Archive for the Mythos Category

“If You Have Ghosts…” repost (Sunday A.M. Punk Rock Gospel)

Posted in I Heart My Love-Tribe, I Heart Tricksters, Intuition & Gut Intelligence, Mythos, Rock & Roll, Spirituality & Religion, SPOOKY KABUKI, The wisdom of the universe with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 9, 2010 by alphabetfiend

Well, lovers, the week started out nice enough what with spoiling the RobotBoy for his August 3 birthday and then a new little niece was born which was all kinds of exciting but then I made a fateful decision and let a 2 year old — my niecy, Thing 2 — handfeed me spaghetti. My friend Vince said, “Ah, you’ll do anything for a baby” and he’s too right. Pieces of parmesan cheese or stray bits of noodles fell from her mouth, onto her sauce-stained shirt, and when she gathered up this germy detritus with her chubby grubby fingers and aeroplaned it towards my mouth, I opened up. Yikes! I must be crazy! It’s a biological evolutionary power these babies have over us grown-ups. We’ll set aside our own good sense just to see ’em grin. Anyhoo. No sense crying over spilled spag. Now I am laid up and only barely human with a wicked case of strep throat. I’m missing Cyndi Lauper in a New Orleans club tonight and still unable to wrap my feeble mind around my half-done draft for this week’s punk-rock gospel. The Robot was gonna fill in for me but then he got sick too so I have decided to repost an oldie but goodie from way back when. (originally posted on the 28th of October, 2008.) Newcomers, enjoy! I’ll make it up to those of you who have read this one already. I’d give you big old smooches but I love y’all too much for that, cause I’m “naasty” as my niece would say and who wants my naaaaasty kisses anyway? Be well and beware of germs!

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“If you have ghosts, then you have everything…. You can say anything that you want and you can do everything that you want… one never does that… In the night, I am real. …I don’t want my fangs too long…. The moon to the left is a part of my thoughts and a part of me is me.”

These strange words, a mad shaman’s chant out of the speakers — volume LOUD — and into my atomic self… “eye” at the essence/energy level.

This was a hymn from the church I’d been waiting for. This was reckoning & rock n’ roll at once.

This was the theme to the soundtrack of my life. NOT one of those songs that I came to love. I loved it on first listen — in my bones, in my molecules, in the depths of my mind. If you have ghosts, you have everything. I had been waiting all of my days and nights to hear that song. I still shudder at every listen. It is my anthem. It is the mantra which saves me, its odd sequence of words spirit me off to my truest place. Where it is all okay. Not just okay but gorgeously fortunate.

Roky, my coyote in the dark piney woods. He howls. Pine cones float in the moonlight as organic odes to Tanuki and Kitsune. The coyote says “This was the life you wanted. How lucky you are to be haunted.”

If you have ghosts, then you have everything.

These spirits that clamour, who are they? Why are they here? What do they expect? They leave omens everywhere, valentines in the path of days. Instructional pamphlets? They are here because they adore you. You are who? The “universe’s darling”???  Who told you that? You have won their gaurded hearts. The telephone rings (Dad called it the “cosmic phone”) and the voice on the line is the voice you were longing for. The scarab in Jung’s window will knock with more frequency should he see that you too have twitching antennae.

Ah, to talk about what this song means to me is almost impossible! When the effect it had was to scatter me like seed while condensing. How can it feel this way?

It reminds me of Alice with the Drink Me bottles and the Eat Me cakes. I am ENORMOUS! Crowding, pressing, filling up. I am tiny. A nanotech hologram of all that I am, a portrait of Dolly Parton etched on a grain of basmati. Practically invisible, wholly infinite.

I am simply being forthright when I say that this song means the WORLD to me. Is there anything more in the world than this?

If you have ghosts, you have everything.

 

I have ghosts. More and more everyday. I feel their presense at the tips of my shoulders. I dream of complex impossible machinery and blame them. They are always watching, wondering. What now brown cow?

Some people point to their scars and say, “See! I have lived! I took the leap!”

Others point to frown furrows. “I have suffered. My heart has broken in a million places.”

Or to smile lines. “I have grinned. I have beamed. I have known joy, I have brought joy.”

I point to ghosts. They are the proof of a life lived on the curled up smoky edges of existence like burnt paper. They are testament to …. willingness? …. courage? … awe? … curiosity? … wonder?

 

If you have ghosts, then you have….

