Rock Me Mama
Just click that and let it play.
The friends you keep up with over time are the ones that matter, and I always feel sorry for people who seem surprised when I tell them I live with a best friend who I've known since we were 14, and I get even older friends I've known since wee-boy childhood coming through touring with their bands and what have you. That whole scene.
We all reinvent ourselves; we all go through changes; for all the excessively individualistic ideology we grow up with about identity in America, I think it's our connections in many ways define us as people. I'm proud to have history, maybe more loosely tied to my flesh-and-blood family than some, but rich with a pretty wonderful array of souls all around this great blue-green earth. My own world-wide-web. Ho ho ho.
I dunno; it feels like everyone is waiting for something. Sometimes it's that undercurrent of doom -- when will the other shoe finally drop? -- and sometimes it's just that fleeting, unprovable, but totally undeniably unshakably true feeling that there's more to life than this. I most often feel like I'm waiting on revelations, for some kind of heavenly inspired moment of clarity or strike of lightning or burning bush to show me the way.
They do happen from time to time. Maybe you wake up in some strange girl's bed and you don't ever leave. Maybe you just saw her face and it made you a believer. Maybe it's a speech you see, and then decide to join up with the campaign. Maybe it's the desert sky or a city skyline and sunset. These moments come few and far between, but they do come, and the best the rest of us can really do is try and be ready.
There's a bit I wrote in a performance piece about six years ago about being on the Edge that I'm remembering right now too:
There's a certain point where your heart stops, literally and figuratively, where you die, both in the biological sense and the Shakespearian, where the divine membrane separating this world from the next reaches its point of maximum tension and, to borrow a phrase, you break on through to the other side.
And I don't want to go back. I mean, who would? Fuck me if I don't want to feel that feeling again and again and again - it doesn't matter what gets you there: we all crave that ecstatic unconsciously beautiful moment, a moment defined by unity and coordination of motion. It's never static: whether you're threading obstacles at high speed, or dancing the dance from which all dances have come, or just lying still as a god and feeling the celestial clockwork spinning all around you... you are there, you are an irreplaceable part of what is happening, and you are undeniably alive.
Life isn't just a series of climaxes -- the holy waltz of contrasts can't all be high-notes; everyone knows that -- but there are these good and heady stretches of smooth-sailing speed that I wish I could stretch out better and longer and more often. Living free and easy with friends; having some kind of community or plan or something; a bigger-picture dreamland context and skating fast on smooth Zamboni glass. I miss those old monkey days.
My mom and I both share this feeling of always being out of place. I suppose we share it with a lot of people, being always constancly acutely in-between. Sometimes it's a blessing -- I make a pretty good living straddling gaps -- but rootless independence has its price. It wears a body down making your own way day after day.
And it's not to say that I'm really "on my own" ever. I've got friends and partners (and mom, like I said) and plenty of comrades too, but it's a shifty underground personal kind of network. I treasure my people, but they're few and far between, and a diverse bunch to boot. You never know where more of them might be at, and it's not like we have our own scene or anything like that. The New Cultural Movement remains, for now, a clandestine affair.
Phiew! I started off wanting to write about how I was feeling kinda lonesome, swimming around in the City and wishing it was just me and my people and my fantasy lover back out in dreamland, and how that Old Crow Medicine Show tune was plucking at my heartstrings last night having dinner with my friend Kim back in Brokeland, looking at pictures of friends from New Zealand, etc. Somehow I got all diverted off into the revolution. Whaddya know.