Dappled Things took the bait… Heh.
With apologies to Dino…
I found this somewhere online and thought it would be a great idea for a Korrektiv Poetry Contest. We haven’t had one of those in a while, so why not? Winners (1st, 2nd, 3rd and two Honorable Mentions) will be announced on Shakespeare Day 2017 (April 23). Each will receive – well, something Shakespearey, I suppose.
Then get scribbling!
From the Sister Sinjin blog: What Does Creativity Look Like Within the Covenant and Constrictions of Life’s Obligations?
When we met for the first time we talked about creativity as our culture celebrates it: Freeing yourself from distractions, surrounding yourself with all things beautiful, being lost inside the space created for yourself whether in nature or a coffee shop, throwing off any labels the world has placed on you and discovering your true self. Who doesn’t want all of that from time to time?
We are at a different stage in our lives, however, where time for leisurely creativity is at a premium. And do we even want that? We all have families and loved ones that we’re not willing to sacrifice to art.
Elise threw out the phrase “Creativity of Obligation” as a topic for exploration. What does it mean to be creative while embracing the roles, responsibilities and obligations of mother, wife, friend, minister, employee, Christian?
What if creativity does not flow best into the limitless space we strive to create around ourselves? What if, instead, it is pressed out of us by the constant, repetitive, unending cycle of daily life? What if creativity is not the result of acting on our every desire, but rather what’s found after everything else has been drained from us?
Maybe there, in the uncomfortable realities of our lives is where creativity is expressed, because it must be in order to survive the exhausting and the mundane. Maybe creativity is more incarnation than transcendence.
Creativity of obligation requires us to show up with all our baggage and create something anyway.
Two weeks after we first met we began recording an album. We have carved out space though it has been brief and hard won. Most of our creative process, however, has happened with children surrounding us, in dirty kitchens and cluttered cars.
If we had all the time and resources in the world we could create something more grand, more elaborate, but not more beautiful. What results will be all of what we had to give in a brief period of time with pinched pennies and crying babies at our side.
Our obligations do not stop us from creating, they compel us.
Oh, my. A bondage-themed chandelier made from actual women, some cantilevered over the scene, backs arched and hands manacled over their heads, some supine with their legs spread and raised to heaven… Lady Gaga, perhaps? Or Madonna at the height of her “Express Yourself” antics?
Nope. The “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend” number from 1953’s featherlight rom-com Gentlemen Prefer Blondes. They’ve got women working as candelabras, too!
See me up there in the upper right-hand corner?
As Percy would say, I’m “validated” like the young man who sees his own town in a film or lights up William Holden’s cigarette without acknowledging that he knows Holden knows he knows who Holden is, etc.
(p.s. This is not meant as a provocation, so please if you have anything bad to say about the current president, I would refer you to previous dust-ups at this blog on that issue, which I won’t even link to because I don’t think it bears any relevance to this post. Here, it’s all peace and joy and I don’t really care what you think about the current president – I’m making a Percian point here, which is much more important.
As a smoking/meat-smoking friend of mine in California might say, “Oh, you don’t like my politics? That’s nice. Did I mention that I bake bread?”
Except in my case I would say, “Did I mention I make a helluva good Chicken Cacciatore and that I can make you a martini that you will never forget? Sit down right there at my kitchen table and I’ll stir us a couple, and then let’s light up a smoke—cigar for you? Perfect!—and cigarettes (unfiltered) for me. Let’s talk then about the beauties of poems that completely nail the execution of a perfect enjambment of lines, of women who wear their hair down, of early R.E.M. albums and whether they were meant to be concept albums in the tradition of Pink Floyd and Yes but tinctured with a Southern Gothic ethos, of love in a time near the end of the world, and of children and how, one way or another, the little dears are going to get you out of bed in the morning. Yes—oh, and how’s your drink? See? I told you so….Cacciatore will be ready in about 20 minutes. How ‘bout another round?” )
She’s 100 and still singing. (Sort of.)
She, who for us young laddies was only a strange allusion in a strange song on a strange album….
And in a strange film…
. .. by Rufus & Quin
I’ve got the Cartesian Blues
From the middle of my brain
All the way down to my nuts and screws
I went to the doctor,
An’ I said, “Gimme da news …”
He just handed me a bunch of data
And said, “It’s just dem ol’ Cartesian Blues!”
