Please, please let me know if you / anyone needs a place in Chicago. I’ve been living with this lovely subletter named Aldo the past few months, and he wants to stay on here, but is having trouble finding a roomie.
My place here, if you haven’t seen it, is really a great deal. Inexpensive, spacious, on a tree-lined street in Andersonville/Edgewater, right by the train. I’ve loved living here. Plus I want to leave some furniture here that I won’t need in Ukraine, like my bed, so just think of it, you can cuddle my ghost!
Obvi this is last minute, but it would makes things hella lot easier for Aldo, and for me, because then I wouldn’t have to haul as much shit. THANK YOU, over and out.
Dinner with Amy tonight at Lulu’s, where my most favorite baker Jesus works his night job. I hadn’t seen him in a couple of months since I quit the bakery, and he gave me one of those manly-friends-hugs (shake hands while patting the other person gruffly on the back). As we finished our dinner, our friend Isaac brought over the MOST RIDICULOUS BROWNIE SUNDAE: coconut ice cream on top, with chocolate & carmel sauces and powdered sugar. “Jesus said to bring this to the ladies.” What a guy - I guess we have the kind of bond only working at Sugar & Spice can seal.
Trying to forget everything, as soon as I awoke I’d write down those dreams in which action and meaning were one, taking great pains to make my style poetic: I dreamt…our shadows were not extinguished with the setting of the sun, but took on a life of their own, mastering a thousand little things that we should have mastered while we slept peacefully in our clean, cool beds…
Yes, I lived. The State hung me up by the feet, I saw
St. Petersburg’s daughters, swans,
I learned the grammar of gulls’ array
and found myself for good
down Pushkin Street, while memory
sat in the corner, erasing me with a sponge.
I’ve made mistakes, yes: in bed
I compared government
to my girlfriend.
Government! An arrogant barber’s hand
shaving off the skin.
All of us dancing happily around him.
From Ilya Kaminsky’s “Musica Humana.” I’ve been meandering through some Eastern European voices this morning, in a dilettantish preparation for moving to Ukraine, and I was really struck by this poet. I’m probably late to the party on this one, but I recommend!
This is from The Power of Myth, the interview with Joseph Campbell, and really just made my day incredible. The section is quoted to a greater extent here, but you can also check out the interview’s transcript in book form, or watch a recording.
One day, two policemen were driving up the Pali road when they saw, just beyond the railing that keeps the cars from rolling over, a young man preparing to jump. The police car stopped, and the policeman on the right jumped out to grab the man but caught him just as he jumped, and he was himself being pulled over when the second cop arrived in time and pulled the two of them back. Do you realize what had suddenly happened to that policeman who had given himself to death with that unknown youth? Everything else in his life had dropped off – his duty to his family, his duty to his job, his duty to his own life – all of his wishes and hopes for his lifetime had just disappeared. He was about to die.
Later, a newspaper reporter asked him, “Why didn’t you let go? You would have been killed.” And his reported answer was, “I couldn’t let go. If I had let that young man go, I couldn’t have lived another day of my life.” How come?
Schopenhauer’s answer is that such a psychological crisis represents the breakthrough of a metaphysical realization, which is that you and that other are one, that you are two aspects of the one life, and that your apparent separateness is but an effect of the way we experience forms under the conditions of space and time. Our true reality is in our identity and unity with all life. This is a metaphysical truth which may become spontaneously realized under circumstances of crisis. For it is, according to Schopenhauer, the truth of your life.
- Joshua: ew
“And then at once she was filled with love and inestimable satiety, which, although it satiated, generated at the same time inestimable hunger, so that all her members were unstrung and her soul languished and desired to fly away. And she wished neither to see nor to feel any creature. And she did not speak and did not know whether she could speak, but within she spoke, clamoring that God not let her languish in such a death, for she thought life to be death.”
- Christian mystic Angela Foligno (1248-1309)
The above quote is cited in the Most Fascinating Article I’ve read in a while: “Mystical Acts, Queer Tendencies,” by Karma Lochrie, a queer interpretation of some female Christian mystics in the late middle ages. Lochrie argues that these mystics experienced and worshipped Christ in an erotic way — and not Christ as a husband but as a particularly feminized body. For example: depictions of the wounds in Christ’s side as vaginal symbols. Yes. VAGINAL. Excuse me while I roll on the floor in ecstasy for a minute.
Unfortunately the site I’m linking (the only place I could find this online) has some weird html stuff going on, which makes for a more difficult read. But if you’re into hot sexy devotions to God a la John Donne’s sonnets (“nor ever chaste” except God ravish him) with a lavender twist, or into queered historiography in general, definitely give this piece a look!
Late Renaissance music from Istanbul streaming here via Millennium of Music. I heard this on the radio in the spring, and I’m SO EXCITED it’s finally up online. Seriously check this out, very beautiful, intricate music.
And which of them in time would be betrayed
was never questioned by that poetry
which breathed within the evening naturally,
but by the noble treachery of art
that looks for fear when it is least afraid,
that coldly takes the pulse-beat of the heart
in happiness; that praised its need to die
to the bright candour of the evening sky,
that preferred love to immortality;
so every step increased that subtlety
which hoped that their two bodies could be made
one body of immortal metaphor.
The hand she held already had betrayed
them by its longing for describing her.