smilin and singing out loud. then i am alone, but contentedly so, happy to know that i am the kind of person that can do this, that can be okay by myslef. sjs telling me about how much she was cracking herself up while home sick, alone. thats a beautiful alone, not lonley.

this alone is diferent, but still not lonley. this alone is powerful, and puts me in touch with the world of men. i have felt it before, when driving across the country- in hotel parking lots and rest stops and gas stations where the world is enormous and unpopulated. all the signs of commerce and society surrounding, advertisements and trash reminding me that i am in the world of human beings. of living and dying and buying and selling and anger and boredom and desire and stagnation. and somehow, in spite of all of my feelings of isolation and detachment form the world, my sarcastic spearation and absurdist observing, i am a part of it, im there, and its letting me. the world is letting me pass. im doing just fine. i can stop into the gas staion and fill up the tank and pay with a card and not get arrested, not get flooded with lights and snipers, not be jumped by men of tired jokes and boring clothes and poor musical taste, throwing a sack over myhead and asking mke who i think i am. i cant talk to most people, i cant agree, but somehow ive slipped through the netting and am here, alone, unaccompianed, unstopped. how can i be in lisbon? what the fuck am i doing in lisbon? how can the world of men have let me here? im not that kind of man...i look up at planes overhead and start laughing out loud, start laughing like a maniac as loud as i can and still am left alone. there are old buildings and cars, yes, but there is still ocean and grass and sky, im still there and conneceted through those pieces of nature. and i can laugh at the things i see and wonder at the words people tell me and feel so alone, but im free to do so, i am free to act and think this way. i am getting away with it.

later, lost. scared, alone. yet excited. alone. not lonley. finally, a woman helps, points me to the sea, north is south, and i return, legs five hours sore. back on the boat, alone.

and then lonliness. only then, when the sea of acquantinces return.

at night there is a halloween party on deck one, i go in black pants and a grey shirt, there is free coors light and pizza and two dozen young white women in sexy costumes dancing and five dozen nonwhite men standing in a circle around them, arms crossed, lusting. i dont talk to anyone. i walk from room to room and dont talk to anyone. drink a beer. tap my foot and smile out loud at the people i see, but dont talk, because i know if i do ill be greeted with words i dont really understand, a script i tore up years ago, a mask i didnt bring, and ill have to laugh those plastic laughs, and ill just get sad and lonley and uncomfortable. when in throw out a curve, when i try to say something that i want to say, when my courage lets me, im greeted with looks. looks. better to just watch and be happy. better to keep my eyes open for godliness without interrupting. better to just be alone, and not have to talk to remind me that im lonley too.

later still, deck 12 black night and the ocean is furious, the wind homicidal; the atlantic crossing has begun. i fall a surprise from a gust and laugh out loud as my chest hits the wet ground laugh, laugh maniacally, as loud as i can, screaming into the sky and sea, and no one looks, because no one is there. so alone, so happy, so lonley, so sad.


29 October 2003

last night we played for a concert pianist. his name was brooks something. he was old, crazy einstein hair, wore a tux with tails, starts with a ridiculous version of "america" from west side story. lots of big fancy fast piano pyrotechnics, high fast loud notes, trills, glissandos, the whole arsenal of romantic piano embellishment. fucking terrible. yet really really good.

i cannot play piano fast. i dont have technical proficiency. i can play slow, and i can play pretty, and i can play weird and i can play creepy and noisy, but my fingers just wont do the really herculian liszty girlswooning fast stuff. there was a time, in college, when i was better at it, and could play some pretty hot runs, but they required lots of practice. i dont like practicing; i like playing. so, i eventually decided to build an aesthetic around my strengths and leave the fast stuff to others who have six hours a day to waste, and i think i do mean waste (well okay not for everyone), on piano practicing.

