This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal. I know the world is bruised and bleeding, and though it is important not to ignore its pain, it is also critical to refuse to succumb to its malevolence. Like failure, chaos contains information that can lead to knowledge — even wisdom. Like art.
It’s been a while. There was the usual pit and prune juice of poor Beat life, and then there was this fire. We’re ok. And so it is Christmas and hopefully I can get back into blogging for the first of the year. For now there’s this, and God bless you and yours.
“Hello, babies. Welcome to Earth. It’s hot in the summer and cold in the winter. It’s round and wet and crowded. At the outside, babies, you’ve got about a hundred years here. There’s only one rule that I know of, babies:
God damn it, you’ve got to be kind.”
– Kurt Vonnegut, God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater
If we are going to survive these enervating days, we need to come to an understanding. We must give each other space to Be. We should stop demanding the use of each other’s minds to further our own questionable, possibly misbegotten, ends.
American culture in 2017 is scripted for television, in the worst possible sense. Viewer discretion is not only advised, it may be crucial to our hopes for sanity. Covfefe the Clown thinks he’s holding court in the Big Top, the Center Ring, but in reality we all have lives that are much more important to us, far closer, more pressing and urgent, day to day. 45 is just a sideshow barker surrounded by flying monkeys, screaching “Welcome to the Grand Illusion. Come on in and see what’s happening. Pay the price, get your tickets to the Show!”
Don’t fall for it. Your mind was made for better things. You have a truth to express and it’s entirely possible it exists in no other mind in the world. I mean you won’t find it in opinions, in the results of other people’s thinking. No one else can think what you can think. Find the freedom to think it.
Proposed First Rule of the Creative Life
Whenever someone is creating something where there was nothing before, don’t interrupt.
Sub part A: Transpersonal expressions count, whether you believe it or not.
Sub part B: Making Nothing out of anything should be assessed with strictest scrutiny.
Metaphors be with you.
Listen to Styx, The Grand Illusion:
Poetry is above all a concentration of the power of language, which is the power of our ultimate relationship to everything in the universe.
– Adrienne Rich
“Have nothing in your homes that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”
There are many things around me that claim their beauty from a still, small place on the arc of memory.
Oh God, let me be this kind, this loving, and I will ask for nothing else.
I will close my eyes in this darkened room
and remember faces, so dear and far away
and death will be nothing anymore.
I was born out of Heaven
onto Earth and my life
is in this place.
I was born with a craving for stillness
and music that sways a little
like trees in the wind.
I was born out of Heaven
meant for Heaven and somehow
got delayed, drawn here because
I heard you crying
and knew I would be loved.
For a moment here with you, I
will not be missed in the eternity
to which I’m traveling.
When I arrive, I will find the house
well lit and a soft bed
and music in the sky.
But I will miss this home.
J. Kyle Kimberlin
2nd Draft 12.21.2016
I rarely go down to the water’s edge
preferring to be here on my hill.
I can see the field of dry flowers
where men will come soon
to build the new road.
They will throw up dust.
And I can see the little boats
come and go with their sails
the colors of festival.
They leave a white scar
on the sea. Someday
a boat will come for me.
I will be terrified and I will go alone.
J. Kyle Kimberlin
2nd draft, 12.09.2016
I recently upgraded my iPad to iOS 10 and just out of curiosity, I set up a thumbprint unlock setting. Big mistake.
Last night I picked up my iPad and it wouldn’t accept my thumbprint. It would only accept a passcode, which I never set up. I didn’t want both. Now I was hopelessly locked out of my own device.
Apple will tell you that when you set up a biometric – using your fingerprint or thumbprint to unlock your iPhone or iPad – a passcode will be required also. This would have prevented my problem. If had set up a passcode, I could have entered it, instead of my thumbprint, and opened the iPad instantly. By it isn’t true; it wasn’t required and there was no warning of the risk. So I’ve gently made Apple Support aware of this.
The only way to get my iPad back was to connect it to my PC and use iTunes to restore it to factory condition. Then all of my apps and stuff were restored from iCloud. The process took 2 or 3 hours, with Apple’s assistance. I first followed the instructions online, but failed.
Everything is OK now, including the photo of Brookie on my lock screen.
But events like this are stressful: they flood our poor soft-celled brains with damaging cortisol, which makes us stupid. Which may explain why I had to call Apple.
Ordinarily I’m a big believer in system encryption and personal security in general. I lock doors; ask anyone who knows me well. But in the case of devices this complicated, it might be that the better policy is KISS: keep it simple, stupid.
The better approach may be to be careful with our belongings, not let them fall into the hands of miscreants.
What do you think?
I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.
– Maya Angelou