Friday, June 3, 2011

Obstacle II.

Obstacle II



It’s been so long since we’ve written to each other. A week. I know. But you always know how I miss you when you’re gone. It’s irrational. Until you tell me the same thing. Sometimes it makes no sense. But what does in this world? Did you get the book I sent you? You have to read it. Tell me you still read the books out loud and in character. I do.

Memphis came by last week. He told me about this fire that was happening at Hunter’s Point. I went with him to the fire. They were burning all these copies of Anna Karenina and the fire was green with life. I knew. I just knew that this was the last time I’d ever see a copy of Anna Karenina. Can you remember when we spent those three weeks in June reading the book chapter by chapter across the wire? You’d skip ahead when I’d only read my chapter. Anyway, I’m a little sad that we’ll never do that again. The fire wasn’t limited to books this time.

Memphis wanted to warn me when they brought out the paintings but there wasn’t time. One by one they hung the portraits and lit fire to the bottoms of the canvas. I’d never seen anything quite like it. The colors were enveloped by black smoke and flames. The smell was unlike anything else. The chemicals released into the air were noxious. As they grew intense the crowd of onlookers began to disperse. Memphis wanted to grab a Rembrandt and run, but the men, there were men with black suits staring at the crowd with their weapons armed and ready to fire.  

Are there enough words left in the English language? Can an action ripple across the pond of life?




Words are meaningless even with sounds. The actions with the strongest ripples reach to the ends of life’s flowing pool of water.

It’s always too long and too short when we’re away from each other’s messages. There is no other way now.  A week is nothing when you think of the time that’s passed since we had to start this way. Sense, it makes plenty on the inside and that ought to be enough. For who else needs to understand. The book. Please don’t risk that again. I’ve read it. Enjoyed thoroughly. Sending anything banned is a criminal offense.

I’m happy and sad to hear about Memphis hanging around. Happy that he’s still in your life. Sad because I cannot see his smiling face. The joker’s wilder than a mad hatter but he’s a good one. Sort out your papers and bring him to the next round. I miss your face. And his.

The paintings are unfortunate. By any chance did you see it? That’s why you went isn’t it? He’s still looking for the piece. I couldn’t hope to believe that it’s survived this long. You have to find a way to get word to me if it’s still out there. The books are a tragedy. Such beauty in that story. I remember how we read that one. We ought to do it again. I’ve been thinking of revisiting Moby Dick. Would you care to call me Ishmael? YES, I still read them in character. I’m not surprised that you do as well. Let’s not spend another minute saying we should. I’ll take the first chapter and you grab the second. Leave word in our usual places.

Can a rainbow hold both the weight of real and imagined? Is there a beginning and end of that argument? 




The rainbow like the elusive white whale has basis in both reality and the imaginary. There is a beginning and an end to the argument because there is no argument.

Memphis tells me that the books aren’t fraudulent or breaking any laws when they are chosen to be burned. They’re destroyed for content. It seems that the color of the paper indicates a year or time when printing. The last copy of Moby Dick sold at Sotheby’s for a fraction of value. Can you put a price on value?

Ishmael? I think that’s exactly what we’ll call you. Go ahead and start then we’ll go from there. Please leave word on the top of the yarn at the bar on 8th.

Just because it’s raining doesn’t mean the sun won’t shine, does it? When we stop believing in magic as children does it make it any less real?




The sun can shine even when it’s raining. Stranger things have happened even miracles. There is always magic when you believe in it. Children can believe in nothing but that is still something.

Memphis is correct. The books wouldn’t be frauds or law-breakers until they’re restricted. The burning is about the need... about control rather than fulfilling a need to solve a problem.  The content can open our eyes and inform. The knowledge is never the problem. It is what we choose to do with the knowledge gained that can change the world. There is little to be done with words in a book. Now the actions on the other hand, when based on knowledge plenty can be done.

No riddles this round my dear. There is little time. Enclosed find a book. Keep it hidden. Take its words to action. I’ll be around when there is time.  


Letters. Obstacle 2. I wrote Obstacle 1 during the summer. It was about books. Since I’ve finally spun full circle with “in dreams” and “asleep” I thought why not drag things back around. There are very few things in this world that I press upon people, but knowledge is one of them. I firmly believe that you can be well read versus well schooled. Wisdom is not earned by how many years you have gone to school. Wisdom is a bit different. It is what you learn and how you apply it to living. Reading is a basic right that you do not need to earn. You may not be a reader, but it could be what you are reading. Trying picking up a book that peaks your interest, then expand and challenge yourself to learn more.

The writing has been... a slow spinning table. YES! The other projects… I’m researching, working, setting up deadlines and trying to get these older things tied up. And now I’m off for the weekend once again. Can’t complain though. This time to see my favorite Zen master, my sis who promises me a sleeper hold this round. Ever wrestle with your siblings? There is a lifelong friendship in our sisters and brothers. Needless to say if you don’t have siblings it’s hard to share that sentiment. Friends are a little bit different even when they are just like family. Anyway… have a great weekend. Enjoy life love and breathing. It’s too short and too long not to. Kisses. m.

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