A Guarded Narrative

Theories exist that propose a process for primary and profound attachments.  That as these attachments proceed, they will inevitably expose (or reach, come up against) individual limitations.  As humans intermingle with increased intimacy and time, eventually the darker reaches, safer holdings in us (traumas, repression, grave fear or terror, shame) will be engaged and something will ensue – usually either openings or closures.  The following was composed as an attempt at a relational account of this…

Alfred Hitchcock Doors


We Open Doors

We struggle.  We stumble forth.  We reach, we ramble, we run.  We learn to walk.  We tumble and waver, we stride.  We overhear, we listen, we engage.  We greet what we encounter, we welcome and inquire.  We reciprocate.  We open doors.

We gaze, we laugh, we remember and rejoinder.  We wander, we wonder, we happily agree.  We chide and we dispute, we recommend and reason, we exclaim.  We open doors.

We step forth, step through, we open chambers.  We confess.  We beg, we plead, we rest and bless.  We sing.  We join, we sway, we dance.  We kick and scream and wriggle.  We resonate.  We hurt and we forgive, we open doors.

We whisper while we shout, we worship and succumb.  We praise and denigrate, argue, negotiate, we push and we budge. We hesitate.  We wrestle with the locks, we suppress and unremember, we fabricate, we lie.  We pry the doors.

We change the stories.  We imagine.  We concoct and recreate.  We design a thread and tell a tale, we corroborate with doubt and love.  We fear and we recall.  We reassure.  We swoon, we falter and we soothe.  We open doors.

We enter dungeons.  We smell the dark.  We trigger mines.  We panic and react.  We flee aimless and return, we grasp and seek and hope.  We lift the doors.

We reach the wetlands.  Cross the plains.  We clamber mountains holding onto rope.  We knot and we undo.  We disrobe and arm ourselves.  We bleed.  We heal.  We stack the rocks.  We open doors.

We attach and we press on.  We scab and suffer.  We get lost.  We recover.  We holler, we recoil, we respond. We widen cracks and we expose.  We grope, we censor, we divide.  We rage and we varnish, we forget.  We ask and refuse the answer.  We testify, profess.  We strain and crawl.  We collapse.  We guard the doors.

We collaborate.  We weave and tear and shape.  We invent.  We threaten cores.  We gird our hearts and steel our minds, we clasp our hands.  We jump and weep and fly.  We grieve.  We repose, we dialogue, we alchemize.  We sear.  We use our weight.  We bolster.  We open doors – they slam us.

We protect.  We damage and arrange.  We repair.  We gossip with our notions.  We theorize, we enter forests.  We drown and cradle rocks, we float and we resign.  We hear the latches, we peer downstairs, we take our steps and count the beats.  We’re keeping time.  We feel the tremors, we sense the snap, we open doors.

We break them down.  We tremble.  We contract.  We slither, wriggle, wind.  We explode, we come undone, we disappear.  We hear the lock.  We search the key.  We gather, we conspire, we close in.  We close doors.  We seal, we paint, we turn.  We shrink, explore, thin out.  We look away, look forward, look about.  We separate and margin. We barrier and bind.  We open doors.

We pause, we blind, we wish.  The doors shut tight on what we’ve opened.




Erosion, continued: “What Begins as I, Ends as It”: A Form of Fiction (explicit)

MEANING from EXPERIENCE:  “What Begins as I, Ends as It”: A Form of Fiction


“Every movement resonates with its preacceleration and its overarticulation, active in a contagion of speeds and slownesses”

-Erin Manning, Always More than One



The erosion would be complete (or very nearly) now.  What had once seemed an “inner life” or “personal experience,” perhaps “individuality” or some such, (as far as could be sensed) was wholly in absentia.  No happening, event, or perception – let alone interpretation or meaning.

Now it was only something thesauri’d as anguish – maybe migraine, maybe ennui.

The emptying and erasure, incessant deterioration.  Taking it back to the cells.

  •          Movement.
  •          Terror.
  •          Survival.

Formulating a system.  Psychology and reflection not necessary.  Systems in relation for persistence.  An added instant.  Another day.

