Saturday, May 14, 2016

The 4004th Post

I think today is International Astronomy Day or something, and yesterday I went downtown with three friends to visit the Mirrored Infinity Room at the Broad. You could go in, only two at a time, for only 45 seconds. Gazillions of lights hung over water like stars.You stood on a platform and looked at your reflection in the many mirrors. It was cool, but we agreed that the pictures were actually better than the experience. There just wasn't enough time to really feel the magic. When I walked out, I remarked that it was what I imagined death to be -- some kind of immediate and quick merging with the stars. At least that's what I hope it'll be.

So, this is my 4004th post. How weird is that? I wish I had someone who would go through all of them and pull out the significant ones, if any. I know the key to the organization of my book is somewhere in there, but the task seems formidable. Anyone?


Sophie continues to recover from her oral surgery on Tuesday. She had minimal swelling and no ice was used. I think it was the CBD. It's a powerful anti-inflammatory. I'm feeling a bit drained from the experience, but it's not about me, is it? Speaking of, I got a dress-down from someone on Facebook. I had objected to her use of the word "retarded" in her rant against Elizabeth Warren detractors. While I agreed with her rant, I was bummed that she'd used the word "retarded" and said so. She defended it. I wrote her a private message explaining why it's so awful. She wrote me back and was very angry with me. She said a lot of things that I've been thinking about, some true and others just plain vituperative.

These things drain me, too, but once you're drained you're empty and can find things to fill you back up.

I can't get this poem by W.S. Merwin out of my head today:

I Live Up Here

I live up here
And a little bit to the left
And I go down only
For the accidents and then
Never a moment too soon
Just the same it's a life it's plenty
The stairs the petals she loves me
Every time
Nothing has changed
Oh down there down there
Every time
The glass knights lie by their gloves of blood
In the pans of the scales the helmets
Brim over with water
It's perfectly fair
The pavements are dealt out the dice
Every moment arrive somewhere
You can hear the hearses getting lost in lungs
Their bells stalling
And then silence comes with the plate and I
Give what I can
Feeling It's worth it
For I see
What my votes the mice are accomplishing
And I know I'm free
This is how I live
Up here and simply
Others do otherwise

I've read it about ten times today and gotten something new out of it each time. 

Disney Hall, seen from The Broad

I can't stop listening to this old song:

4,004 posts. 

Art, poetry, music. 

This is how I live. Up here and simply. Just give me one thing that I can hold onto. Others do otherwise maybe.


  1. Once you stop reading your own archive it's hard to stop... maybe just go to page one and see what happens?

    The nasty attacks are so draining. It amazes me that people defend their use of the word retard so aggressively.

  2. Elizabeth, once again you amaze and you stun and you give me inspiration. If you get that pulling things out of the blog dealie down, let me know. I'd think everything you've got in here has some significance...

  3. I'm impressed that you've hit 4,000 posts, but looking at your archive I can see you were hitting two a day (roughly) for a couple of years. Way to go! I can't imagine someone would argue for using the word "retarded." It's just a hurtful word for some people, and that alone is enough reason not to use it, it seems to me. I love the look of that infinity room, but 45 seconds hardly seems like enough time to experience it!

  4. The woman was angry because she was busted.

    I still don't get poetry. I'm too literal I think. For me, what fills me up is images and the natural world. I've been so busy this past month I haven't had much time in the river valley. Last night the big guy and I walked over to the pond and watched the geese and ducks. I do love the geese. The goslings are hatched and one family stole some of the goslings from the other family because they have two different sizes of goslings. Apparently it happens.

    And the lights, they remind me of a night on the Big Island of Hawaii. We stayed on a plantation and when we went out at night I was awed. I had never seen so many stars. The sky looked like a blanket of stars stretching from one horizon to the other. It was so beautiful.

  5. "Mirrored infinity room..."

  6. You express your anger, sometimes vehemently, at others. That must empty them out as well, yes?

    1. Undoubtedly, although not often. I always hope to make amends and would never cut someone off from doing so. Anger is tricky, isn't it? I work on my own as much as I can and fail miserably sometimes. I love as intensely, too, and am loved in return. That never seems to fail.

  7. What happened to Oliver's birthday post?

  8. Yes to the song, the art, the architecture, the poem. Have you ever seen the Apu Trilogy?

  9. I was listening to the song and then ended up on You Tube for over an hour. I am back to say that W. S. Merwin is one of my favourite poets. :-)

  10. That lovely song was one of the first I ever performed with a band, in public. Love it. That and Someday Soon. Yes, I was one of THOSE folk singers.

    People are slow to come to understanding just how offensive the R word is. It will take time. All we can do is gently remind them that many, many take offense. I saw a fb post today where a women used the term "bitches" to describe her friends and, of course, there was push back. Then everyone else rolled their fb eyes. So, there's another one.

    Congratulations on your 4004th post! You know, if you want to judge your 'best' my how many comments it generated, I think you can sort for that.

  11. I love that mirrored room, but I would want to really hang out in there, I think. It might make me crazy to have to leave so quickly.

    As for the book organization, I've been doing the same thing - pulling out posts from the last ten years to try and add things. I can't say I feel like it's been hugely successful, but I have been able to search on key words and find posts I knew I wrote years ago. We can brainstorm this weekend, for sure.

    Glad Sophie is recovering nicely. XO

  12. Thanks for taking up the cause on Facebook. You are brave and strong. Good luck culling from over 4,000 posts. My suggestion would be to "start over." I think it would be easier/faster, more cohesive, and ultimately, more satisfying. I have no doubt that you have the "new" words in you, and that what you want to say, what you want this book to "be about" will come through.



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