The Self is a Very Complex Event

My friend, the poet William Pitt Root reminded me I'd said: "The self is a very complex event"--during a recent appearance at Bookworks in Albuquerque to promote a new CD release (which I haven't officially announced yet) of a spoken word CD: She Had Some Horses, to accompany the re-release of the book. It's been in publication for 30 years, an imprint of Thunder's Mouth Press, no part of Avalon Publishing.

I don't always remember what I say. Speaking is or can be a creative act, as much as writing.

The self is a complex event and this particular self is under reconstruction.

Interesting the comments when I tell people that I am teaching at UNM only in the fall semester. "Oh, so you're on vacation?" I've heard this frequently during this season of getting together with family and friends, and non-professional associations. My musician, writer, poet, artist friends know that what I will be up to without asking. I have many writing and music projects in the works. Everyone else thinks I'm not working. I've battled with that all of my life--"oh, since you're not doing anything" (I'm writing away with monies from an NEA grant--{I could use grant or award money these days for my projects, if anyone has ideas...])"can you pick up my cleaners?". I've noticed that male artists don't have this problem, not to the extent of women. I always admired my male musical partners who appear to always be creating. Usually they have or had wives or girlfriends who made sure they had meals and washed their clothes, who take care of the domestic aspects of their lives. They didn't or don't have the primary responsibilites of children or (extended) family. Those tasks are ongoing, even when the children are grown.

Many questions, and knots of problems are gathered around me as I stand at the precipice of the new year (the new year according to the Christian calendar). Every day is literally the beginning of a new year, but this particular time which marks a changing of the seasons, towards winter and introspection. I'm concerned about the direction of the tribe and a lack of a cohesive and energetic vision, I'm concerned about the general state of compassion or lack thereof, about the fascist governement in power in this country, about the squeezing of my heart with the pressures of sadness that is all of the family (blood, in laws, ex laws, outlaws, etc etc) stories and recent deaths around alcohol, drugs, abuse, about the recent destructive trends in weather--all of this has been predicted. We have been duly warned that if we do not actively take part in and acknowledge the gifts of this earth, and the very spirits of the earth and skies then we will forget who we are and it will all fall apart.

We are in the falling apart. And we're in it together. We have to keep going.

Tonight I figure I'm either exhausted or depressed. Tomorrow I will get up and the sun will give me energy to keep going--I am going to have to find another way, though--this particular route has been exhausted.

What delighted today, however, was a monk seal who crawled up on the beach and enjoyed the sun with all the picnickers and surfers and (a few brave) paddlers (I wasn't one of them...did not wish to brave the break). They are rare. And the three whales frolicking just off shore.

And then there's what I don't write here, what I don't say, the ghost blog. Maybe next time.

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