  • an open mind like a a wind-whipped hallway. Where is the wind coming from? It just comes.
  • a hungry heart. Skulking in the dark, turning over every rock, nibbling velvet moss, barky twigs, souls unlike your own, souls akin, a lover’s skin, a friend’s soft spot.
  • made allys amongst the gods, the totems, the sky, the dirt. Unlikely connections bind you to the hearts of others forever. Your allys fight for you with fervor and loyalty. They defend you against haters. When you are injured, they gather you up in cloudy limbs and carry you to a bed of soft thistle.
  • loved, you have loved to love, and that they are loved is no secret to those you love. You have grabbed their cheeks or pounced on their goodness. You have pointed out their attributes and celebrated their quirks and their quarks. Even their molecules feel handsome. You don’t withhold kindness. You take liberties with love. You lay it on thick.
  • been loved, always, and with such enthusiasm! They love you fully and fiercely. Even death cannot change the love they feel for you. It is more than emotion, it is a morphic field. It all gathers there, all the love that you’ve ever been given. All the compliments filed away, all the talismans built from origami & feathers, all the tokens of affection. And so many keys to so many hearts on a ring that clangs in your pocket. Lucky lucky lucky to be so loved.
  • you have found members of your tribe, recognized them, summoned them, exalted them, comforted them. SHOOK THEM.
  • not just people loved and lost but selves, moments, ideas. Pets. So many layers of being like tissue paper glued over glass. Illness, experience, dreams, injury, heartbreak, love, longing, learning. All the things that contribute to the complexity of your being.
  • had an unexplainable unduplicated drug like any other … wine, hallucinogens, tobacco, soda pop, sex… none of it compares to the ephemeral solace of the spirits that carry you, ferry you on a raft of peach skins, banana peels, orange rinds. You float on the current of time, space, electricity, wonderment. You crack the pod and lick the shell. The doorway swells with feathery light. You swallow the bulb and become a bulb. Incandescent.
  • no need for long fangs. No need to take, rape, steal, beg. If it’s not willing, you don’t need it. Hate is not welcome in your heart.
  • a glow-white lightning bolt of SPOOKY KABUKI, theatre of synchronicity, dance of the Mindellian demon. When the audience laughs, just bow. Whether they are laughing at you or with you, it doesn’t really matter. When you stutter or miss your cue,  you are Pee Wee Herman who meant to crash his bike into a rose bush. They will appreciate how you stop to smell the roses. Should you mangle a line just tie your mustache into a bow like your mouth is a gift to the world.
  • your toe in the water while the wave has its toe in you.
  • EVERYTHING.
 
IF YOU HAVE GHOSTS
 
If you have ghosts you have everything
If you have ghosts you have everything
if you can say anything you want
then you can do anything you want
If you have ghosts then you have everything

one never does that
one never does that
if you call it suprise there it is
the moon to the left of me is a part of my thoughts
is a part me is me
one never does that  In the night I am real
in the night I am real
the moon to the left of me is a part of my thoughts
is a pert of me is me
forever is the wind is a part of my thoughts
is a part of me is me
in the night I am realI don’t want my fangs too long
I don’t want my fangs too long
the moon to the left of me is a part of my thoughts
is a part of me is me
forever is the wind to the left of me is a part of my thoughts
is a part of me is me
I don’t want my fangs too long
if you have ghosts, then you have everything.

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The three paintings (above) are by the mind-boggling Miss Van who has captured my soul as well as my skin. Hopefully her brilliant renderings can help to translate my urgent over-wrought gobbledygook. When you love something the way I love this fucking phantom-tastic Roky Erickson song, your brain turns into a dollop of whipped cream. In the struggle to grab the meaning from its swirling vortex of importance, the writer looks like a hack and a zealot.

So please, please, forgive my words, excuse my raving mythos.

Just look at these masterpieces by Miss Van. 

Just LISTEN to Roky, my coyote guide, our city-shaman, our genius mad man who was spirited home to us at last. 

What God is to Goof, amen is to Aha!

God=Goof.

Amen=Aha!

Goof+Aha= if you have ghosts, you have everything.

Fur reals, y’all, not funny math. 

Thank you for tuning in/turning on to this special SPOOKY KABUKI edition of the Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel. 

AHA!
  

“Cracklins” (Sunday P.M. Punk Rock Gospel)

Posted in country music, I Heart My Love-Tribe, I Heart Tricksters, Music & Life & Sundays, Mythos, punk rock, Rock & Roll, Spirituality & Religion, Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 26, 2010 by alphabetfiend

I gotta find some weed and some wine! I just got to find some trouble sometime!  

They’re called The Gourds. They say their music is for “the unwashed  & the well-read.” I’ve oft-referred to them as “Austin in a can”…frothy, cold and startin’ to sweat straight outta the icebox. Pop the top and out comes the sound of Austin in a musty, malty swoosh.  

The Gourds are (left to right): Max Johnston, Claude Bernard, Jimmy Smith, Keith Langford and Kevin Russell.

Goof-damn, there’s been so many good gourd-carved memories!  

Hearing ’em live for the first time ever at the tiny Cactus Cafe, a room as big as y’all’s den; dancing with Leah at Antones, on one of her last A-TX visits before she got married and became Sophia’s momma; flirting with Cha by the lake at twilight as The Gourd’s tore it up cuntry-style.  

