August 31, 2014

Joseph Arthur's tribute song to Robin Williams

A life is lost and a stone is thrown
into the pool ripples spread out
from the impact,  concentric rings push back
In time, the ripples become stillness
Yet, sometimes the ripples just keep pushing
spreading wave upon wave
We stand at the edge and wave good-bye.

August 30, 2014

The Private Dining Room

by Ogden Nash 

Miss Rafferty wore taffeta,
Miss Cavendish wore lavender.
We ate pickerel and mackerel
And other lavish provender,
Miss Cavendish was Lalage,
Miss Rafferty was Barbara.
We gobbled pickled mackerel
And broke the candelabara,
Miss Cavendish in lavender,
In taffeta, Miss Rafferty,
The girls in taffeta lavender,
And we, of course, in mufti.

Miss Rafferty wore taffeta,
The taffeta was lavender,
Was lavend, lavender, lavenderest,
As the wine improved the provender.
Miss Cavendish wore lavender,
The lavender was taffeta.
We boggled mackled pickerel,
And bumpers did we quaffeta.
And Lalage wore lavender,
And lavender wore Barbara,
Rafferta taffeta Cavender lavender
Barbara abracadabra.

Miss Rafferty in taffeta
Grew definitely raffisher.
Miss Cavendish in lavender
Grew less and less stand-offisher.
With Lalage and Barbara
We grew a little pickereled,
We ordered Mumm and Roederer
Because the bubbles tickereled.
But lavender and taffeta
Were gone when we were soberer.

I haven’t thought for thirty years
Of Lalage and Barbara.

August 13, 2014

I flirted with you all my life

I flirted with you all my life -Vic Chesnutt

I am a man. I am self aware.
Everywhere I go, you're always right there with me.

I flirted with you all my life
Even kissed you once or twice
To this day I swear it was nice.
But clearly, I was not ready.

When you touched a friend of mine, I thought I would loose my mind.
But I found out with time,
That really, i was not ready.
No, No

Oh death, oh death, oh death.
Really, I'm not ready.

Of death you hinder me.
Death makes those dear to me.
Tease me with your sweet relief.
You're cool, and you are constant.

When my mom was cancer sick,
She fought but then succumb to it.
But you made her beg for it, 
Lord Jesus, please, I'm ready.

Oh death, oh death, oh death. 
Really I'm not ready.
No no.
Oh death, oh death, oh death.
Clearly I'm not ready.

It's fairly clear that Vic Chesnutt wanted out.  His overdose on Christmas 2009 was a suicide attempt that ended his flirtation with Death.  His friends and fans were devastated, but we can never be truly shocked or surprised when someone who has attempted suicide many times was finally successful.  Strange word successful.  Especially in this context.

I loved Vic Chesnutt's music and especially his lyrics.  The first song that drew me in was Danny Carlisle.

He wanted a tree fort more than anything
Yes he wanted to build and defend one on his own
But the neighbor boys BB siege was overwhelming
So he won't be building his dream tree fort anymore

He received a five-speed Schwinn for Christmas
So he built a ramp out of plywood and a stump
And at nights he dreamed Evel Knievel
And a canyon to jump in his backyard

Danny Carlisle don't give a shit about the contras
Danny Carlisle is barely grown
And he's used up most of his options but still he would rather
Dream than fuck

Once he used a pocket knife to kill a garter snake
Yes he chopped that evil serpent into fours
And when he raised his eyes to heaven as a soldier
He wiped the blood of bad snake on his shirt

Danny Carlisle don't give a shit about the contras
Danny Carlisle is barely grown
And he's used up most of his options but still he would rather
Dream than fuck

What a beautiful line!  He don't give a shit about the Contras.  He's barely grown and he's used up most of his options.

Still he would rather dream than fuck.

Who writes songs like this?  No one but Vic, and now, no one.

That is why death, especially self imposed death is so devastating.  It is final.  There is no going back.
No do overs.  

In a few seconds changes.  Life's disappear and all that remains are tears. 

August 12, 2014

Suicide happens when pain exceeds resources for coping with pain.

First off before we go any further let me just say I am fine.
I am a very sensitive person who knows the black dogs of depression,
but today the only black dogs are the ones on the end of the leash as I walk them around the block.

Lately there is so much death in the news.  And sadness.  

How can people be so stupid and so cruel?  

From Gaza to the Ukraine, from the continual war on women, and the war on the individual, and 
the war against privacy, the world closes in.
We start to choke on this world.
It grabs us by the throat and throws us to the ground like a rag doll.


We smile.  We force ourselves to smile.   We walk our dogs, and pet our cats.
We hug our children and kiss our lovers.  
And the sun shines.
And the water is clear and drinkable.

But for some people who do not have all the love around them like I do, life can become unbearable.

The following is from a website: 

"Suicide is not chosen; it happens when pain exceeds resources for coping with pain."

"That's all it's about. You are not a bad person, or crazy, or weak, or flawed, because you feel suicidal. It doesn't even mean that you really want to die - it only means that you have more pain than you can cope with right now. If I start piling weights on your shoulders, you will eventually collapse if I add enough weights... no matter how much you want to remain standing. Willpower has nothing to do with it. Of course you would cheer yourself up, if you could. "

"Don't accept it if someone tells you, "That's not enough to be suicidal about." There are many kinds of pain that may lead to suicide. Whether or not the pain is bearable may differ from person to person. What might be bearable to someone else, may not be bearable to you. The point at which the pain becomes unbearable depends on what kinds of coping resources you have. Individuals vary greatly in their capacity to withstand pain. "

"When pain exceeds pain-coping resources, suicidal feelings are the result. Suicide is neither wrong nor right; it is not a defect of character; it is morally neutral. It is simply an imbalance of pain versus coping resources.

You can survive suicidal feelings if you do either of two things:
(1) find a way to reduce your pain, or 
(2) find a way to increase your coping resources. 

Both are possible. "

I remembered this from the Art Bears from my time of great creativity, and great wild life:

Words by Bertholt Brecht, Music by Hanns Eisler

In such a country, and at such at time
There should be no melancholy evenings
Even high bridges over the rivers
And the hours between the night and morning
And the long long winter time as well
All these are dangerous !
For in view of all the misery
People just throw, in a few seconds time
Their unbearable lives away

"People just throw, in a few seconds time, their unbearable lives away."

These words are haunting.

If you cannot cope with your pain, your mental conditions,

your  demons, depression, your black dog,

 you become overwhelmed, PLEASE ASK FOR HELP!

Scream for help if you have to. 

In a few seconds time.....

I have been trying to write for the past few months.

Lately, death is all around me.

A few months ago, our friend Dave Gregg's heart gave out far too young.
A few weeks ago, My dear Mother, her time ran out, at age 93
She lived a long and beautiful life, 
although her last 8 years she was trapped inside her mind. 
her life was the living hell that is dementia

A few hours ago,  Robin Williams who made us all laugh and cry so many times 
ended his own life.

In a few seconds time...

Oscar Wilde gets the last word.

"The final mystery is oneself.
 When one has weighed the sun in the balance, and measured the steps of the moon, and mapped out the seven heavens star by star, there still remains oneself.
 Who can calculate the orbit of his own soul?"