While Playing Hooky


“How can I possibly be expected to handle school on a day like this?” – Ferris Bueller

“We’re off to the witch, we may never never, never come home,
but the magic that we’ll feel is worth a lifetime” – Ronnie James Dio

Look down with me upon this day, across the high desert to a certain place. To an old trailer tanker resting deplete. Its only cargo, on the floor of this rusting keep. Look closely, so closely at a picture of two boys, a picture left in this place, as if by choice. Two faces from history, that time will repeat. Even now comes knocking, the last who will see.

Two heads we see, headed west, down a sunbaked path; one with brown hair, the other a black mess. The sun falls fast on this single day of spring, shooting down through the heavens, bringing something on its wings. It would appear the burdens carried from a year of math and art. Now are loose without a feeling. For these boys walk without an arc. Why there shoes made by converse, leave hardly a trace. As they carry sacks of lunch and knowledge to the place of secret things. “School is not made for the living”, one boy cries unto the air, and they both laugh without smiling for the truth is there somewhere. For a moment, let us watch them still frozen in time. In their purity shimmering, moving onward in this rhyme.

Let us look at the picture that is painted from above. A numbered highway in the background, beyond it scrubland wild with yucca, dryland arroyos, lie open, writhing with their scars. Down the path that leads us westward lies a rusted oil tanker and two old cars. It is a graveyard of a shadow of another place tomorrow. For it is tomorrow where they go, a bit of yesterday, and as the clouds flow from the east, they turn their backs, and begin to walk to stray. Indeed, we see them avoid a snake his triangle head of spotted gray. “No matter it all”, one boy he brays, the other sings out, “we missed our school today”. A matter of steps a slight incline, the scrubland rolls out, and dips and divides. At last we watch the two boys much slower, reach the rusted oil tanker, the place they know they will soon grow much older.

For here, it is we cannot grow nearer, the picture shimmers, dances, and glimmers. A place were two boys search for cracks in what is sutured. Finding doors that open, on order, past and future. Ruins discovered in place. Veils ripped from openings, alien voices calling out from deep to deep. It is the discovery of the last of days. It is here they come to play. If we could venture a thought of what they find, inside compartments of an old oil tanker way past its prime. Could they go where one has not been, could they find the way past when? Is there blackness beyond the divide, or have they found the path to the divine.

“That picture looks like us”, one boy says, a film of cool perspiration resting upon his brow. The thick darkness inside the front compartment of the tanker surrounds the thin beam of the flashlight. It gives the feeling of a tomb. “It could be us”, the other boy says softly.” His voice carries a soft echo through the oval opening into the next compartment. It is there; we look and see a sudden wind created. We watch as it lifts itself backwards through another opening, and then upwards through the open hatch, as if with a sudden relief.

Look down with me upon this day, across the high desert to a certain place. To an old trailer tanker resting deplete. Its only cargo, on the floor of this rusting keep. Look closely, so closely at a picture of two boys, a picture left this place, as if by choice. Two faces from history, that time will repeat. Even now comes knocking, the last who will see.

For my eighth grade English teacher Mrs. Howey, who charged me to read the classics fearlessly, and to write as if I were mad. I will forever carry the guilt of disappointing her by playing hooky on the final day of school in the spring of 1974. In her aggrieved state, I have always hoped to share with Mrs. Howey that I was indeed engaged in research for how to do both of the charges thus listed above. – 03.22.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

 

 

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Marriage


After all these years, I see that I was mistaken about Eve in the beginning; it is better to live outside the Garden with her than inside it without her.” – Mark Twain

Our marriage is like a shelter.

Our marriage is as Don Quixote heaped with scorn.

Our marriage is like a great man o’ war with sails unfurled.

Our marriage is as “Allegri Miserere” performed at 3:00 A.M.

Our marriage is abstract before concept, a dismissed preposition, built upon an article of fact.

Our marriage is like a shelter. Our marriage is like a shelter.

There is a falling angel with eyes like glass, bringing fire for our journey to the world we cast. For we float on many waters of times to come, and we search each other’s motives with an iron rung. For we are one, under this shelter, we are one.

