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.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Sent in an email that I am not going to undertake the Doctor Nance Project.
Thought and decided that my passion is not There, but elsewhere.
I already slogged through a program for my field's terminal degree and the thought of maneuvering through seminars, attendant writing and reading, plus teaching responsibilities, and maintaining my career was not only a hellacious undertaking, but not one that enthralled.
Not easily, but onwards.
Time to make make and do.

Doing and not doing Love.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

The People (yes, that would be a big P) of Andrew Cuomo hunted me down to insist that I troll The Archive for more more more images of him and Eliot and Hillary. I complied but not before a question - OK, so your deadline is in like how many minutes, how long did you HAVE this deadline.
The woman I was in actual contact with transitioned from the ennui-laden voice of a campaign chair in the Shiney Apple to the squeaky all-girl high-pitched We Are Conspiratorial Pals voice.
Well . . . Nancy . . . you KNOW how campaigns are.
So here I am in the Mac store in the former wetlands of Cheektowaga, in the dismal mall - a universe away from the clubbiness, the buzz of the SoHo/Preferred Mac Joint.
Working in said Mac hangout in the former wetlands on a demo model just like the one that the nice Apple folks constructed per my requests out in Cali. And, just like the machine of Yours Truly, the freakin' trackpad does a very odd skip and jump.
It is time to wend my way out of this happy land of machines and digital pageantry to the land of deadlines, and requests.

Honeyed Love.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Yesterday's gig was making portraits of a solid couple, he the gatekeeper if You will of a fine old Middling City place of worship to the intangible energies of Life.
The couple told me that upon finishing their sitting with me they were going to ready the joint for two baptisms, a service, two weddings. That they'd packed lunches and dinners to lunch and sup in the back catacombs whilst their helping hands were not needed. We discussed the somewhat Pagan-sounding tradition (a dying one, according to them) of arriving believers to dip their fingers into Holy Water to remind themselves of their baptismal promises.

As this couple in Love was busy backstage before our shooting I gave a donation to the candle fund, stuffing it into the large wooden box to light a large blue candle under the resident copy of the Pieta in honour of the first death of one of my first cousins, Patricia.
Under the Pieta as her mother, my aunt, is, needless to say, beyond heartbroken and stayed with Patty from Mother's Day (when the devastating news was delivered) until now.
Patty died of lung cancer. This was fast and furious and following her ineffective complaints to doctors of shortness of breath. Bronchitis they said. Wrong. Peace to the soul that is free.

Deborah told me yesterday that she made her Bat Mitzvah, that it was a rather surprise transition, that they did not even know that she would be making it. I think I'd like to make a celebration for her Bat Mitzvah.
Made one of the best green gazpacho recipes YT has ever seen, this time for the annual chili extravaganza at Bruce and Diane's. As Luck would have it found a cut glass punch bowl, as I did last year for a soirée at Liz's where I brought same soupy goodness, at the supersonic thrift joint. Being a tomato allergy victim (TAV) I like to show up at tomato-centric events with non-tomato molecules. At the party, held in honour of Bastille Day (back on the 14th, bien sur), saw a plethora of pleasing people, most alligned with Middling City U - a treat for sure.
Saw President John Simpson and Katherine across the way and could not get over to give a big hugging Halloo. John, always dressed to perfection, actually, she is, too, was in a vibrant short-sleeved shirt, quite unlike the vintage complexity worn by Pat K at the joint where I met some of the girlies this fine morn.
Brought Kennedy to the party last night and beforehand to the most soothing Botanicus Gardenus at the edge of South Park.
Marvelled at some orchids, plunged into lemon blossoms.
Bought a succulent that is truly a work of art.
Speaking of art, came up with a grand book club-like concept to be carried out with the girlies to make art in lieu of reading. Get together. Have an art project. Finish art project. Hurray.
Time to speed off into the distance for now.
Carrying with me all that is.

Is Love.