I am not clear on how to pronounce this one.


The common wisdom, the popular paradigm holds that knowledge is power.  However, let’s take an ascetic stance, holding that the highest aim in life is not power, control or influence, but contentment, to make one at peace with himself, his own existence, to be comfortable in his or her own skin.

For instance, Theodosius, my confidant, holds that the chief good, indeed the very meaning of life, is to be given affection, which is usually just the simple touch of a hand along the fur.

To ascend Parnassus for a line of talk, a “quiet conversation” however one-sided about one’s possible futures.  Paths fork into unique eventualities, and this notion is the stuff of science-fiction, in which the creators contemplate alternate possibilities, worlds much like our own, but with subtle differences.

Consult a sage.  Even have the clever seer construct a graph that you can carry with you on your way.

The ascetic, however, usually finds wisdom after life kicks him in the teeth, after his dreams have elapsed, when he has ran out of options, resorted to the very worst sort of life, that lead him to be put away in a prison somewhere.  Lining his cell with meganzine pages, decorating the way a teenage girl would, clipping things and using scotch tape to affix them around him, so that something always tingles his eyes, like a feather to the ribs.


That old familiar, the venerable Theodosius.

One draught of old times sets all to rights.


“Securing the color?” said Ian.  “That’s a mining term.  I know the import of that f*cking term.  Focus.  Must be the secret of the success of all you highly-successful types.”

self-evident= a priori

My cat followed me into the bathroom this morning as I evacuated my bowels.  The cat was not so much focused on that, because he did not know or care particularly what I was doing, so long as I could spare a hand for petting, to give him some attention.  See, it was quite early, hours before daylight, so we were the only two stirring creatures about in the house.

This Theodosius, has a quality.  Like a caring sort of thing, but still manages to brook no-nonsense.

Having glanced at the writing of Kant, his fine, granular parsing of terms, a priori this and deductive that, like some stuff we either already know so we recognize it immediately, like a PC having an SSD to speed up the booting time, or yet we recognize it instantly, within the thinkgood, which he still considers a priori knowledge, via the fact that we did not use the cognitive facility to reason it out, or as he puts it, we did not need to “deduce”, Mister Holmes.

Quite so, Mister Watson, but I’m sure, by the look on your face, in your astonishment, that you are eager to find how I reached these conclusions.  You see, it was all quite easy with a quick appraisal of your appearance, the knife marks on your the sole of your boots where you tried to scrape the mud away, leaving the quarters of your mistress.

Fuerte.  They wouldn’t let Lashley play the heavy in the big leagues, despite the face that he is rather obviously suited for that purpose, but instead giving him a mouthpiece of a person accompanying him, “putting him over” before the WWE Universe.  The called him the “Destroyer” in Impact, which kind of sent a bit of a thrill through my person, but still he resorted to playing a rather average heel there after a time.

In the vacuous fog of midnight, sans even the least modicum of support.


I was told by a source that the natives would try to coax the mighty Eagle to fly into the turbulence of hurricanes, in order that the winds would be slowed.

I think also of the dim candlelight, around midnight, when the darkness seemed to usurp the air, and that dim candle was like a butter knife trying to cut through solid stone.  Beethoven would seat himself at the piano, in the snowy Vienna midnight, with his cloak about his shoulders and the world having long gone into silence.

A mighty noise!

He seats himself near the end of years to compose a song of joy: the glorious NINTH!

You say, so self-assured, that these are just the words of an



saying Old Man slowly, enunciating, as if I were a brand of confection on the peddler’s cart, sitting alongside dozens of others, but an Old Man knows, and the words of malignant mortifying personal experience cannot be roundly dismissed as some “fatuous”(hey Sheryl!  The other word, from the other day), or some flight of fancy, but taken as firm, and at least equally short, off that same malignant personal experience, that long slide into the grave, like when the carnival ride begins to slow to a stop,

and yet the most joyous part of the Ninth is the “chorus” at the end, the denouement.

It keeps on giving.


Were you given something, then you looked at it really close, and said, “was it worth wasting one of my wishes, on this?”  I have that feeling almost every time, and now I defy it.  You spend the year wanting, and then when the dang thing finally gets there, you realize its just a thing, that an ideal flatly dies, or falls flatly like a turd on the hot griddle of the now.

Some say the gift is life, like we two sit, fallen squarely on our asses at the bottom of a ravine, and on the cliff above, the DOT warning sign “Pride Cometh Before A Fall”, and we fell and all the eggs in our pockets broke in the fall, destroyed; we are thus become the omelet for which the eggs were broken, and we fell not worthy, that all the effort, the toil, the blood, the sweat, the treasure and the ignored dreams all fade in comparison to the dim permanence, persistence that is, of waking modernity.

One grandfather fed me greens, and he liked his greens with pan-fried cornbread fritters and vinegar.  Delicious.  His wife, my grandmother, used buttermilk in the cornbread.  The other grandfather would sit in his chair with a styrofoam cup of iced tea in his hand and I would stand at his knee, given the cup in his big hands, sipping at the tea.  And I tell you, that put simply, was a gift.

