Jim Trainer

Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

LEARNING TO DIE IN THE ANTHROPOCENE

In Uncategorized on October 17, 2019 at 11:00 am

This is an example of flagrant and audacious fraud, and a shameful misuse of public funds.
U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain

The most obvious shift is that the cost of living is so insane, it’s difficult to hire and keep new people.
-Elaine Katzenberger, City Lights

We Have Spent $32 Million Per Hour on War Since 2001

It don’t take much to bring my love around…
Shakey Lyman

THE FOLLOWING POST WAS WRITTEN YESTERDAY, WEDENSDAY OCTOBER 17, 2019, BETWEEN 4 AND 5PM CST

Feeling good is bad for business in Personal Journalism.  It’s off brand anyway, but deadline trumps all.  That’s why I set them.  Deadlines must be upheld, whether I’m disinclined, morose and fucked or if I’m fine, ok, copacetic and even happy.  I’ve used my blues, truth be told, like a bullfighter but who the fuck wants to write when they’re happy?  So I’m hacking it out and incredibly having a hard time writing today because nothing is wrong.  The worst trouble is no trouble at all.  Ain’t it, Reverend?

They were certainly having a hard time between 7th&8th on Red River this morning.  The city votes on new vagrancy measures tomorrow so the police and EMS were breaking up the homeless camps beside the ARCH and behind, in the alley.  Front Steps staff were huddled in a circle by the exit when I walked out with my parking pass.  Exodus.  The homeless are getting moved.  Tarps and pallets loaded and hauled away. It was hostile out there and that’s the first time I can say that–in over 2 months of reporting to the ARCH as a computer lab tech with Austin FreeNet in the pre-dawn and piss-smelling dark.  There was talk of an abandoned hotel and a town hall meeting but I left to go to job#2 only to be stood up by my Audi-driving boss.

The deadlines I’ve set, to release a collection every year until 2025 and post up to 1,200 words here every week until I die, are a deal I’ve made, with you and my own self-worth.  I prove to you I’m a writer and if I don’t then I failed.  These are the stakes and the dark motivations that keep me posting, self-publishing and anyway stepping into the light of day.  It’s this deadline that has me here in the War Room punching this out instead of walking around out there in the glorious Fall.  Meanwhile all those folks unwell in body or mind or just unlucky probably yearn to be in here.  This city is trying to sweep them under the rug but it’s too late.  Everything’s been exposed.  We all see it and we won’t be able to pretend disparity doesn’t exist anymore.  The 4th wall’s been razed and I’m glad of it though shit’s gnarly ain’t it.  The 4th wall coming down is what gave me my start, here, at Going For The Throat–and my charge is 6-1,200 words every Thursday, regardless of how lucky or unlucky I feel.

Luck comes and goes, but it’s mostly privilege that got me here.  Inspiration can be fickle but it’s only testing you.  We’re here, 444 words in.  We all know the score.  I can’t do anything about what’s wrong with the world.  But I’ll do my part and be glad to.  Twelve or so hours a week down there and with a new and roving eye for the non-profit sector.  Truth is I identify with the row and people on hard times way more than I’ve ever related to squares and even my Brothers and Sisters of the working class.  Bullshit bores me but the real will keep me interested and better, focused.  I don’t have much time for anything else.  I’ve got books to put out.  Hope to see you on the streets motherfucker.

THIS POST’S TITLE STOLEN FROM THE BRILLIANT ROY SCRANTON

 

THIS POST’S FEATURED IMAGE STOLEN FROM A DIPSHIT OFFERING TO CHANGE YOUR LIFE ON INSTAGRAM

 

2031, JIM TRAINER’S SIXTH FULL-LENGTH COLLECITON OF POETRY WILL BE RELEASED THROUGH YELLOW LARK PRESS THIS DECEMBER

 

WILL STENBERG’S NO COMEBACKS WILL ALSO BE RELEASED THROUGH YELLOW LARK THIS DECEMBER

 

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Shrieks of Paradise, Correspondence&Rails#38: From Brother Heath