so perhaps there are pangs of jealousy and regret inside of me when i hear a ridiculous concert pianist; this is definitely true when i listen to some recordings of pollini (reallly fast) or argerich (sexy fast) or rubinstein (slow motion fast) or any of those other ridiculous piano playing motherfuckers. they make me feel like a imposter at the piano; like i am tricking people into thinking they are hearing good piano when in fact theyre just listening to a lot of indulgent masturbation with the pedal down. i dont really feel this way, but i realize that i could...but lets get back to this guy. there are lots of problems with this guy, this beautiful guy who has the audience melting. look at the way he raises his right hand, as if making a fine cognac toast while the left brings in the melody from chopins fantasie impromptou. look at the way he pinches his lips and rebounds a good foot above the keys while playing de fallas ritual fire dance, an old virtuoso warhorse. listen to his ridiculous english accent and the way he says the word "class-ee-cal" with a sibilant stacatto dignity and the way he flourishes his arms gracefully through the air while prancing about the stage telling tender anecdotes and the way that he calls rachmaninov's 18th paganini variation "one of the greatest melodies of teh twentieth century". this guy is a fucker, im telling you. why? why is this so wrong? why is he so right?....wait, ill get into that.

first let me tell you the rest of the show. joplins the enetertainer, done in the style of a. honkytonk piano (chain across the strings) b. old gramophone recording (the gram slows down, the music changes key, skips in the record, funny mouth scratch sound effects) c. vaudeville nonsense (slide whistles, tennis ball thrown into audience) d. rock (including me having to repeat this tendonitisific boogie woogie figure on electric keys). then, greek medley, where i completely fuck up this keyboard bouzuki (that cant be spelled right) part, really royally and loudly and for an extended period of time (you have no idea how fun it is to royally fuck up music in a professional concert and absolutely not care, to just laugh and laugh as its happeneing right under your nose), and then finally a medley of, gulp, hey jude and give peace a chance, with the audience singing the latter slowed down and unsuwng to match with the former (in the intro to this, he says that he "sincerly believes that mr. lennon (listen to that, "mister" - what a fucker!) wrote this song as words for people who might attack us." what!!! its clearly a republican crowd, but still, john fucking lennon? do a garth brooks finale if thats what you want...anyway. oh, yeah, and furthermore, for the second half of the show he changes into a funnier jacket, purple with sequins.

now in the past (ie last cruise) i have accepted performers of vegas style cheese because of the audience response they get. the audiences here love it, they eat it up, standing o's all the time. but after last night, i am not so sure- im not so forgiving. i think there is something deeply wrong with what this man is doing, and it comes down to honesty.

honesty, i think, is the thing by which music, all music can be conistenetly judged. if its honest, it is good, if not, it is not. this is great for me because skill doesnt really come ito it (ie fast playing not necessary). now i love, man just love a lot of different kinds of music, and i hate a good deal of music too. there is very little in between- usually if something is in the middle for me, i a confused and have to listen to it several times until i figure out what is going on. i have brought with me, in fact no less then four cds that have confounded me in the past and am happy to report that i have come to turns with three of them . (nick drake, finally, fucking great. so pretty. love it. radiohead, hail, finally really sunk into the track that goes ".i .dont .know .why i .feel .so .tongue . .tied" that track is fucking great, incredible, makes me smile and dance, everything about it, man! go listen to that song! i think its track 12, though i have a burned possibly out of order copy. it made the rest of the album work for me {though i still think the first track sucks}. cat power, finally, fucking great. the fourth, still bewidlering one is sea and the cake. does that music suck? or doesnt it? hard to tell).

