"...to enclose the present moment; to make it stay; to fill it fuller and fuller, with the past, the present and the future, until it shone, whole, bright, deep with understanding."

Virgina Woolf, The Years


Love and Freedom VIII - Magnetic pink and evolve princesslike, or What voice in what wilderness? (Love and obedience II)

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked,  
dragging themselves through the negro streets at dawn looking for an angry fix,  
angelheaded hipsters burning for the ancient heavenly connection to the starry dynamo in the machinery of night,  
who poverty and tatters and hollow-eyed and high sat up smoking in the supernatural darkness of cold-water flats floating across the tops of cities contemplating jazz, 
who bared their brains to Heaven under the El and saw Mohammedan angels staggering on tenement roofs illuminated
- Howl, by Alan Ginsberg

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by wedding planners, dieting, in shapewear, 

dragging themselves in cute outfits through the freezer section for the semifreddo bender,

blessed innovative cloister girl pin-ups burning to know the rabbi of electricity in poverty, obedience, in the dream stick of opium and the green Wi-Fi fuse,

not allowed to explore alleys or ride the rails or hitchhike either because of the magnetic pink and with all the years of training before spread out boundless the rules and safety tiresome before them,

who busted out against parents’ wishes clattered cross-county in a Model T with another girl to see the iron pyrite fool’s gold The West and the finally wide open-legged Pacific zones,

who talked all night in the tourist camps and were up with the sun and snappish with hunger,

the navigators in terror of the steep mountain road refreshing the radiator with water inhaling the rust steam fragrance of open road red oxygen metal and a lunar happiness,

who listened while the mechanic romanced over velocity and atonement die-stampings on sheet steel and drop forgings while the diner waitress ground out pies and pies and pies,

wandering nylons suffering while the word of engagements and new babies began its bone descent by mother’s phrasing and martini lunch date with the old school of the hot comb and the inner ear,

who broke up with boyfriends and walked tap heels on streets for dentist’s appointment a doctor’s appointment an interview a newspaper grocery dinner tomato,

who found the sublet which for what she was making she could afford but the roommate had trouble with rent alarm clock rooster cock boyfriend,

who saw her clothing was available in size 00 so it was time to disappear entirely, 

who listened to the TODAY show while she Kindled exasperated on an exercise bike in the new pink Manhattan Island 22.7 square miles of dawn,

who carried her infant in a baby sling she designed herself out of thrift store fabrics,

who wept because caesarean was a term for last resort, having felt cheated by the dictionary of the pain of real meaning and deliverance of child into atmosphere,

who anyway flamed ardent and breathless in illuminated swinging as she sang lulling smooth neurons already waddling inside the babygirl’s palimpsest brain,

who watched the girl with highlights blow her boyfriend and then blew her boyfriend and then copulated analytically with a stranger waiter painter truck driver in a sorcery of forgetfulness, 

who is up nights and days peeing restlessly endlessly with nothing but cranberry cranberry cranberry eucharist for the body’s  unyielding sciences and the UTI of the Punishing Boy God who decided who wins,

who felt the embryo always crunching futures with crushing weight of the fixed decree by which the laws of the universe are prescribed the bitch of necessity the bitch of chance and the DNA overlord,

who from curiosity and an old curse tried the spinning wheel in the coldest room of the castle and spilled drops of blood on the snow, fell into a sleep that would last a hundred years, until, what else, a boy kisses her,

who lost her virginity to the three bad playing cards in cardboard plastic coated false love the slippery wet Jack of Text Messages the forcible Jack of All Fours the odd can opener of need filled by the One-Eyed Jack who finally demystifies though it turns out not only slightly painful but truly unpleasant, followed by all the new information, 

who burned her novel this actually happened destroyed a second Bell Jar dedicated to him call her impossible but the leapt from it must have been split-second maddening rapturous,

who blew him three times and then his friend because it was hard to say no when you say no nobody likes you as much when you say yes or even whatever you are loved into momentary relevance existence,

who begged twenty dollars from each friend to pay for a secret abortion, her man needing the child but not her to show his father manliness by imperialism of the womb and eventual abandonment like any suburban mall, 

who should have been on the road but for the uterus repeatedly renewing its lease convincing energy affirmative right honey that’s right honey right there,

who gave a light touch delicate hand beautiful chisel cheek blonde wave Mother Image Madwoman chick and ignu driving inward toward an isolated, lonely peace, 

and lived the biography filled however with biographies of the others for which she made a home flashbulbed in silver their likenesses and tried love in living room, attic, slanted redeemable love their fingers articulated like saints,

who after the understandable and recognizable desire loveshape would then expand, against his will and this was a shame, this lie abandonment anger congenital analgesia against hope plan bugout for ten years,

returning in her saffron clothes her flat dimension the mother saint devotion song of spiritual angers lovingly pressed into an incense cone of spirituality, her image carved by apostles among the lonely goat forgotten sheep infant in cozy rags framed by any window to be honored in her eternal loneliness,

Amherst’s Evergreens’ First Congregational’s cupola and conservatory hothouse echoing pure song and archway and hymnal restraint, Daisy who bends her smaller life to his in her fenced-in field within which the horse can gallop wildly as she likes, grieve her your best girl

with a still, restrained, almost annoyed sigh, what voice in what wilderness, minutest cricket, most unworthy flower I will never be tired—I will never be noisy I will be your best little girl— nobody else will see me, but you — but that is enough — limitlessness, wilt thou say,

ah, ladies, good night, good night, good night ladies —

and who therefore know the biology of the soft matter and the cluster of creation in its salty stellar lonely archive is matched by the sweet violence of thought,

the madgirl and saint unrecognized and writing madrigal in bedroom and recipe in library and songs during class and sketching sunflowers for what’s left of us,

and remains magnified sanctified we should be allowed Yitgadal v’yitkadash sh’mei raba Acanthus whorled and dense and impossibly real multiplying in fields an abundance of sunflowers serious beauty,

with blooming, ridiculous with blooming, arriving and opening in endless profusion forever. 

Excerpts from Amy Newman's Howl

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