The Supposed

“God-shaped hole”?


the sensation that no matter how well or how much I am loved

I can not believe I am lovable simply because I exist…

and how it seems that if I could (simply believe I was lovable),

so many difficulties might be solved, resolved, dissolved…

how many things entangled in this vacuum…


in the mirror I note the shirt I am wearing

Bartleby Shirt

is it as simple as that?


The bum-rush of living


There are places we “escape to,” i.e. repair to for very specific reasons and purposes.  Maybe an acquaintance’s pad for hurried or feverish orgasms.  A park or patch of woods for perspective, silence or briefly encounters with “natural nature.”  A carrel in a library to prompt and focus our studies.  A basement stairwell for sustaining shots of liquor, bathroom window or fire escape for a stealthy cigarette.  Favored chair and lighting for reading, drawing, reverie…


A therapist’s office wherein to be oblivious for a moment, anonymously honest, saved from (and toward) pressing responsibilities.  A café, a waiting room, a stoplight, a store.  Our furtive thievery of solitude.  Self-care.  Secrets.

A human is a strange animal indeed.  Tantalized by taboo.  Somehow more fully owner when the product is taken for oneself.  Somehow more strenuously truthful when maintaining a lie.  Somehow better at self-care when stealthy and artfully dodging.

Perhaps not all of us.

Who claims directly to know what they want?  What feels good to them?  What they obsessively desire?

“Pre-emptive strikes.”  We are wary.  We negotiate rather than demand or direct (what separates the “neurotic” from the “psychopath”?).

The time goes by.  Incrementally, unceasingly, dependably.  In leaps.  Life, again, moment after moment, wends and charges, plows and slips its certain way into death.

We hesitate, we detour, we “pit stop.”  We navigate, wander and avoid.  We indulge and punish, set out and swerve, ashame and repent.  Sort of.  Sneaking pleasures, performing roles and rites, detracting, desisting, compulsing, rewarding…

Remarkable at tricking and deceiving ourselves.

We are interesting characters, sincerely.

Operative on many contradictory planes.  Ridiculous, incredible, foolish, amazing…complex.

Woven into surrounds we continually seek to distinguish ourselves from, in, for.  Tremendously unstable, uncertain, tormented, delighted and undone.

Just try to piece it apart: what you WANT, and what you WANT.  What you DO and what you WISH.  Where you GO and where you ARE.  Who you APPEAR and why you BE.

What you want and what you want.  What you desire and what you mean.  What you do and what you say.  How.  How.  Why.  and What.

It is all quite twisted.  Very weird and strange and unusually usual for us, to BE.  The “high” and the “low.”  “Good” and “bad.”  “Productive” and “lazy.”  Health and unhealthy, partial and whole, fragment and phrase.

Complicated beings in intricate surrounds.  The regularity is what’s irregular, the constancy is changing, that which we’d love to consider paradox or mystery.  The off-putting put on.  The performance unmasked.

“How many out-of-character things did I need to do, I wondered, before the world rearranged itself around me?”

-Ben Lerner, 10:04

Deceptive dialogues giving so much away.  Proper behaviors exposing our lies.

My son recently said he was a “walking contradiction” and I thought is that not the nature of humanity?

Confusion and contrast, contractions and deconstruct.

Wilder beasts – fearful and proud, generously scrooged, clinging as it slips our grasps.

Odd, misnomered things.  Smart here, dull there, sexy and unkind, popularly rejected, abnormally similar.  Attempts to be truthful mire us in espionage.

The bum rush of living – death’s inescapable quicksand



Empathy: A Way, but not My Way

O.E.D. – Empathy / einfuhlung

  • “The power of projecting one’s personality into (and so fully comprehending) the object of contemplation”
  • “to feel oneself into it”
  • “the feeling-out of other minds”
  • “a form of imaginative identification of self with non-self, a feeling-into”


Feeling out, feeling into, projecting one’s experience in order to absorb the experience of another.  “In and out of one another’s bodies” (Maurice Bloch), “intersubjectivity” (Daniel Stern).

