8th segment

’cause I don’t have to stop.  ’cause it doesn’t.

experience anyway cover


            And now “I” am different, again.  Change.  Is how I would “put it.”  What with the whip of atoms calling “I” ever-coupling to the Itself that the “I” calls “world,” really, when one gets down to it, in it (always), the distance is elusive (is “illusion”).  And so “I” changes at the rate of the wind “I” is sharing; of the sea “I” is seeing; of the matter (volatile shivering).

It is Here.  We are.  Since we cannot claim a territory, we strain for modes to re-fer (de-fer?).  Differ.  We’re attuned to it.  The rhythm of our tune is differance.  There is no reason that suffices.  We are in it.  It.

A live.

In vocalizing, movement sounds (for humans).  Or in gesture – perceptible matter (always suited to the version capable).  It is always a matter of moving around, shuffling space with time.  I cry, there is movement.  The air and the chemical sea.  I look – things displace, replace, are placed by my gaze – an interactive mechanism – part of a NEVER discontinuous train.

We touch, because sound, because cell, because particles and waves (as both) – because movement.  Because “separate” is an aberrant traction (abs-traction).  A practical folly.

I love you – re-cognition that borders are empty, margins erased.  That “you” and “I” intersperse (wind, sea, light) molecules.  Movement.  Alive.  I love a live.

Because live doesn’t noun an “f.”  Life.  Life is a period, an arbitrary stop.  Imposed.  But a “v” simply vibrates.  We are a-live.  We are the living.  Even the “the” can’t contain it.  It rushes the punctual, overcomes it.  We are us and I love you (us).

Perhaps we need little realms to find out.  To discover.  Acting networks to re-member (to sew, to put back together) what’s dismembered convention.  “The way it is” – what we’re impressed to “get by” (“survive”).

This, It, is NOT the survival of fittest, a live is the fittest and cannot be dismembered, “I’s” just being particled Lifes – and those not really – except in that most human of ways (itself a “not really” invented by us).  It is more complex than that (call it “what’s live” or Enaction), and can’t be reduced to its “parts.”

Nor combined in a “whole” (another punctuated word).  It’s not final, complete, but just changing (rates of wind, of sea of weather; of stones and planets, emotions and plants) – if we could dissect it (and we try) the variation of paces “seem” astounding…but It’s chock full of seams like two sides of paper – not different but same save the semes that are perceptible.

These semes are intended for motion:  I love you.  My so-called chapters and segments to “say” – we are us, there’s no other, and we’ve little idea of that.

“I” lean back, am exhausted, and rest (always moving).  “I” don’t see the difference in sleep.

The Return – the Quest continues

Pikes Peak

After a glorious week smushed together in an old log cabin without running water and an outhouse on the slopes of Pikes Peak Colorado, we have returned.  It was wonderful family time – hiking, kayaking, playing, reading, climbing and performing the necessary tasks of cabin-living.  Irreplacable.  One of our sons was reading “How to Read Literature like a Professor” for his summer reading assignments in the wee hours and pointed out that this type of vacation shared many qualifications of the Quest in literary themes.  That feels so right.  Life lived in relation to others always seems a quest – to know one another better, love one another better, hear one another better, express and differentiate and develop as persons-in-relation.  I have been immensely blessed with a mixed and quirky collective of children from whom I learn so much, and a spouse who cracks and opens me.  It is a particular pleasure when the world around us is also so splendid and obviously large as it is in the Rockies of Colorado, and when so many distractions are replaced with shared attentions – mushrooms, critters, rock formations, streams, decrepit mines, wild donkeys, and so on.  Priceless time.

Upon return it is easy to see how the quest goes on…kiddos heading back to school…classes starting again…and these packages opened in the pile of mail:

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the quest always beginning…

Family is Fiction, part two


Family 1


            Quick to give up, or in, to description.  Sidelong glances, or enough periphery, and it’s known – they are there.  Are here.  Which is firstly what needs be established.  Shaggy in-turned male and self-consciously-nondescript-as-a-waged-war-within-herself – are here – whether explicitly denoted or not, for that is not what this story’s about.  And all of their children – as if we’re in shadows – near presences felt.

If the man were currently reading (he is reading now), and is sitting at his desk, surrounded by more words, words bound up to burst and licking the chops of their leafy lips, prepared to murmur and shout.  It seems to him.

And she would be (read “is”) pushing a broken body into limited stress-inducing motions purposed to loosen and tighten.  Laying on a mat on a floor watching women on a screen count and stretch and breathe, mimicking them with her own limbs and torso. Accentuating her “core,” strengthening her “self” for this losing battle.

The children are learning and eating, playing and working – whatever it is youth do to fend for themselves and their futures – their shadow-dance with age.

Unable to say it as is – the is too complete and far from attainable – in segments and particles, or a falsified whole from great distance.  Oh nature.  Oh being.  Because of the facts, we have to just enter, and being recursive it matters only slightly where or when – inception/conclusion are unrecognizable to a decentralized everywhere, connective and mobile.

Some are known by their doings, some by their fathers’ or mums’; others according to their works or the times.  Some hardly known of at all.  To speak of them is to personally encounter –  as if face-to-face – an intersubjectivity of optimal expressivity.

