Saturday, July 29, 2006

Today wrangled with the past by brazenly ignoring the ongoing policy of ignoring high school reunions. Attended an event this afternoon honouring three fallen classmates: a sudden death, a cancer death, a suicide. I did skip the evening portion of drinks on a patio on the river.
And, just as with hanging with Loomis, I am intrigued by how memory obscures nearly all events from those non-halcyon high school years. Over lunch six of us managed to piece together some things.
As I did one year ago with Loomis, I rifled through a lost & found to glean a few souvenirs and the objet I scooped up I'm mailing off to her.
Today at the memorial gathering I read Evening Without Angels by Wallace Stevens, as I did for my Aunt Marion's funeral. One thing to completely dig about this poem, beside its wordsmithed perfection, is that no matter how many times it's encountered there is a surprise, an impermeability.
The poem has celestial sounds that belies its darker thrust.
You will miss it online. You will find it below like right now.

By Wallace Stevens
Evening Without Angels

Why seraphim like lutanists arranged
Above the trees? And why the poet as
Eternal chef d'orchestre?

Air is air.
Its vacancy glitters round us everywhere.
Its sounds are not angelic syllables
But our unfashioned spirits realized
More sharply in more furious selves.

And light
That fosters seraphim and is to them
Coiffeur of haloes, fecund jeweller –
Was the sun concoct for angels or for men?
Sad men made angels of the sun, and of
The moon they made their own attendant ghosts,
Which led them back to angels, after death.

Let this be clear that we are men of sun
And men of day and never of pointed night,
Men that repeat antiquest sounds of air
In an accord of repetitions. Yet,
If we repeat, it is because the wind
Encircling us, speaks always with our speech.

Light, too, encrusts us making visible
The motions of the mind and giving form
To moodiest nothings, as, desire for day
Accomplished in the immensely flashing East,
Desire for rest, in that descending sea
Of dark, which in its very darkening
Is rest and silence spreading into sleep.
. . . Evening, when the measure skips a beat
and then another, one by one, and all
to a seething minor swiftly modulate.
Bare night is best. Bare earth is best. Bare, bare
Except our own houses, huddled low
Beneath the arches and their spangled air,
Beneath the rhapsodies of fire and fire,
Where the voice that is in us makes a true response,
Where the voice that is great within us rises up,
As we stand gazing at the rounded moon.


So after high school revisitation (really, I did enjoy the girls, lunching and laughing) stopped over at Liz's - post Garden Walk - to see the garden in its fullness, and to see the prized lily that she repaired with duct tape.
And not only that but a good glob of Elmer's Glue to boot.
(This also conjures how YT has been doing some plantings, time allowing, anticipating a late-summer fete and the rock star visit this upcoming Tuesday chez moi.)
There is a plethora more going on this fine, about-to-deluge evening and I did think of Al (as in Gore, not Farmelo as 1. who is the champeen of global warming miasmas and how to fix - go here for some awareness, and 2. I have never, ever referred to Allen Farmelo as Al, as dozens of others do.) as I read of record-breaking high temps the world over, beloved Paris has even become an oven and the bedgraggled tourists at the Eiffel Hoopla are being misted with water cannons. Yours Truly imagines dozens of fun-savers ruined each day.

Must report upon some missed (speaking of misting and missing pieces) happenstances of late.

Minding my own business I was returning to the USofA from Canada and was at Booth 14. Waiting and waiting as seemingly each booth had a complication, a slew of questions, trunks popping open for closer looks. It became my time at #14 when, seemingly, all hell began to bust loose as the inspector, the border patrol man became rather panicked and speaking loudly into his shoulder radio. DISREGARD SOS FROM BOOTH 14, DISREGARD SOS FROM BOOTH 14. I looked at his face sort of awaiting an ironic punch line, or a few SWAT Team members emerging with AK47s at the ready. He looked down at me in a strange way, perhaps to see if I was expressing any anti-social, pro-terroristic senses of humour.
Again minding my own business met a bunch of girlies out recently after dinner with Jana at some Med joint. Read: garlic dips.
At appointed meeting place there are others that are pals so it became a real happening of sorts. Jen and Eric were there, for instance.
So I'm standing at the bar (Yes, minding the business of YT) when the bartendress (and I do refuse to use the word barmaid as it conjures for me images of ass-pinched women sweatin' for tips) puts the ol' upturned, or downturned, rather, shot glass in front of me pronouncing Apparently, you've touched a customer in here.
And, of course, I had to ask if that was appropriately or inappropriately.
I asked who the spender was and she sort of bobbed her eyes about. She finally tossed out the biggest clue of all. Cowboy hat. There were two bona fide (you could tell, believe You me) cowboys in the joint, obviously from far far away. I saw them eating Slim Jims later. In case You had a doubt. At some point the cuter of the two cowboys meandered by and, as he passed, said in my face You shore are purdy.
Did I feel like Debra Winger just then in that god-awful cowboy movie. Nope.
Can You explain how that image just emerged from this high school memoried-besotted brain.
I thought not.

Not thoughts, Love.

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