            Flefzzhat, remune, it sounded like, and signifying nothing.  Activity is all.  Behavior.  Quieted, plastic, rearranged.  Emotion in hiding or exile.  It would not be decease, and he could not seem to help it.

It was cold.  Began to chill.  Unable, apparently to warm itself.  Something gave it liquid, which, though iced cold, seemed to flush it warm.  Reaction, not response.

Activity observed, not intention.  It shivered.  A scribbling, not a mark.  A murmur, not a sound.  It seemed deflated.  Otherwise.

Not like a rodent, really: not furtive or purposeful.  How to describe it?

A wrapped tree or  scarecrow – if the scarecrow was broken and crook’d.  What would survival mean, without love for words, without relish?  Without desire – is it pro-cess?

Dead crow in flannel.  No future envisioned, no breathing to count by.



Room after room over months all displacing.  Pieces at a time – chair here, sock there, key, sign, and implement.  A picture.  Emptiness synonymed, a variant from loss.  Loss implies gone; emptied – gone away.  The figure shuffling toil devolves the way of water – seamless evisceration – an evaporate.

The labor worked like cancer on its host – a devouring accretion.  Humans call it grief – the impression of depression.  Unable to relate, all signs a bag of Scrabble tiles.  A tick will move toward warmth, grass stems trigger to the sun.  Scarecrow? – merely flux.  Perhaps the wind.

At one time it forayed.  The worlds of animals and humans.  Would have named systemic processing: “living.”  Drill down deep enough, or extend exponentially – the vitality recedes.

            Vitality recedes.

            Sonic elements, sense.  Beyond the psychosocial, even basic physics began un-mattering.

Another room, another artifact, another particle of dust duly removed.  The figure now a beach – sand devolving slowly toward rock.

Rock:  elemental, unfeeling, simply there.  Simply there, in its flux.  Taking space by making it.  Stupid, muted, dumb.  Pointilism sans points – that sort of thing.  The figure itself an oxymoron, an elision.  Not illusion.  From outside this is really happening.

From within, it’s only time.  The songs of Orpheus, collected as poems.  Dalliance in extinction, without a puffin’s reward or a dinosaur’s drama.  Just scarecrow – a covered tree – limbing in almost dark.

Prime example of nearly.  Nearly being, nearly attached, nearly meaningful – nearly perceived.  Nearly alive – another way of saying (in a scientist’s tongue): NOT.


If a statement of faith is “always more than one” then here we have a really hard problem:  no statement, no faith, and ever only one…Beckett’s dissolution… How It Is.

“how last how last”…”vast tracts of time” 


It echoes.  The emptying room.  A hollow.  Blowing stiffly enough, some would say it howls.  If a howl, then a cry.  If a cry, a reaching out.  Scarecrow doesn’t cry.  But the drink kills the migraine, whites out the angst.

Wrapped tree in snow.  You know it’s there.

It, without life or blood or brain.  It now alone, now diminished, now slowly stripping bare.

            Call it the Passenger Pigeon, the Ibex, Orpheo rising from the dead.

Call it Nothing and No-one.


Please do not call it at all.


Someone said meaning was the sticky point.  Point dislodged.  Evaporate.  Another: “this is love.”  Love fucked and raped in eye socket, armpit, ass – then abandoned.

Another room cleared by the scarecrow.  More bark removed from the tree, even while the burlap clings.

Life would astonish the gods – an elegy owed.  It’s worse than that.  It’s autopsy alive – with light everywhere.  A copyist’s error.

            Branches clack, and make impressions.  That is all.



How People are Made

How People are Made: Relation and the Myth of Anonymity

  • Jonathan Franzen wrote a book entitled “How to Be Alone.
  • Here is the sunset as I drove to this spot to write.  It is Kansas.  This is not uncommon.
  • Donne: “no man is an island.”                    

There is no shame to it.  How many participants in Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Flickr?  How many millions “chat,” “text,” visit sex or dating sites?  It’s the history of communication, as I’m considering it.  Gesture, sound, scent, language.  Writing, correspondence, law, artefact.  Telephone, computer, Pony Express, gmail.  Travel.  “Solitary walks.”  Family.  Friendship.