fuck, anyway. the common thread...right:

the common thread is honesty. when musicians are playing honestly, when they are getting as close as possible to translating electric impulses in their brain into pure sound, with no steps in between, they make good music. (now, im just talking about performance and composition here, he whole inifinite power of music to explain the universe thing suggested in last post can wait for now. i dont even know if i beleive that, i just get carried away when writing about that spiritual shit. please, salt grains, everyone). children singing sound great. dying alcaholic billie holiday sounds great. bob dylan sounds great. miles davis changing a dozen times sounds great. the rolling stones young and alive sound great, but later, not so good. later, they are imitating a sound. its not them. its not honest. a lot of pop music, (using the term in the worst possible way) is dishonest, in that it is contrived to sell, and thus not a manifestation of the artists head. and there is some great song writing going on there (i still love "that way"), but it leaves me cold. and i think a lot of the most popular groups of any genre are the ones that are concsiously distilling the genre, breaking it down into its essential recognizable parts so that it may be easily packaged. this has been covered pretty thourghly elsewhere im sure, and i dont really want to get into the corporate music machine thang, that not really my style, so lets just stop and say the one common thing there is in every piece of music i personally like is honesty.

now of course this can get terribly complicated. if you honestly believe the words of an old jazz standard, will it sound good when you sing it, to your high school boyfriend, on the beach, with your uncles out of tune guitar? no. it will sound good only if you sing it honestly, if the actual physical movements of your throat are natural and not an attempt to recreate any singing you have ever heard before. which is damn near impossible, but good (fuck is it good!) when it happens. and also explains why so much good music is so unique...a quality almost, but not quite, as defining for good music for me as honesty. high school jazz band players sound awful because they are not playing honest notes- they are hitting certain notes played at least thirty years ago becaus it "sounds like jazz". music that sounds like jazz is awful. this genre titles get so damn difficult because if its really honest, its probably going to either a. fall outside of any genre or b. define the genre. so. honest. and you can still sing inside of a genre and sound fucking great, but its going to be coincidence, see? a great folk singer working in the folk tradition will sound great because her honest voice just happens to fall into the great folk tradition. but if someone just says, oh, folk music, i like that, im gonna sing it, look out. odds are their voice wont sound like that, and theyll force it into all sorts of twisted caterwalls based on the memory of an old joan baez record. thats not folk.

not to say that there isnt craft involved, and practice and understanding of music history. i think these all contribute to making great music....im making a ridiculous distinction here between good and great music. not everyone can make great music, that seems pretty clear; it requires a lot of work and dedication and passion and a certain type of mind, analytical yet emotional. and there are geniuses, oh god there are geniuses. but i think everyone can make good music, even hand clapping. or whistling. or late night bathtub singing. it can be very beatiful, yes? yes. but as soon as you start to imitate, as soon as you become concious of the making of music, you psych yourself out into playing old tired charlie parker licks. thats not jazz. thats not rock n roll- kenny g aint got no soul, john coltrane is rock n roll. yes?

now the piano player. he is being honest, and for this reason his show is good, but conditionally, and ultimately, i think, dangerously (god im so fucking melodramatic). because just what, oh what is he saying? what is his truth?

it is not "see my soul, im in pain." it is not "i feel that way too, you are not alone." it is not "i love the world". it is not "i have felt things and learned from them and i want to help you." it is not "there is a god." it is not "if you move your body for a while and stop thinking you find true joy and awakening." it is not even (though it almost is) "the human body and mind are amazing in combination with each other. you can do astonishing things. you are god too." these are the messages of good music. these are good messages.

brooks whatshisnames truth is "music is understandable and virtuosity obtainable through hard woork and dedication. it has a power to move people that can be learned and controlled. performance is an art that is powerful and can be mastered. i care for you and want to show you a good time, so i have mastered these things." which is not a terrible message...but its dangerously accepting of the audiences complacency. that is, its a presentation rather than an invitation to comtemplate. or an invitation to grow. no one in that audience worked for their smile and joy last night. no one saw god, thats for damn sure. they were shown a good time and reacted as if they had a good time, just as the retelling of saturday night live jokes will always get a laugh at the water cooler on monday. (im assuming that this still happens...maybe?). so if something sounds like good music, people react as is it were good music, but i think these people are asleep. and should be woken up. should be played some real music.

i appreciate the mans craft. i even laughed at some of his jokes. and i especially appreciate the fact that he bought each member of the band a bottle of liquor before signing off (jameson for me, hee hee!) but i do wish sometimes that people would realize that god is hiding under each of those 88 keys, each of those twelve notes, and that if you pound, if you dont approach your instrument as a priest approaches the communion table, you risk damning your soul and raping the souls of those around you.