Notebooks full of conjuring, I’ve dreamt and striven to elucidate or embody, to caress and coerce language to convey or carry-like-a-message the interpersonal convergence, experiential agreement we might be signifying with the syntax and semantics of empathy.

There were moments, instants, it seemed evident, nearly obvious – as when a child ran itself across a brittle late-summer yard, lodging a prickled sticker in the pad of its heel, and hearing its friend following close behind, sensing its similar fate…a kind of “predictive apprehension” become co-mprehension as experience is multiplied, at least observably shared – at least sympathy – a feeling-with, if not –out; and –into.

Two humans losing their loved ones, or spouses enduring the same tragedy?

Experience-learning applied to replicated or duplicated occasions.  Similar, perhaps, sympathic.

But “fully comprehending” journeys beyond this.

Apparently, empathy happens when one extends emotion beyond the individual body and absorbs, joins, or feels-into another – a verge of meeting, movement,

beyond into between, meshing as a sunset goes about forming itself, or the creation of fog – something like con-gene-ial requirements.  Some of us, hell, all of us (and more) share genes, so this must be possible (we have a word for it after all!).

Our forms, our reach, must be flexible.  We share-with, finally, down to our atoms out through our environment, galaxy, and beyond.


-components of empathy-


…a coordination of coordinations of actions…

(Humberto Maturana / Francisco Varela)


            Perhaps empathy, a possibility of intersubjectivity, occurs when subjects extend awareness through a mutual orientation into a consensual domain…each feeling-out the other by feeling-into a shared sensual arena, learned by experience and therefore anticipated predictively…in rare occasions of empathy…simultaneously!?

In other words, based out of our shared genetic realities, generated by the kinds of experiences and “worlds” our species can have, we feel-out of our heartbreak, grief, joy, ecstasy, fear – emotive and sensual experiences – into con-sensual co-ordinated domains of those experiences occurring in some liminal, marginal space verging each; similarly to the way a coastline clearly separates and thoroughly connects sea and land, while both continue going on underneath one another.

Perhaps.  But I was not seeking to describe, explain, or indicate empathy in language, my desire was to enact it, evoke it…and in that I have failed…ever to try again.

Self-writing / Autography

web I


I want to know how everything we do (as the human kind of organisms) functions for us, including wanting to know how wanting to know how everything we do (as the human kind of organisms) functions for us, including wanting to know how wanting to know how wanting to know how everything we do (as the human kind of organisms) functions for us, including…


A Real-ization?

A Real-ization(?)

“…And here begins my despair as a writer”

Jorge Luis Borges, “The Aleph


I should say, “began.”  And not “as a writer,” per se, or even primarily, no, I should more accurately portray the experience “…and so began, and ever continues to begin, my despair as a human.”

For experiences, no matter where or when, in full matter of where and when, are multitude that begin such despair.  They are occurrences of a process we call variously “knowing,” “comprehending,” “understanding” – encounters with unlimited and unnecessary contents we might describe as “revelatory,” “visionary,” or “true.”  We describe their feeling and fumble with content.

For they seem to circumscribe an everything – as contained and opening out – well-metaphored by the scientifically religious Big Bang, an un-caused cause or some like.  Experiences we couch in the babbles of mystery: synchronicity, omniscience, omnivorous, omnipotent and omnipresent.  We feel them like an orb or spiral, a series of looping waves without succession.

A.k.a “convergence,” simultaneity and emergence coming together at now and here.

I write “as a human” because I cannot be anything else.  And a human, as a living being, is characterized by limitations and potentials.  Although kinds of things never exhaust their potentials (as far as we know) – thereby always altering what might constitute affordances and constraints lists – nevertheless, in order to be unique (or anything at all – “what –so-ever”) humans must be limited, those limitations providing the very contexts for exploring potentials and potency.

One such environment or niche is the operation of our living processes in space and through time.  I.e. a simultaneous occurrence of everything cannot be processed, cannot be shared, as such.  It must needs be dissected and dismembered via many spaces and over time in order to be perceived by such an animal as we – re-membered and imaged-in (imagined) according to our nature (our processes and practices in our environments).

