might be close to the last person in the building ... so quickly
we empty out for spring break ... no ... i hear some voices way
down the hall ... maintenance people ... the snow is coming down
on purpose like in a play ... a bunch of old men ... hoping for
a soft landing ... now two kids come by looking for homework ...
now a maintenance guy tells me he's working all next week on floor
tiles ... he's approved for asbestos work ... tells me my floor
is good ... no asbestos ... good
...Random books from my
Sonata at Payne Hollow
by Wendell Berry
The country of marriage by Wendell
Our Sustainable Table by Robert Clark (ed.)
could be some weird slot machine
...what would i win if i got three berrys in a row? actually ...
i believe there is an essay by berry in the clark volume ... hmmm
House of Toast: Refuge
... The world had been this way
for my whole lifetime, and, indeed, from the beginning of history.
But I was tired of being appalled. There had seemed to be a particularly
ugly confluence of awfulness lately.
and then paula finds some peace and sanity ... as
she always seems to ... in the smallest places ...
on milton today ... "lycidas," as you see ... and did
okay ... at least i came out of it feeling like i could get him
if i had to (as in "gonna get you next time i see you comin'
'round" ... as in "gonna get you and yr big brother
too") ... i've been avoiding it for three years ... just
because ... maybe for the same reason i've been avoiding henry
james ... but i decided this morning to go head-to-head ... mano-a-mano
.. & see what damage we could do ... & it weren't so bad after
three periods ... i clearly learned more from it all than the
seniors who only got one dose while i got three ... though i may
not be ready for paradise lost
a colleague mentioned that he had spent some time reading fyp
... he didn't
say much but he wondered if i was angry ... if i was an angry
person ... or angry about something ... or life in general ...
and this was kind of unsettling
to me because i wouldn't naturally ascribe anger to myself ...
as one of my defining traits ...
told him something like ... you know, this "i" in these
things is not necessarily me ... in fact, the i is most always
a consciously constructed other ... or even sometimes not that
... but just the word "i" in the space of that line
... just i ...
but i know this
doesn't answer ... and it's got me wondering if for all their
apparent randomness ("nothing is random" i told the
sophomores just yesterday related to thoughts about eecummings
poetry) ... wondering if some kind of persona has floated up through
the dust of all that language i been making for the past three
years over there ... some kind of someone that i'd want (need,
hope) to deny was myself ... and yet ...
those things come from me & not from some automated
phrase generator ... some "me" is making them ... including
and exluding this and that word ... and the words do add up to
... something ... so ...
from Thomas Merton
...We must begin by frankly admitting
that the first place in which to go looking for the world is not
outside us but in ourselves. We are the world. In the deepest
ground of our being we remain in metaphysical contact with the
whole of that creation in which we are only small parts. Through
our senses and our minds, our loves, needs, and desires, we are
implicated, without possibility of evasion, in this world of matter
and of men, of things and of persons, which not only affect us
and change our lives but are also affected and changed by usThe
question, then , is not to speculate about how we are to contact
the world - as if we were somehow in outer space - but how to
validate our relationship, give it a fully honest and human significance,
and make it truly productive and worthwhile for our world.
From Love and Living
Thomas Merton, edited by Naomi Burton Stone and Br. Patrick Hart
(San Diego, New York, London: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1985)
actually last week's thought