In Uncategorized on October 13, 2019 at 4:52 pm

I’ve been feelin a bit down too but, my GOD!, how can you possibly even entertain the idea of a life lived in vain?? Let me clarlify something right now: you have led a life that is the antithesis of anything remotely vain!! And I’m not just fuckin saying that! I was also surprised to hear you say you don’t really care about the world when you’re one of its most True and honest shapers. You’re a brilliant writer, creative genius, etc. Of course you’re not gonna feel too close to the useful idiots that schools and societies churn out, LITERALLY, like a fuckin factory!! But just think of all the times you’ve helped them. How many times have you caused them to look at something differently or made their eyes blossom as they realized something very deeply they never would’ve realized if not for you. And don’t worry about the depression. It can give the best of us some serious guff at times but just try to see it as a dark cloud in the sky while you sit back and watch the weather change. An album I had been waiting 13 years to come out recently did and I read the final lyric of the last song on album which was “A tempest must be just that.” I’m assuming that “tempest” is a metaphor for life, here. Ha! And it’s true. A tempest cannot be a kangaroo! Right? It can only be what it is and we can either choose to step up and face it or run and hide like most people. I don’t think I need to ask what kinda person you are.

BLACK IS THE COLOR

In Uncategorized on October 10, 2019 at 11:00 am

I write her a letter
just a few short lines
and suffer death
a thousand times
-Irish Folk Song

What’s it like to be this shamelessly desperate for access and attention?
-Beth Lynch

She is his unwritten poetry.

All of it was made for you and me…
-Iggy Pop

I hate this place.  Last time I was here Dude was whistling to Run To The Hills at 9 in the morning, with a line of preppies to the door, and I love Iron Maiden.  Dude was normalizing it though.  It could’ve been Supertramp or James Taylor and they would’ve stood there waiting—pensive, frowning, self-important and upper-middle class.  Today Dude’s listening to some red dirt trash country and, again, it’s not that I don’t like music.  I don’t like it when it’s featured and an aspect of the barista’s personality on display.  Fuck out of here. Yesterday I camped at the ‘Bux on 5th. I’m back here today because I still don’t have WiFi in the new place.  I’m drinking their bullshit light roast and on hold with Apple through cans pitched jauntily over one ear.  Apple asks me what kind of music I’d like to hear while I wait.  43’s in my feed. Him and Ellen at a Cowboys game and 507,000 dead in the forever war.  I’m not in a good mood at the moment, it’s local weather but I am of the opinion that the end of the world is O-K.

At least 63 million of us think there’s nothing wrong with a minimum wage that’s 10 years old, that healthcare costs are prohibitive of living and the business of American politics makes it cheaper to die.  Then there’s the rest of ‘em—khakis and choads, beards and body Nazis who sip light roast and think Iron Maiden is cute.  Some, if not most, of these folks will even vote for Bernie but for them it’s a vote of conscience.  Our vote, Good Reader, is another matter.  One need only reflect on the rigged outcome of the Presidential Election of ‘00.  W. didn’t get the popular vote either but took the electoral votes from his brother’s state of FLA by a margin of 537.  One vote from you or me Brother was the difference between living in peace and prosperity and eventually getting mired in 3 different forever wars and pushing the economy to the brink of collapse.  Either way it’s ok for the upper-middle class.  These are the same people online “maintaining their integrity” should they happen upon W. and calling me an asshole for saying he’s a war criminal. These are the type of people that can make a fella happy about the end of the world if only to see them cry and be burned alive.  In fact the only silver lining to ecological collapse would be this cafe moldering, it’s walls ground to soft powder, it’s beams twisting in the charged, red radioactive wind.

I’m in a bad mood, sure, and I’m sorry about that but I sure as shit ain’t sorry or sad to see this rig get unwound and the human race reset and rid itself of these scabrous shiny-shoed cunts.  The only thing worse than them is me.  The difference?  I’m not happy being so entitled.  I commit egregious acts of self-import and ignorance every day and I lay down every night a lot less than a man and certainly not an honorable one.  At least they’re involved in living.  I don’t even have that going for me.  I suffer them and keep my circuit narrow.  I work and go to band practice.  I live on bacon and bread and don’t do anything without coffee.  I’m an entitled slob who doesn’t watch Ellen, didn’t support W. (or his wars) and poo-poo my own privilege in the prime of my life whilst shut in by my own anger and blue woe.  I suffer a great and grave anxiety.  It pocks my sleep and fucks with my bowels.  The end is coming.  If I never see them again it’ll be too soon.  It’s the end of the world as we know it and I feel fine motherfucker.

