Boy with a Coincidence

Posted on June 19th, 2009 by george.
Categories: coincidence, epiphany, friends, life, music, numbers, poetry, serendipity.

This morning my hands were so full that I left In Rainbows on the kitchen counter by accident.  I had to choose a CD on the commute, so I picked one from my case that’s been neglected for weeks:  The Shepherd’s Dog, by Iron & Wine.  At work I got a tweet from Sholeh.  She hadn’t tweeted in over a month. It read, “One year since I came back from Haifa: http://sholeh.calmstorm.net.”  I hadn’t been to her blog in months.  I read her prose and poetry and realized I hadn’t written in just as long.  I was inspired, so I wrote this:

deep in diodes
the world at a stop
my lifeblood pulsed
the same shade
as the light
cast off by electrons
funneling down the rabbit hole
at the moment
providence beamed upon my crown
a glimpse
of the essence of red

now drinking daily
from the only watering hole
the ripples calm
to reveal a change in stripe

is this some new animal
some tender new shoot
or the same heart
sheathed in endless years?

what use is fluttering
madly
in a cage designed
not to confine
but instruct?

wings newly wed

will spread
soon enough

for now they flutter
bear
and endure

for ultimate reunion awaits

more powerful than any
in this life

At the exact moment I finished writing, I got a text from Lorenia reading, “New blog post!”  I clicked through the link to fresita.org on Sholeh’s blog, read all about psycho kitty (qu’est-ce que c’est?), and promptly posted a comment.  The second it posted, I saw that Sholeh had commented at the exact same time, down to the minute.

Ok.  So great coincidence, right?  Just wait, the braid draws tighter.  I was lost in thought on the drive home, Sam Beam

cooing my worries to sleep, when I realized I had just heard The Lovesong of the Buzzard, the song whose meter inspired my last good poem, Alhambra, written about Lorenia.  Down the road, I glanced up at the glowing, green traffic light passing overhead, right at the moment Sam sang, “Like stubborn boys with big green eyes.”  In fact, I saw it precisely as he said, “green.”  It struck me that in the poem I’d just written, I referred to sitting at a red light, staring at the LEDs.  Now the light was green, a symbol of hope, and I was moving forward.  The song ended, and the very next track was “Boy With a Coin,” which Sholeh had first clued me in to on 07-11-07, while she was in Haifa, the place she wrote about today.  Coincidentally, we had one opportunity to launch of STS-127 this week, but a faulty GUCP valve scrubbed it until 07-11-09, exactly two years later.  Furthermore, on the poem Alhambra, Sholeh’s comment was, “makes me think of sunsets, for some reason. lovely.”  The poem she wrote that inspired me today?  It’s entitled, “sunsets always make me miss everyone.”

In searching for where she mentioned that song, I entered “coin” on sliding thoughts and came up with exactly two entries…both about coincidences.  In searching on LJ for the same, I found a fitting end to this post.

into my heart’s treasury
i slipped a coin
that time cannot take
nor a thief purloin, –

oh better than the minting
of a gold-crowned king
is the safe-kept memory
of a lovely thing.

-Sarah Teasdale

5 comments.

This will make your day

Posted on March 12th, 2009 by george.
Categories: dreams, film, humor, life, love, music, video, youtube.

Discovered via Devon’s entry on soulpancake.  More on Oren Lavie here.  Funny that among his predecessors is Leonard Cohen.

1 comment.

Pale blue dot

Posted on January 30th, 2009 by george.
Categories: enlightenment, environment, epiphany, film, future, life, music, society, space, synthesis, technology.

Didn’t think I was gonna get a post up in January, didja?  HA!  That’ll show ya.

Here’s a month’s worth of hope in one short film.  Watch it full screen.

2 comments.

The Golden Eleven

Posted on December 15th, 2008 by george.
Categories: music, numbers, youtube.

I’ve been agonizing over this list since October. The instructions are simple: choose your eleven favorite musical artists, then your favorite song by each, and provide a link so the world can share in the crème de la crème of your musical tastes. This list is probably different than your eleven favorite songs, which is why you choose the artists first. I found this process singularly difficult. I’m tempted to create a second list of honorable mentions, because there is far too much amazing music out there to be content with such a small sampling. Futhermore, when you consider that what makes an artist your favorite is that they have many songs that you love, the exercise in choosing one among their repertoire is made that much more maddening. Still, since this is a meme of my creation, I will adhere strictly to it. I give you: my golden eleven.

11. Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers – Mary Jane’s Last Dance

10. Cake – Opera Singer

9. Metric – Dead Disco

8. Pixies – Hey

7. Spoon – Me and the Bean

6. Zero 7 – Destiny

5. Feist – Gatekeeper

4. Elliott Smith – Independence Day

3. Portishead – Humming

2. Radiohead – Subterranean Homesick Alien

1. Beck – Deadweight

11 comments.

Nine slices, five seeds

Posted on September 11th, 2008 by george.
Categories: enlightenment, epiphany, future, history, life, love, music, synthesis.