Then there was that sticky sunset, driving into El Paso on my way to The Unified Science of Consciousness Conference in Tucson (University of Arizona.) After a long blistering day on I-10, I celebrated crossing the Texas border (finally!) by repeatedly cranking “El Paso.” Cigarette on a rumble seat, drive all day got nothing to eat. I’m Drivin’ all day,  got nothing to get me to where I’m going to. El Paso I’m going to, El Paso I’m going tooo….  

Let’s see? What else?  

Ah, the annual New Year’s Eve Masquerade Ball. One in particular, at The Parish. I wore my elaborate indian headdress & daisy yellow tights under a black mini-dress (trusty LBD of the day) and all night long I played the hell outta my tiny toy accordion! We passed a bottle of bubbly (my prize for best-dressed) and we sputtered laughing cause it was just the kinda New Year’s Eve that you expected to have as a kid, while all the Grups were out partying and you stayed home to watch the ball drop with Grandma. The RobotBoy had a robot mask and we danced all night –rung in the new year right.  

Yep, so many of the gourds-soaked memories are romantic: like “Hallelujah Shine” on the radio those days, those nights in a dark dash-lit car, when the Robot and I were first falling in love.  If you want to meet the Jesus, you gotta go down there brother. If you wanna meet Muhammad, you gotta get in the water. If you want yer hallelujah shine, you gotta go under. You gotta go under Jordan’s mighty waters. This hallelujah shine is mighty dark & old!

If we ever get married — the ‘bot and I — we’d love to have an old-fashioned country carnival: snake-charmers, burlesque dancers, fried chicken and gin-soaked watermelon. RobotBoyLoverMan would don a seer-sucker suit and candy-striped socks. My dress would be all sweet & kicky; something shorter, since a long train would collect grass-stains. Instead of flowers —  as my “bouquet” — I’d tug a swaying, bobbing bunch of balloons. My bridesmaids would sparkle beneath paper parasols, six gorgeous faces shadowed from the Mississippi sun. Speaking of that sun! Let the sucker set! As the sun melts like a butterscotch, The Gourds’ll kick off a raucaus set with “Cracklins!” (Maybe later they’d indulge with a cover of Cohen’s “Dance Me to the End of Love.”???) 

(At this point, after 11 loyal years together, it’s worth waiting until gay marriage is legalized or until we have the budget for The Gourds.)
 
  
I’ve only  just arrived back here in Podunk, Mississippi, having come from Austin, Texas (at this point, I call both cities home… each one homey for different reasons) and after a long roadtrip, I’m thinking damn if it isn’t high-as-hell time that we featured “Cracklins” by The Gourds as a perfectly punk-ass Punk Rock Gospel selection. 
 
The song makes me wish I was a wicked cracklins connoisseur but no. I’m no fan of real-life pork skins. They’re stinky and they’re furry. I prefer my snack foods to be hairless. But hey, I got nothin’ but good things to say ’bout some weed and some wine and some trouble some time.
 

 

“Cracklins” is about recovery, reinvention, redemption! 

Reincarnation! Resurrection!! 

“Cracklins” reminds us that “living out loud” (as G*word would say) is a joyous & good thing — a great big noisyness, a holy ruckus, a prayer the gods are sure to hear!!!
 
I just gotta find a little trouble sometime.
 
When Blood of the Ram first came out( in 2004) I played “Cracklins” for my friend Mary Knott and she thought I was nuts! Especially when I started crying at the end — weeping really, like a stone statue of Mary. All overwrought & goof-touched. All giddy & awe-struck.
 
It’s been years and “Cracklins” still gives me chills.
 
Them Mississippi state police chased me, Pascagoula all the way to Metarie. I robbed a federal bank with a rack of ribs. A jar of sauce, some white bread and a bib.
 
“Cracklins” is an anarchist psalm & a trickster yodel. A holy hell holler & a crooked halo.

An ode to the outlaw! 

A sly nod to all that’s mysterious & mischievous & miraculous about the human spirit.

 Hot DAMN! 
 
Come all ye holy hedonists, this shit’s for you!

  

Listen up! 

Don’t read the lyrics until you’ve listened to the song or you will spoil the surprise at the end which is the very best part and the reason why “Cracklins” makes for good gospel.   

   

Cracklins  

31 days my fingers feel like rain. 

This jail was built on cracklins and cocaine. 

Policemen knocked me down and then charged me, 

With smokin and inciting vagrancy,

yes ‘ey did, yes ‘ey did. 

***

Chicken sneezed, eatin’ my cracklins. 

Buttercup, bloomin in the badlands. 

Kaboom kaboom, piss on the curses. 

Hospital, kiss all the nurses. 

I got to find some weed and some wine. 

I just gotta find some trouble sometime. 

***

Them Navasota troopers ran me down, 

Escorted me right out of town, 

For cherry pickin’ squirrels and feedin’ dogs, 

And dreamin of Jamaica in a fog.

Yes I did, yes I did.

***

Chicken sneezed, eatin’ my cracklins. 

