To the Workshop Gods, to the Weekend Artists, to the Loud Talkers, to the Local Name Droppers, and to those who say they do important things for the art without taking action. Good Job. TS_
The beauty of writing
is sharing your words,
spreading your ideas,
whether it is
unique or not.
It is touching keys
forgetting the edit,
and doing what you want
Writing is either part of your life fully,
or great distances far away,
or in between;
it can come back at any moment,
and it can sit there and stay.
Writing is expressing yourself
not for those around you to critique,
it is for you,
it is with you,
it is by you,
in all the experience that you’ve seen.
Your everyday trivial
is more poignant than
yesterday’s raved about
new modern messiah.
Writing can be a target,
with a big bright red mark on your back to attack,
it can show humor
and inspiration to act.
The beauty of writing
is it is actually you,
no matter how weird,
how the labels others choose to use,
or who it will prove to confuse.
Writing is religion, Allah, Christ, Academia, Professors, and God,
it is verses out of rhyme,
it is punctuation out of time,
and it is of topics trite,
and themes grotesquely odd.
The beauty of writing
can be called flawed by all,
but when it comes time to write,
the loudest have nothing at all.
Looking over the tanned Hennepin Avenue Bridge
where a shaded Grain Belt sign still won’t shine.
Here too, Nicollet Island looms in an aromatic Spring night,
shadowed by new and ancient high-rises, boxes of floors,
holes of light, standing against the straightening northern winds.
These apartments of the departed—mills and factories and dreams,
ghosts left for better times and warmer climes.
They no more see the Guthrie above a scintillating river’s distance,
no more spiraling down Gold Medal Park pathways
through thick buggy twilights, in tow bags full of books and beer
slung over shoulders, no more here; new eyes peer.
No more boats or barges pass through the upper lock and dam
loaded with local commodities, as pedestrians stroll along St. Anthony Main
catching a movie, drinking and spending, as tangled trees
build up and obstruct the Mississippi flow below Central, sounding wetness,
sounding to south. For this sign there is no more light.
Right here, remembering this unlit hallmark as headlamps
of cars buzz flashing by, on dotted pot-holed streets,
we on feet, bumble through dialogue of what we read and where we’ve been.
This sign now is painted black as it watches over downtown in the fore,
were it shining off of the muddy waters, were it catching in cigarette smoke
exhaled, were it meeting pupils and blazing that scene on some
grey matter fold in a viewer’s mind, it would still be lit up there,
hanging above a tanned bridge, in its gold, black, white, and red.
At times we are a shameless weekend day-drunk,
on more mission than malicious,
while some factors remain
out of our hands.
In Dinkytown, a hundred dollars pocketed,
bike tires on fresh-thawed paths—
I moved with those in needed noontime sun,
where girls in flowery mini-skirts and low-cut t-shirts
families holding hands and smiling men—friends,
on a walk, on the go,
to Washington Ave, to West River Parkway, to bike paths,
more on the trek: sunglasses, glances, buses, and light-rails
those along the tracks.
a Saturday to spend,
In the foreground beautiful dimensions;
a bridge expanse,
where tons of rock and rubble smashed,
stood in the sky above brown waters stirring,
above geese making wake,
with joggers, debris, bikers, and cars in the street,
this is where a person must stand the apex and view the cityscape ahead,
from Franklin Ave Bridge, it was.
Where Marathons had crossed,
where break-ups took place,
where others died on bikes by cars
in the twilight.
Memorials stood for them, fading,
locked to poles,
My mission: head to Zipp’s for that
a $25 bottled designer beer.
I had to,
latent function ephemera.
like biking while cars pass,
here, remembering houses and nightly walks home alone,
or with new found strangers,
remembering people under streetlamps, red eyes glare,
empty cans and scattered trash about,
An accident brought me back here for something,
Seward streets and an absence of time.
I thought of Tracy’s and Luce,
and cigarettes and movies,
of what I had not come to see,
I was careful with my backpack, another bottle couldn’t break.
You, me; us we—forward or backward,
together we are the same.
Parts of a carnal body, whole—
built of dust, thoughts, and air;
no scar is without a measure,
no action still unmoved,
shell of human being outside,
ghost of us within.
We are compelling a kind,
eyes peer to see;
from Franklin and Nicollet to NE,
Middle America to Middle East.
Still, forward or backward, we are the same.
Sharing small town concepts,
language, in hopes to pave a path;
at a bar stool conversation,
after an empty whisky shot throat-sting,
as beer bubbles trace a 1/3 full pint glass.
One local could move forward with art,
or make it easy—take a step back.
Laugh , and seize the moment…
I think about it…
I say: but the proof is only if it kills you,
Bukowski said that,
I sort of believe the man.
We are not perfect artists, really—no one is,
the evidence is: we are still alive, mostly.
See: I’ve been to a few funerals;
I know the end of my story will be
surrounded by a shovel, dirt, words, and a box.
Then, a man I don’t know will tell others about me.
(The real artist is the priest who doesn’t know you acting like he does,
he swears to god. You were good, though god doesn’t understand death.)
Then, no more art will come out of you,
but they will hear it.
That is the perfect artist and art.
That is the truth, perhaps.
As early March had come in biting and the best were kept inside,
a span of two weeks had passed slowly and sleep had become elusive.
Professors watched second hands tick and gave out faux tests;
these symbolic life quizzes—it’s who makes it who matters.
Desks became confines as concentration went out open windows,
to welcome hands of mild weathered-breeze and new-season sun.
People—tired students, red-eyed lecturers, they didn’t exist;
regular situations became stimuli for a stagnant comatose: why?
No answers formed, except that three days later a person could be a week away,
anywhere—abroad, nothing to do, only to read titles and books which please.
Yet we all sat watching that clock, it moved slower despite us;
now, it would have to stay indoors and assess classrooms of empty chairs.
Scholars and administration would hopefully be in Spring air, taking it in,
with a cold beer in hand and tender sunrays on their back;
minds would exist as empty—blank slates, to pen a tale—an experience,
with no thoughts of what was left sitting behind, with not a hint of rigor.
“My Goal is
with cream cheese melt;
how you entice
it is early in the morning
and I am hungry,
into my stomach