Over the past few days I have been listening to Radiohead’s “Hail to the Thief” on the commute to and from work.  It strikes me that when I first played this album on the stereo, kicking back in my 70’s-era chartreuse La-Z-Boy (oh, how I miss that chair), looking out my bay window on the streetlights of Laurel Avenue, atop the ridge of Fort Sanders in arguably one of the most coveted properties for students at the University of Tennessee, surrounded by meticulously-tended gardens and rosebushes too often robbed of their blooms by passersby, that I didn’t like it.  It’s strange to have adored “Kid A” and “Amnesiac,” coming so hot on the heels of yet such a departure from Radiohead’s timeless masterwork “OK Computer,” only to have “Thief” stick in my craw.  At the time, I couldn’t place why it didn’t resonate; I’ve since heard that it was “thrown together” on a short schedule, and suffered from what some say is a lack of polish compared to previous efforts.  I now realize, after having “In Rainbows” wear ruts into my soul, pressing its melodies into the fiber of my being, rivaling the majesty of what to this point was my favorite album, that “Hail to the Thief” suffered only from lack of context.  It was simply ahead of its time; too raw, even though it was finished and complete, like a bridge suspended across a chasm whose far side has only now seen the tectonic plates of time grind past each other, lofting the perfect cliff into place under what seemed a terminus hanging in dead air.  The bridge to nowhere now emerges as a grand paean to the future as told by authors of the past, a gathering together of the sine wave of repeating history, a needle and thread through the wrinkled fabric of this collective consciousness, drawing tight the crevices to be filled with the golden light of meaning.

 

  

It dawns on me now that my love for this group of musicians was tied to the future more than I could imagine, their prescience wholly overshadowing my own, a hand reaching down and transcending the dimension of time, their glowing ladders of song rising out of the misty and dark swirls of this material world to the ethereal flights of the spirit.  I see too, now, that I have not yet fully appreciated my time in the city of my education, the lessons I learned in and outside the classroom, the mistakes I made and the choices I got right that have led me to this day, this moment, these words spilling forth over the banks of my stream, tumbling down white over the rocks of fortune.  Even for all its gray skies and cold nights, its mists and trials, its mazes and morasses, worn desks and defaced walls, I see that I loved that city, my time there, the people I shared it with, the sunshine they reflected that pierced the hazy air.  The rainbow arcs high and bright over the sapling of my existence now; for all their deep and abiding knowledge of past predicting future, I cannot recall a band that’s been through the hourglass that has enjoyed such lofty greatness for so long, or excelled so magnificently so late in their glorious career.

 

P.S. I’m getting married.

 

10 comments.

DDR gone wild

Posted on August 20th, 2008 by george.
Categories: dance, friends, fun, humor, music.

There is such a thing as too fast.

0 comments.

Let’s dance

Posted on August 14th, 2008 by george.
Categories: dreams, future, music, photography, poetry, youtube.

last night met David Bowie
in future New York City
he said, “Hey man
wanna see my pad?”

felt like a suffragette
face in elevator chrome
got off at twenty-seven
the view on top so rad

private island high rise
I spied the streets below
I had my baby’s camera
to shoot the passing scene

out into the lobby
escorted by the duke
asian paparazzi
then crashed my little dream

how odd it must be for him
to deal with all the fame
for just a little stardust
the people scream and yell

elbow to the window
ignoring all the din
I zoom on things below
to see what tales they tell

a traffic jam with police
directing all the flow
I couldn’t time the shot right
being jostled at the glass

finally I got it
the next moment I awoke
two cops, a jumping high-five
now that’s a dream with class

1 comment.

All I Need

Posted on May 14th, 2008 by george.
Categories: coincidence, life, music, serendipity, society, synthesis, travel.

It would take a novel to tell the tale of our recent trip south of the equator. I could wax poetic about the natural beauty of Peru and Bolivia, and indeed, Lake Titicaca is everything the Animaniacs crack it up to be, and Machu Picchu is most deserving of its spot among the New Seven Wonders of the World. What keeps emerging as I tell the stories to friends, however, is an aspect of that same modern world that we as Baha’is are working to eradicate: extremes of wealth and poverty.

Coming home to my first Radiohead concert, after waiting more than a decade to see one of my all-time favorite bands live, only threw the contrast between the United States and Peru and Bolivia into starker relief. While the experience was underwhelming (most likely due to the poor sound quality at Ford Ampitheater in Tampa, the lazy crowd and the mellow setlist), it was still worthwhile. There’s no comparing it to Peru, but I couldn’t get Radiohead’s songs out of my head for days. Indeed I still can’t. In Rainbows defies my knack for hyperbole. I think Vince, who joined us at the concert, said it best.

IN RAINBOWS – choose 1:

a) Great Radiohead Album, or

b) Greatest Radiohead Album

Leave it to a band who defines my generation to say what I wanted to say about South America (and indeed all countries not as privileged as the G8) with a powerful music video, released while we were in Peru.

4 comments.

LOLLA OH EIGHT

Posted on April 8th, 2008 by george.
Categories: friends, fun, music, travel.

Ladies, gentlemen, the lineup is here.

Lolla 08 @ Yahoo! Video

Chicago. August 1-3. Be there or miss Radiohead, Rage, NIN, Wilco, Kanye, Blues Traveler, Jamie Lidell, Bloc Party, Cat Power, Dierks Bentley, and Newton Faulkner!

17 comments.