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Les Semaines

99.10.17

what I'm thinking and doing § what I'm listening to § what I'm reading
what I'm writing § retrospective: The Phonosnout

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Sunday in the Park with John (& Jim)

Having drifted most of the day reading the fat Sunday paper, eating chewy peasant bread then lentil soup, drinking coffee, chatting, reading, we belatedly set out in the late afternoon warm October sun to Carkeek Park. It's maybe thirty blocks away from our house--far enough that we drive. Pile out of the car and I realize I've forgotten to change my shoes and am wearing tatty old street shoes that I only wear now around the house because they're so floppy and have holes and all. Oh well.

The first part of the path is down into a ravine. Immediately it's another world. Dimmer. The only sound is our chatter and the wind in the trees and Piper Creek beside us gathering streamlets and dividing and muddying the path.

Dark dim and water and trees; it feels like a dream of autumn, where you could walk through and come out into another world, but we didn't, we walked along the stream, crossing it several times, past the old orchard, tended now by parks people and teenagers picking the fruit to throw at their friends, past some strange watery construction, and ended in a familiar part of the park with the main car park and lots of people walking their children, dogs, and even a cat. We drift through the new paths and walkway over the slough and then take the high walkway over the railway tracks to the beach.

Yet another world. Low tide and sea smell, and children mucking about in the sand and water despite the cold breeze, and a tug pulling logs out there and a ferry and the Sound and the Olympic mountains across the way. We drift this way and that, sniffing the ocean.

Then turn and walk back, trying to decide who is who. Are we the Fates? We decide we're the monkeys, covering our heads with our hands. Jim can't be speak no evil. That must be John. I must be see no evil because I cover my eyes. So Jim is hear no evil.

The stream, the dimness, the mud, the maple leaves trodden into the stony path. The sun above in the tops of the trees. High up there, bright as a knife. We climb up and step back into it, and it's blunted by the end of the day but still shining.

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Listening

Friday night we went to hear Mary Lydia Ryan's cd release concert for her new album, Diaphanous. What a wonderful concert! Her music shines in a concert hall setting, especially one this intimate, her music alternately shaking the place and hushed and clear as though she were singing for just one person. The songs are wonderful live, and I'm impressed with them all over again. A magical evening, and Diaphanous deserves such celebration.

Loved Amy Denio's short opening set, as well. She's such an stupendous, captivating performer.

last week's listening § next week's listening

Reading

Francesca Lia Block's Dangerous Angels a compilation of the related Weetzie Bat novels was delightful. I'm not sure who the audience is for these--they seem a little to adult-oriented to be for kids, and a little too trendy-feeling to be for adults, but I still found them thoroughly enjoyable. Tales of tangled human relationships.

I finished (at 3:30 am Monday night, curse insomnia) Mary Renault's ...Return to Night.... I never knew before that she had written some non-historical novels, but heard about them on Usenet. Anyway, the way she handled the nuances of the thought processes of the characters in the main relationship can only be described as exquisite. Amazing. Too bad these novels are all out of print, but I found this (and a few more) at Seattle Public Library. Well worth tracking down if you're interested in relationship novels. I also found this one a fascinating look at life in '40s Britain from the inside--oh, and the main character is a woman doctor, so feminism was an interesting issue in the book.

Followed that with North Face, which I liked a little less--I found the characters less captivating, and it was told with just a little more authorial distance so I didn't live the relationship the way I did the one in ...Return to Night.... Still, well worth reading if you can find it.

And I followed that by reading The Charioteer, her seminal novel about gay relationships. The main character in this is a young injured soldier in a hospital, who falls in love with one of the orderlies, who is a Conscientious Objector, but who at the same time meets up with a man who had been instrumental in his realization that a gay world existed. Again, the subtleties of the emotional responses of the characters is wonderfully, clearly depicted in a way that is rare in fiction.

last week's reading § next week's reading

Writing

Yeeks. Let's not talk about this right now, okay?

last week's writing § next week's writing

Retrospective: The Phonosnout

About the Phonosnout

April 1976

371. Help!

I'm calling for reinforcements, a time when i'll need strength is coming momentarily, i want to cry, to take an easy way out. Actually i've never felt less like crying, but something's dying deep inside, as always. I think i need someone to come and hold my hands. Time to pray... of course.

372. A bullet

[Quote from Elton John about feeling like a bullet in an assassin's gun omitted.] Well, i did it, and right now i feel like i'd be better off dead. I can't believe i had (or have) the power to hurt another human being that much. It tore me apart, so much i can't believe it, yet i smile and i laugh and life continue. How could i possibly do it? [Quote from same song omitted about breaking up being like breaking the law.]1

373. Movie Man

[Long quote omitted about being watched by the Movie Man.] Movie man? Watching me? Yes i guess so. O wonder if He feels what i did was right. I hope. I think i know.

374. Stop hiding in songs

Maybe i should stop hiding in songs and fact it--i did it, i actually hurt someone. That hurt me more than if i had been hurt (understand, Phono? I hope so, someone had better). I can take almost anything except hurting someone; i feel like i've been torn to shreds, yet recovery is already on its way, thanks to the Movie Man. [Brief quote about having no hiding place from Simon and Garfunkel's Bookends/]

375. Rearranging

I'm thinking now it's time for a little rearranging, like in my mind. I've got things to reorganize, and reevaluate my thoughts. Right now i've only one thing left to say--lie is hard enough without goodbyes.

376. So lonely

Funny (or maybe not) ever since i made the fatal move i feel so lonely. Empty. I know i've got friends, i know Jesus is there, but still, i want, i need someone more, to fill the void. I've been phoning friends a lot (and normally i detest the telephone2) but that definitely is not satisfying. Something in my life is definitely gone. Sadness. Must learn to wait. One of these days something will come along. Somebody(?)

377. I want to turn the page.

I want to turn the page. Make a few weeks skip by, and begin to live in the future. I just would like to miss a few of the days and come around when everything has been arranged.

378. Misc. things on a Sat. night at Seed

Oh, how fascinating, watching Phil, Paul, and Laura play rummy. Paul's got the remain of a G.F.P. sign on his hand. G.F.P. stands for Girl Flea Proof. Shades of grade five. Really feeling depressed tonight, don't know why. Probably because i can't bother feeling any other way.

379. Indecision and wanting out

Don't know what i want but i do know i would like to go for a walk. Won't anyone go for a walk with me? Obviously not. (Sigh) and rats.

Help, Phono!

Help Phono, i'm hiding again, i just can't take it. It hurts. I feel like crying, but will i? I doubt it. I can't. But how i wish i could!!) Oh help, i want to escape but there's no way out. Isn't there a place where i can hide, where no one will find me for a while? *Sigh*


NOTES

1. This was me breaking up with Everett, whom I was very fond of, but I still had this crush on Paul and I thought I just didn't love Everett the right way and I was trying to be a good Christian girl. Now when I think back I wish I'd stayed with Everett long enough to stall off what was about to happen with Paul. Everett was a kind and sweet person--which Paul was not at all. When I broke up with him he immediately went away on a fishing boat because he couldn't stand staying in town. When he came back weeks later, I was with Paul, and I never got the chance to explain that I hadn't broken up with him to go out with Paul--at the time I had no idea Paul was going to happen, in fact, Paul had told me he didn't like me that way. I've always felt guilty about that.

2. Oh, interesting. I didn't know I felt that way back then. I think I'm even worse now.

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