Buttercup, bloomin in the badlands. 

Kaboom kaboom, piss on the curses. 

Hospital, kiss all the nurses. 

I got to find some weed and some wine. 

I just gotta find some trouble sometime.

***

Them Mississippi state police chased me, 

Pascagoula all the way to Metarie. 

I robbed a federal bank with a rack of ribs, 

A jar of sauce, some white bread and a bib.

Yes I did, Yes I did.

*** 

Chicken sneezed, eatin’ my cracklins. 

Buttercup, bloomin in the badlands. 

Kaboom kaboom, piss on the curses. 

Hospital, kiss all the nurses. 

I got to find some weed and some wine. 

I just gotta find some trouble sometime.

Time, time. I’m gonna find ya, I’m gonna get it.

*** 

I was eatin cracklins as the Feds were closin’ in. 

They watched the water as my car went rollin’ in. 

They dragged the river and notified my next of kin. 

But brother, pigs do fly and so can a man! 

When he’s full of fried pork skins!!

Yes, sir! 

Whew!

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Love love love! 

How ’bout a talisman to honor The Gourd’s teachin’? By PaganGypsy, only $5 bucks on etsy.  

 

In the mood for pork cracklins? See Emeril Legasse’s recipe for homemade cracklins!  

 Go thee to the gourds website  

Sexy Mermaid Vay-Cay Get-a-Way (for Alice)

Posted in Art & Culture, Art Lover, Buxom Goo Goo, Goof & Glamour, I Heart Mermaids, Mythos with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 14, 2010 by alphabetfiend

Alice has been fantasizing about “a luxurious, decadent, and totally out of reach beach rental in Florida, especially for Mermaids, I kid you not.”

“Mermaid Castle” is the oldest beach house in Crescent Beach, Florida. The house, once a small grove of cypress, sleeps 12 and is available for holiday rentals.

“Mermaid Castle” features a tiki hut, a jacuzzi and a swimming pool perfect for re-infusing our scaly tails with much needed moisture. Also — so we don’t get too homesick for Atlantis, which is such a sorrowful “itis,” just ask Alice — there are “breathtaking ocean views.”

It’s no wonder Alice is inspired to play hostess (with the mostess.) 

“What a tea party I would throw. Of course, I would invite the Mad Hatter, Foxy Trickster, and the illusive brown rabbit with the black spots.”

Did you catch that, sailors?

I’ve been given a sought-after invite to Alice’s tea party. That’s me, Foxy Trickster!

I just can’t wait to meet the Hatter. I hear he’s very, how do they say? Eccentric. Those are my people, y’know. The Eccentrics. Jonathan Zap calls us mutants, I call us mermaids. Some people say weirdos to which I say “Woo-hoo!”

Oh what a tea-party that would be!

There on Crescent Beach, sipping maitais outta porcelain teacups, stuck haphazardly with technicolor paper umbrellas. We’d munch on a rainbow array of Parisian macaroons shaped like swirly seashells. We’d play poker with oceanic ante: tiny starfish & coin-sized turtles with orange sherbet bellies. We’d nap in poolside hammocks as the pages (and our fins) flapped in the salty breeze.

Around midnight, we’d don sequin mini-dresses & fishnet stockings. We’d order dark rum ON THE ROCKS  and lure shy seaman, who would crash into us with the velocity of a tsunami.

Of course they’d be long gone come morning (er, some might call it “afternoon.”) We’d awake satisfied, dreamy-eyed and mop-headed. We’d gossip about the evening’s exploits as we lolled beneath paper parasols (like in our teacups, only big.)We’d flop our tails in the sunshine, trading sexy tips & naughty details.

“Like what?” you wonder, with your drawers a-stir.

Well….a mermaid never kisses & tells (outside of a tea party) but let’s just say that we use what our mer-mama’s gave us.

MMMmmm. Mermmmermermermermmm. Mmm.

Get it, knucklehead?

Mermaids are experts at fellatio!

(Or cunnilingus, for those of us who prefer femmes.)

>Wink wink < 

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The painting “Fishnets” is by the whimsical & wonderful Nancy Farmer. Prints are available. If you have some time, lotsa time, swim on over to the artist’s site. Nancy Farmer must be a mermaid herself because you WILL get hopelessly ensnared. I once spent several hours in her “net” and when I finally came out of her sea-song trance my shirt was soaked with drool and I’d grown a fine set of demon horns. Be forewarned!

“Cinderella” Dies at 81

Posted in Cinema & Filmmaking, Fame & Celebrity, Movies & Movie Stars, Mythos, Romance, Style & Fashion, Technicolor Pop, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 7, 2010 by alphabetfiend

OK, don’t freak out — Cinderella didn’t die because Cinderella shall live forever in Technicolor.

Ilene Woods died at 81. Ilene Woods was the voice — speaking & singing — of Cinderella in the Disney classic.