There IS NO HOW to be alone.

 There is no ALONE to BEING.

I have been trying to be “alone.”  Unattached.  Separated.  Theoretically, “divorced”:  “dissolute,” “diverted,” “turned aside.”  TO MYSELF, in-divid-ual.  There is nothing there.  No one.  I AM UNIDENTIFIABLE outside of RELATIONSHIP.

At one time I considered this a weakness, a co-dependence, some personal immaturity.    ANONYMITY (Related words: oblivion; inconspicuousness; invisibility; invisibleness; insignificance…”) DOES NOT EXIST.  (or we do not). 

I’ve watched the movie “Her” four times this week.  I continue to breathe.  I listen to, feed, tuck in, taxi my children.  I feed the dogs.  I lay in a bed.  I drink water.  I move, in air.  I rely on ground, on floors, on walls, on doors, on oxygen.  When no children or dogs or phone calls or “people” (humans, organisms) need my attention… I read, I write, I sit on chairs, walk, think, imagine, breathe, murmur, eat, exercise, “think.”  THERE IS NOT ONE THING I DO WITHOUT OTHER THINGS.  THERE IS NOT ONE THING THAT IS ME.  THERE IS NOT ONE THING.  THERE IS NOT ONE(there is only one?).  (“I” takes its shape from what surrounds it).

If you click into social media and comment.  If you press the “chat” button.  If you text or shoot an email.  If you “answer.”  If you read, write, compose, move.  If you “think,” “imagine,” “daydream,” “fantasize,” – IT REQUIRES INTERACTIONMORE THAN YOUR”SELF.”  Did I ever doubt that “self” existed as a SOMEthing, I would now state it as a tenet of my core beliefs:  I believe: THERE IS NO SELF.  “SELF” IS A CO-CONSTRUCTED ENTITYTHERE IS NO “SELF” WITHOUT “OTHER,” AND “SELF” BECOMES, INTERACTING. 

Here’s the gist of this.  As soon as a comment is posted, as soon as symbols typed, words breathed through sound, keys struck, a step taken, a breath inhaled, mark interpreted, sound perceived, an IDENTITY (the “identification” of an organism) occurs.  Imagined, pretend, hoped-for, deceptive – NO MATTERACTIVITY BECOMES an organism – particularized.  What is “I” utilizes and processes air from around me, utilizes and operates upon matter surrounding and constituting me, and TAKES ITS SHAPE IN RELATION TO WHATEVER IT INTERACTS WITH.

Otherwise, there is NO.  Simply NO.  I cannot think un-interactively.  I cannot move sans interaction.  I cannot BE alone, an island.  There simply IS no HOW TO BE ALONENo option exists for us.  We are WITH, or we are NOT.

If you respond…you take on identity – are identified – you can twist, shape, invent, pretend, co-create that “self” through chat, gesture, speech, writing, breathing, reading, hearing, moving, INTERACTION – WE ARE IDENTIFIED (given “identities”) VIA INTERACTION.  Otherwise, we are simply NOT.  DO NOT EXIST.  Not “don’t matter,” not “invisible,” not “ignored,” not “anonymous” (all identities in themselves) – simply NOT.

I used to want to be someONE.  A writer, a man, a husband, a father, a thinker, artist, philosopher, significant, meaningful, AN IDENTITY, A PERSON.  I CANNOT BE something on my own, alone, to-myself.  Without oxygen, carbon, gravity, hydrogen, DNA, plasma, neurons, (energy + matter in specific combinations)…I’M JUST NOT.  And that carries through from the atom to the identity to the universe.  Whatever BEING I might be, can be, AM – depends.  DEPENDSUTTERLY DEPENDS.  On each and every moment of interaction.  And is CO-CREATED in each and every interaction.  There is no STATIC, no CORE, no SELF (not even a possible way to get one’s “self” ALONE/APART from world to try to discover “WITH” oneself WHO one is – IF we are ALIVE – we ARE ALWAYS INTERACTING) – no singular ID-ENTITY.  “I” is an organism identified by each interaction… 


web I

…and nothing without you

…thank you ALL for shaping a self out of/into me…

“Reality does not exist beyond the activity and interactivity of systems” – Humberto Maturana Romesin, Fundamental Relativity: Reflections on Cognition and Reality


Modality Independence

the wonders to consider… thank you Multisense!

