Posts Tagged ‘Writing’

Hindsight

Monday, December 28th, 2015

Play it where it lays.
Do what I says.
This is not a phase
but a way to stay and gaze
into the haze
of wasted nights and forgotten days.

Midnight in bed I plead and praise
for I fear the everlasting blaze,
but even more the endless craze
of knowing that there were ways
to avoid this cowards maze.

Suicidal poem
HCMC Crisis Unit, Minneapolis
February 2013

The Laziest Soldier

Friday, June 3rd, 2011

From atop his highest mountain, King Yat attacked. His wings bore him with an easy power which he flung as great sharks whip their tails. Thus he swam into a steep plunge, plowing downward; a driven nail. All his armies looked up in fear and amazement and they cheered, for the laziest soldier was about to die.

In the valley below, that soldier knew it at once as his comrades pushed away from him, fleeing in all directions. So he stood alone, encircled, and gawked about in terror at the sky. Down came Yat in a swoop, in a blink of flashing sword and was gone into the clouds. All that remained was an arm and a boot. The rest rocketed up, only to be caught by the hair at the apex of ascent and beheaded for all to see; the body dropping away into the distance.

The roar of applause was immense. It shook the valley. Yat felt this upon his wings and he raised the soldier’s head high with a sneer and then flung it, still living, into space. Then casually he flicked away low over the troops, just out of bow range. Arrows rose like prayers and followed him as he laughed, darting to and sweeping fro. His minions loved him and at dawn he would hurl them at his enemy, conquer and feast in the evening.

King Yat! They hailed him, and he knew, already, which was the next one to die. Fetch my spear, he mused.

Last Show at the Conventicle

Wednesday, June 1st, 2011

…And the cops still haven’t showed up – after over a year of operation and hosting dozens of bands traveling through the Twin Cities the house venue has decided to disband. The tenants put together a line up with several bands for the closing show to ensure they did not end on a soft note, like a punk house with a DIY ethic should.

I had apparently pulled up to the house just in time, Punk Standard Time (where shows typically start almost two hours after scheduled), to see almost a hundred folks sprawling out from the back deck door winding down the steps and out to the lawn. However, for a change the schedule started a bit early and Fuck Detector (Fargo, ND, ex-Gumbi) as well as Serenghetto had already played; not a single complaint was heard about their performances.

Making way through the between-sets crowd outside I found that there was an exorbitant amount of food brought by and for anyone to share. The range of this potluck was wide enough to satisfy any food diet in practice with plenty on the backburners for later with meats still marinating, vegetable medleys, chips n’ dips, and a pile of a day expired boxed food most likely rescued from the local chain store or market. The kicker was the rhubarb pie humorously served in a pan in the shape of a Christian cross for one of the housemates’ birthday. The care in preparing the pie and the taste as it was served à la mode surpassed any notion of how to argue the implications of an inverted cross pie.

Into the living room space where the family Christmas tree had exploded, splattering the lights across the room’s interior and blowing out all the other furnishings and decorations out of there opened it up as the stage. A nice change to the typical basement dwellings, taken advantage of only seconds into Wild Child’s set by someone who leapt over the railing of the raised level into the tall room to crowd surf. Wild Child was a well-received local band that filled the room with a crowd that ebbed and flowed.

Probing the house further between sets would reveal that majority of the rooms were pretty bare, but served as getaways for groups to convene in. There were either two lines many people were waiting in, the one to use the only bathroom in the house or the one to get drinks at the bar. The bar was again in tradition staffed by Zach, one of the residents, who maintains pleasant conversation and his good-natured company was something to take back with you as the evening went on.

Getting into character was Chickadee Mountain Martyrs next. The band has been rightfully getting more attention as of late and for good reason. The lead singer/guitarist put his gear in place while dressed in black robe, dark sunglasses and a razor sleeve that draped from the arm he strummed his guitar with. Together with two separate drum kits, one of them a stand-up kit, and a bassist, they artfully crafted complex compositions without the other times employed horn and string accompaniment. Their experimental sound proved to be captivating and held a genuinely interested open-minded audience.

The night shifted back towards punk rock as Peer Precious, Mike Wilson of Duluth’s lyrically and rhythmically masterminded three-man band, prepped the bunch with their pop-punk music. People did their best to acclimate to the 80˚+ muggy atmosphere created by their own body heat as Shellshag (Brooklyn, NY) took over. The power duo, surrounded on all sides, weaved beautiful harmonious lyrics amid the heavy drumming and shake of bells tied to the standing drummer’s waist. The tower the drummer had sculpted out of each drum piece and stands reached far over everyone’s heads marking the end of their set.

