Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Ran into Anthony in the loop

So today I ran into my friend Anthony, street friend, I see him on the street here and there at different events around town. Last I saw him was at the All-Star game playing outside Busch Stadium where he staked out a place along the fence hoping to make a little money as the crowd passed by. He's a street musician, pretty good sax player, also guitar drums etc.

He was down in the loop sitting in front of the sushi place across from the comic book store. I saw him as I was headed over to get a falafel, and stopped to chat for a while. He was pretty high, first time I've ever seen him really high qnd looking so rough. Told me he lost his place, was living in his van, though I've never seen him driving anything, and every morning he was getting himself a bottle of liquor. I told him I'd come back after I had lunch, bring him something to eat. Figured it was the decent thing to do. I brought a menu back so he could pick out what he wanted, took him a while, but he found something with ground beef that he liked and I went back in and asked the girl behind the counter to make me an extra big one.

I was grocery shopping, headed home at the time, but I thought I'd hang with him for a few minutes because he needed to go across the street to the music store and get his guitar, and he didn't want his other instruments laying around for anyone to pick up. He's got a nice sax, worth a few hundred a least. So I sat down on his bucket and played his role the best I could for a little while. Picked up a bongo and banged on it once I figured out the right angle, I couldn't play the drums even back when I was good with my hands, so I just reverted to making as much noise as I could to try to get people's attention as they strolled by.

It was an interesting experience, street musicians mostly get ignored, people don't look up or in your eyes to avoid it. So I just hit that drum as hard as I could, made a few remarks to anyone that happened by. Some people will acknowledge you, others just act like you don't exist. Street people are pretty common down in the loop, so local people just kind of develop an immunity to them, the way you would to a virus, if a virus could walk and talk and play the bongos. I was only there for maybe 10 minutes, but it seemed like a lot longer, and I felt a kind of loneliness that even I'm not used to, and I get taken for homeless when I'm downtown sometimes so I know how it goes somewhat. But I have to say that I felt kind of isolation sitting there kind of isolation that would make me want to take a drink or smoke some dope surely.

Anyway Anthony came strolling back after a while with his guitar in hand smiling, and I hung around a little longer to try to keep a beat while he jammed pretty good on his acoustic, but I was pretty pathetic pounding away with my fucked up hand. I could never make it as a street musician that's for sure, or as a homeless person either, ain't got the heart for it. It's a lot tougher than it looks I'd say.

I gave him my card and told him to call me if he really needed something, I know he won't even if he does. I don't know what's going to happen to him this winter, hope he finds a warm place.

Anthony rehearsal, Fashion FR8 show (05-31-09)

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Woman with Flower

I wouldn't coax the plant if I were you.
Such watchful nurturing may do it harm.
Let the soil rest from so much digging
And wait until it's dry before you water it.
The leaf's inclined to find its own direction;
Give it a chance to see the sunlight for itself.

Much growth is stunted by two careful prodding,
Too eager tenderness.
The thing we love we have to learn to leave alone.

[Naomi Long Madgett]

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Clutching at water and taking no prisoners

I see art in a few I've known. Some realize their power, others remain safely ensconced within their box and most likely never will.

Attempting to harness the light within her she wavers on the precipice of success, trying to implement as if following instructions instead of just letting it go, letting it flow. Trying to grab the light it slips through fingers like water, to spill at her feet creating an ever-growing puddle, a rippling energy pool of desire reflected back.

It is there certainly, within, she can feel it behind her eyes, its aftertaste always in the back of her mouth, why can't she reach it, why can't she get a grip on it.

Cup your hands and let it fill the space like water from an ice blue Spring, so cold it burns, the sensation indiscernible from that of fire, face the pain, take the pain, allow it to pass over you and through you and remain untouched, that's all it takes.

A maddening existence surely, to be a fountain, a fountain that draws them all to dip their cups and bathe in the healing waters, while she remain forever parched, not a single swallow to ease her thirst. Forced to lick the moisture from the hands of others, from between their legs just a taste and nothing more. It's an oral maxillofacial energy fixation, but you're prognathism is not severe enough to reach it.

It must hurt the pride to watch others cool their toes in her waters, grow strong and enrich themselves from what she creates. Always having to settle for whatever is offered, a crust of bread and a bit of meat thrown her way, like slaves that came before her. Sexual favors granted to her for services rendered, not because she is really wanted. Why don't they want me? Why do they always want someone else, not me?

It's not long before frustration turns to anger, anger to rage, rage to rampage, a struggle to keep herself in check against the desire to lay waste to all around and anything which stands in her way, the easy way, the safe way, a way without fear, the way of the destructor. Still she yearn to turn the page, turn the page on that whole bitter distasteful mess, start over from scratch maybe it'll be different next time, yes next time with someone new, there's always hope it will be different the next time. I can do it right this time, I can be good.

But then, as if it were out of her control -- at least that's what she tells herself -- it starts again, in another time and place, new faces and eyes to look into, new hands to drink from, only to watch it all happen again. In the end it's the same, always her standing alone defiant proud, in control, the old way, the familiar way, the way of survival, but at the same time always refusing to grant herself a solution to the question she keeps asking and only she can answer. A curse, some would say, perhaps so, but at least she's still alive, priority one, all other priorities rescinded.

Why does this keep happening to me? why? Me?

Don't dare tell her what she refuse to see, don't remind her of what I can never accept, or she'll make you pay, and pay dearly. A lesson none of them ever forget, always hit back 10 times harder than you were hit, that's the only way they learn to respect you, that's the only way to make them leave you alone.

The price for all those who attempt to push their agenda disguised as help upon her...war...pain...punishment...Jihad... banishment...for life. "First last second chances." Don't test me fucker, she exclaims with a gleam of violence in her eye.

And so it goes.