American Idyll

yes, the river knows

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Last Train Home

Pat Metheny: Last Train Home

The crucified planet Earth,
should it find a voice
and a sense of irony,
might now well say
of our abuse of it,
Forgive them, Father,
They know not what they do.

The irony would be
that we know what
we are doing.

When the last living thing
has died on account of us,
how poetical it would be
if Earth could say,
in a voice floating up
from the floor
of the Grand Canyon,
It is done.
People did not like it here.

--Kurt Vonnegut
A Man Without a Country

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Poking Up Over The Grocery Store


Laurie Anderson: Sharkey's Day


at the end

of the movie

they know that

they must

find each other

but they ride off

in opposite directions

Laurie Anderson / William Burroughs: Sharkey's Night


Monday, March 20, 2017

But The Season Is Advancing

The first stars tremble as if shimmering in green water. Hours must pass before their glimmer hardens into the frozen glitter of diamonds. I shall have a long wait before I witness the soundless frolic of the shooting stars. In the profound darkness of certain nights I have seen the sky streaked with so many trailing sparks that it seemed to me a great gale must be blowing through the outer heavens. **

When I opened my eyes
I saw nothing but
the pool of nocturnal sky,
for I was lying on my back
with outstretched arms,
face to face with
that hatchery of stars.
Only half awake,
still unaware that
those depths were sky,
having no roof between
those depths and me,
no branches to screen them,
no root to cling to,
I was seized with vertigo
and felt myself
as if flung forth
and plunging downward
like a diver. **

WAVELIGHT from Sunchaser Pictures on Vimeo.

He is
not admiring
the colors
of the earth
and sky,
the marks
of the wind
on the sea,
the gilded clouds
of twilight;
they are
the objects
of his meditation. **

I know that mood. Three years of the desert taught it to me.
Something in one’s heart takes fright, not at the thought of growing old, not at feeling one’s youth used up in this mineral universe, but at the thought that far away the whole world is aging. The trees have brought forth their fruit; the grain has ripened in the fields; the women have bloomed in their loveliness. But the season is advancing and one must make haste; but the season is advancing and still one cannot leave; but the season is advancing ... and other men will glean the harvest.

--Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Wind, Sand and Stars **

Friday, March 17, 2017

Halfway There When The Rain Came Down

Arcady: The Rocks of Bawn

Van Morrison: Shenandoah

When I come out
on the road
of a morning,
when I have had
a night's sleep
and perhaps a breakfast,
and the sun lights a hill
on the distance,
a hill I know
I shall walk across
an hour or two thence,
and it is green
and silken to my eye,
and the clouds
have begun their slow,
fat rolling journey
across the sky,
no land in the world
can inspire such love
in a common man.
--Frank Delaney

Mundy / Sharon Shannon: Galway Girl

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Whose Feet Are Four And Two And Three

Grateful Dead: into Days Between...2/9/93

A thing there is
whose voice is one;
whose feet are four
and two and three.
So mutable
a thing is none
that moves in earth
or sky or sea.
When on most feet
this thing doth go,
its strength is weakest
and its pace most slow.

The Riddle of the Sphinx

Days Between ...2/18/93

The Moral Of Mazes

Jacqueline du Pré : Bach~~Cello Suites 1 and 2

That labyrinth
became a world
whose rules I lived by,
and I understood
the moral of mazes:
you have to
turn your back
on your goal
to get there,
you're farthest away
when you're closest,
the only way
is the long one.

After that careful walking
and looking down,
the stillness
was deeply moving...
It was breathtaking
to realize
that in the labyrinth,
metaphors and meanings
could be conveyed spatially.
That when you seem
farthest from your destination
is when you suddenly arrive

is a very pat truth in words,
but a profound one
to find with your feet.

--Rebecca Solnit


Friday, March 10, 2017

Wheel Of Fortune

Majoresque cadunt altis de montibus umbræ. **

John Renbourn / Robin Williamson: Wheel of Fortune

I had come
to the canyon
with expectations.
I wanted to see
snowy egrets flying
against the black schist
at dusk;
I saw blue-winged teal
against the green waters
at dawn.
I had wanted to hear
thunder rolling
in the thousand-foot depths;
I heard the guttural caw
of four ravens...
what any of us had come
to see or do fell away.
We found ourselves
at each turn
with what we had not imagined.

--Barry López
Crossing Open Ground

** And the greater shadows fall from the lofty mountains.

Monday, March 06, 2017

And We Didn't Even Use That Right

Mose Allison: I Don't Worry About a Thing

I was born
a hundred years
too soon.
We just had
hemp rope,
and we didn't
even use
that right.

--Carl Blaurock
(founding member of
Colorado Mountain Club)
upon turning 98

I'm the Wild Man


Saturday, March 04, 2017

Out Past The Party Lights

Tom Waits: The Long Way Home

The lane to
the land of the dead.
Where you are, my friend.
Marie-France, my lady,
she prepared this road,
but her lord
choked her off
before I could read
the book of her days.
Neuro from the nerves,
the silver paths.
Romancer. Necromancer.
I call up the dead.
But no, my friend
and the boy
did a little dance,
brown feet printing the sand,
I am the dead,
and their land.

He laughed. A gull cried,
If your woman is a ghost, she doesn't know it.
Neither will you.

--William Gibson

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Something Like A Bird Within Her Sang

Grateful Dead: Bird Song ...9/17/72


...the wind had dropped,
and the snow, tired of
rushing around in circles
trying to catch itself up,
now fluttered gently down
until it found a place
on which to rest,
and sometimes the place
was Pooh's nose
and sometimes it wasn't
and in a little while
Piglet was wearing
a white muffler
round his neck
and feeling more snowy
behind the ears
than he had ever felt before.

--A. A. Milne
The House at Pooh Corner


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