I’m Super


I bought this for Oliver in Las Vegas during Ticket Summit. It say’s “I’m Super” and has a big blue star in the middle of a yellow cape as well as stars on his shoulders. I put this on and he gets to play “The Star” a character that goes around lighting up the world.

Annotated Poetry

I thought it would be interesting to write out the images I see in my mind when I read a poem, for one of my own pieces of writing. Here is an annotated version of the poem “As I sit here, waiting to die”. If you have not yet read it, READ THIS FIRST . Then compare the version below which has stage directions to see how close it was to what you were thinking when you read the poem. I would like to make this into a video at some point.

As I sit here, waiting to die

(An old man lies on the floor of a teepee like structure with a sandy dirt floor. The teepee is in a crowded pedestrian village reminiscent of one of the Mayan sites or Machu Pichu. The man is lying on his side, crouching over the center of the structure, looking at the dirt floor. He sits up, still watching the floor.)

As I sit here, waiting to die
I look at the ground
My little patch of the universe, temporarily occupied

(We focus on the floor itself. The man has a stick pushed into the earth. He thinks of writing in the soil floor. There is writing all around the structure and outside of it.)

I will till letters here with my fingers
I will carve a memory through this clay
I will tell them everything
(He draws a figure of a man and we zoom in to see it is the old man’s face when he was young, standing proudly over a battlefield of slain enemies. As we zoom in the initially primitive drawing becomes more detailed and the music becomes grand and glorious while we begin to gradually hear screams in the background.)
All I was
All that I made
A garden of my accomplishments and dreams
All my realizations unshared in a lonely walk through the world
(The man looks over at the other side of the teepee that is empty. Clearly the many has no wife or child. It should feel dead at first. Lifeless. )

(The man looks out the window at a monumental sculpture. It could be Mayan again or perhaps something grander like Easter Island. We zoom in on the statue’s face during this passage and then zoom out to see just a part of the broken statue, now a relic sitting in a gigantic window of a mousey old woman’s New York park view apartment.)
I know I am not a chief
I know my face will not be saved in stone
Glaring for centuries out the apartment window of a New York heiress

(The man look over, still out the window, and now sees a teepee being cleared out. Someone has died and people are scrambling to take their now unneeded possessions Fights break out. The floor of teepees are kicked about and writing erased, wooden stakes broken, etc. They keep fighting and fighting, no one taking control of the structure. At the last line a man is killed and we see his wife hunched over him crying and praying. Water begins to lap against her legs on the ground.)
I have seen them trample the earth when you go
I have been in the impatient hordes
Grabbing for the prizes, shouting and angry

Scattering to nowhere a lifetime of wisdom
Whole people cast away for a minor convenience
For such temporary shelter in such a long, cold season

(We zoom out and now see body is the old man, lying down in the dirt in the middle of the teepee. The floor has become a beach and waves lap against his legs. We pan over the body. He eventually lowers his torso to the sand and is overrun by the tide.)
And as the shore of eternity washed up and laps my toes
The muscles in my back relax
And I lay my head down in the sandy earth
And the waves wash up and over

(We watch the old man peacefully lying in the sand, which becomes a bed. The man is making himself comfortable, stretching and rearranging pillows and so forth. The man keeps alternating between periods of closing his eyes and trying to sleep and periods of thrashing about unable to get to sleep. We focus on his face then his nose, then we watching him breathing).
Why did I fight it for so many years?
Why did I pay such small attention to the feel of my body at night?

One should get comfortable first in bed

Your legs, your shoulders
The feel of breathing in and out of your nose

The soft hum inside us

I fought too long writing letters in this short blasted soil
And now instead mix my bones with the rocks and the flowers and the stars

(The man’s body is put through a sand shaker and gradually he disappears amongst the waves. We focus on a very content face. As the body decays and disappears the smile is so calm. So satisfied.)