I wake, eyes wide, from smoky dreams, of tattered wings falling from beams. I wake in morning of the year’s just past, I harbor that vision of yesterday, dwelling my eyes, upwards while kneeling as to pray. What there does fall, and consume rare air, fall at fifteen past two before the altar stair. Just the years before, before my words “I shall”. How it warmed my face with a bit of touch, then brushed right past me to a bridal veil.

Those years before, when I looked up high in a sanctuary and saw no sky. Imperceptible in quiet, below, rafters’ brown in tongue and groove, flew a rarer angel who with burning glass eyes flew. Came a lustrous fire upon the gentle head, swaying to my side, such a beautiful head. In all those words strung by to and fro, a lighter rhyme off our tongues they flow. Written by earth bound hands and spoke with ease, now they mark my soul a façade I see. Now in this morning of the years just past. Something in those rafters reaching so fast.

For it seems the years before brought something new. Not the voices inside, the ones I always knew. But a visual aspiration, from a king’s held cup. A curse or a blessing, but it is always enough. A premonition that would lose its way floating through the years of marriage until it was almost decayed. Once or twice to rise, when forgotten enough, just a kind reminder, of the host with wings above. To speak clear words in the dust and binge, when the modern worlds about us, and we cannot remember why or when. The shelter of sorrow, with hands held close, our entwined fingers tighter than if they were sewn. And if I look just up above, toward the ethereal of heaven, where most see a dove. For I see a raven with fire in its beak headed towards kingdoms for those we yet seek. What comes to me just as that first day, when I said, “I shall”, and two in one we came away.

There is a falling angel with eyes like glass, bringing fire for our journey to the world we cast. For we float on many waters of times to come, and we search each other’s motives with an iron rung. For we are one, under this shelter, we are one.

Our marriage is like a shelter. Our marriage is like a shelter.

For Susan who has put up with me for 26 years under the glassy eyes of the angel. – 03.13.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

Occultavia (1988)


“Because no retreat from the world can mask what is in your face.” – Gregory Maguire

“What is strange, when the strangest things are born from G_D.” – DS

I thought for a moment that it could be the late hour, the tricks of the night on the eye, the curves of the highway. I thought too much on it at first, and then I thought not on it at all, as the hillside parted, and that which was movement moved.

The space around her appeared barren, the frozen fog closing gaps around her lithe figure, changing not it’s form, yet somehow it changed. That she was the first witch, that I knew, and although there is reason that I should have known it not, yet in that late hour it became a part of me, something in reflection, I would rather it be not.

The years since then, that is something most would address, those many years since I saw, that cold dark spirit. She there in the wood. Still, so still near the highway. She in shadow, not a tale. Not a figment of thought to frighten young children on eves of reckoning. Rather she a witch, a true shadow in the leaves on that winter night. Standing with arms unfolded, inviting. Her song in alien syllables not of this world, but of that which we do not see until we die. But yes, it is the years since then I now address, and I do so carefully, for I think I have seen her once again in the corners of my dreams, and in that I think there is something I should see not.

I could describe that night, in detail, the Ozark mountain highway, the very monochrome world that I drove through. The cold, the moment KFAQ out of Tulsa, went silent, that bend in the road. That place where giants were born from falling angels, after the flood, after Ha Adam. The sifting of red clay and rich dark sediment, where the flood began, and ended. I could tell you all. Still, all would not describe her, standing there at 3:04 A.M. The first witch in darkness. The first witch I have ever seen.

It is written for I cannot say it aloud, that, my darkest thoughts contain G_D. It is in those thoughts that I am judged, for as my name beholds, G_D is my judge. Also, in my thoughts, those darkest thoughts, stands a witch, the first witch. She too implores and judges, and often, as my life moves, I do as I should not, and I look if only briefly into my mirror.

She runs, with her billowing swaths of black cloth moving all around her, she follows chasing, frost and cold about her. and her face I pray, oh her face I pray, I never ever see. – 02.25.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

Clouds


“The pillar of cloud by day, and the pillar of fire by night, departed not from me.” – Exodus 13:22 (Paraphrased DS)

“There was a star riding through clouds one night, and I said to the star, ‘Consume me’.” – Virginia Woolf

It is a wee voice, a small murmur like that gift of calling to Father Samuel, the end of a whisper as it falls to reprieve. It is a hum, a syllable or two not known by any tongue. An undertow that pulls with its sound. For it is a question, and everywhere the sky is painted, with colors and clouds. It is a wee voice, and it comes from many clouds.