This is why moments we might re(in)fer to as “transcendent” or “wholistic” perhaps “encapsulating” or “converging” – compressing and expanding (synonymously) some happening that seems “total” generate despair for our kind or species.

I am unable to deny what comes to experience, but with labels and descriptions (interpretation) must take care.  One often turns to symbols or metaphors: icons that serve to absorb a variegated but comprehensible share of human experiences.  Accrued via descriptions and depictions over time, these symbols resonate and traverse times and boundaries in order to gather experiences of a kind.  Take for example the term “hunger,” or a drawing of an eye.  Mirrors, or a resolving I-IV-V progression.  These activities of reference and participation, renewal and recognition, present and re-present for us experiences that seem to extend or equal (again, synonymously) us.

Despair comes in the desired specificity each individual of the species wishes to convey (form of convergence – communicate meaning for our kind can be spotted by our use of the prefix co-).  That experience (in itself necessarily co-), in order to have meaning(humanly speaking) must be shared – we find that telling/singing/dancing/painting/acting/writing/ filming/making/working/sculpting/creating/crafting or any combination of them all and the human-specific processes this entails are unable to re-present such “totalizing” experiences, except at certain angles, perspectives, fragments, over time.

Yet, were it otherwise, we would have no need of any of our abilities – for we would know.  The relations, practices, potentials and processes depend on this inability (limitation) to be.  For us to be, as humans, what and whom, where and when, we are.

Unity would undo this.  In fact, we have no evidence that ANY living entity “shares alike” – reciprocates perfect understanding or replication (or reproduction, ex-ist-ing) exactly…down beyond our cells…there is difference, mis-matching, variation.  In fact, all the co-operations that provide con-vergence and co-mmunity, me-and-ing (meaning) depend on the disjunctions we strive to come over or through in order to express, be understood, known, “as one.”

So, though never “of the same mind,” perspective, or feeling, even when we experience me-and-ing together (gathered) – – this is also how we are.

Perhaps then, less despair than real-ization?


Potent Selections from Vacation Reading

“I wondered what indeed it meant about me that I was so set against the notion of convention that I should attack it.  So, I replaced the dream with the novel, stripping the stories of my dreams of any real meaning, but causing the form of them to mean everything.”

“…the gap between the subject of enunciation and the subject of enunciating not only failed to appear to me as a place of entry, but also failed to register as something I might elide.  For me, there was no gap, as there is no gap for anyone.”

P Everett 1

“…generally, people are only inclined to speak of the past with those they believe will somehow not only share some commonality, but who will also be disposed to exhibiting sympathy.”

“Is a photograph always present tense?  I described them so…better, let the question be, is what is in the photograph always in the present, without a before, without an after?  Of course, it is.  And isn’t that actually you in the picture?”


“On Ludwig Boltzman’s tombstone is carved: S=k. LogW.  S is the entropy of a system, k represents Boltzman’s Constant, and W is a measure of the chaos of a system, essentially the extent to which energy is dispersed in the world.  This equation meant little to me as I read of it the first time, but as I considered it I grew excited.  The space between S and W is the space between the living thing in front of me and stuff hidden inside beyond my observation and comprehension.  It raises the question:  How many ways can the parts of a thing be rearranged before I can see a difference?  How many ways can the atoms and molecules of my hand move and recombine before I realize that something is wrong?  Thinking about it scared me.  Certainly, I understood that natural events symbolize collapse into chaos and that events are motivated by dissolution, but the idea of such subversive and invisible change moved me.  I likened it to observing the minds of others.”

P Everett 2


“Ezra Pound said, ‘Every word must be charged with meaning to the utmost possible degree.’  Let it be the case then.  But words need no help from anyone.  Bet thew ords kneeknow hellip freeum heinywon.  Context, story, time, place – don’t these work like Bekins men, packing the words like so many trunks?  But finally, words are not cases to be packed at all, but solid bricks (and, of course, like a brick, even a word’s atoms are not motionless).”