Multisense Realism


A striking feature of language is that it is modality-independent. Should an impaired child be prevented from hearing or producing sound, its innate capacity to master a language may equally find expression in signing […]

This feature is extraordinary. Animal communication systems routinely combine visible with audible properties and effects, but not one is modality independent. No vocally impaired whale, dolphin or songbird, for example, could express its song repertoire equally in visual display. “

This would be hard to explain if consciousness were due to information processing, as we would expect all communication to share a common logical basis. The fact that only human language is modality invariant suggests that communication, as an expression of consciousness is local to aesthetic textures rather than information-theoretic configurations.

Since only humans have evolved to create an abstraction layer that cuts across aesthetic modalities, it would appear that between aesthetic modality and…

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“Determining Gapless Playback”

Might it indeed be we passing through world as world makes its way through us?

In other words, we walk along, and call it “moon,” but once we’ve passed it goes on in its nameless and momentous being?

Likewise “Holly,” “daughter,” “self,” … “being”?

And anything else to which we lend ideas?

If “lending” (for practical purposes)

is not dictation.


Incise.  Excise.  Decide. – a definition.

Who of you likes to be told what you are?

Who of us can be?  Even by our (many) selves?


Erosion, take two


This is the story of how I began telling the truth.  The truth I defined as “two truths and at least one lie.”  The truth of my experience.

Poets often carry sorrow in their sockets – some underlying angst influencing attention.  There’s sclera, iris, pupil, and a deepening mirror of perceived pain…or seared “ego.”  Grief or grudge – and difficult to distinguish.

As much as there is to learn or to know, some simple patterns give the slip.  Once you figure a composing context, the information is derived.  Look out for what might constitute survival for each respective entity.  Aim your inquiry there.

Parents hurt as much as heal.  As do love and risk and wisdom (or well-being).  All that is given in life is also taken away – exactly when it is given.

Everyone canvasses sorrow.  The surgeons in their trembling hands, the librarians in their order.  The therapist’s reflective stance, architect’s angles, businessman’s mettle.  We all know that we’re going to die.  Celebrities in their acclaim, the athletes in their strength, and whores in their affection.  Everything is risk.


What = Now


“to change patterns…expose the wounds…”

– Charlie Kaufman – 

1.  Truth is…truth was…truth is… 

And this was the daily game of Reality-Telling…two truths with at least one lie.  A morning-midday-evening list-assembling of continuous is-was-ises.  Spilled coffee, set aright, sopped with towel.  Triples.  Thing – thing – relation.  So many relations revising so many “things.”  Complicating, co-creating, is-was-is.

“Change is never lossless,” it was written.  Once comforted by the is of experience – that no matter the grief or anguish, no matter the disaster or rift, the poverty or destruction – experience kept accruing.  “Experience is additive even in reduction.”  Even deletion adds to experience.  Isn’t it nice to know that regardless of what or who or how – for every living thing – at least something accumulates?  Grows richer, more varied, expands?

But how calculate that every addition is reductive?  That the raw fact of everything adding up = losing?  At least this is one way of working the figures.  An instant added is an instant taken away.  “The Lord giveth…”

The very momentariness, unquantifiability of what happens seems to attest to this.  Two precisely equal processes, or hands.  The one inviting and offering, delivering; the other letting-go, sweeping aside, and waving goodbye.  Moment in, moment past.  Experience added, one less experience to have.

Life as a riverbank – new deposits and constant erosion.

            The truth is: experience

            The truth was: experience brought exactly what it took away

            The truth is: experience

(therefore): NOW =

            And thus it is known that living is equal to dying and “He who would save his life will lose it” is just a simple fact.  Dying is equal to living.  It all happens in the same instant.  One step further = one step nearer to something else.

Sometimes people smile when they’re together.  Sometimes they don’t.  And sometimes other things happen.