To wrap up the punk catalog was the locally established Frozen Teens. By this point it was better to have stripped the better part of what clothing you wore so it wouldn’t get drenched with sweat. I, as usual, made the mistake of keeping all my layers on. The thickness of the crowd and the movement the band created tested the camaraderie of the mass as people rolled over onto the ground and the occasional surfer rode the top surface.

The persistent barrage let up and everyone hurried out to cool off. By this time nearly two hundred people were scattered around the property. Hugs and goodbyes were made all around the yard of the house while those who’d traveled and could not make it home that night were welcome to stay at the house for one last night. The Conventicle had its last great show May 29, 2011. The feasting will continue elsewhere!

Full Line-up:
Fuck Detector – http://www.facebook.com/pages/Fuck-Detector/
Serenghetto –
Wild Child –
Chickadee Mtn Martyrs – http://www.myspace.com/chickadeemountainmartyrs
Peer Precious – http://www.myspace.com/peerprecious
Shellshag – http://www.myspace.com/shellshag
Frozen Teens – http://www.myspace.com/frozenteens

A gift from the wind

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011
 

 

I stepped out Karl’s door on Tuesday morning to retrace the steps I had made the previous day when I photographed all the Adept stickers I could find on the Minneapolis streets with a film camera that could not focus on them closely enough. I really should have done it with my digital, so I brought that instead for the do-over. I really like them (those stickers) and as I shot the first one on Lake Street I remember thinking (or wishing) that it would be sheer happiness to find one on the ground that I could keep, but in all the months and miles I’ve wandered the city making pictures I’ve only once found a scrap of decent sticker graffiti unstuck and loose on the sidewalk. They almost never fall off. They’re called stickers for a reason.

Adept draws his characters with a caligraphic pen and a steady hand that seems influenced by Robert Crumb, Robert Williams, and Lucy in her Sky with Diamonds. Many of them are balding lumpy old men. Some, I assume, are of real folks he knows. Others are freaked-out wrinkled monsters. Some are erotic. Some are cycloptic. None of them fail to intrigue.

Clearly, I am not the only soul wishing to keep one. Peelers have tried and failed. Miserably. They’re called stickers for a reason.

To calculate the incalcuable odds against me finding one loose and unstuck on the sidewalk at all, ever, let alone on the very day I wished for it – on a day that I chose to walk several miles to capture them all before the rain and the sun could destroy them – one would have to start at 50/50, because if it had been face down I would not have spotted it on the Lyndale Avenue sidewalk. It is missing a corner and appears to have been tramped on a few thousand times, but it is perfect nonetheless. And I was right. It was sheer happiness to find it.

Shaking Hands with the Killer

Tuesday, May 17th, 2011
Me and the Killer

Me and the Killer

I don’t normally comment on the events that pass through the news. I’ve learned from making my mistakes at the Minnesota Daily that it’s almost always a bad idea, a trap to suck your mind down and waste time.

But with the passing today of Harmon Killebrew, a hero here in Minnesota, the root of Roosterhouse country, I did want to say something. It extends back to my teenagerhood, when I was still figuring out things. (Note the mongrelesque picture above).

I shook Killebrew’s hand back then and along with a lot of other people had my picture taken with him. Killebrew’s handshake was the strongest I’ve ever encountered being only comparable to my grandfather’s. My grandfather worked his whole life on the farm, something Killebrew was liable to do in the offseason.

My grandfather is in his 80s an it’s funny how something like the handshake will persist into old age. That strength and being once found isn’t lost. I don’t know. In the digital world (nowland), that appreciation of the physicality of the generations previous is understated and underappreciated. What I learned back then was to have a strong firm handshake. When I shook Killebrew’s hand, I knew “Yeah this guy hits 400-foot home runs AND he’s a good guy. ”

It does amaze me how much of one’s being is transmuted down through the shoulder to the arms, to the wrist to the meeting hands. That disappearing art of touch, the close encounter, on-the-spot confrontation. It’s easy to tell a liar through the handshake. Easier yet to tell someone comfortable in their own skin.

LucidStill 04

Wednesday, December 1st, 2010

By virtue of loneliness I babble.

Once a strange child seeks company.
Will someone witness this loneliness?
It is laying empty in the daylight.
It is daylight.