In 11 years global temperatures will reach catastrophic level.  Jim Trainer will release 2031 this December. Forty-six poetic ruminations on the end of the world through Yellow Lark Press.  Also from Yellow Lark Press, No Comebacks by Portland poet Will Stenberg. A poetic homage for each champion of American boxing, out this December through Yellow Lark Press. 

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Shrieks of Paradise, Correspondence&Rails#37: Some Silly Stupid Such Thing

In Uncategorized on October 6, 2019 at 6:25 pm

I need to let everybody that’s interested in knowing that I WILL NOT BE A PART of the Black Flag reunion show at the Hollywood Palladium on Sept.12th and 13th as I was told that my presence or services were not necessary!  At the very beginning of what’s turned into a complete mess I made a commitment to do the shows based on the word of one of the main players that Ron Reyes (Chavo), Roberto Valverde (Robo), Dez Cadena and Chuck Dukowski (The Duke) were all going to be a part of this and as of last week Dez is doing it for sure and Robo might show up…I’ve apparently been spreading vicious and damaging rumors and the story gets more stupid the further we get into it.  The bummer is that a large amount of people have already purchased tickets based on the fact that these shows have been advertised as “The 1st Four Years” but if there is no appearance of Ron Reyes, Chuck Dukowski or myself I guess that would make it the last year of the 1st 4 or some silly stupid such thing.

Thanks, Keith

BETTER

In Uncategorized on October 3, 2019 at 9:41 am

Me and you, what can we do
when the words we use sometimes
are misconstrued
Well, I won’t guess, what’s coming next
I can’t ever tell you
the deepest well I’ve ever fallen into…

I am sleeping well with more regularity these days.  It’s making all the difference.  I’m shitting like a good functioning biological organism, if several times a day.  Had a painful revelation with ice-cream on that end last week, but, let’s just leave it at no bueno and move on.  The fact that I’m writing about sleep and bowels is either a low point in my writing career or else the luckiest Goddamn thing in the world.  Let’s go with the latter ’cause I’m feeling good Good Reader.  The problem isn’t Life or trying to live your dreams but that when you get there and achieve what you set out to it’s still you there, reaping the reward.  I guess I thought I’d be different somehow and anyway done with the static of an over-anxious brain that wants to fight, fuck or kill at every waking second although bloodlust and dread often wake me early in the morning too.  If you ever made it to the shitlist you’re probably still there which shouldn’t be bad news for you.  You’re living your life and I mine, miraculously and even sublimely sometimes when I’m not enumerating failure or fantasizing about all the ways to ruin you.  Well.  Not you, Good Reader and certainly not us but them, always them–they who stood in our way once and are standing there still, which is my point.  These good days came with a price and this plateau ain’t Heaven.  I’m still paying for what I’ve done or up before dawn plotting on how they’re gonna get their’s. It’s Karma and it sucks but you can work at it like I have, put enough time in to thinking/feeling/doing better and you can burn some of that shit off of you. If you’re lucky you’ll find even more shit underneath to rectify or make peace with and the act of beautifying and making better can go on and on.

It took me about 5 years of sobriety before the treacherous extent of my past caught up with me.  It’s been harrowing and I’m not exactly sure what to do with these memories, to be honest.  I chalk this process up to authentic living but I’m not at my best while carrying this burden.  Sounds like it’s time to go back to the rooms and anyway get over a hump that’s decades old.  Might even be time to fold up the Jolly Roger and confront the only thing scarier than what a sack of shit I was for most of my adult life–a full-time gig.  The shifts at the ARCH are excruciatingly early in the morning, and incredibly bureaucratic at times, but fulfilling on a level I’ve not experienced working a J-O-B before.  I suppose I gleaned some deeper satisfaction as a caregiver but that didn’t last for several maddening and inane reasons.  Beyond altruism I need stability.  I need steady and consistent work but the rub is it’ll only have me champing at the bit and bucking in my pen.  I hate square life.  I always have.  I hate red lights and lunch breaks, pay checks and people.   I’m at a crossroads here but despite my oft-mentioned ailments I am healthier than I’ve ever been.  I feel tremendously lucky to still be after Art.  The written and spoken word and getting up there under the hot lights makin’ ’em know and giving them the what for.  It’s hard to write a post like this, when all is well.  Madonna probably said it better but, who writes when they’re happy?  I just finished Uncle Hank’s broken summers and if anyone is making the case for reportage at all times and for all seasons it’s Henry Rollins.  Besides, this blog’s become a check-in and bet I’m always glad to hear from you.  I’m including my email for you at the end of this post.  I want to hear from you–the good, the bad and the wiggy.  Tell me what you live for or that you just want to die.  Whatever it is, reach out and we’ll make it, Good Reader.