And floating now on the endless sea
My skin it keeps me warm enough
And I smile and let go
I smile and let go

As I sit here, waiting to die

As I sit here, waiting to die
I look at the ground
My little patch of the universe, temporarily occupied

I will till letters here with my fingers
I will carve a memory through this clay
I will tell them everything
   All I was
   All that I made
   A garden of my accomplishments and dreams
   All my realizations unshared in a lonely walk through the world

I know I am not a chief
I know my face will not be saved in stone
Glaring for centuries out the apartment window of a New York heiress

I have seen them trample the earth when you go
I have been in the impatient hordes
Grabbing for the prizes, shouting and angry

Scattering to nowhere a lifetime of wisdom
Whole people cast away for a minor convenience
Such temporary shelter in such a long, cold season

And as the shore of eternity washes up and laps my toes
The muscles in my back relax
And I lay my head down in the sandy earth
And the waves wash up and over

Why did I fight it for so many years?
Why did I pay such small attention to the feel of my body at night?

One should get comfortable first in bed

Your legs, your shoulders
The feel of breathing in and out of your nose

The soft hum inside us

I fought too long writing letters in this short blasted soil
And now instead mix my bones with the rocks and the flowers and the stars

And floating now on the endless sea
My skin it keeps me warm enough
And I smile and let go
I smile and let go

Profit C

i smile against the mushroom cloud
the dark fogs fear my steel-tipped laughter

and still
they knock him down again
(and by him I mean me of course)
and they beat him
and call him foul names in booming ugly voices
and they rip his clothes
and tear his hair out

all the time shouting evil secrets that no sane ear can hold
all the while spinning in tighter circles
until
at the end
the vultures round wound
and down fell the dusk sun to evening

I still kick against the walls
I never learned it from my mother,
how
to stop.
to stop kicking against the womb that nurtures you
to stop ripping out the strings that bind you to the heart of the world

All I have left to kick with now though,
Back-broken and tired old man as I am,
All I have left are these few chuckles
Precious shells in my gun,
Blasted ever outward
A star consuming the universe

a new me

i wake up sometimes
thinking perhaps there was a different me
or would have been
if i hadn’t bashed his brains out
if i hadn’t broken his heart
and taken his dignity
and dragged it through the streets, bloody

but every time i think it
i grow older and older
and the me i see is older
sometimes wiser
sometimes worse

and of course you try to better yourself
and of course you lift your neighbors up
and of course you smile when you are tired
when you are right, but she needs to win
and you are smarter,
but too chicken to speak up
and you are tougher
but rougher too
so far that they think you a buffoon
or worse, a bore

when you are up and down and sideways twisted,
when you are blistered tongued and feeble
when you are so angry the fear no longer stops you,
overwhelmed by the underwhelming everywhere
i will lift you up, i tell myself
i will lift you up

nothing ever ends

if there is one thing we should learn from Buddhism it is
that nothing ever ends

the dead come back,
resurrected as the selves they strove so hard to create

the clouds fly on with the carelessness of well fed birds

the rain washes into gutters
and rivers
and swimming pools
and over the faces of dogs
and under the feet of the wicked

and you and I
again and again
will wake to new surprises

and all our carefully tended gardens will grow wild
and all our well oiled machines will grumble and grind down
and all our enemies will eventually impress us
and friends will lift us up and let us down
tortured yo-yos on a string that never fully unravels

and this makes life at once both terrifying and exciting

the darkest cave has holes we can wind through
the deepest well has cracked walls we can claw against
as we lift and scurry and tumble
and try to stand still as the world spins and the crows mock us

but we forget

we watch the second hand tick so regularly
along the patterns of our watches
so carefully drawn in parallel lines

as if every moment could be measured against every other
and a first kiss could be compared to a simple breath taken while sleeping
because both take just a moment

and when fate lifts us we see a world full of heavenly mountains
and when fate drops us we see only endless craters
as if we’ve awoken on the moon

and we fear every day will hold more of the same
and all our dreams will drain away
below the earth to the land of forgotten yesterdays

but nothing ever ends

if we just sit still and calm
a rock in a stream
the sun will paint us in a million colors in the span of a day
the trees will serenade us with a symphony
of gusts
and still moments
and muted sounds
and glaring angry noises

and if I hold your hand and close my eyes
the atoms that make a simple piece of a simple man
will tingle with a thousand joys undiscovered to the rushed and the preoccupied

it will get better
and worse
and unbearably bad
and undeniably joyous

and you and I will see it all
never ending
never fully settled
but never trapped either

so hold me now
in the midst of this infinite chaos
and feel the strings in our hearts
stretched to what feels like breaking
plucked by fate
so they can resonate with the joyous music of a life lived in the world