The boy stands at the canyon, the one that lures him in. The curious art he sees in the obscurities, the mysteries without end. He ask himself a question, a personal thought within. Where does the course carved by this river have a source to begin? Am I to be like this canyon, carved and butchered below a skyward facing rim?

A cloud moves slowly throwing shadows, a humming voice in wind. All my life a cloud just behind me. A small cloud known to move many rivers, and bring them home again.

The young man stands near the ocean, the one that dares him swim. The twisted patterns he sees in its never-ending currents. The dark water appears so dim. Greater than the tempest, an octave of torrents. The face of Lilith looking up from a vast and pale vale. A moment or two of indecision, a fear of drowning in depths that have never seen the stars. He ask himself a question, of which not a word begins with when. Who calls to me? Who calls to me? Am I to be within this water? Dead and plummeting without breath.

A cloud moves slowly throwing shadows, a humming voice in wind. All my life a cloud just behind me. A small cloud known to move many rivers, and bring them home again.

The gray haired man stands on a mountain, above and below some clouds, he sees. It appears just a moment or a prospect to close his eyes and disappear for eternity. The wind has the sound of spirit voices, the eagle it swoops in vain. Somewhere close just nigh of heaven up here, the rocks echo a name. He ask himself a question. Is my destiny still the same? Is my destiny still the same? Am I to fly home into these heavens, finally to be consumed by your flame?

A cloud moves slowly throwing shadows, a humming voice in wind. All my life a cloud just behind me. A small cloud known to move many rivers, and bring them home again.

It is a wee voice, and it comes from many clouds. – 02.18.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

In the Library


“Oh, my G_D how profound are these mysteries!” – John Dee

Kelley holds the shew-stone with the mist forming fast. The white vapors shoot upwards around the volumes on upper shelves and form a circle as if to task. The days are still some colder but the winter will not always last, voices moving in their language, numbers show me, show me, something past.

For what is the speech of angels?

I set upon a voyage in a hinterland of sleep, a cauldron of air so cold at first, I thought I would freeze. A self-taught journey from places of the deep, to find the ever after answer in the library of John Dee. Symbols all around me some painted legend in the sky, a coat of many colors as millennium flew by. The whispers of the angels said they were drawing nigh, and then my soul dropped from the star filled sky. Like the star, not yet of morning, summoned to a rite of old, my bare feet feel so frozen in the library I well know. It is about the phantoms, and it is about the truth, the long search of the symbols to find if what angels speak is truth. Moreover, in it all, yes in it all I am speechless.

For here among this sceptered place, with pages from strange worlds, candles burn until morning light, all time has come unfurled. The figures of the two men turn as if to see, but then I see them looking upwards, they do not see me. The coven of the angels falls without light or human sound, they whisper in the shadows who is willing, to stand higher ground. Their bodies are like different lights, some common, some spark with sound. It could be some are seraphim, some light daemons who have come unbound. Moreover, in it all, yes in it all I am speechless.

I stood so indecisively, surveying an unreal play. The ghost of Dee and Kelley asked their questions from a book displayed. An esoteric experiment, to know the power of G_D, to wonder at the wisdom, imparted in what they caught. The scene of simple symbols invoking that realm in which the angels play, to not know that they had reached any reason, only the gray at the end of the day. Moreover, in it all, yes in it all I am speechless.

So, this is a little something that happens now and then, I disappear in airs of thought to a library where time stands still. I ask the light around me what is that of shapes and wills, and still I have no answer, and perhaps I never will. Moreover, in it all, yes in it all I am speechless.

For what is the speech of angels? – 01.30.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

The Blue Forest (Two)


“And into the forest I go, to lose my mind and find my soul.” – John Muir

And so, with this broken and most terrible day at an end, I retreat to my pillow, with only sleep on my mind, thinking not that the night before me offers a path of redemption for myself and a long forgotten youthful twin!