Or not.  Language gets carried away.  When we search for a meaning or some explanation is it not because we already believe it is there?  Something already imagined?  What remains is a tying together in  idealized systems like logic – building a case or crafting a theory, replete with supporting cast of regulatory theorems.  Which demonstrates little but our ability to make science out of anything.  Exercise in closing the systems.  While all remain open.

The rugged male shifts from his papers, given possibilities, which it turns out rhymes everything.  She teases her hair nonchalantly (she hopes) and attempts to forget her over-calculations by delving into them – representing them – externalizing image and textures.  Viewed askance not head-on, but in outlines and shades or peered at and through, as we’d envision a form from behind.  Anything to remove the scrutiny of mere appearance – incorporate more and defraggle illusions of skin.

She scribbles it onto used papers,  ready surfaces already marred, turning scarrings and blots into figures and wounds; while he accentuates the peculiar, alarmed by specifics and seeking connective similitude.  If a thought comes queer, he tattoos it with ink until it sounds available.

Both, in a way, finding commerce, a transaction with others engaging/avoiding themselves.  Feeling so like and unlike.  A pestilence of the species, er, human condition – overwhelming similarities of form with infinite intricacies of difference.  Everything related – never one without another – a closed system of incalculable possibilities.  They labor in.

Male smells sour in just a few days, not accustomed to shouldering public, perhaps what allows for his mess.  Adapting  to the threat of her attention, though in the absence of comprehension.  She allows him his comforts till they confront and offend.  Peaceable enough – this arrangement – and duly provocative:  they enhance and combine, stimulate and remind one another in a struggling intimacy – they love.  Not without precedents or fear, but they love.

And in their sleep, the gears will turn.

He writes off stuck places – the uncanny processes of dreams.

The children behave like loosely arranged magnets, at times slamming close, or sullenly repelled.  Usually vibrating, tensely, between.  The volatility of past and a future reacts in young bodies as now.

Viewed collectively – it’s an inter-&-co-dependent mechanism, sketchy and atomically diagrammed – similarly potent (at least potentially) in its splittings and pressures.

Live things best metaphor themselves.

Systems Theory


Regulating Relationships

From most points of view, life is a system.  Enormous and elaborate interlacing activities keep it going on.  Biology, physics, religion, mathematics and logic; semiotics, psychology, aesthetics and history; chemistry and health, poetry and politics, philosophy and fame – all intricate reverberant systems of night (and possibly?!) infinite interconnections – visible and invisible, conscious and unconscious.

I feel it all the time.  I’m “affected.”

Hubbub over sports, havoc of war, hullabaloo of cosmology and genetics.  Tentacles of memory, omens from the past, illnesses and love.  My own aches and pains.  Allergies, anxiety, pleasure and joy.  Tastes, values.  All of/in these indecipherably interlocking worlds of living things, views, theories, events and conundrums.  Words, images, feelings.  Wires, energy, matter.  Signals, symbols.

I feel it.  I’m “affected.”  Always.

All ways.

An hypothetically infinite ganglia or swarm of influences and infections  — a finite and mortal middle-aged male inhabiting a very small space made of receptors, pores, nerves, cells and liquids: constantly thrumming, sloshing, snap-crackling, emoting and perceiving a cosmos of effects/affects.

This is why I keep saying: I get it, I’m totally “a/effected.”

The situation is perhaps similar to a paramecium channeling a bolt of lightning.  Most likely the little sucker survives in some fashion – but what the – ?

How do we manage?

No wonder we blitz out, dull, “veg,” “pass out,” sleep.  Drugs, fantastical entertainments, thrills, spills and crack-ups…anything to direct/divert the universe-sized charges incessantly overwhelming us.

Something struck me today.  In our growing history of surviving, perhaps even thriving, how have humans as a species often overcome overwhelming difficulties?  Well sure, all of the ways mentioned above: escape, denial, “tuning out,” apathy, ignorance, fantasy, insanity or violence, danger and so on, but when we are perceived (perceive ourselves) to “advance” “progress” or “grow” – what is the method?  (When we can interpret one apart from “accident” or “effect”?)

Have we not repeatedly immersed ourselves in our reality (“the way things are”) and used them to our benefit rather than detriment?  Technology, science, arts and beliefs – the seeking of the facts, turning them to our interests or needs, finding fulfillment and challenge – furtherance – survival.

What snapped in me today (I’ve had years of “managing” my “e/affectedness” thorugh alcohol, isolation or the dependence of my children) is this:  if our inquiries and theories by and large agree/propose that “life” is one phenomenal, inescapable and gargantuan set of layered and inter/intra-relational systems, then “relating/relationships,” their process(es) and effects are precisely where the work, the living, the surviving (perhaps thriving) emphases ought to be engaged.

That balancing, recharging, nourishing, coping, diversion and awareness might be best figured out right where it happens – in systems of relationships.  That where we are “affected” and what “effected” by is precisely where our greatest opportunity to “effect” must be.   Our process of relating, our relationships with/in the cosmos of possibilities, is our living.  What we know or think seems to tell us – our attention, our “solutions,” our being belongs there: in relationship.

Linguistic diagram

Thank you Holly (my wife), Scott (my dearest friend), children (all of you, my charges) – and others – you truly regulate me in this world.