My earlier points on luck and Personal Journalism?  I don’t suppose I can complain about having something to write about–as inane as getting old and self-help might be.  There were years of my life, whole swathes, watching the sun slide down a wall, moving in and out of women’s houses, nights blotto and sharking mad in the blood-red dark.  My decade in the city of Philadelphia was falling down, getting lost and getting fucked.  The decade here was an upswing and reclaim.  We both know it’s been thorny.  All one has to do is look back a week at GFtT to see how impossible things were for me even such a short time ago.  The boon of posts like that is you know you’re not alone.  Then you reach out and I know I’m not either.  Let’s stay together, and, as Greta Thunberg says, see you on the streets motherfucker.

CORRESPONDENCE:
JAMESMICHAELTRAINER@GMAIL.COM
P.O. BOX 49921
AUSTIN TX 78765
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jolly_roger

Shrieks of Paradise, Correspondence&Rails#36: As a Creative Writing Professor for many years…

In Uncategorized on September 27, 2019 at 10:56 am

Hi Jim- Whenever Thom sends me forwards I just react. It really wasn’t meant in either a positive or negative way-just another prompt with some antonyms that weren’t even exactly line by line. As a Creative Writing Professor for many years, I can tell you it’s pretty common practice to take someone’s poem and work variations off the theme. Hope that helps. Peace and Happy Writing…

AM I RISING OR IS THE SKY FALLING?

In Uncategorized on September 26, 2019 at 11:00 am

A woman who was severely burned in a domestic violence attack in Vermont is hoping for a second face transplant after doctors recently discovered tissue damage that likely will lead to the loss of her donor face.
ABC News

Since then, some have moved away and I have lost quite a lot of diversity on my street. However, my homeless neighbors have increased in population.
Dawn McCombs

How can a seventeen-year-old like me suddenly be eighty-one?
Lewis Wolpert

The way out of darkness and into light is what you’re holding in your hands right now.
Belle Leaver

Hello darkness my old friend.  Suicide is taking up my thoughts again.  I’ve been here so many times–the perigee of depression, when my blues is closest and I’m not well and finally admit that something has to change.  Before you go on you should know that if you’re reading this I’m probably fine.  I’ve a long record of at least feeling better by the end of a post like this.  At best I’m taking an honest account of a lifelong sufferer of a major depressive disorder and at worst I’m spending some time out of mind, doing something besides being down.

Allergies have flared up.  I’ve a tightness around the bridge of my nose, which is strangely better than the rawness I had in my throat last night.  When I got out my car in the drive, I sharted and it shot down my leg.  It’s weird to be pleased about something like that but I’m glad that anything is coming out, to be honest.  I haven’t shit since the Presidential Election of 2016.  It’s been a nightmare and it’s brought suicide to mind often.  I can’t shit, or I practically shit my pants, and I’ve a sinus headache clamping down on my nose and temples like a vise.  I see little reason to continue living, especially if the years are only going to blow by at breakneck speed like they been while I’m shucking and jiving and getting little respect on the dayjob, not sleeping or feeling well and when I do feel alright I think about the end of the world which is strangely the baseline.  Baseline is we’re all going to die and at least be extremely compromised in or about twelve years from now.  I feel like shit and it’s the end of the world.  Why shouldn’t I be depressed?

