May 25, 2015

Where the airdale used to lay next to the fireplace, now a fine cigar box with its ashes.  Next to the bed where the husband used to sleep, a bill on the nightstand for July's hospice care.  And where the wife used to stand in the kitchen now stands a different woman, in the same skirt, making the same rice pilaff, still making all the ends meet, whispering to herself that this will be a good year.  She can always sense the future.  A good year bound to come after so many bad ones.  This will be the year , she is always saying to freinds at dinner, when the quantum coin toss will come up diamonds.  She considers it her rightful destiny, because after all she was born in the shallows of a river as her mother washed the sheets.

Philip Glass says he's come to see his life's arc through the music he's written, which is all part of some great lineage of music.  His place, his life's meaning, is somewhere in that lineage. And so the writer, the doctor, the professional of any kind has a place in the lineage of a certain craft. But what if you have no particular craft, merely a long list of dreams?  What if your craft is solely in the lineage of unfulfilled dreams.

May 17, 2015

Weeks ago, on the day the governor announced the water cuts, we went for a walk in Golden Gate Park. Twenty-five percent for San Francisco; well, that won't be so bad for us.  We said.  But then think of all the lawn people, the golfers, the corpses, the car washers, the little kid bodies at the public pools.

It was early evening; the wind subsided. Quiet set in. As we walked along, it suddenly occurred to us, to me at least, that the park itself seemed to have gotten Brown's message. As though the very thought of what was coming had gotten into the soil and dried it; just then as we were walking along, just as we were talking about it, and here was the moon glistening and the sea roaring, and yet the park seemed like the hopeful patient told he's cancerous and suddenly he's quiet, hardly breathing.