Woods was just 18 when Walt cast her as Cinderella, beating out 400 hopefuls for the coveted part. The fellas who wrote the lyrics for the feature film were friends of Ilene Woods — songwriters Mack David and Jerry Livingston — and so Woods sang in the demos that were submitted to Disney. Walt liked what he heard and gave Woods the part. How exciting that must’ve been!

I wanna be a cartoon!

I wanna end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard.

When I got my boobs & hips overnight, taking on a pronounced hour-glass shape of near fetishistic proportions, I was immediately hailed as “Betty Boop” by all the boys (much to my dad’s dismay.) The Boop thing continues to this day but before that, I was called “Cinderelli” by my father. If I felt the least bit put upon or taken for granted (as the oldest of six, I often had cause to feel grumbly) Dad would mercilessly tease me in sing-song, “Wash the dishes, Cinderelli! Fold the linens, Cinderelli! Sweep the hearth, Cinderelli! Serve us stew, Cinderelli!”

Only I had no mice or birds to make me gowns of cast away gewgaws. O woe! I want mice and birds! I want a perfectly drawn up-do. I want a pumpkin carriage.

I want GLASS SLIPPERS, the most dreamy and absurd accessory of all. As silly as the diamond-soled shoes that Paul Simon sang of, “People say she’s crazy, she got diamonds on the soles of her shoes, well that’s one way to lose these walking blues. Diamonds on the soles of her shoes!”

Yes, I wanna be the itty-bitty specimen of footly perfection that slips, effortlessly, into that magical high-heel.

It looks like Woods had a real-life pair of glass slippers! (She’s posing with the heels in the above photo.) Lucky lucky cartoon lady.

Ilene Woods said that the best part about playing Cinderella in the timeless classic was that her children (and her children’s children and so on) would be able to connect with her long after she parted.

I wonder if they’ve watched the film since her death on July 1st.

Maybe their hearts are still too raw for that.

Like Janet Jackson was, after Michael Jackson died, when the film “This Is It” was in theatres. Janet refused to see the film, citing her grief and a lack of readyness. Someday, she said, Not yet. Not now.

After my Dad died we continued to pay his cell bill, for months, because we couldn’t give up the comfort of that phone number. We’d call the number just to hear his voice on the message. It was kind of like pushing a big purple bruise, flinching, ouch, and then you push it again. When I finally decided to disconnect the phone, I checked his voicemail one last time and was astounded to find that calls had been pouring in, at all hours of the day and night, from family, friends, kids, cousins, nephews, even his dry-cleaner/tailor who had once turned the flag my dad stole from the post-office into a subversively patriotic shirt. It took me forever to listen to all the messages, as people spoke to him with desperate yearning.

How could you do this to me, Paul? asked one friend, You sonofabitch asshole cocksucker. Why’d you leave me here alone?

Losing a loved one is never easy. I can only imagine how hard it would be if your mother was CINDERELLA. Maybe it is too soon for Ilene’s family to cuddle on the couch and watch as Cinderella enchants Prince Charming. But someday they will and Woods is right, that film will be a gift that keeps on giving.

Bon Voyage, Cinder-Ilene! I hope you are traveling by coach. I hope the journey is magical and Technicolor and glorious. I hope you are wearing your glass slippers.

 

**For more info, see Animation Magazine.  **“I wanna end up a cartoon in a cartoon graveyard”  is from “You Can Call me Al,” yet another song by Paul Simon.

Your Own Personal Jesus (Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel)

Posted in country music, Music & Life & Sundays, Mythos, Spirituality & Religion, Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2010 by alphabetfiend

Have your personal Jesus call my personal Jesus and we’ll work somethin’ out. How’s Sunday work for ya?    

For this week’s Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel, I’ve chosen a song that’s gone through quite a transformation since its early 90’s hey-day. Originally done by Depeche Mode, “Personal Jesus” got a whole new spiritual life when covered by the late great Johnny Cash.    

    

Johnny Cash recorded “Personal Jesus” for his 2002 album American IV: When the Man Comes Around. Brilliantly produced by Rick Rubin, the album is a masterful collection of Cash covering songs by such diverse artists as Nine Inch Nails or Simon & Garfunkle. (Hurt; A Bridge Over Troubled Water) It’s clear from Rubin’s song selections that he’d listened to a lot of old Johnny Cash records. Each song is a glimpse into Cash’s psyche, soul and sound.    

    

“Personal Jesus” was an especially perfect choice and yet not at all obvious.    

Johnny Cash? Depeche Mode? Whuuut?    

C’mon, think about it! “Personal Jesus” was made for Johnny Cash. It’s a Jesus song! And damn can Johnny sing us some Jesus.    

“Gospel music is part of what I am and part of what I do,” — JC    

By 2002, singing about Jesus was old hat to Cash: he’d struck an earthly aching chord with songs like “Redemption”, “I Saw the Light” or (my fav) Billy Joe Shaver’s “Old Chunk of Coal.”    

