Monday, August 05, 2002

Sting is such a sell out. All AOR and none of the genius of his Police days or early solo work. No faulting him for doing the TV commercials, but to have such a bland sound on Brand New Day. Wife likes it, all mellow and sultry. Sting hits to the femme eros. But I long for British reggae We are spirits in the material world or even 1987 Englishman in New York. Pretentious too that Nothing Like the Sun, but good LP.

Another displaced unheard wilderness cacophany. Poetry reading saw an awkward fool from early college Rock Valley Forge newspaper days John Hardt, cousin to best man bald man in my wedding, Steve "puffy cheeks" Hardt. He's living at home again after wife left him, along with his brother and sister. Kind of like my bud Todd Stanley who lives at home with all his siblings. Wish I too could have so close a family. Siblings near so much to take for granted. That's the long-running joke with Paris Ken considering jobs in Chicago. Every time I see sis Carol and Ken and Bob it is family gathering all crazy and super social and no one on one and sharing. But you take what you can. I don't know that I'd get along with them, anyways. Brief family gathering type visits don't test patience.

Rare sugary treat given me by Amy Stanley at work. She bought M and M's and didn't want to finish bag. Handed em to me when I was on phone. Now my teeth feel all sugary. Add a coke to that and plaque buildup on back teeth and behind front ones. Caffeine afternoon anxiety as I wrote about West Nile Virus crazy acting crows in Beloit. Deaths in deep south. Southern wisconsin no humans contracted the disease. Nobody gets out anymore. Too urban. No faith in permethrin and DEET and the almighty bliss of the great outdoors. This air-conditioned detachment from natural world, but nature reminds you of your central role in it. West Nile Virus, Chronic Wasting Disease, drought, fire, deformed frogs, sea lampreys in Lake Michigan, Garlic Mustard, chicory on the roadside. Pesticides roundup ready. Shiny fruit, plastic aisles, green shoots through the sidewalk cracks. Old timbers stately home rot and are reclaimed. Nature the perfect cleaner, perfect mistress. Annie Dillard the eating and the eaten. Horrible hollowed out frog skin body.

And at the poetry reading tonight this big black cornrowed flabby armed dramatis nubian femme waxed proper bout da hood and crack and dime bags and love and the angst and ennui and emotionalism of the Rockford black experience. And then there was the old lady who creaked up to microphone and rambled on about her dead son, youngest son, bipolar manic depressive like her who killed himself 10 years ago. And she writing about him on his death day. Admits schizophrenia in herself. Talks about angels, wild eyed and frail, as if they were there. And the usual old person complaint and wish for release from the pain to heavenly permanency. Me, I'm young, and can afford a bit of existentialism, the void a concept and not a gaping maw at my feet. I was so caffeine tense when I arrived at wood-paneled auditorium, and, fooey, I still feel a little bit of that fake energy, but something about the reading and the environment mellowed me.

Two young guys, anger and energy a la Zach de la Rocha and beastie boys and Neal Cassady flip rap rip down on the system up on the rhythm their anger and rhythm the cause, the only true cause and here I am pushing 30 establishment me still connect to that bull force, spittle spray rap scrap routine. And of course there was the odd mother, the burned out hippie, rapping all rhyming and sweet, talking about their children or the struggles of the life. Host a spaniard who loves sports and made boxing and football metaphors for work and drinking tequila. Another old lady mentioned a local Logli supermarket in two separate poems. I much preferred the crazy schizo angel talking smell of death lady.

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