Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Lesson TEN : Broken


I’m so nervous about my life the little of it I can get ahold of
-- Frank O’Hara

Johnny, saying, I wish I had more to go on is not a legitimate complaint.  Rather, it is an expression of the human condition, akin to saying, the body is 60% water.
      I went out, several night ago, to a celebration party.  It was not enjoyable.  The party was not a success.  Turns out America does not want to be America any more.  It doesn’t even want to pretend to be America.  (Will a name change be forthcoming?)  Everything that matters to me is due now to be cancelled -- and I am only told, again and again, that the key to survival is to resume fixation upon one’s own petty concerns as soon as possible.  Personal responsibility is what this is called.
      I trust everyone will keep in mind non-stop that comfortable white people urge you to just stay positive.
      The first time I felt safe, after my father announced his intention to slit my throat, and stab me with a knife, and my brother explained to me that Dad wasn’t crazy, “just very frustrated”, was weeks later, in ancient Egypt, at the Met, where I arrived and at once began to weep.
      Ostracon is the singular.  The plural is ostraca.  The note on the glass explains: Egyptian artists and scribes made practice sketches and drafts on broken pieces of pottery, or flakes of limestone.  I admire how they make use of the brokenness, collaborate with it, find in it an ally.  The lion crouches in the narrow edge, a stag rears in the broad, a line is drawn, then redrawn.

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