27 October 2003

im in spain now and its raining outside and i got sick of waiting for the king and queen to walk down the road, so i have left, making my way through the crowd with entschuldigen sie bittes so as to avoid the looks of antiamerican derision, and am now in an internet cafe where the woman asked me my name and i said david and she wrote down devil. devil. i also bought a shiny black shirt.

last night i left the martini table once the talk turned to movie dialogue, i went to the mess late late and got some sandwiches and brought them up to the mooring deck, a deserted area of the ship late at night, loud and strangely lit, the bright whites and blues of the ropes causing supercontrast with the black ocean speeding past below. i threw the plastic fringe topped toothpicks into the water and then thought about jumping in. not really, please, not really suicidaly, more just marveling at the idea that the possibility existed, and a world in which that happens existed as well, because the choice existed. choice seems to be getting a lot of play in my head and the world around me lately, from matrix style pop philosophy to quantum physics, and just a lot of recent conversations have had to do with it too. ("...or i could just go fucking nuts right now, and start throwing pans and shit around!")

on the plane out i read eggers' you shall know our velocity, which i thought was very good, better then his last, and anyway he reiterates and idea i came across earlier this year, the multiverse. this theory comes from quantum physics, and basically says that the bizarre probabilistic behavior of subatomic particles can be explained by saying that the universe actually splits into parallel universes at every moment of decision in a subatomic particles life. which is ridiculous, to be sure. the bizarre behavior in question is that particles move in ways that can only be predicted as probabilities, that is, you can say that there is a 75% chance that this little photon will go over here, and indeed if you shoot a hundred photons out of one of those cool little photon guns youll get about 75 landing where you said 75% should, but on an individual level, one photon at a time, we have no way of knowing what will happen. but the fact that 75% do indeed land where you said 75% should land seems to suggest that each individual photon knows something about the other 99 and where they are going to land. they also seem to know about the conditions of the experiment; in this super bizarre double slit experiment individual photons seem to know where to go based on whether or not a slit on the other side of the room is open or not. there is all sorts of bizarre shit going on here, including experiments where scientists have set up light fast, random slit opener/closers to test whether or not the photons were actually just reading the scientists minds.

one thing that has always pissed me off about the books ive been reading this, and something which actually makes me suspect that there is something key that i dont understand, is why this phenomenon is talked about only on subatomic levels. the probability of a dice roll seems just as puzzling to me. theres a one in six chance that youll roll a four, and sure enough, if you roll the die 600 times youll get a four about 100 times. but how the fuck can the die keep track of that? i remember my father teaching me that the die has no memory, and the probability of getting a four after rolling a four is still one in six. but if the die has no memory, how does this work? how can the world be just about 50% of each sex? does each individual egg and sperm know the state of the world at the moment of conception? how can photons and dice and eggs know anything? what is the universe up to here? its a really existential problem i think, and one that seems to lead to the idea of choice and time.

the book im reading now, einsteins dreams, talks about some of these things. one dream talks about time being circular and endlessly repeated; another talks about worlds where time exists in three dimensions, a simplification of the mutliverse idea. but all of these things seem to tell me that in fact there is no such thing as choice. the die cannot choose what to land on; the universe takes over, to insure that the laws of probability are adhered to. the universe, as a whole, united entity, decides what sex this new child will be. evolutionarily, this makes a lot of sense; life cant continue unless we get this many eggs, this much sperm. yes? wait- im in spain- ¿yes?