In all things, I babble.
Seeking to find home in clarification of an object beyond
reason or sound, to know that object
as I know my heart; uneasy, or as I know my breath;
tiring; but not as I know my words

something to be carelessly thrown at objects who
never deserved them. Did I mean this madness?
Surely madness is meant, and if not

Baby Hitler. Asleep.
He dreams a Jewish mother
whose breast is an atom bomb.
We will die in his lips.

LucidStill 03

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

He pops ambien to chase day.

Remembers something ancestral, something that blooms from the stem where his brain first split from it’s body and produced the opus of what he now calls “life”.

Logos. He remembers the root and you know it when you speak with him for he gifts words like wildfires and they spread around your body and leave nothing but the barebones in the end, the ash and the skeleton. He dissolves you to this only to claim it is not him, but the weather.

This is a poem about Jeremy Brunger written to the only mass who will ever care enough to bear it’s witness as a fruit and not a burden.

He takes ambien to chase the day visions, wandering blind through streets he reads stop signs as his skin and cannot enter; this is the problem. He is a perpetualist.

Lonely, lonely man.

When he wakes, he walks in my head, and throughout my sorrow. I taste him when the pen is down, and taste him when the pen is up, and remember him every time I am alone.

I salute the moon with his kiss, and he’d hate this, and I salute that as well.

We are human, we are flesh
we decay, we die, we need
lust
to forget. We have to forget we are sleeping God’s

for the day the babies wake to rattle the cage
there will be no earth to hold them
and we will fall free as bliss
into an eternity of thoughts never once
glimpsed.

LucidStill 02

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

See.

Coffee houses spilling jazz staves like syrup up the open crack of street watch
time carried as rite of passage by cloaked venom shrouded custodians they
ingest a right a left and then swerrvy into the open masses as
ink carries their gums to taste foreign ashes. Here in
Hiroshima or France
the words carry the same weight, the weight of the world,
the weight of their own demise and explanation lost to the fact
a pictoral representation of stickly heart in sand
means more to us then the words pertaining it’s meaning

WHY does green gush so luscious when I wake up and
HOW could a color possibly correlate with both
wreckage and death and cool tempest like a lovers hush
before wrath takes the body and bends it’s will.

I hope. I cannot help but hope and write my hopes as humanities.
I watched telepaths light themselves on fire for this. That is not a semantic ruse.
I cannot stand on corner for fear of catching fire
I cannot stand on building for fear of catching fall
‘s fingers too limp in my hands, the pardons of another year
and they kiss me to whisper hush here hear

how words
speak.

There is truth in puns. There is an unbearable is-ness to the raw intensity it takes to hold and twist a colloquialism built into a monument of history over years, to take that and just… twist again, like every summer, like every year
twists it’s head into it’s own pocket: I could not count this snakes demise
until I saw it’s rattle make music of it’s throat
you who chant wardrums
know the pulse of September is one thousand steady cold
in the moat, in the river, in the gutter, for Hope.

What a word.

Hope. On whose wings fly bombs.
Hope. On whose wheels cum whores.
Hope. On whose heels all humanity sits
the bored drooling mess of our own ancestry
maybe the dog domesticated us?
I’ve become trapped in this skin I’ve fashioned
to save me from my trappings;
I’ve become devoured
by my feast.

by what I’ve seen.

LucidStill 01

Sunday, November 7th, 2010

Contrive.

When fall
trees downed
as shots round
the bar shouts
and in come
the saints
and their clown
suits ghosting
hollow winds.

To form designs;

this groundwork they call morals.
I watch pigeons paint their shit with God
and man paint his God with shit
and wonder which is better.

To plan with ingenuity
the bastardization of our holiest antiquities;
those rites which lay their arms through birth
and death like the limbs of trees counting
lives by the stains they wear, white stains
to vanish with the rain.

To bring about by a plan;
“Do you see that man below?”
“The one in the hat?”
“The naked prophet on the soap-box.”
“Why is it the religious never cover their heads?”
“Fate.”

“Nice shot.”

Down the Predestined Tunnel

Monday, July 19th, 2010

Willow Vortex (right-click to download) (7.9mb mp3) (3:28 Min)

Down the predestined tunnel with beastly inclinations in co-hoots with robotic growth, synthetic progress, sight is perfectly blurry, brain is magnificently ambiguous, a visceral monster, capable of incapability, incapacitated bliss, lost laughs traveling on side tunnels intersecting at certain vertices, directional false truths, ears can only hear an uproarious silence, waving goodbye to passing frequencies, the fly lands, throws up, flys on, away off, set to automatic no necessary reload, limitless jealously swimming in a pool of paranoia, searching for fine tipped knives to stare at enviously, longing for longing nothing else but the spiraling willow vortex.

