"i have turned to hot chocolate for comfort. i have one every day. with
whipped cream. and cinnamon. sometimes with cayenne. i like how a swampy
cake of cocoa lives at the bottom of every mug, a last hurrah. i read my
fortune in that slime. it begs:
what are you worth?
in what sense do you deserve the thing or things you want?
ever think perhaps you are better off without them?
i have gone kissless on Makeout Mountain. broken into homes. climbed to the
very top of her favorite tree in a prairie and stared out over mountains.
mountains who are humbled, humiliated, by the sun at its redheaded funeral.
this is the place she goes to think. she took me to the place she goes to be
my dad used to deliver papers when he was a kid. he was a paperboy. he would
wake up before the sun and ride his little bike around his little town,
chucking paper after paper at porch after porch. on rainy days, his dad
would wake up with him, two hours before he had to be at work himself, and
he would drive around in his ancient car to help his son with his
deliveries. good dads are the rainbows of the world. & when the paperboy was
16, they called him out of english class into the office at school. his
older sister betty was there. she was going to take him home today. "dad is
dead," she said.
when i have significant moments in my life i wonder how they might ripple
out, shaping in some unseen way events or people that aren't here or perhaps
don't even exist yet. like how these things that happened to this paperboy
in this other life, a thousand lives removed from mine, how today his
sadness ticks in me like a bomb. like someone switched bags with me at the
airport. you don't realize til 30 years later, and it's just the tip of the
iceberg. haven't we all been crafted by a thousand hands? by so many strange
unseen strangers' stories, all strung together like a school of birds above
us? rain drops making the rain. a library of tragedies marking the many
folks who made their tiny mark on me, and in that mark written every tear
they've ever shed, and all the tears of their parents too, and their
parents' parents. further and farther into the past, getting dimmer and
fainter, but still there, somewhere. we are illustrated men. an illegible
kaleidoscope of the world's story is etched in each of us. how many dead
fathers sleep behind your eyes. how many age old broken hearts crack in your
smile. into that chaos i cast my card tricks.
in flagstaff, arizona. it is dry and beautiful. i came because i don't
really need a place to go to be alone. i came because i don't really need a
place to go to think. my mind is a haunted television that does not turn off
when you unplug it. it hisses static:
why are you here?
what did the dream mean?
when you turn on the light, where does the dark go?
where are the keys?
we looked up at the clouds as they spewed over the moon, and we saw the
cotton shapes that were there for us to see. a seahorse. an old man. a
demon. a stallion. a turtle. a set of keys. raise your little hand if you
think you're going to end up alone, the mayor of aloneville. raise your
little hand if that makes us feel superior, and also sad, and also scared.
the rain walks on the roof suddenly, and then stops, and then starts. like
some fit of kisses that collapse into a half-sleep, then erupt again, then
where is it going?
what did she wish for?
where do they keep it?
we climbed up the side of the building downtown. i stepped on the pipes that
grew from the power box and pulled myself up from the fire escape. she
managed some other more graceful way. we had a blanket and we sat up there
quietly. from the roof i looked at the streetlight light through little
holes in a canopy of leaves. holes between the leaves. holes in the leaves
themselves, made by this insect or that one. i like the lines that come out
of the lights, the refractions on the eye that look like little lasers. do
you get those too? i remember petting caterpillars as a little kid. it was a
thrill, a little scary, like holding a butterfly, or catching a grasshopper.
there is a short children's book called "Hope For The Flowers" that Natalie
showed me. it's a good one. you should read it. it only takes a few minutes.
it's a good feeling to record songs. i don't enjoy it as much as writing
them or performing them, i'll be honest, but it's still a thrill. like
holding a butterfly.
& there are shows on the horizon. the plan as of right now is through the
midwest and the northeast this fall, down through the southeast and across
I-10 in December to start another record in Austin. Back through the West
half of the country in April and May, and more recording in the summer of
2010. When does it end? can't say for certain, but I think I got a pretty
good idea. I played an open mic at Mia's here last night, just sort of for
fun. A kid came up to me after with a song and dance I've heard before.
"we're all gonna die."
"true, but not everyone gets the chance to be a rock star."
"they die too." "
Paleo is in my hometown
i wish i was there so we could see him
on the first week of every month,
I'll be posting some of his writings
thanks for reading
take a listen