any theory that backs evolution seems like a good one to me, cause evolution seems to me to be the be all end all theory. not all the particulars necessarily, but just the idea that the meaning of life is life, that everything in this universe works the way it does for the sole purpose of continuing life, and that life continues in new ways, a great variety of ways, each an experiment, a test to see what works, what lets life go on the most effectively. creation is a constant, and with its sister (or brother if you prefer) destruction the universe is. even splitting things in two like that seems a little dangerous to me- a good friend told me once that every attempt to explain the universe is inherently flawed, because the universe is one and all analysis is the act of breaking things down into smaller parts. yinyangs and introvert/extrovert psychology and david deida do it in two, freud and kant and hell most of western philosophy do it in three, ken wilber and physics does it in four, ennegrams in nine (nine?), the kabbalah in ten, zodiac in twelve. pianos do it in 88, you might say, but music, ah music, so fucking incredible because it gets as close as you can get to one- sound is infinite in possibility, an infinite number of permutations, greater than words, which seem infinite but are truly limited. you can only make so many three letter words, but once youve got it, you can say it, you can sound it, in an infinite number of ways- just the distance from f to f# would occupy a lifetime. but anyway. for now, right now here in spain rambling and not making much coherent sense, id rather just leave it as one: the universe is creation, with all that that entails, even the occasional entropic purging. i like this idea. it makes sense to me. it explains beauty and love to me, art and passion, because both are tools of creation.

what is my point here?

oh, right. this started because i had a neat thought about fate and free will and time earlier today. there seems to be a problem with the ordinary depiction of predetermination, and it comes with that prefix, pre. the idea seems to suggest that the course of the world has been determined at some previous point in time; at the beginning of time, the big bang began and the world was set in motion and the chain of cause and effect caused this predetermined world we have now. which i might buy, but what about time? everything in relativistic physics suggests that time is not this linear constant, but rather something far more, well, relative. the idea of the past and future are just flatland concepts we poor old one dimensional time creatures have created and held to as true, but i dont think it is the case. if time is a circle, if deja vu is real, or better yet if it is a sphere, a torus, a ten dimensional escher twist of nonsense that exists as a whole for always and always, well, well.....well doesnt that change things? and what does this have to do with choice...shit.

ive lost it. ive lost it. i just stared at a receipt on the table and tried to know whether or not i was going to crumple it up. i stared at it and tried to find out. and tried to empty my head and let the future come into me. but it didnt, and i grew frustrated, and i reached out and crumpled the paper in frustration.

eggers's complaint about the multiverse theory is that it is meaningless because he has no access to it, these other universe could not exist in the same consciousness as his. i remember reading an article about the multiverse that suggested one practical application of these infinite universes, if they could be accessed, would be storage. assholes!

so, yes, i have no access to any of this, at least not on this conscious plane, and i doubt that travelling to another plane would really affect the life here, this body and mind writing on this computer right now. and time moves ever forward, and all my understanding of it will not change that. but i know how to slow it, yes? and i know how to stop it, i think, from time to time. that is, i think i know what kissing is for.

25 October 2003

tonight we played stardust again. it was so lovely.
some of you know that this is maybe my favorite song. i made a recording of it that makes me tingle every time i listen to it (usually listening to my own music makes me swear out loud to my former self. "what the fuck...come on...stupid, imposter, stupid!"), and thessaly or parnell will tell you that i play it around the house an embarrassing amount of the time. those chords are just perfect, just perfect.

i didnt fall in love with the song until i worked on a cruise ship last time, from july-sept 2001. we played it during our big band sets from time to time, but it was still nothing special. then all hell broke loose and i found myself (i decided, i created) coming home early to a heartbreaking situation...my state of mind on the boat that last week was indescribable. never have i been more uncertain of everything, both the external world, the feelings and actions of others, and the internal, my own frenetic thoughts and feelings and pains and ideals. i walked around the ship in an emotionally sapped daze, which was fine for my coworkers because i had told the authorities that i was going home because my girlfriend had breast cancer, the incredibly poor taste and bad karma of which has been pointed out to me several times, thank you. anyway.