  • Drums: Jaira Donery
  • Bass: Yarrow Benrud
  • Guitar/Vocals: Schedlo
  • Location of Recording: The Space

Bill J. Chadwell’s Only Adventure

Saturday, June 12th, 2010

Miss

Miss

Bill J. Chadwell existed for the duration of a survey conducted by a government official on a porch of residence. He stood in the doorway leaning out to answer questions and leaning back in towards the house to think of answers. If Bill J. Chadwell was 29 years old and born four days in August after the anniversarial date of THEM dropping death on a mostly civilian city in Japan, what year did he have to be born? 1979? 1980? He picked one and later math proved it to be wrong, but the premise was wrong anyhow, because Bill J. Chadwell from birth to death could not have been more than 3 or 4 minutes old.

Bill took other things into consideration. He hoped the nice lady was not reprimanded for Bill’s apparent youth and inability to figure numbers. He also hoped that somehow, Bill J. Chadwell would firmly exist in THEM’s mind/matterwork. That a manhunt would be conducted, that an extraordinary amount of energy was expelled in efforts to prove whether or not Bill J. Chadwell existed. Hell, Bill was halfway to trying to figure that out himself before the screen door closed and the lady with a pen and paper descended the three steps up to the porch.

I, Colossus

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010

The glistening mass of ants had been called to the surface by the fog. Its language had grown louder during the damp night, drawing the whole colony up and into a boil at the edge of the forest where the green ended and the world turned to featureless stone. As It spoke to them, they raced around it and over each other; the constant contact communally pleasing -communally informing. The ants at the very center of the pile were dead of course, though not from the struggle and the trample but from the strength of the signal. Oh to die in that glorious din. Oh to secumb to all that knowledge. Their spent bodies continually were squeezed to the surface of the scrum, rolling off on all sides like droplets.

Away from all this, at the edge of an abandoned tunnel entrance sat one on the outskirts. The fog spoke to him too, but he was smaller than the others – a straggler who probably wouldn‘t last. He was the only one who saw the colossi arrive. They approached on legs that were two miles high and stopped. Concealed in the fog, their voices thundered notes between each other for awhile as their enormous feet shuffled dangerously. Then without warning one of the gods reached down and began pouring a bright yellow river onto the seething populous. The small ant recoiled in horror and instinctively attacked without knowing why or what he could possibly do against creatures so high in the sky and wide that they could not be completely seen, and as he leaped down the steep stone face toward them he saw a mass of ants making the same descent away to the east. Hundreds caught in the new river and falling like hourglass sand over the prepice. As he tumbled to the bottom he skinned three knees but ran for it anyway. The river brushed past him sweeping up many, but he got out into the open and he never looked back or slowed down.

Racing across the wasteland to catch the foot of the colossus he could feel the colony behind him rejoicing over the catastrophic liquid. They were slick with it and a sudden energy gripped them all. Those who were too soaked immediately began killing one another in the puddles. Others crawled out and threw tantrums in all directions. The Voice has become pure liquified energy! cried the hivemind. Only one knew better, and he wouldn‘t be missed.

Roosterhouse Roadtrip : Journal Entry 7

Friday, October 2nd, 2009

Boxher Rebellion

Boxher Rebellion


09.25.09-09.26.09

New Players:
Sarah
Abdul and Ramone
Construction Paper Hallucinations

Destination: Minneapolis

We stayed with Sarah in her Western Case Reserve University dorm setup after attending the Heartless Bastards show in Oberlin. Sarah was handing out boxes of colored condoms and that was how we came to meet her. She is a transplant from St. Louis studying international relations on her way to becoming an advocate for rape victims.

We stayed up until 4 am exchanging stories, discussion following the line of couchsurfing, roadtrips, the DIY house scenes in Madison, St. Louis, Minneapolis, Duluth and complaints about the assholery of the band Highlife. There is a nourishing positivity about Sarah and we can only hope she stops by Minnesota on one of her travels.

After hanging out with Sarah, we explored some of the thrift and antique stores in Cleveland finding a few rolls of undeveloped film and some eeky backalley beer toughs selling stained glass ripped out of churches.