The 40s are the strangest age.  Great in a lot of ways.  You get up to the vista and look around.  Almost everything you wanted is gone or you got it already.  Your chances getting the rest are easier than ever while paradoxically slipping away.  I can tour now because I have credit cards.  I can’t go out for months but instead have to do a long weekend and catch-as-catch-can it before I have to head home to make the money to pay my credit card bill.  The 40s are great.  I’ve never been so terrified.  I feel more fragile than I’ve ever felt but the trick is I suppose I know now, and hope to integrate, my weaknesses.  I see how depression has taken whole swathes of my life (and savings) when at the time I just felt tired or fed up.  Tired and fed up are very real and discernment’s the key.  More like a sword ain’t it.  Discernment can cut the shit between your damage and what the healthy voice is saying.  Because they come from the same place.  Fucked right?  Sure is and I’d never tell you different.  I started this post earlier this week when the scales were tipping heavy to the suicide side.  I’ve since got a new lease on life, thanks to 2 consecutive nights of log-heavy sleep.  Discernment.  I could’ve signed on for a 13-hour bartending shift yesterday but instead opted for a 4-hour mini Friday and a 5-hour last night.  I’m doing a double Wednesday which is what it is, and I’ve got 3 jobs over the next 3 days and a performance booked for HAAM day on Tuesday.  The Poem Of The Week needs to go live and rehearsals on the doghouse are beckoning if I want to be in fighting weight for 2 church gigs in October.

The difference between thinking that hanging myself might be alright and being genuinely excited about what’s ahead is 2 solid nights of sleep.  No alcohol (if you’re just joining us), no cigarettes or drugs, and no overselling or prolonged and late-night negotiation with the other sex just to get a taste and only want to split first thing in the morning.  Plenty of writing and water.  Prunes, too.  This is the highlight reel.  Plenty to be down on.  Plenty of reasons to get upset.  I’ve saved myself from the chipper this week but still wonder, like Sister Sarah:


Many people try to find a spiritual path where they do not have to face themselves but where they can still liberate themselves–liberate themselves from themselves, in fact. In truth, this is impossible. We cannot do that. We have to be honest with ourselves. We have to see our gut, our real shit, our most undesirable parts. We have to see that. That is the foundation of warriorship and the basis of conquering fear. We have to face our fear; we have to look at it, study it, work with it, and practice meditation with it.

-Chögyam Trungpa

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SEND ME YOUR ADDRESS AND I’LL WRITE YOU A LETTER!  #LetterDay #goingforthepost

Shrieks of Paradise, Correspondence&Rails#35: Dear Gallardo

In Uncategorized on September 20, 2019 at 8:40 am

The Office of Jim Trainer
P.O. Box 49921
Austin TX

Laurie Gallardo
KUTX Public Media Studios
300 W. Dean Keeton, A0704
Austin TX

1/26/19, 10:56AM

…the Zen master is evidently playing the long game—the longest game of all, in fact, which is eternity.
-TIME

Ahoy Gallardo

How instantly folks must feel at once connected with you, having experienced your voice in their cars and homes, and of course through the love of music.  The magic of these mediums is constant and being at the helm of either is unmatched. I love singing and playing music but I really love speaking into the cardioid and being broadcast onto the city.  I’m in awe of radio but more than a little jaded with playing music. For one thing, I’m not nearly as depressed as I used to be. I’ll have to re-examine the need to scream my fucking head off onstage, maybe even think about technique and that a song could serve something other than the devil inside.  The blues is just a good man feeling bad and I’ll be a punk rocker until I die. Of course it’s an ethos and we know this but my point is the reasons for me to be up under the hot lights aren’t as crucial as they used to be–thanks to psychotherapy and whatever Gods have fell in love with me. Radio on the other hand, well–nothing really trumps that feel does it, the absorbency of the atmosphere out there, the command and diction through hot ‘phones and carried on a radio wave through hard stanchioned walls and high-reaching steel and glass.  And when you put on Bob Mould or The Ramones and for 3 or 4 minutes all is well with the world, the knives of the mind have ceded and we’re still and completely engaged. Punk rock may be the most important socio-political movement of our time. It certainly dwarfs most of what the square public swore by in the 20th Century. Punk was unerringly prescient and for me it’s been my unflinching “why” and armament searing through any amount of “how” and fuckaround, red tape and small hours on shift and paying taxes, listening to the news and anyway shucking and jiving and taking what they’re giving until I can get under those hot lights or sit at the helm as the ON AIR sign goes red.