It comes like softness unspoken, an undertone across bare skin. “The late hour it whispers, is over, the morning is never to have been, and nightfall has come forth to show you a strange forest”. “Rise in your place let’s begin.” I wondered at this kind of slumber, awake or a dream held within. For surely it was as a time I remembered that happens over and over again. For just a second, I thought it illusion, a discording thought of dissonance within. But then the sweet kisses touched all my body. What inner wounds inside sewn, a healing began? As soft sounds sang, I traveled millennium, both forwards and backwards, my spirit extends. To see that place a child called a forest, blue with light, a place I had been. The two of us stand in our glory; mist about the mystic begins. A thousand lights the magic starts again.

Day upon day, my life seems to tremble, so shy in its way, so much trouble it seems. An opera plays Faust with marching daemons, sticking their bloodthirsty knifes in me deep. Suffering thoughts of infinite worry, anxiety, fears there seems no relief. Still, still a thought pervades all this darkness, making its way to the core of my belief. Two is you, tied to survival; night has come, now learn to believe. Night has come, fly forth to receive.

So easily thought of in childhood survival, the blue forest hides as each year passes by, but somewhere in mercy, there sits a kind angel. At night she arrives in my memory she fly’s. Goodbye, I go, the journey enabled, to the blue forest, a memory of trees. Open clock doorways to worlds and their fables, journey I journey with the boy, I know just beside me. Ever this land has brought my heart nearer to something or someone G_D means me to be.

It comes like softness unspoken, an undertone across bare skin, that sleeps next to me. It is so cold outside but here it is like April, teasing and pulling me saying come please. Arrayed by sight, led until I am able to know what is right, in front of me. Paths that gleam white in the blue forest. So many trails, which one shall it, be. A moment a knight, a sword on a quartz table. A sign that says pull forth and be free. Be stronger now and let the child see. What’s two in one G_D has set free.

And so, with this broken and most terrible day at an end, I retreat to my pillow, with only sleep on my mind, thinking not that the night before me offers a path of redemption for I and a long forgotten youthful mind! – 01.18.2019 – דָנִיֵּאל

 

Whiteclay


“Civilization has been thrust upon me… and it has not added one whit to my love for truth, honesty, and generosity”. – Luther Standing Bear

“What must we do, has become what must I do?” – DS

And he looks away!

He sees Whiteclay as immortal sometimes, and perhaps it is. A Northern Nebraska indention between the world of his ancestors and the fifth of Wild Turkey he holds in the very palm of his hand. He feels Whiteclay as an empty faced angel scorching the earth in January, alkali and snow mixing, bringing death to the valley grounds. So cold in winter, there’s not a sound, except the sighing of the last breath of the defeated.  The indigenous, such a nice progressive word, for the itómni man leaving town. The mist it rises barely, over worn blankets hiding flesh, their bottles around them giving unto them a twenty-second century rest. And for the record Bruce Springsteen you can go home, for your song Nebraska, does not come close to atone. Your culture of murder, and thrills. Nothing is real in these Nebraska hills.

And he looks away!

For a million stars that have fallen from this cold sky. A million spirits that failed to gray and die. Look away, he sometimes hears them say. Born to die, die in Whiteclay. And sometimes late night, when he’s so drunk, his greatest grandfather comes riding bareback on the back of a thirteen-point buck. His eyes are smoking, and his feathers gray and black. He speaks in languages that the old ones hid away. Sounds and syllables from way back. In his tongue there is no variance or broken sound, just a rushing river of the winds from the south. The questions he wonders the ones he should ask, always seem to stick in his mind, as his greatest grandfather looks back. For in the morning when he awakes there is no greatest grandfather, only the empty bottle in Whiteclay, and his headache.

And he looks away!

He sees Whiteclay as a metaphor, for the coming future for the whole damn war. For the differences between what has been and the future apocalypse for agnostic sin. He knows it is a place in a state of mind for the drunken Indian that has lost his mind. But somewhere in the springtime when it is not so cold and bare, sometime when the first grass starts to bare, then if he’s alive, he will start again. To drive north from Whiteclay to where this war began. In the dead of night, he will sing a song, do a little ghost dance till the dead of dawn. And from the point of past of where he might have been, he will look away from demons and try to rise again. And then he will toss the bottle of his greatest sin, and he will look away. Finally, he will look away.

And he looks away! – 01.14.2019 – דָּנִיֵּאל