The Detroit leg of the trip was cancelled which meant a 15 hour zip to Minneapolis on Interstate 90/94. I drove, consuming a cold can of Red Bull every three hours. Emily drinking what amounted to a jetpack cannister of lollipop flavored fizz which seemed to keep one awake by keeping them on the edge of nausea. Joe passed in and out of consciousness in the backseat.

We picked up hitchhikers Abdul and Ramone in the early a.m.’s because they had been pulled over by traffic patrol and forced to abandon their vehicle. We brought them back finding that they roamed the same neighborhoods in Minneapolis that we did. We wished them luck on their drive to Chicago.

The energy drinks make for chatterbox conversation. Why did we do the work we do? Chuck Close. The fascination with lines and image and context gradually swaying over to our own lives and the stories in the roots, in the veins: why our parents are the way they are. Money and breaks. And finally to love, what was it, what defined it, what made it feel so important and how something could feel so defined and undefined at the same time. To be at a loss for one’s self. The duality, the reality that everything is both alive and dead, fast and slow, real and unreal, human and inhuman and that the passions that govern all of us are within and without us, in our control and without it. Finally, “I don’t know.”

And somehow behind all of this some element of elegant guidance, like the tilt-a-whirl at the amusement parks round and round out of control but it sure was fun. And the roadtrip was certainly an element in it, a drive for something older, film, people, real people who shook your hand and listened and got drunk with you and pointed out constellations they thought were there.

And after four or five hours of conversation like this of things only understood in the shadows and the strange alignment that shadows allow, passengers curl up in their blankets sleeping on their hands. The driver is left to explore the wordless bands of am radio. These tunings sounding like wounded robot birds droning up and around what one imagines Venus to sound like in its canyons.

After fifteen hours of driving the only boundaries one has is the speed of the vehicle and the chattering white lines. Between the lines there is a dull sense of comfort, outside the lines small pangs of anxiety. Eventually the distance ahead tears into scraps of construction paper, light fuzzed edges, layered on each other in hues of black and blue-black. This until the realization that this wasn’t Tomah or some other fill station town but Minneapolis itself, in words, some part of home.

Roosterhouse Roadtrip : Journal Entry 4

Sunday, September 27th, 2009
Slide?

Slide?

09.22.09-09.23.09

New Players:
Glen
Ginnie
Owls

Location: Monongahela National Forest, West Virginia

The police pulled us over in Petersburg, West Virginia clocking a 27 mph in a 25 mph zone. We left with warnings and directions to the Big Bend Campground in the Monongahela National Forest.

It had taken us about an hour to drive the winding roads to the campgrounds. At a faster pace the photo processor and printer bouncing in the trailer would have made mediocre firewood. At the entrance to the grounds, Ginnie a wiry woman, bobbed hair, studded ears, and cigarettes waved us down. She seemed to emerge from a space of conversation reserved for partners that have long been together, a comfort closely paralelling and perhaps aligning with and being happiness. Physically the space was a fire, a golfcart, a camper, tents and Glen.

The campground was deserted except for one other campgroup and the caretakers Glen and Ginnie. Emily, Joe and I spent the night of the 22nd pitching the tent and passing a bottle of wine and smoking around the fire. Topics of conversation: the trip, direction of Roosterhouse, the stars in the bowl above us, the loonlike calls of the West Virginian screech owl.

On the 23rd, from her golfcart Ginnie pointed out a peak above us on the skyline. The sundried beige point jutted out from fall turning trees and seemed to overlook the entirety of the park. She gave us directions, we repeated them and she parroted and again we parroted her.

“We’re tent campers” Ginnie had told us, meaning they lived in the park year round emerging for supplies and breakfasts at Mallow’s and Traditions 15 miles away.

Glen is a largish man with a white fur chest on tanned skin and like Ginnie in his 60s. Glen’s hands are soft and he wears glasses to read the minimalist rules of the park to us. Their kids visit them in the park and had been practically raised there, pulling fish out of the rivers and blowing sycamore leaves off of the paths.

Emily, Joe and I set out for the peak an hour before sunset on the 23rd walking along the South Branch Potomac River and then past a 19th century picket fence gravesite. From there we went straight up the mountain having to rest four or five times on shale outcroppings. The angle of the mountain steep enough to cause every stone dislodged by our steps to roll down towards the gravesite.

