Monday, February 20, 2017

METAPHOR?

The other day I had to go to Newark airport which I hadn't been to in a few years. It was the United terminal, which I'm very familiar with having been in it many times since it was built. After parking you go in through the ground floor past the baggage claim area and up a short escalator to the second floor where you can check bags or get your ticket if need be and then there's two escalators going up to the next level where the gates are.

I'm used to going right up to the gate level, but there was a security guard at the bottom of the escalator on the second floor, and those devices they use for forming lines, with over a hundred people snaking through them, and then beyond that hundreds more people on a more or less straight line going all the way to the other end of the terminal, the length of a few city blocks. That's the one we had to go to the end of, but I noticed the second escalator going up to the gate level had two security guards and no line, so I busted my way through and went over to ask why.

The unpopulated line was for "premier customers"—maybe a term for first class and business class, or maybe for frequent flyers or something else, I didn't ask, I just got the visual and visceral reality of a two tiered system where if you're in the top category you breeze right through with no hassle, but if you're in the lower one, you're stuck on an endless line that represented not even 98 or 99 percent of the flyers at that moment but more like 99.9 percent or even more.

It seemed like a perfect metaphor, or maybe I mean example, of the ongoing and continually growing inequality of our society. Time to either make just one line, or if more, make them all equal.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

THERE'S A FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING

Me as "Captain Bubb" on the DEADWOOD set, the first time I ever rode a horse, which I didn't tell the casting director but did the wrangler in charge of the horses on the show, so he gave me a very gentle, sweet one whose name I have unfortunately forgotten, but who I rode for three weeks almost every day, sometimes in the saddle for hours, even in one scene (that got cut) galloping into the town and jumping off, over and over again, doing it perfectly each time (the repeats were for technical reasons), thanks to this sweet fellow creature who I grew to love in those three weeks...

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

MY VALENTINE POEM TO ALL

LOVE NEVER DIES

Lots of shit dies
Love doesn’t

Parts of me are
Already dead

But love isn’t…
My appendix

Dead and buried
My prostate and

A disc from my back
Dead and gone too

And parts of my brain
Cut out with the

Dime size foreign body
That got in there somehow

To cause so much trouble…
The twin towers died

And all those lost with them
Like a woman who was

Kind to me when
She didn’t have to be

Gone on one of those
Two planes, but

My love for her isn’t…
Five of my siblings and

Our old man and ma
Passed on now for awhile

But not the love we shared
When we were honest…

The mother
Of my oldest kids, my

First wife, gone, but the love
She and I shared never

Died, though maybe the
Like did…my first true

Love, too, the love of my
Life, gone now for almost

A decade, but my love for
Her, and hers for me,

Never died even thru
All of our husbands and

Wives and lovers over
The years when we

Were out of touch with
Each other, none

Of that stopped the
Love we both felt

And affirmed whenever
We spoke again like

The week before she
Passed still working

To help troubled kids
Find families, those

Kids still grateful for
The love she showed them

That’s still alive even if
She’s with the ancestors now…

Or other women I’ve lived
With who have passed on

Or lovers long gone
Like Joan B or Joe B

Her face so sweet and tough
Voice still admonishing me to

Just be myself and not
Worry what others think

His voice so quiet and
Stuttering in my ear as I

Write this, his image on
My bookshelves with his books

His art on my walls, I only wish
He’d lived long enough

To see it didn’t matter
How famous he did or

Didn’t become, his work
Living on among us

Who love it, exhibited
Often since he passed

Or Tony gone so recently
A young man who went from

Ripping doors off their
Hinges when he was

Upset with his wife and
Kids to the gentlest giant

Of many I’ve known
His ex-skinhead rages

Transformed as he turned
The pages of his life from

Anger to compassion
His punk Buddhist

Practice enabling him
To live with the rare

Brain disease that
Took his physical

Presence from us
But not the love we

Who knew him shared…
I think of him every day

As I do a lot who live
Now only in our hearts

…oh
Lots of shit dies, like

Almost everything that was
New when I was a boy

Including the people…
If you live long enough

So much passes it feels
Like another world…

But it’s the same one
Where love never dies…

—© 20013 Michael Lally (from my book SWING THEORY)

Monday, February 13, 2017

ART BREAK

So I've been getting these assignments from friends on Facebook to post art as a break from politics  (who maybe haven't noticed that I've been doing breaks to post all kinds of creativity since the great catastrophe occurred), but of course I have to rebel from the assignments and choose my own art works like these three from one of my favorite artists (though you really need to see his work in person to get the full impact): Jean-Michel Basquiat