I feel a kinship with you and it’s not just the songs you play.  It speaks to the magic of the medium, that we can enjoy the music in the same way and at the same time but from our own corner of nowhere.  Rock and roll’s charm isn’t a deluded one. We know things are breaking down and that the world runs on power and greed. Rock and Roll doesn’t deny.  We celebrate, we shake and groove in calamitous tones and we celebrate how inadequate we often are to overcome the beast within. The heart can be savage and the confidence of decay may be our only faith.  Nick Cave and The Sea and Cake. These are all the reasons why I wanted to write you, reach out and say YES and THANK YOU. Afternoons in this town can feel like you’re waitin’ round to die and the tragedy of it’s compounded when you look around to see you’re planted on the hot tar with a horde of patrons of horrible Capitalism and a religion of money and death.  But you put it on ain’t ya and we revel the littlest inch, we rattle our chains and make it, off the deathway into the carport and throw everything down on the other side of the door just to get online and lookup the band that gave us that sound.  That thin wild mercury sound, that killit punkrock music and couplet that cracks the hard nut of solipsist suffering that is working full-time in the America.  Man, I really tried to keep this concise, at least not be entirely wild and poetic. This unhinged missive and cracked narrative only speaks to how much I love rock and roll.  Put another dime in the jukebox baby. I’ve no regrets for how it makes me feel nor even this nonlinear letter to my beloved hometown DJ.

Letter writing never fails to circumvent writer’s block.  I’m happy to be writing but I can only commit so much Personal Journalism.  It’s bad, Laurie. Blogging is a dirty business–it’s self-mired and passe, unreliable and insane.  It all comes down to craft, though, and only if the craft is being practiced. I’m sick of myself so I write about that.  I get unruly and blue, so, that too. I fantasize, ostracize and get wiggy with truth, or at least come to what Dr. Thompson has called the Wisdom.  I can get there and it’s usually a line or two that’ll bring me around on the idea of living that will justify spending some hours hitting the keys by a grey window and drinking AA-levels of coffee while occasionally blasting Shellac or Cory Branan before I dive in for another go round and exciting draft of Personal Journalism.  We’re all mad here.  Thank you for you.  I can’t help feeling like I’m in High School when I listen to you which leaves me wishing for my youth if only so I could burn through Marlboro Reds again, take black smoke into pink lungs, maybe read The Rebel and get inspired by the songs of the street, dare to be unjaded and move despite the acute tenderness of being in love with a world that’s destined to end.  There weren’t many good things about High School and sadly the worst things about it are only prevalent today. So are our days now. High School never ends.

See you on the airwaves.  Keep rocking. If the kids are united then we’ll never be divided.

Ab irato,

Trainer
Austin TX

And openly I pledged my heart to the grave and suffering land, and often in the consecrated night, I promised to love her faithfully until death, unafraid, with her heavy burden of fatality, and never to despise a single one of her enigmas. Thus did I join myself to her with a mortal cord.
-HOLDERLIN, The Death of Empedocles

SEND ME YOUR ADDRESS AND I WILL WRITE YOU A LETTER.  GOING FOR THE POST—WE’RE ALL MAD HERE.  #LETTERDAY.

HACKING AWAY

In Uncategorized on September 19, 2019 at 11:00 am

Deadline trumps all.  I wouldn’t exactly say I phoned it in these last couple months, but I couldn’t commit to the material and the deadline won.  I had to go with what I had and catch-as-catch-can it while taking an uninvited houseguest, learning a new repertoire on a new instrument and moving.  All’s well now I guess.  I had a little downtime yesterday and spent it just shy of the brink and at my favorite place in the back of my brain before I made the drive to Dripping Springs and reported to my bar captain, the trolling wench.  I sit here this morning with little to nothing wrong facing the green window at the writing desk, sipping the dark stuff with the fan blowing overhead.  Realizing it’s only been 2 months I been remiss feels a little better if not great.  The worst thing in the world for me is if my work suffers as I’m sure you can understand.

I set up my life in service to Art.  I took the example of working class writers and poets and take jobs that take the least from me mentally.  That might mean I’m exhausted but it’s easily remedied.  The kind of jobs I take won’t be calling me after hours and if they do they’d be wise to just hang up and save it for the shop.  In short I get paid by the hour and when I’m not on the clock I’m as good as gone.  The idea is to make it back to the place and bang it out on a manual or electric typewriter.  If my work suffers than I’m only a bartender and suffering the hard luck hits of a Boheme life for naught.  Point is in the midst of learning upright bass, housing and carting around an uninvited guest, working 2 jobs and moving and going on tour, I had to fly by my seat on here and go with posts I’d have rather sat on and anyway took more time to revise before I hit PUBLISH.  So I’m here today, at the writing desk, putting a little time in before I woodshed on the bass and get my set together for a house party in Wimberly this week.  I’m hoping for the best writing this and at the very least making sure this week’s post is written well before Thursday, when it’s not crunch time and I have to go with whatever I wrote because the 40-hour work weekend is looming or I’ve got to rehearse for a gig that pays $50 a man.