so one of our very last nights, were playing big band to a small crowd on the tenth deck late at night. it is the second set and i am drunk. very drunk, almost too drunk to be playing, the drink special that night beng tom collinses. who knew i had such a weakness. and im sad and crazy and really on the edge, just about to shatter into a million pieces, and the notes on the page in front of me are blinking and dancing in a liquor haze. i am swaying, but my hands are locked to the keys playing, playing, but i am not there.

and then stardust gets called. we start playing it, and im in a trance already and when the chorus hits suddenly im gone and and oh my god, the saxophones! the saxophones are playing counterpoint to the trumpets melody throughout, all voiced in velvet rich thirds. they hit these whole tone runs that ripple through my soul like electric wine, sounds like the ocean and the speed of light. the song is stardust, and i can see the stars inside of me. and every sound around me- the ride cymbal swinging in celebration, the bass landing on each note like it was a planet, the tinkling glasses in the crowd, the rocking of the boat on the blackblue sea, all this movement through time, sounds so wonderful, so holy, and i look at my hands and see them doing their familiar acrobatics and finesses, but i see them for the first time and see how amazing they are and realize that i am creating this moment, but im not thinking about it, it is just happening all around me and i seem to be everywhere at once. everything was synced. i am choosing the notes to play without being conscious of it, i am creating outside of my mind and have obtained somehow that zen moment of one taste, of nondual being, where subject and object become blurred and indistinct. this is what music is for, i remember, this is that place of emptiness and creation all at once...i am not there, only spirit is there, creation, and it is the most beautiful sound i have ever heard, because it was the world, the whole universe right there, moving through time, and i knew that everything was all right. everything was empty and full of beauty and light. everything was everything.

that was the night i understood time, tasted music as a oneness and became god, and was sure of it. its a moment i have forgotten far too many times in my life since. but tonight we played stardust again and i got to stop thinking again, and i felt love the love of the sea and sky love and creation all around me.

24 October 2003

what the fuck am i doing in monaco. what the fuck am i doing in monaco. what the fuck are these people doing with their money? im in the casino, the world famous casino where james bond plays, and there are crystal chandeliers and ceilings so far away and gold and red carpet. there is a buffet room, and i ask the man working there if i may eat.
-no, no. is invitation only
-how do i get an invitation?
-the management would ask you, if they wanted
-who do they ask...just those people that are doing really good?
i really want to eat there. it looks really good. so i decide to try and get someone rich to use me as a good luck charm. i stand on the outside of the velvet roped roulette table, and just start staring at people with a really wise, spiritual look on my face. not surprisingly, theyre not having it. this man, short and portly and immaculately dessed, a thin line of silk handkercheif just above the pocket of his black five button suit, and awful cigar stub in his mouth. or this man, young and asian and sunglassed, hopping form table to table, throwing 1000 e chips on the table at the last possible minute, then jumping to the next table to avoid seeing the outcome. all of them have pieces of paper with indecipherable scrawls of blue and black ink, tiny circles and numbers on the eback of a thick old memo pad. and im just staring at them, and i swear they cant even tell im there, theyre so rich. i feel happy that i am unimpressed by there shoes, on the whole.

i move to another table where they are playing a game i dont understand at all, and the movements are a beautiful dance of subtlety. there are four blue jacketed men running each table- south runs the chips, west the cards (or wheel), east the bank, and north watches over all in a chair thats raised four feet off the ground. north is by far my favorite. at one point he stares at me and i stare back and he keeps staring, hes staring right at me while this game is going on under his nose, and i stare back, oh im not letting go of this, so we stare. this is great. and then, and finally then he does this thing, what the fuck, where he slowly smoothes his tie...smooth, smooth, smooth, neck to groin. and when he is finished he looks back at me and raises an eyebrow.

that was enough for me.