Sinner? (Johnny Cash)

Johnny was the sinner striking out towards redemption.    

There was a sadness in Cash: an ill-healed injury, a bruised history. Yet Cash wasn’t brow beat or beat down. He wasn’t ashamed or unwilling to change. Johnny Cash was a work in progress… he was “Us”. For all the hurt his voice conveyed there was also yearning, learning and hope.    

Before I heard Cash’s cover of Personal Jesus, I never saw the song as spiritual or even especially meaningful. It seemed, to me, to be more about SNARK than SPIRIT.   

With that voice like an open gash, Cash gave it gospel. Personal Jesus” was never meant to be a spiritual hymn or religious statement. Dave Gahan reportedly wrote the song about heroin, after battling a nasty addiction to the stuff. (Guess that explains the snark.)   

Saint? (DM's Dave Gahan)

For me, the Depeche Mode version elicits memories of an illicit afternoon of stolen sex with my high-school boyfriend who was supposedly my ex-boyfriend (who should have definitely stayed an ex.) He’d shown up with his shiny new CD, hot to trot, hopin’ to be my very own personal Jesus. While he sang along,  fancying himself as unholy savior, I sat there thinking A) This again? What am I doing? and B) He bettah not be thinkin’ he’s my personal Jesus. Until I finally busted out with “Y’know you’re really not” and he said, “Oooh, yes I am.”    

Let us take a moment to thank our blessed father who art in heavan, for it was Johnny Cash who took ultimate and final possession of “Personal Jesus.” Sorry DM fans, sorry MM* fans, but it’s true. “Personal Jesus” is Johnny’s. Always will be. Sorry ADC but you aren’t my personal Jesus. Never waz.    

Everyone must find something to give their life texture and meaning, be it Jesus or Johnny Cash. We’re all setting our own moral barometers and looking for guidance — in the pages of The Koran or in the pages of Nietzsche. Whether we find peace in ancient psalms or Ginsberg poems, we’re all in search of the joy that obliterates pain, the light that illuminates the dark.    

    

What is more personal than Jesus?    

Often, when someone’s found what they’re looking for, they’ll become convinced that they have what the rest of us need. But spirit is a private matter. No one can save another’s soul. Even those belting out “Jesus Loves Me” beneath the same rain-pelted church roof  are singing to their own singular versions of God’s first-born.    

Historian/Author Stephen Prothero explored the many-faced Jesus in his book American Jesus. The book examines how Jesus has affected our culture and how our culture has affected Jesus.    

No religious personality has captivated so many Americans for so long as Jesus. Indeed, as Boston University historian Prothero demonstrates in this sparkling and engrossing book, Jesus is the one religious figure nearly every American, whether Christian or not, past and present, has embraced. From Thomas Jefferson’s cut-and-paste Bible to Jesus Christ Superstar, from the feminized Christ of the Victorians to the “manly redeemer” of Teddy Roosevelt’s era, from Buddhist bodhisattva to Black Moses, Prothero surveys the myriad ways Americans have remade Jesus in their own image.    

(Publisher’s Weekly)      

    

Whether you view Jesus as a diety or not, there’s no denying that Jesus has become an American icon. Chances are, you too have your own personal Jesus. We should all have our own personal Jesus! Who doesn’t sometimes need to reach out and touch faith?    

Personal Jesus    

Reach out and touch faith
Your own Personal Jesus
Someone to hear your prayers
Someone who cares
Your own Personal Jesus
Someone to hear your prayers
Someone who’s there    

Feeling’s unknown and you’re all alone
Flesh and bone by the telephone
Lift up the receiver
I’ll make you a believer    

Take second best
Put me to the test
Things on your chest
You need to confess
I will deliver
You know I’m a forgiver
Reach out and touch faith    

Your own Personal Jesus
Feeling’s unknown and you’re all alone
Flesh and bone by the telephone
Lift up the receiver
I’ll make you a believer
I will deliver
You know I’m a forgiver
Reach out and touch faith
Your own Personal Jesus
Reach out and touch faith    

This video is beautifully done — sun-faded familial shots of Johnny & June intercut with raw b+w photos of haggard looking celebs. (Kris Kristofferson, Kieth Richards, Dennis Hopper, Billy Gibbons, Kate Moss, Sheryl Crow, Justin Timberlake, Johnny Depp, Chris Rock, Lisa Marie Presley, Travis Barker and Kid Rock.)    

   

Who or what does your Jesus look like? Who’s listening to your prayers? What do you reach for when you’re all alone, just flesh and bone by the telephone?   

I sometimes suspect that Johnny’s personal Jesus was June.    

    

After June died, after they buried her, the Robot Boy was reading the paper when tears welled up in his green eyes. I was… surprised.     

Wow, he said. Johnny’s not long for this world.    

