Shifting the Sun by Diana Der-Hovanessian

When your father dies, say the Irish,
you lose your umbrella against bad weather.
May his sun be your light, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the Welsh,
you sink a foot deeper into the earth.
May you inherit his light, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the Canadians,
you run out of excuses.
May you inherit his sun, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the French,
you become your own father.
May you stand up in his light, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the Indians,
he comes back as the thunder.
May you inherit his light, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the Russians,
he takes your childhood with him.
May you inherit his light, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the English,
you join his club you vowed you wouldn’t.
May you inherit his sun, say the Armenians.

When your father dies, say the Armenians,
your sun shifts forever.
And you walk in his light.

“Shifting the Sun” by Diana Der-Hovanessian, from Selected Poems. © Sheep Meadow Press, 1994.

I have been looking for this for 2 months. Finally found it today. A friend sent it to me via FB messenger right after my dad died. I thought I had stashed it somewhere easy to find. That as pretty silly of me.

It will probably make you cry a little. It made me tear up, again. But, it helps my heart, too.

Tomorrow is my parents 56th wedding anniversary.

_____________________

Ded said “Garrison Keillor read that on The Writer’s Almanac the day before my dad died. I was alone in the office in the very early morning, which was a good thing, because I knew my dad was dying, and I ended up sobbing. I also knew it was a gift, and I worked to find a copy of it (this was 1996, before you could find anything on the interwebs) to be read at his funeral. On the first anniversary of my dad’s death, Garrison Keillor read it on The Writer’s Almanac again. Since then I have always shared it with friends when their dad’s pass, and it was read at the funeral of my children’s father. It means a great deal to me; I’m glad it means a great deal to you too.”

dna

Talking about Porn

I think artistic nudes are about form and light.

I think erotica aims to titillate. Where you draw the pornography line has to do with your own head. For me, it is determined by consent. And erotica that doesn’t have the consent of all participants crosses that line into unacceptable. That includes putting up your own photo of yourself being erotic where I will see it without warning me that you are going to show me your sexuality.

If you say “There is erotica here” I can choose to participate or not. If you put up a photo of you slipping your hand into your panties or your dick slipping into your willing partner without a warning, you have become a pornographer because my participation was without my own volition.

And work no longer has anything to do with “NSFW.” That has become code for “there may be nakedness here.”

Non-objective

I have been a fan of Wassily Kandinsky ever since I first saw a picture of his work.

And it puzzled me because I don’t (didn’t) really get abstract art. And I presumed Kandinsky was doing abstracts.

I was wrong.

Recently, I was at a gallery show with artists hanging around to meet the public. (Last Friday in Hillsborough) Lolette Guthrie was one of the artists at the Hillsborough Gallery of Art and we had a very brief conversation. She explained her Summer at the Coast to me.

There is a line that is the beach. There is a line that is highway that parallels the beach. There is blue that is the ocean and there is blue that is the sound. I don’t entirely get abstraction. But, I have a better understanding.

So, a couple of months after that, I was in Charleston and there was an exhibition at the #Gibbes Museum of Art that included work by #Kandinsky. I learned that there is #non-objective art. Art that doesn’t represent, in whatever form, objects. Rather, it creates a mood, a feeling, using space and color and shapes. And it resonates so much for me.

It just grabs me by the heart.

Yoga philosophy

Patanjali’s 8 Limbs of Yoga

Yamas (Restraints)
– Ahimsa (non-harming)
– Satya (non-lying)
– Asteya (non-stealing)
– Brahmacharya (of Brahma)
– Aparigraha (non-hoarding)

Niyamas (Observances)
– Soucha (cleanliness)
– Santosha (contentment)
– Tapas (zeal for yoga)
– Svadyaya (self-study)
– Ishvarapranidhana (surrender)

Asana (pose)

Pranayama (breath)

Pratyahara (withdrawal of the senses)

Dharana (intense focus)

Dhyana (state of meditation)

Samadhi (state of oneness)

Pictures of death

http://www.featureshoot.com/2014/09/walter-schels/

This man decided to confront his fear of death by taking pictures of patients in hospice before and after their deaths. It’s very moving.

We try not to talk about dying and I think we do ourselves a disservice by that avoidance. I believe we need to discuss allowing people ways to opt out when they feel like that is the correct thing to do. Death is inevitable and ignoring its eventuality is absurd.

Emily and Elvis

My friend, Caitlyn, turned me on to this poet via Tumblr. I love both of these.

Emily Dickinson and Elvis Presley in Heaven, by Hans Ostrom

They call each other E. Elvis picks
wildflowers near the river and brings
them to Emily. She explains half-rhymes to him.In heaven Emily wears her hair long, sports
Levis and western blouses with rhinestones.
Elvis is lean again, wears baggy trousers

and T-shirts, a letterman’s jacket from Tupelo High.
They take long walks and often hold hands.
She prefers they remain just friends. Forever.

Emily’s poems now contain naugahyde, Cadillacs,
Electricity, jets, TV, Little Richard and Richard
Nixon. The rock-a-billy rhythm makes her smile.

Elvis likes himself with style. This afternoon
he will play guitar and sing “I Taste a Liquor
Never Brewed” to the tune of “Love Me Tender.”

Emily will clap and harmonize. Alone
in their cabins later, they’ll listen to the river
and nap. They will not think of Amherst

or Las Vegas. They know why God made them
roommates. It’s because America
was their hometown. It’s because

God is a thing
without feathers. It’s because
God wears blue suede shoes.

—————————————————————————–
With All Due RespectEmily Dickinson fell in love with women


And Elvis got his licks from Black folk.
Respectfully, if there is a God
(and only one God)
The fuck would It need shoes for?
If there is a Heaven, undoubtedly Emily is one of its queens
Blissfully happy
With Kate, or maybe Sue.
She is not sexless; she has desires
And now there is more than poetry she can do with them.
When she does receive company
She probably hangs out with Gertrude Stein
Sits out on the porch with Alice B. Toklas
And Sylvia Rivera.

In any idea of Heaven I care for
The music is played by anyone who loves it
But crowds flock to the people who made it
Not to the people who marketed it best
The acceptable white face (if not hips) of blues.

By the end I imagine Elvis probably just wanted to be left alone for a while anyway.

Someday he will emerge, and maybe he won’t be thin and young
Maybe he’ll still be fat and wearing that godawful jumpsuit
Because he liked jumpsuits
And nobody will care.

Because if a God is running around like some kind of heavenly bookings agent
Finding people cabins and shit to live in
If It exists
I prefer Heaven not be exclusively populated

By de-sexed bisexuals, white bluesmen,
And a God who has to wear shoes to get around.

And maybe someday their hometown will be as safe
For fat dudes in rhinestones,
Black musicians
Queer people
Poor people
Maybe even people who don’t believe in God
But not without a little more breadth of imagination
When it comes to picturing Heaven.