I put on my shirt, I put on my shoes,
I put on my rubbers
I had nothing to lose
But them godforsaken Cartesian Blues
I went down by da red lights,
An’ asked, “whaddya got, and how much are the dues?
She said, a hunnerd dolla for 38-26-34
Will get rid of your Cartesian Blues
The automatic teller
Spit out some cash
I’m a handsome feller
I gotta make a splash
Just as soon as I peruse
This article about
The Cartesian Blues
I think therefore I am
Was the caption on her selfie
A vegetarian except for ham
Very clean and never filthy
Except when I hit snooze
And get those Cartesian Blues
So I went down to see the bartender,
And said, “I need some medicine—it’s called booze,
And he answered, “Well I got 101-proof bourbon, aged for 30 years in a 50 gallon barrel,
And that oughtta cure those Cartesian Blues”
It hit my naso-cortex
Like every species of shit
And caused a spark to fly
Across that Cartesian split
But the next morning I paid my dues
I still had those Cartesian Blues
So I went to the social worker,
Cause I got nothing to lose,
And she said, “We got 20% unemployment,
A third of the population is mentally ill,
In the great urban area 5300 people are livin’ in tents,
And now 100% of our assistance programs are means-tested,
Which means we alls got Cartesian Blues”
She referred me to a psychiatrist,
So I told him “I got something on my mind”
And he said, “I think you mean brain”
And I said, “mind”
He said “brain”
I said “mind”
“Well, this is clearly a case of those … Cartesian Blues …”
I went to ask my Ex-wife,
“Ex, Why why why did you move?”
An’ she told me, “I can’t graph
or coordinate your Cartesian Blues …”
In place of God there’s a Demon of Doubt,
All faith is just a ruse …
That is why COGITO ERGO
But I’m energized – Big League – at least it’s going to someone who actually understands the difference between sovereignty and totalitarianism…
Well, shit, if you think I’m wrong about it – the laddy said it right here. I quote unquote quote:
“Edited clips of Trump replied: “I will build a great, great wall on our southern border and I will have Mexico pay for that well.”
“A wall? Like the Berlin Wall? Like the Great Wall of China?” Bono, a donor to the Clinton Global Initiative, shot back to the video screen.”
Well, let me uncling mesself from thissere gun, religion and God type-a-thing before I continue. [Sipping at a cold one now, hold on…]
Well, shit, what I mean to say is, hell and hard nuts, America is so tired of thissere electionation process… Oh, hell, let’s just all go home and hope that we have jobs come Monday… I’ll buy the keg (Quinn, can I borrow 40 bucks? The Hamms is on sale…)
Well, as I look out at this wonderful U Ass of A we gots usself here, I can’t help but thinks about that what which Bono’s countryman and fellow string-strummer once said, “That’tare ain’t no country for old menfolk…”
Well, Cormac, I guess you can be fixin your Nobel year to be—
Hell now, look at that, Mr. Tweedy, you made me spill my Blatz.
No, excuse me – EXCUSE ME, Mr. Tweedy, but we happen to got womenfolk in the audience just now, so you just you shut your jaw the fuck up, now you hear. I realize you got a grimace like a hound dog trying to pass a peach pit. But just heel now, y’hear? You’ll have your chance at the carcass after Cormac gets a gnaw!
Well, I guess that’s about alls I got to say – ummagonna end the conversation righ-chere.
Love and peace and I’m all with Her and all.
Sorry, Cormac, maybe next year.
A nod to Kierkegaard and Walker Percy: existentialist tomfoolery, political satire, literary homage, word mongering, a year-round summer reading club, Dylanesque music bits, apocalyptic marianism, poetry, fiction, meta-porn, a prisoner work-release program.
Cosmos the in Lost
Everything that Rises
Good Country People
By Way of Beauty
Charlotte was Both
I Have to Sit Down
From Empty Hands
All Manner of Thing
Gerasene Writers Conference
The Ironic Catholic
Catholic and Enjoying It
Catholic Radio International
Is My Phylactery Showing?
Babes in Babylon
Fort o' Tude
En pocas palabras
William Wilson, Guitarist Extraordinaire
Signposts in a Strange Land
Mr. Bones' Garden