The Singer and the Song
Movements in art. The way things go. Secret clubs.
Everything sings to those who listen. Man-made artifacts sing more, having caught a bit of their maker’s voice in their own throats. Natural objects likewise sing, but in a different language, they too having caught the voice of their maker. Put two objects next to each other, and their singing becomes exponentially more interesting, including two voices and the counterpoints and pulling between the voices. Each added object juxtaposed makes the sound denser and more complex. Louder. Stronger. More interesting.
Real people sing best, but also lie and mitigate and, worst of all, listen — this can muddle and confuse the song. They are both singers and listeners. They have preferences about the songs they’ll hear. They will fight with others to quiet some voices to hear others better. Abraham smashing idols. Jews lined up in concentration camps.
The song pushes and the song pulls. We exalt in being the audience, but find it difficult to isolate and separate our own voices. Singers and listeners. Euphony. We seek harmonies, but get head-splitting dissonance. Who will teach them to sing? Who will call the tune? Who will set the tempo? (A jar on a hill in Tennessee).
Who benefits? Who is trustworthy? How will the commonwealth be divided? When and how and where will the song end? To what extent should we be singers and not just listeners? Is the world perfect already? The world + art = the world. Saw that in bright neon letters in the Philadelphia Art Museum. Was it with Eve in 2001? Or was it a different museum all together? Washington DC? I don’t think so. But could have been. Cities, Great Songs, blend in to each other. To which song shall I sing. Who shall I be. Do I have the courage of my convictions? Sometimes? Can I type without looking. Of course. Possible there will be mroe typos, but this is a better record of my thoguuhts as they happen, lookin at envelopes, colored pencil cards, the clock, the photo of my father and grandfather, both wearing yellow shirts. They are standing on some old ship. It sings it sings. My mother’s blackberry. A stapler, with the number 767 embossed on its striking head. Half of a Sierra Club calendar peeking out from other papers, with a Western sunset and a Joshua Tree in shadows. My name is Joshua Tree by the way. I was named after the U2 album. Piles of papers. Leavings of thoughts. Tree + Thought = Paper. Food is the opposite of shit. Looking at rorsach diagrams on toilet paper. Everything sings. Even that. Old Diviners. Oracles at Delphi. In the long distance future, this city will be called Delphi, and I will sit as its postapocalpytic king in the ruined halls of the Art Museum. Behind me will stand a bow-drawn Diana, and the neon words the World + Art = The World. I will arm my knights with the armor from the Arms and Armor Room, and we will all wear swords, to keep out the Morlocks. From the hights of the Art Museum, we will be able to see them coming. The Watchmen.
Idea for a Theater Piece. The Oresteia in the court-yard of the Art Museum. Wearing Masks and wireless Microphones, so that their voices will bellow out above the Parkway. Oh, what a beautiful city. Oh what a beautiful town.
Enough memory of phrases in this hollow head to keep the rhythm, to call the song. Books, books, books, the opposite of people. Food goes in, Shit goes out. But let’s not get all moralistic and conservative about it. Archaeologists are as interested in shit as they are in food — more so, perhaps, for the artifacts sing louder.
When walking through Art Museum, we forget the Artifact and stare at the Art. We ignore the Singer and focus on the Song. Mind the Singer! The Medium is the Message. Not really. But the Medium + the Message = The Message. And the Message + the Medium = The Medium. What is a river?
What is a metaphor? The ability to put new wine into old bottles? At some point the old bottles break?
What is clarity? Simplicity? A communication that values transferability over precision of thought? Why the metaphors? Why the obfuscation? Or the esoteric? Does it protect myself? The Simple might be well-protected if when encountering the esoteric merely killed the speaker, reasoning that anything they did not understand was obviously dangerous, because some might —
Secret religions and cults and philosophies. Preaching something. And yet we live in the Exoteric, Preterite World. No longer we are fallen. Is the Rebbe as Messiah inconsistent with Hasidic Judaism — maybe not, maybe not, they are Panentheists, aren’t they. God in Everything? This is my legacy, this is my writ, this is my word, this is my song, God, Walking in the Garden, Singing the World into Existence. The doorbell rings, two tones, high, low. The twisting of tumblers. My brother’s girlfriend. Love. It blossoms there, you can hear it in her voice, can you hear it in his, yes, a twist, girlish delight in a manboy’s voice.
Let it be enough. Two whistles. What’s that mean? The bread transubstantiates into the body? Shit later. Is it? Is the Host shitted out? Is it still God’s body then? Perhaps they should make it in pill form? Or better yet, an injection? No waste. This is my blood. This is my body — whitepoppyseed blooming, a joy I know not, but will, as I sit on the edge of the world and prepare to fall off.
This blog — blog sounds like shit, like bog, like a swamp, doesn’t, the long slog — would not work for one with a quiet and orderly mind, a Zen mind contemplating oneness — staring unblinkingly at the secret central hear t of everything — that’s what minimalism is all about, isn’t, rejecting the various veils of illusions, replacing artifice with art — allowing more crystalline and more crystalline mediums until there is no medium, only message — a final message — peace which means completeness which means quiet. The Song of Silence. The UnSong. The Peaceful Rest.
Instead, I sing the Chaos, singing Order into Chaos, but Chaos all the same. Scylla and Charabydis. In Joyce, I’ve founder on the Wandering Rocks, as the Principals get their Act IV break to make water and clay. (Not really, those things happen onstage in Joyce. Perhaps it is only to provide some parallax, of Others and of Writers).
There is no Parallax here. I am the Absolute Subjective, accepting all in the World as happening in My World, Which is not the Age of Men but the Age of Me. Lost an ‘N’ there, an ‘En’, a diminutive Em, gone and broken, but very important. Spell out the letters, is there wisdom in that. Ae? Bee? See? Dee? Ee? Ef? Jee? H. Is it spelled Aech? Yes. Think so. Eye? Jay? Kay? El. Em. En. Oe. Pee. Quew. Ar. Es. Tee. No idea about U. Anyway. Anyway. Bye. Bye. Bye.