Upon a massive upheaval in my life, I became acquainted with my long dead Grandfather’s study bible.  I had it then for my very own.  It was a handsome hardback edition, an old original edition Thomas Nelson Open Bible, a Jerry Falwell edition, the printing itself older than me, with not a linen cover, but a kind of rugged leatherette, and flecks of paint from when they painted his bedroom pink a few years after he died.  I was drawn to two of the wisdom books, Job and Ecclesiastes.

as fatuous does.


I was in the bargain bin again, and scored a Shirley Temple-Black two film DVD singlet.  See, I’m not greedy and I’m not a huge fan, being an ascetic as I so often am, the whole set was not needed, but just a fortuitous sampling.

Her, a child herself, singing along with the other children, me thinking of Pinocchio singing, “got no strings to hold me down”.  When he grew up, it was the Harley and treks along Nevada, Arizona, peeing in the desert, chasing scorpions along with his stream, all the while, interested buzzards circling over the head, waiting for him to stop moving.

My Dick can lay an egg!

Calm down, Shirley, and then there is the Airplane: Don’t Call Me Shirley dvd.  That’s classic stuff, new classics, like the Stallone flicks, Die Hard, some of Arnie’s stuff.  McTiernan, bold, a virtuoso, telling stories to the adult masses, thoroughly entertaining them, and Stephen Wallace sequels that give us another taste, but not quite as good as the original.

Assaulted in a car by a Brasilian woman, beaten with her hand bag and clawed until her fake nails were lodged in my shoulders.

I, to forsake the frivolity and go on my own tangent, through the Sand Hills diaspora, past the Hightower House and all that, the state work shed, and the power plant warning horn, given over to asceticism, become at one with my circumstance, as Marcus Aurelius would ask of me, that to conform to nature, while yet seeing to the frustration of evil, is the highest virtue, alongside one’s religion.

And to make it clear, the Stoics did not specify a religion to follow.

I relate this bits, having seen these and yet other things.

Planks of the prime Lebanon.


All you want, babies.

The temple of Solomon, I speak of. Behold the destruction of the temple by the Chaldeans!  Why, allow me to illustrate:

The wood

it smell so good

they took it down

walked us out

them proud Chaldeans

pulse is what we now eatin’.

A wood with a hard grain, aromatic.  Goofy little green needles and loose bark.

Feeling a bit low in myself over the weekend, taking fresh air, as of a burst of cedar smell, in order to bring forth a bit of clarity, to get me for a moment out of my own head.  As of a Bible and a pocketwatch kept in a cedar box on the drawer chest, with some ornate scrawl that once was intended to be beautiful, but you feel, for a moment, that beauty is a transient concept, and all of it, every last word, slides down the muddy riverbank never to be seen again.

But you remain.

While sitting at Starbuck’s drinking expensive coffee, I conversed with a naturalist about matters of conservation, stewardship, and I felt like a certain responsible element was calling me, outside of myself, but as I walked away for the park, I felt all that jazz melting away, like horns playing, but become so far away that I cannot hear them anymore.

Would you have your unblemished earth back, like an old coin passed down through the generations, returned to your hand, a little metal lump sitting there, like a spit goober from God himself, staring blankly up at you when you unclasp your fingers, staring dumbly like the truth of your birth?  What is laid at the feet of the proud Chaldean, but cinders, and that for him to put in the royal treasury, as of a deposit, or perhaps yet a proof, that those pesky Yahweh worshipers even existed at one time.

“I could have cooled that situation out.”

I say this, relating to you the story, having seen these and yet other things.

The September light on Uranus, with the frozen penumbra and sickly glowing effluvium.


Cells grown all big.  Stasis.  As if to hibernate the cold away.  But will it go away?  The night is eternal, so why not the chill?

As if to microwave a corndog, which makes the honey-battered cornbread wrapping hard as a frigging brick, while the wiener inside is left still frozen.

The chill of existential morning, with the new dew freezing at the tips of the undergrowth, things needing air, and sh*t, and generally a state of stasis being perpetrated in which life is stultified as if to be looking at an old Polaroid rather than living color.

The corndog wagging, sagging, a soggy, graven finger, accusatory.  The tip of my nose numb, and my sinuses wanting to drain.  I wonder if it will freeze at the ends of my nostrils, as it is fully met by the crisp air.

Along December, at last it has come, my time, the roiling railing against the pretense, the veneer, the plastic wrap of superficial decency, the wall of societal interactions, in which what is really said is not at all what is really meant, and a open undisguised word is like fresh spring water in a cold dipper: I lap that up hungrily, but no, this is not your fate gunslinger, for we are the frozen dead on an old battlefield, with the weather too cold still even for the carrion birds to come.

Two hours before sunrise.  Cats it my feet.  Cigarette at my lips.  I can see my breath coming out.

I say this, having seen these and yet other things.