RB passed the paper and pointed at a photo of Johnny Cash at June Carter Cash’s funeral. Cash, in a black suit and tie, was seated in a wheelchair; his face was graven and distant. A man was offering condolences, hand out-stretched, but Johnny saw right through him, as if he were in a whole other plane of existence. As if one or both of them were ghosts.    

They’ll be one of those couples, predicted RB. It won’t be long, now that June’s gone.    

And it wasn’t. It wasn’t long at all. I cried and cried the day Johnny died but having seen that picture, I’d say I was prepared. I could see the peace in it.    

    

*Marilyn Manson also covered “Personal Jesus.”    

The Holy Banana is from Stuff That looks Like Jesus, a gallery of one Jesus after another, whether in a dusty moth-wing or in the chocolatey layers of a kit kat candy bar.     

“Dead Characters” (the Jesus Big Boy painting) is by the ever-brilliant Mark Ryden.“Jesus with Desk Lamp” is by Branden Martz (just one of many amazing multi-media artworks on view at his website.) Expect to hear more about Mr. Martz!    

American Jesus by Stephen Prothero is available at Amazon.

Sonic Youth’s “Sacred Trickster” (Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel)

Posted in Friendship, I Heart My Love-Tribe, I Heart Tricksters, Lipstick Shamaness, Mythos, Spirituality & Religion, Sunday AM Punk Rock Gospel, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 13, 2010 by alphabetfiend

Last Sunday was supposed to be a special birthday-honoring trickster-themed double edition of  The Punk Rock Gospel, but you know what they say about the road to hell…        

Despite my good intentions, I wasn’t able to swing both Gogol Bordello’s “When the Trickster Starts a Pokin”  and Sonic Youth’s “Sacred Trickster.”        

I was too busy eating bon-bons and being spoiled by the Robot Boy. No biggie. The glossy bow-topped packages and the birthday cake carried over into the rest of the week so why not trickster anthems?       

        

The “Sacred Trickster” is the first track on Sonic Youth’s new record. “Eternal” was just released June 9. It’s Sonic Youth’s 16th album and their first album since 2006. “Eternal” — cover art by famous folk-artist John Fahey — is the band’s first album on Matador Records. “Eternal” finds SY creatively-charged and still rockin’ as they return to their old school indy roots and revisit past aural forays:        

Twelve tunes that are a fireworks display of Sonic Youth touchstones. From the primal no wave attack of its earliest days, to the radical chording and song structures of its 90s period, to the more focused and contemporary explorations of the last five years. (Amazon bio)        

   

    In the song, Kim Gordon refers to West Mass noise artist Noise Nomads and French artist/painter Yves Klein.       

        

Sacred Trickster, I want you to levitate me. Don’t you love me yet? Press up against the amp, turn up the treble. Don’t forget.        

   

Sacred Trickster makes me wanna light a cigarette and dance inside my own smoky tornado. I wanna build bombs! I wanna be a girl in a band! I wanna wear my fox-ears to church and bang chaotically on the church organ while reciting lines from Ani songs: I’m tired of being the interesting one, I’m tired of having fun for two. Just lay yourself on the line and I might lay myself down by you. I wanna draw chalk mandalas or fly kites fashioned from old love letters.        

Makes me wanna press up against the amp, turn up the treble.        

Makes me wanna make noise, trouble, love.        

Mostly it makes me wanna ask more of myself: to reach down into my own heaving, hurting place and to dig around in the sadness until I’ve recovered the sacred.        

"LadyFox" by painter, Carolina Hardigree

  

And when I’m done asking more of myself, I’m gonna turn around and ask more of you. And you and you and you.        

I’m going to want you to do for me and to come through for me. I’m gonna want you to make me dizzy when we’re just sittin’ around. I’m gonna want you to levitate me. Can’t you do that for me? Can’t you rid me of all the steely hardness that holds me down? Can’t you blow into me with your breath until I’m light as air? Can’t you lift me from the bed — from my bondage, my ache, my sorrow — and send me up up up with the soft shush of a pink balloon. Why won’t you levitate me? Don’t you love me?        

Or do you think I am asking too much?        

I want you to blow my fucking mind.         

Is that asking too much?        

As Ani sang, I want somebody who can hold my interest, hold it and never let it fall, someone who can flatten me with a kiss that hits like a fist or a sentence that stops me like a brick wall.        

When did we stop expecting to be IN AWE?        

Why are we arrogant if we seek greatness in ourselves or greedy if we expect greatness in others? Why is it too much to want it all? Since when is the status quo enough for any of us?        

So I wanna rub elbows with the sacred, so what? So I expect you to levitate me, why not? Don’t you love me yet?       

       

The Sacred Trickster is that part of yourself that wants to steal the raspberries and chase the gingerbread man.     

The Sacred Trickster is the lover who makes you better by pointing to the bigness in you and saying Gimmee gimmee gimmee.     

The Sacred Trickster is the friend who cracks the secret code and then the nut and then a smile.     

The Sacred Trickster is the melody inside the noise, the meaning inside the poem, the puppet show theater inside a hallowed-out 1956 TV.     