The mountains in West Virginia are not the mountains of Colorado but rather really steep hills that typically block out a third of the sky. They are covered with trees: oaks, sycamores, pines, and at their base junctures tiny streams carry leaves away. The topography of West Virginia makes driving an entertainment, a back and forth, speed up and slow down pace with plenty of blind curves and unmarked pavement. Other than the mountains the scenery consisted of black cattle and dilapidated trailer homes. Locals have a tendency to stare and hold conversations by their trucks at the end of their driveways. The people have a character that is much their own.

At the top of mountain we found a farmstead that without truck paths and mowed yard would have appeared completely deserted. We turned back and spent some time climbing trees and admiring the vista. The day was already a light grey darkness and we abandoned plans of finding the peak along the ridgeline. This was the top of this particular mountain and we left satisfied at that.

From there it was straight down the mountain knowing that the river was below. We spent the next few hours clinging to trees or falling to them until it was obvious that the best way to climb down a mountain was to not climb. This meant sitting in a rowing position. According to preference you tucked one leg under you or not and you slid. Slid down around trees, over stones, slid on dry layers of leaves down, bumping down and landing on soft beds of leaves three or four feet thick.

We slid in the darkness only using the flashlight to inspect the occasional ridge that dropped twenty or thirty feet. A fall off one of these meant being impaled on dead branches and a stoning even Jesus would not have approved of. Nothing compares to mountain sliding. You dug your heals in plowing paths before you, filling your bags with leaves, collecting scratches and bruises along the way. You had some control braking with branches and you had just enough sight to discern trees from space.

We found the river and soaked ourselves in it and crossed it. We then tramped across paths and over fallen wood trespassing and untrespassing. No moonlight guided us. We considered sleeping in the woods until morning. We backtracked and recircled. We were lost. We followed the river and then Emily spotted a sign across the river but was forced to retreat by a large mouldy brown eel. But she had to cross anwyay and did so skittering across it like a water spider.

From there it was camp and then fire, counting bruises and roasting marshmallows.

Roosterhouse Roadtrip : Journal Entry 3

Wednesday, September 23rd, 2009
Tralfamadorian

Tralfamadorian

09.21.09-09.22.09

Arrival: Huntington, West Virginia

New Players:
Tiana
Nich
Tim
Heather
Erin

Huntington was pleasant surprise, past West Virginian hills, shaved down in layers, steppes, finally leading down brick alleys to a big house well over a hundred years old with plenty of brick and room. Here a woman had lived her life and died here, and hustlers had come and gone leaving furniture behind and the non-biodegradable remnants of a growing operation.

Tiana gave us a tour round through the house and finally outside to the garden, lined up in rows of carrots, beets, raddishes, more. A soundscape of growling cicadas like grounded helicopters above our heads.

We ate at Hillbilly Hotdog, sort of a local common-cultural landmark. Tires for tables, toilets for seats, gumball machines that don’t dispense gum. Menu consisted mostly of hotdogs dressed up in fiesta wear, Italian, or however you like it next to the fifteen pound hamburger for $50 and the fifteen inch hotdog.

And the rest of the night hung out with the gang playing Katamari, a game seemingly based on the concept of a dung beetle’s life and mixed with a good degree of cosmology. You started rolling pencils and popcans into a ball ending with rolling stars, planets and universes. The end point being some sort of mass oneness. And this all because God went on a bender one day leaving you to put it back together.

From there it was Yuengling beer and conversations about fear and life. All of it personal and vital and all because the unbearable lightness of existence behind our breath. After hummus and green salsa, Nich finally walking us through neighborhoods, all of us a beer warmth and slightly stoned satisfaction, tramping through yards of boarded houses, following massive chains meant for ocean hydras, following them back up from the beach through a playground and finally to the Ohio River (Ohio-West Virginia River anyone?).

All us by then just Karl, Emily, Joe, Tiana, and Nich wanting to swim but knowing we’d get sick if we did. But content watching the pillars of light melt and reform in the shadows of the river. Watching a single barge with a giant finger of light tracing up and down the banks. We sat on logs kicking at a pesticide spray cannister and a wire rope noose, stepping on plastic bottles talking about Twain, about Failblog, and desires to leave school, leave the debt behind and trying to figure out how. But how with complex social mazes. We can go forward but only with some degree of full consideration.

We left town eating at Biscuit World, local chain, Tudors, leaving in the morning with the sense that friends are easy to make and you hope they can get a chance to come to Duluth and Minnesota.