It’s a good life.  Besides having to remind myself of that constantly I can’t complain.  Though I often do, as the weeks burn by and I haven’t done the work, that is–put in the time.  My posts at the Flake News are a great example of how work can flow if you work at it.  My appearance on Dig This! in the summer of ’18 as well.  I sound informed and it’s on the breath–everything from the stolen election of ’00 to media and the end of the world.  You can refute a well-informed writer but you must esteem him as an adversary first.  Hell I’m glad I got those posts out but it’s not enough.  Well it was enough but not what I want.  I hate to be hacky, on the page or up there at the mic.  I was rusty Friday, at the Hearsay Poetry Open Mic and it was one of those nights you got to just get through, not exactly a bad night and certainly better than my worst shows of the past. Some nights you can only try not to suck.  It’s only rock and roll, but I wasn’t prepared.  Just like I wasn’t prepared to read in Brooklyn last month, printing out material in a FedEx on Market Street in Philly an hour before I had to get onboard a Peter Pan to NYC.  I made the nut in Williamsburg and read to 6 or so people who didn’t seem to care and I spoke and read last Friday and sold a book to Poet Christina Jackson.

I’ll get back at it–early mornings at the ARCH and St. David’s, corporate lunch in the triple-digit heat and rehearsing on the doghouse, really digging in to that thing and playing music simply because it keeps the depression away. It sure as shit does.  Even if I fell out of love with songwriting, playing the bass calms me, sets me to rights much the way writing does.  It sucks when this blog or the Poem Of The Week becomes something I have to do or even worse something I need to fit in between rehearsing and working part and full time as a computer lab tech and banquet captain.  It all sucks, I won’t lie, being conscripted to this life but it’s better than the alternative.  At least I keep telling myself that.  I hate always having to be somewhere and I’m coping by telling myself I wanted everything I have.  Half way through a slipshod life and burning everywhere, piquant with lust, dark and bitter and too stubborn to die.  

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Shrieks of Paradise, Correspondence&Rails#32

In Uncategorized on September 13, 2019 at 8:00 am

Beshert
6:10 PM

Funny how you can be in two places at once, isn’t it?  Funny as in queer and queer as in shifty, dynamic and mercurial.  We both know that accepted realities and truth, sane and staid law and order, are harder to believe, and by belief I mean in the truest sense, in the deepest body—the difference between knowing and being-believing.  Why should I be in New Orleans on a pew, sipping chai in the Bywater, watching Bernard lurch like a bear with his shoes off, doze in and out in front of the small volume of Kerouac poems?  Why couldn’t I be in the court with you, stalk thin and bright, and those matriarchs of your youth?  Why can’t this bayou air, in this town below sea-level, be the same air, high and white and far away, at another time on another continent?   There is magic to be had, to grasp and be grasped by, as the small illusions dissolve, as a sword of presence can sever us from all we thought we were, until we’re falling into what is, what truly is—the grand and molting illusion.  The dreamer and the dreamed.

Bernard is asleep but awake.  Our nights are different but the same. Native Americans believe that Crow are the keeper of mystic law.  Mystic law is beyond contradiction.  Mystic law is and is not.  Neither and both.  Maybe there is no you and me, two sets of eyes, two pairs of hands as one and at once with this letter.  How can I be there with you now but still be sitting here, in the past, in the Bywater, Louisiana?  When Crow saw his shadow he pecked at it.  He pecked and pecked at it until his shadow became alive and killed him.  The Crow we see in this world is not crow.  The Crow we see in this world is Shadow Crow.  Real Crow lives in the abyss.   Shadow Crow can do some impossible things in the real world.  He can shift and multiply, appear and disappear.  The real world is not as it seems.  Maybe the real world is not real at all. Night is here. Like it always was.  My dusk in Zimbabwe is over. Fly to me.

Jim
3/3/16

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