The Sacred Trickster is the rock star who has you pressed against the throbbing amp… the writer who wrote that line (the one that kills you every time)… the painter who has convinced you to cuddle the sly white fox. You open up your cozy covers and Fox closes in tight, nestling, nuzzling, stinking like star dust.      

Who is The Sacred Trickster? He’s you and she’s me. That’s the way it should be.      

        

 Sacred Trickster        

I want you to levitate me        

Don’t you love me yet?        

Press up against the amp turn up the treble        

Don’t forget        

Getting dizzy sittin around        

Sacred trickster and the no tech sound        

I wish I could be music on a tree        

Noise nomads and me        

Levitating on the ground        

Uh huh uh huh        

Uh huh uh huh        

Uh huh uh huh        

Uh huh uh huh        

Whats its like to be a girl in a band?        

I don’t quite understand        

That’s so quaint to hear        

I feel so faint my dear        

Getting dizzy sittin around        

Sacred trickster and the no tech sound        

I wish I could be music on a tree        

Noise nomads and me        

Levitating scootin around        

   

Summon the Sacred Trickster! 

Thanks for tuning in to today’s Sunday A.M. Punk Rock Gospel. Enjoy this, the official Sonic Youth “Sacred Trickster” video as released by Matador Records. It’s ferocious fun in a Gossip Girl meets Guerilla Grrl kinda way.      

***The LadyFox painting (above) is by an extremely talented, emerging artist named Carolina Hardigree. We’ve featured Hardigree’s work on Cream Scene Carnival before and we will again; because she is brilliant, amazing and mythic-minded. My kind of girl! Carolina Hardigree’s work can be purchased via her own website @ Black Bird Fine Art.       

Sonic Youth’s Eternal is available on Amazon.

Porous Walker’s Modern Cave Paintings

Posted in Art & Culture, Lipstick Shamaness, Mythos, Psyche & Sexuality, punk rock, Sex & XXX, Sexuality, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 12, 2010 by alphabetfiend

I was born in 1974 on an evil hippy commune in La Madera, New Mexico. Then, because of the their hippy ideals and to escape the aforementioned evil, my parents moved into a cave. I’m not even kidding about that. In first grade I shared that detail with my friend Kim Koontz and her family. Afterwards Kim’s mom had a talk with my mom about my “lying problem.”

I don’t really remember those days in the cave but if I did I bet I’d get along famously with Porous Walker. I’m on a campaign to get a cave for Porous Walker. Porous Walker needs cave walls to paint on so that future societies may stumble upon it and have a deeper understanding of our culture.

"You're still a dick."

Do you have a cave for Porous Walker to paint? 

"You're weiner is so cool."...."I wish I was."

As you can tell, the man really needs a cave that he can just go to town on… do you think they have arts grants for modern cavemen in need of caves?

Walker has a modest rudimentary style. At first look his work has a sort of humorous doodle quality but then you notice those organic, geometric patterns, like honeycomb or tortoiseshell. You feel the reverberation between humanity and environment. Like an echo in the mountains. That’s the only thing I remember from those cave days… I remember standing on a precipice with my Dad as he demonstrated the concept of an echo. My age was measured in months at the time… I know, because my first official memory was on my second birthday (I remember that waxy candle in the shape of the number 2.)

Hello? Hello! Hello? Hello! 

I call out and you call back… hello? Hello!

Porous Walker is that voice in the canyon… the world talking back… an assurance that we’re not alone..

"Now demolish the skyscraper, Godzilla."

Put the word out, people, cause there is a man in need of a cave. Until then we will have to settle for seeing his art in a balloon-filled gallery. Porous Walker had an opening on June 4, 2010 at San Francisco’s Fifty24SF. The show was heralded as “Haricots Magiques: The Final Attempt by Porous Walker.”

 

In a open letter cum press-release, a far-too-modest Walker discussed his caveman urge to make art: 

I’m honestly a bigger fan of art than I am an actual artist. I’ve tried to stop drawing, sculpting, arting but I can’t seem to stop. I’m addicted to that feeling of seeing amazing artwork, ideas and feeling the energy and spirit that created them and than allowing myself to let go and just make what I want.

I really try to work hard on my drawings, and I hope to live long enough to get to a point where I make something visually pleasing as well as purely concept driven.

 I live in Napa. I’m 35 years old. I want you and me both to laugh more than we don’t and above all I want to inspire people to share what’s in their minds.

The (cave)man himself

Walker also says he’s looking for a job and gave his phone number so if you have a job or a cave for Porous Walker then get in touch with the man. His website is currently located at www.porouswalker.com but he is up to some kind of mischief with a coming soon site called “the other google” at www.theothergoogle.com

Jesus Christ is in my Sprite"

Porous Walker will be showing at fifty24sf through July 26. They’re website is www.fifty24sf.com

HELLO? HELLO!

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