“We do not give the creature reality enough credit, choosing to see it sitting out there as either a construct of ours or an infinitely regressing cause for the trickery of our senses.  But I claim here that the most important thing I have learned is that reality has a soul, reality is conscious of itself and of us, and further is not impressed by us or our attempts to see it.  In fact, we see it all the time and don’t know it, perhaps can’t.  It is like love in that way.”

-all quotes by Percival Everett

from his novel, Glyph

Glyph - Everett

The big TOE

theory of everything

I have been fascinated by and greatly enjoying the discussions and promulgations of some very astute bloggers considerations of the possibilities of and potential candidates for a “Theory of Everything.”  See, for prime examples, the tremendous thought-work of MultiSense Realism and Anacephalaeosis.  Hoping to further conversation, I humbly post a couple of intriguing considerations of TOEs by two others of my thinking-hero-eschelon… and hope for responses from those above-mentioned and anyone else with thoughts on the matter (or process, as it may be)…!

From the Concept of System to the Paradigm of Complexity – Edgar Morin


Do We Know How to Read Messages in the Sand? – Isabelle Stengers

Becoming Human: Asking after the Nature of Nobody

“What, in summary, is the nature of the singular entity referred to by the word ‘I’ in judgments like ‘I am in pain’?  Answer: since those uses of ‘I’ do not refer, the question is nonsensical.  One might as well ask after the nature of Nobody.”

-John Canfield-

“The ‘main point’ is rarely extricable from the digressions.  Every section spills into every other… [he] no longer knows what he was talking about.”

-R. M. Berry-

            It grows hair.  It remembers things differently.  It is singing as if in a mumbling voice.  Yesterday I got angry.

It thinks, but after talking with the child I was upset with, it revises its conception, taking into account that she said I exhibited joy.  Yesterday I was happy.

This glassy essence.

“I will need to accomplish a task tomorrow,” it thinks, in a manner different from image, music or text.  It can almost see me doing it – in a situated context – surrounded by people (other ones), objects, time and space.  Not essentially.  Well, maybe.

It calls to mind (read fabricates) what I was like two decades ago.  I was climbing mountains then, most often alone (i.e. not in the company of additional humans), still it is able to consider me there.  There where?  It imagines Long’s Peak in Colorado (in neither image, language nor feeling – it cannot recall particulars well enough to reconstruct)…it senses I was there.  It is reading in a diary.

Does this make it me?  The same as the I who wrote it, camping somewhere along the Eastern slope of Long’s Peak in 1995, apparently gladly absent of friend, foe, spouse or tamed animal counterpart?

I had a pack full of peanut butter and potatoes, a couple jugs of water, a tent, a cloak, a knife, an assortment of pens, books and blank journals.  It roughly remembers some of that.

It reflects (not to itself – that doesn’t even make sense) – must be a sort of nuanced synonym for thinking – (with itself? of itself? nonsense, it simply reflects) – I’m sitting cross-legged on a small clearing near a frothy crystalline stream within a circle of baby pines, trying to read philosophy texts packed in for the purpose of uninterrupted, or it could be me yet-to-come as distinguished by Swiss mountains and an understood language barrier protecting my solitude along with evident (it imagines) distance (and therefore time) between whatever residents might exist and I.  It (hypothetically) notices that (well, enough to pick out an “I” on the Jungfrau or Matterhorn).

But that has happened too.  Does the case that it conceives me thus proscribe an identity?   It isn’t sure, but there are similarities of some variety.  It isn’t saying for certain (the fact is it could say “for certain” but what might that establish as regards me?) – the appearance and accidents, character and behavior are in many ways inexact and altered – but for pragmatic and discriminatory purposes – it would designate me “me” (if it were in conversation or thinking extrinsically).

Could it really say, most definitely, that I was there?  Any more than that I will be?  It is uncertain, entirely possible.

This glassy essence.

It remains, for now.

Thinking of the time I was writing this (nearly now but just before).  It is writing, but not this, I have written this, it is aware, but only just before or just after – that it is I.

It writes.

“…man, proud man,

Drest in a little brief authority,

Most ignorant of what he’s most assur’d,

His glassy essence, like an angry ape,

Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven

As make the angels weep.”

-Shakespeare, Measure for Measure