23 October 2003

this is very very strange. strange because it is two years later and i come back, to a different part of the world, onto a different ship, and yet everything is exactly the same. the ship is different but the same, the smells are the same, the colors are the same, the dentist drill syncopations i can make with my fingernails as i walk down the vinyl walled hall are the same, the tiny sandwiches and ruthless midnight wind and beauty of count basie charts the same. the people are different, technically, but, really the same. the only thing different is me, which is wild- first off, because it has made me realize just how different i am, how much has happened in two years, and then because its like ive been given that famous second chance to do high school all over again. i can fix the past, make it more beautiful and meaningful. so im working it, really trying to savor it, my senses very alert, letting my mind be calmed and body healed.

god barcelona was beatiful. why doesnt everyone make buildings like they are from outer space?

05 October 2003

heres a mystical story for you:

on friday i went to glendalough, the ruins of an old monastic village set in a valley between two lakes, about an hour south of dublin. i went hoping to have a mystical experience; i had read eco's foucaults pendulum on the plane, which is a lot about kabbalah and masons and the occult and telluric currents, boy you should read it if you havent (though it has some pretty obnoxiously erudite sections), but anyway it got me feeling really lonley for some unknown forces. so im waiting for the bus, and then there it comes, and it goes right past. so i think maybe im just in the wrong spot (the stop is not marked), so i start walking after the bus, but it just keeps going, so now i start running, im running, yes running as i see the bus turn the corner, and i blaze into traffic which is of course not coming form the direction i expect, so horns blare and i almost get hit but i swerve like a frogger and make it to the other side, and my foot jumps onto the curb, but misses, and my balance fails, and i start flailing, flailing, my arms pinwheeling madly through the air, and now i know im going to fall, inevitable, but im just running madly forward until finally i ran directly into a large metal pole with my chest. hard. i spin around backwards and hit the ground, hard, with both arms. i collapse into a pile on the asphalt, knocked out, delirious, and i look up and see two men wlaking past me, and they just look and smile. and walk right past. i shout to them, 'im all right!' and i get up and stumble over to them and tap the one on his shoulder, 'im all right'. 'oh, oh, good' he says. then i start to faint.

anyway, the bus it turns out was just going around the block, so i get to glendalough, and the whole time my body is just aching and i can barely breathe. i hike up a hill, and just watch the trees for a while. at one point the wind blows my sweater down a hill and i have to go chase after it. later i sneak into an old church. nothing overtly mystcal, but its really beautiful, the silence, the water, the wind.

then the next day, i wake up feeling awful, aching, fevered, throat sore. it seems that slamming into the pole has given me the flu. we have an endless rehearsal, and i go home shaking with a thermometer verified 100 degree fever. i go up to sleep, keeping my sweater on.

i wake around four in the moring, in so much pain...every limb exhausted and sore, my body on fire, my throat a razor, my head concrete. i drink the last of my water, and i cant move, but i know i need more...i know i have to put something else into my body, something to purge this disease form me. i try visualizing the virus, try visualizing removing it. and then i remember that there are peaches downstairs. in a small wooden bowl. i spend twenty minutes specualting on whether or not i am going to get up (im goin got get up right now. right now. right....now!) and then i surprise myself and sit up, slowly swing my legs to the ground and stand.

we are staying at jasons aunts house, she is a 70 year old ex-nun. there are religous books and paintings everywhere. and dust. but as i walk out into the hall, i find that i am in fact in my grandmothers house, and i am ten again. i creep down the stairs, past the golden woodblocks of christ, so slowly, nearly falling, and in the dark of the living room i find the bowl of peaches with my hands. i take it into the kitchen and eat it over the sink, which is my grandmothers sink. it is so good, this peach. bright orange. juicy. i can feel it enter my blood and breath. i feel awake all through. its a really beautfiul thing. and then, as im sucking the last pieces of pulp from the pit, i start sweating, my entire face becomes a wet rag; the fever has broken.

i thank my grandmother, then i have a cracker and go back to bed.